Tomato, Mozzarella and Pesto Panini with Balsamic Glazed Red Onions

This sandwich is a nice twist on a classic tomato, mozzarella and pesto panini. I had a lot of ingredients in my fridge that I wanted to use up before this past long weekend because I went home. I had the perfect combination of ingredients to make a great sandwich.

I thought that placing plain sliced red onion on this sandwich may be too strong of a flavor. I love red onion, but it can sometimes overwhelm a dish. I decided to cook down the red onion and deglaze the pan with balsamic vinegar. I honestly don't think I can ever eat a mozzarella and tomato panini without balsamic red onions again. They add such a great flavor.

I definitely recommend making your own pesto for this sandwich. You can control exactly what goes into it and I think it tastes better than store bought. If you don't have time to make pesto however, store bought will work just fine.

Full of veggies from the spinach pesto, tomatoes and red onion, whole grains from the bread and protein from the mozzarella, this sandwich is the most delicious and well balanced lunch that you can feel great about eating!

Tomato, Mozzarella and Pesto Panini with Balsamic Glazed Red Onions:

2 slices whole grain bread
1/2 tomato, sliced
1/4 cup red onion, diced
1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, grated
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1-2 tablespoons pesto (recipe below)

Spinach Pesto:
4 cups spinach
1 tablespoon pine nuts
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup basil leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 lemon, juiced
2 garlic cloves, diced
  1. Combine the ingredients for the pesto in a food processor and store in an air tight container.
  2. Heat a small skillet over medium heat and spray with olive oil cooking spray. Add the red onions and cook for about 10 minutes, until slightly caramelized. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  3. Remove the onions from the pan and transfer to a bowl. Keep the pan hot over medium heat.
  4. On one piece of bread spread some of the pesto and top with tomato slices. Top with the mozzarella and balsamic onions. Spread the rest of the pesto onto the other piece of bread and place on top of the other half.
  5. Spray the pan again with olive oil spray and add the sandwich to the pan. After about 5 minutes, flip and cook for another 5 minutes, until the bread is toasted and the cheese is melted. Transfer the sandwich to a plate, slice in half and enjoy!


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