The Croque Monsieur is the French version of a grilled ham and cheese sandwich that includes a creamy cheese sauce and tangy Dijon mustard. Perfect to serve at your next brunch.
This sandwich is similar to a Croque Madame that you should definitely try if you prefer to have an egg added on top of the sandwich. Also, be sure to try making some delicious Ham and Swiss Cheese Rolls for a quick and easy meal option.
A staple sandwich in my house is grilled cheese.
It's delicious, a great quick meal option, and can be paired with tomato soup for a comforting dinner. I love that it can be made in minutes with two slices of bread, cheese, and butter. If you want to add a little more to it, then throw in some ham and you'll have yourself something hot, cheesy, and comforting.
But, if you want to make it fancy and impress your family and friends, then try making a Croque Monsieur.
What is a Croque Monsieur?
It is the French version, which includes a white or béchamel sauce, and Dijon mustard for a bit of tanginess. The white sauce is spread on the toasted bread slices prior to assembling the ham and cheese sandwich. And if that isn’t enough, after the sandwich is assembled it's topped with another layer of sauce, more cheese, and placed under the broiler until golden and bubbly.
This sandwich can be made in minutes and is perfect to serve at your next brunch. Everyone is sure to enjoy it and you didn’t have to travel to a Parisian café to try it.
Be sure to add this recipe to your kitchen toolkit, so you'll have it for those times when you need something delicious in a hurry. Also if you would like a similar sandwich recipe, then be sure to give the Croque Madame a try which includes a fried egg.
Ingredients You'll Need
- Milk - Try using whole milk to make the sauce. It will make the sauce creamy and thick enough to spread onto the bread.
- Butter - Use any that you have on hand, it can be salted or unsalted.
- All-Purpose Flour - The base of the bechamel sauce, makes the sauce thick and creamy.
- Salt - Helps to bring out the flavors of the sandwich and keeps it from tasting flat.
- Ground Black Pepper - Adds a slight spice and seasoning to the sauce.
- Ground Nutmeg - Adds a nutty flavor to the sauce, be sure not to skip this ingredient.
- Parmesan Cheese - Adds more cheesy flavor and helps to thicken and smooth out the white sauce very nicely.
- Gruyere Cheese - The star of the sandwich. Adds cheesy flavor and is added inside and to the top of the sandwich. Try grabbing a block of Gruyere cheese and use a box cheese grater to shred it yourself. You can use smoked Gruyere cheese as well.
- Dijon Mustard - Makes the sandwich tangy and balances all of the ingredients with a bit of acid.
- Bread - Any slices of bread that you prefer will work for this croque monsieur sandwich, but try selecting bread that has thick slices.
- Ham - Use thinly sliced deli ham.
See the recipe card below for exact ingredient quantities.
Step By Step Instructions
Begin the recipe by preheating the oven to 400 degrees F. and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add the milk and allow it to heat to a low simmer.
In a separate medium saucepan over low heat, add the butter and once melted add the all-purpose flour, ground nutmeg, salt, and ground black pepper. Stir continuously until the mixture is combined, about 2 minutes. Slowly and carefully whisk the warm milk into the butter mixture.
Whisk continuously until thick and smooth. Add the Parmesan cheese and some of the Gruyere cheese until melted.
Line the bread slices on the prepared baking sheet and place them into the oven to lightly toast. Bake for 4 to 5 minutes before turning to bake for an additional 2 minutes. Lightly brush half of the slices of toast with Dijon mustard, top the mustard with some ham, followed by some Gruyere cheese.
Top each with the remaining slices of toast and generously spread a layer of the prepared white sauce on top of each sandwich followed by more Gruyere cheese.
Turn the oven broiler on low and place the baking sheet back into the oven until the cheese is golden and bubbly. Carefully remove from the oven and serve while warm. Enjoy!
- 2 cups milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 ½ cups Gruyere cheese, grated and divided
- 8 slices white sandwich bread
- 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 8 ounces thinly sliced ham, Virginia or black forest
- Begin the recipe by preheating the oven to 400 degrees F. and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add the 2 cups milk and allow it to heat to a low simmer.
- In a separate medium saucepan over low heat, add the 2 tablespoons butter and once melted and foamy, add the 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon ground black pepper. Stir continuously until the mixture is combined, about 2 minutes.
- Slowly and carefully whisk the warm milk into the butter mixture to combine. Whisk continuously until thick and smooth. Add the ½ cup Parmesan cheese and ½ cup of Gruyere cheese until melted.
- Line the 8 bread slices on the prepared baking sheet and place them into the oven to lightly toast. Bake for 4 to 5 minutes before turning to bake for an additional 2 minutes.
- Lightly brush 4 slices of toast with the 4 teaspoons of Dijon mustard, top the mustard with the 8 ounces of thinly sliced ham, followed by 1 cup of shredded Gruyere cheese.
- Top each with the remaining 4 slices of toast and generously spread a layer of the prepared white sauce evenly on top of each sandwich followed by the remaining 1 cup of Gruyere cheese.
- Turn the oven broiler on low and place the baking sheet back into the oven until the cheese is golden and bubbly, about 3 to 5 minutes. Carefully remove from the oven and serve while warm. Enjoy!
*All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands used, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.
Original post date 08/13/2018. Updated 09/08/2022.
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