Zucchini Grillini Panini {Jason’s Deli Copycat}

Carnivore and Herbivores alike…this sandwich is crazy good!
I’ve finally gotten around to recreating one the tastiest, yet simple, sandwiches from one of my favorite deli chain restaurants. Jason’s Deli makes some wonderful food, but their Zuccini Grillini is FABULOUS! I get mine with the blue corn tortilla chips and salsa.

Even though summer is coming to an end {sniff, sniff}, our gardens and farmers markets are still bursting here in the Midwest with vegetables! This sandwich is a great way to pull them all together and make something delicious. You can really put anything in here, but with my initial attempt here, I tried to stay true to the real deal! {All except the bread and cheese.}

Ingredients I used:

  • Trader Joes Italian loaf bread
  • Trader Joes roasted red pepper hummus
  • Organic Spinach
  • sliced tomatoes
  • sliced red onion
  • zucchini, sliced the long way about 1/4 inch thick {or less}
  • pepperjack cheese slices {JD uses Muenster}
  • olive oil

If you are lucky enough to have a panini press, fire that thing up right now!
Take two slices of bread, similar in size, and brush one side with olive oil. Flip over and spread a liberal amount of the hummus on the other sides and set aside.

Take a grill pan {or a skillet will work too!} and drizzle with olive oil. Place over medium heat and lay your zucchini slices down. Salt and pepper to taste. Add the onion slices around them, and cook both until slightly browned and softened, about 5-7 minutes. {Make sure your zucchini doesn’t get soggy. The cooking time will depend how thin you actually sliced it. Just remember: thicker slices = more time, thinner slices = less time,} Remove from pan and set aside.

Over medium high heat, place the olive oil side of one of the pieces of bread down on the same grill pan {or your panini press}. Layer the other ingredients, using a couple torn slices of pepperjack here and there to help the sandwich hold together. Top with the remaining bread slice, hummus side down.

{Skip this step if you are using a panini press.} Using the bottom of a heat proof bowl, press down on your sandwich for about 5 minutes or until you get those great grill marks on the cooked side. Using a spatula, carefully flip the sandwich and again using the bowl, press down on the sandwich for another 5 minutes or so. Remove from heat, flip the bowl over top of the sandwich, and let sit for 5 minutes. The bowl will trap the heat and continue to cook the sandwich, melting that cheese all over those veggies.

Slice your sandwich in half and gobble it right away while it’s hot 🙂

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