Nothing says comfort like a ham and cheese sandwich. Up the ante with a seriously mouthwatering compound butter, soft and fluffy slider buns, and plenty of ooey gooey cheese, and you’ve got a meal that your entire family will want over and over again. Plus, they can be made in less than 30 minutes—just 15 minutes if you prep them in advance—is the cherry on top.
How to Build a Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwich
The components of this sandwich are minimal and straightforward, but each serves a specific and delicious purpose:
- Compound butter: This compound butter can be made with ingredients you likely already have in your fridge and pantry, and it takes these ham and cheese sandwiches from ordinary to superb. It not only flavors the sandwiches, it also helps the sandwiches get perfectly golden brown and not dry.
- Swiss cheese: There are lots of cheeses that’d work nicely here, from American and cheddar to gruyere. I’ve personally found that sliced Swiss cheese yields the best results—it’s mild and lets the ham and compound butter shine and it’s cost-efficient. There’s also a double layer of cheese in this recipe, which acts like glue to hold the ham perfectly in place once baked.
- Sliced deli ham: This recipe calls for thinly-sliced deli ham, but use whatever kind of ham you have access to. After a big holiday meal, these sandwiches would also be excellent with leftover thick-cut ham.
- Hawaiian slider rolls: Hawaiian rolls add just a touch of sweetness and they stay perfectly fluffy even when the compound butter turns the outsides nice and crisp. And yes, they’re also pretty fun to tear into when it comes time to separate them.
The Herbed Compound Butter is Key
The herbed compound butter is what turns this dish into something exceptional, and it’s incredibly easy to throw together. All you have to do is mash together softened butter, minced shallots, chopped parsley, and mustard until it becomes a homogenous, spreadable mixture.
In my testing, I found that using room temperature butter over melted butter created a crispier, golden brown buns, whereas using melted butter made the sandwiches feel greasy.
Think of this recipe like a blank canvas that can be tweaked or finessed to your liking. There’s a whole world of toppings and add-ins. Here are just a couple of ideas:
- To pack in a bit of heat, slather the inside of the buns with spicy mustard, and you can even sprinkle the ham with chopped pickled jalapeños for a spicy, vinegary bite.
- For added sweetness and acidity to cut through the rich compound butter, layer on sliced dill pickles.
Make Them Ahead
All you have to do is pop the sliders into the oven and bake them until they’re hot. The assembled sandwiches—through step 4—will keep in the fridge, covered, for 24 hours before they’ll start to get soggy.
Bake the sandwiches for 3 to 4 additional minutes covered in foil when they’re cooked cold from the fridge.
More Sandwich Ideas for Lunch!
- Hot Turkey Sandwich
- How to Make a Grilled Cheese Sandwich
- Ultimate Club Sandwich
- Italian Sub Sandwich
- Chickpea Salad Sandwich
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Prepare the compound butter:
In a small bowl, combine the butter, mustard, shallots, parsley, salt, and black pepper with a fork. Reserve until ready to assemble.
Prepare the buns:
Using a serrated knife, cut the slider buns through the middle into two halves, dividing the tops and bottoms while keeping each slider bun connected.
Assemble the sandwiches:
Place the opened rolls on a sheet pan or baking dish, and evenly arrange half the Swiss cheese on the bottom bun. Top with the ham, overlapping slightly as you lay down each slice. Arrange the remaining slices of cheese on top of the ham, and close with the slider bun tops.
Use a spoon or butter knife to smear the softened compound butter all over the tops of the sliders.
Bake the sandwiches:
Loosely cover the sandwiches with aluminum foil and bake for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, remove the foil and bake for another 5 minutes or until the tops of the sandwiches are crisp and golden brown.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving.
Serve the sandwiches:
Tear or cut the sliders into individual sandwiches and serve warm.
Storage and reheating instructions:
Store remaining sandwiches in the fridge tightly covered. Leftovers will keep for up to 3 days.
Reheat each sandwich in the microwave for 30 seconds—add 15 seconds for each additional sandwich.
To reheat in the oven, bake for 8 to 10 minutes at 350°F, or until the cheese has melted and the sandwiches are crisp and heated through.
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