It’s National (Vegan) Grilled Cheese Day!

Written by Katie Vann

cheese-contest

Who doesn’t love a good vegan grilled cheese sandwich? That’s why we’re putting a compassionate spin on this food holiday, making it National (Vegan) Grilled Cheese Day. And to celebrate, we’re sharing our award-winning gourmet vegan grilled cheese recipe!

Last year, COK competed in the 10th Annual Grilled Cheese Invitational (GCI) at the Pasadena Rose Bowl–and we took home the trophy for 3rd place in the professional chef category!

The best part? We competed against non-vegan sandwiches, and last year marked the first time that a vegan version of this classic comfort food took home home a trophy. Judges and participants were shocked when they discovered, after announcing the winners, that our grilled cheese sandwich was 100% vegan!

This award helps demonstrate that vegan eating doesn’t mean giving up flavor–it simply means choosing the cruelty-free versions of our favorite foods. We hope more people have given vegan cheese a try since this contest. After all, dairy products are incredibly harmful to animals, the planet and our health.

Our winning Honey Pot (dessert) entry, The Aurora Borealis (recipe below), featured sourdough bread fried in vegan butter and maple syrup; filled with Daiya Mozzarella, Tofutti Cream Cheese, and brandy soaked peaches; and was topped with swirls of blueberry and strawberry reductions made from scratch.


Aurora Borealis Vegan WinnerThe Award-Winning Aurora Borealis

  • 2 slices thick rustic sourdough bread
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • 3 tbsp Daiya Mozzarella Shreds
  • 3 tbsp Tofutti Cream Cheese
  • ½ peach, peeled and soaked in a combo of 50/50 brandy and simple syrup
  • 1 pound of berries
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup orange juice

Berry Reduction Sauce 

  1. Mash berries with sugar and juice and let set for at least an hour.
  2. Pour berry mixture into a small pot, place over low heat, and lightly simmer for 20-30 minutes, or until liquid has reduced by almost half.
  3. Strain out large bits and seeds (optional) and refrigerate in a glass jar (keeps for about a week).

The Sammich

  1. Melt one tbsp of vegan butter and maple syrup in a nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Drop one side of the bread into mixture and remove. Then add another tbsp of the vegan butter and syrup in the pan and place the dry side of the bread into the mixture.
  3. Leave the bread on the heat and grill until the sugar has caramelized and is golden brown.
  4. Flip the bread and immediately add the Daiya cheese on ONE slice of the hot side of the open bread and smear the cream cheese on the other slice of hot bread.
  5. Slice the peach and stick onto the cream cheese.
  6. Stick the two open sides of bread together and continue to grill, flipping once, until both sides are crispy and middle is hot.
  7. Cut in half and drizzle with Berry Reduction.


Looking for something a little simpler? All you need is two slices of bread and a little bit of vegan cheese!