Avocado Mozzarella Panini

So much more than just a bacon + avocado panini

“I call sandwiches sammies, sandoozles, or Adam Sandlers” – Tom Haverford, Parks and Recreation

What is a good way to make someone fall in love with you? By making them a delicious sandwich, of course! Every time I make this sandoozle for someone, I get a hug. Lets be real, bacon and avocado are delicious. I know, I know, it’s just a sandwich, but please let me stress that you should not underestimate the power of this delicious and easy meal. Maybe you’re a fantastic cook, maybe your not. Either way, if you whip this baby up, everyone is going to think you are an angel. From my experience, all boys love sandwiches. They have some weird brain programming that makes them love any sort of food that’s piled between two slices of bread. On the other hand, girls love pretending to be healthy. You get the best of both worlds with this sandy.

Make it and I promise people will be asking you to start cooking for them more often.

Serving size: 1 Sandwich

Avocado Mozzarella Panini

Spicy herb aioli:

2 tbsp olive oil mayo

1 sprig of rosemary

¼ tsp of prepared horseradish



Spicy herb aioli

3 strips of bacon (or more depending how awesome you want to be)

Half of an avocado, sliced

As much fresh mozzarella as you see fit

Handful of spinach

Sourdough bread

Olive oil mayo (for brushing the outsides of the bread)


Step 1: (Fry the bacon)

Start out by making your house smell delicious – cook the bacon. I prefer it a little crispy so that it breaks apart when you bite into the sandwich. You can cook it however your little heart desires. You can also add as much bacon as you have in your fridge. Three strips worked nicely for me, but to be completely honest, I started with four but one never made it to the sandwich. A little tip I learned from one of my best pals, Emma, is to cut the bacon in half before you put it in the pan. This way, all the strips fit nicely and will come out flat instead of all curled up. Also, be patient. I’m basically a pro at cooking bacon. If you set the heat to medium, it will cook evenly so that it is nice and crispy all over instead of being half burnt and half mushy. Another tip, always save your bacon grease! A mason jar is great for this. You just never know when you’ll need to fry up something incredibly fattening and delicious in bacon grease…


Step 2: (Mix the aioli)

My friend Claire was talking to me the other night about aioli. She said, “Have you ever heard anyone say they hate mayo but they love aioli? Its total BS,” which it definitely is. “Aioli” is just a fancy ass word for mayonnaise seasoned with garlic. Some also say that it is just mayonnaise seasoned with other flavors. We are going to accept the second definition here. To put the fancy mayo together, just wash the rosemary and pull off all of the leaves. Combine them with the other two ingredients in a small dish and mix together with a fork. Voila! This amazing little spread will amp up almost any sandwich and it’s incredibly easy to create. If you don’t have olive oil mayo, no worries…just use regular mayonnaise. I was just trying to save myself some calories and add a healthier type of fat to the recipe. The amount made here can actually be used for two sandwiches if you’re cooking for you and a friend.

Avocado Mozzarella Panini

Step 3: (Stack it all together)

I noted in the recipe that you should set aside a bit of mayo for the outside of the bread. Don’t get grossed out, I’m not obsessed with mayo. What I’ve found is that if you actually brush a super thin layer on the outside of the sandwich, it will be perfectly toasted on the outside. For my sandwich I stacked it as:  bread, spicy herb aioli, spinach, mozzarella, bacon, avocado, bread.  I used sourdough here but if you prefer something else, go ahead! Its your life, do what you want, TREAT YO SELF! If you’re afraid of getting too wild, sourdough works really nicely.

Avocado Mozzarella Panini

In my kitchen, I’m lucky enough to have a panini press. I realize most people don’t have this magical appliance so here’s some other options:

  • Skip brushing the outside with mayo and just toast the bread in the toaster. Then, stack up half the sandwich on one piece of bread and the other half on the other piece. Put the halves open-faced in your oven and set it to high broil (500°F). Take it out when the cheese gets nice and melted, put it together and chow down.
  • Brush the outsides with a thin layer of mayo and cook on the stove in a large pan. I suggest building two halves and setting it open faced in the pan. Set the stove to a med-low heat and cover. Covering helps trap the heat and melt the cheese. When everything looks delicious, take it off and eat that bad boy!

Avocado Mozzarella PaniniAvocado Mozzarella Panini

Beer Pairing: (Chainbreaker, Deschutes Brewery)

It is not a local beer but I literally have a crush on this one. Its name is Chainbreaker and it is a White IPA by Deschutes Brewery. I would drink this beer morning, noon, and night if I could. It smells of citrus and hops and tastes like a brew fit for the gods. Its possible not everyone agrees with this statement, but I would just consider those people crazy. I chose it for this meal because I actually just had it laying around in my fridge. Luckily, it fit perfectly. It’s light and crispy but not too bitter so it did not overpower the rosemary and other flavors of the sandwich. Chainbreaker is great session beer, coming in at 5.6% ABV, its perfect for a lunchtime meal.

Avocado Mozzarella PaniniAvocado Mozzarella Panini

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A 20-something living in Denver, attempting to whip up delicious recipes made with or paired with mostly local craft brews. If you like eating and drinking delicious things, this is the place to be.

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