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Vegetarian Recipes

Zucchini & Corn Panini with Pepper Jack Cheese

Zucchini & Corn Panini with Pepper Jack Cheese Recipe

Zucchini & Corn Panini with Pepper Jack CheeseIt’s summer and that means I spend about 4 hours a day thinking to myself, “What can I make with corn? I need to eat more corn.” Because I am greedy for corn. I feel like I need to eat massive amounts of it while it’s in season or winter will be full of tears and regret. Thanks to this Sweet Corn Grilled Cheese recipe from Panini Happy, I now have a new way to use corn: in sandwiches!

Bicolor Corn
Corn in sandwiches is officially my new thing. (Corn on burgers is pretty good too.) Since it’s summer and everyone seems to be looking for zucchini recipes, I added some zucchini to this panini (it rhymes!) too. And then I put shredded pepper jack cheese on it, which gives me the perfect excuse to mention this:

IKEA Box Grater
I am in love with this thing! I bought it at IKEA back in June. It’s a regular box grater, but it has a container to catch whatever it is you’re grating. Maybe you all have one of these and I’m just behind the times, but I was deliriously happy to find this. I really like using cheese I shred myself in recipes because I find that it melts a lot better and this makes shredding cheese a whole lot easier. This whole experience has made me reevaluate my feelings on IKEA kitchen tools.

Back to the sandwich! The combination of spicy pepper jack cheese and fresh summer veggies makes these simple sandwiches flavorful and delicious. The thing I love most about cooking during the summer is that everything tastes so good, you can keep recipes simple and they still taste amazing. I mean, I will eat corn straight off the cob, uncooked, without any butter or salt! When can you do that other than summer?

This post was originally published on July 29, 2013.

Zucchini & Corn Panini with Pepper Jack Cheese Recipe

Zucchini & Corn Panini with Pepper Jack Cheese

Panini topped with fresh corn, zucchini, and pepper jack cheese.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 sandwiches


  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large clove garlic minced
  • 1 ear corn kernels removed
  • 1 small zucchini quartered lengthwise and sliced
  • Salt + pepper to taste
  • 8 slices bread I used a soft sourdough
  • 2 tbsp. butter softened
  • 1 c. shredded pepper jack cheese


  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and cook for about 15 seconds, until fragrant. Stir in the zucchini and corn and cook until the zucchini is softened (but not mushy!), about 3 minutes more. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Turn on your panini press and set the temperature to High. Put half of the cheese on 4 slices of bread, then top that with the veggie mixture, remaining cheese, and remaining slices of bread. Butter the tops of the sandwiches with half of the butter. Carefully place the sandwiches on the panini press, buttered side down, then butter the other side of the sandwiches and close the press. (Depending on the size of the bread and your panini press, you may have to do 2 sandwiches at a time.) Cook for 5-7 minutes or until cheese has melted and bread is toasted.


Any peppery cheese will work in this sandwich--the hotter the better! I've made these with Hatch Cheddar too.
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  • Reply
    Laura (Tutti Dolci)
    July 29, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Love this combination of summer veggies and pepper jack cheese!

  • Reply
    July 29, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    haha, my dad and I used to make corn sandwiches when I was a kid. Take a slice of bread – butter it lightly, add a scoop of steamed corn and two shakes of pepper, fold over and mmmm. I’d usually insist on making one whenever corn was served with dinner.

    Your sandwich sounds yummy and a little more filling 🙂

    • Reply
      July 31, 2013 at 9:39 pm

      I loved doing things like that when I was a kid. I used to always make spaghetti sandwiches with garlic bread. Because really, the only thing better than carbs is more carbs!

  • Reply
    July 29, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    I haven’t gotten my fill of corn yet this summer either but August will surely be the time for it. Your sandwich looks great and I will keep my eye out for that grater box on my next Ikea trip.

  • Reply
    Natalie @ Once Upon a Cutting Board
    July 29, 2013 at 10:42 pm

    I totally agree about summer meals being so easy but so good – I could eat a giant bowl of corn for dinner with just some salt and pepper and be a very happy girl! But it looks amazing in this panini too!

    • Reply
      July 31, 2013 at 9:32 pm

      I could too! I probably have, in fact. 🙂

  • Reply
    Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health
    July 30, 2013 at 1:40 am

    I feel you on the corn addiction, I’ve been putting it in everything I make! This panini looks so incredibly good. I would have loved this with some tomato soup for dinner because it was actually chilly outside here!
    Btw, you’re grater is pretty awesome!

    • Reply
      July 31, 2013 at 9:30 pm

      Ooh, this would be perfect with tomato soup!

  • Reply
    July 30, 2013 at 4:29 pm

    Ooooh nifty cheese grater, I want one! The panini looks DELISH.

  • Reply
    Amrita @ Asian SlowCooking
    July 30, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Corn is a perfect summer food and this panini looks delicious. Thanks for your recipe.

  • Reply
    July 30, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    What a great idea for a grilled cheese. This is a great panini and would give us a great lunch! I have some yellow squash which should work great as well. Thanks for this!

    • Reply
      July 31, 2013 at 8:42 pm

      Yes, yellow squash would definitely work! 🙂

  • Reply
    Kiran @
    July 30, 2013 at 11:35 pm

    I really need to savor more corn into my meals. This looks divine!

  • Reply
    July 30, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    In love with this sanwich!! Wow! Looks so good!

  • Reply
    July 31, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    I know what you mean about corn – just last night I roasted a cob to add to a panzanella salad and decided to taste some from the cob first to test it before I sliced it all off…it was so good that I found it hard to stop eating it all right away, even though I almost burnt my mouth on it! I don’t think I’ve tried it in a sandwich yet but I’m sure I would love it that way too!

    • Reply
      July 31, 2013 at 8:27 pm

      I love the idea of adding it to a panzanella salad! I’m going to have to do that next. 🙂

  • Reply
    Freda Love Smith
    July 31, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    All day long I’ve been thinking about buying a panini press and it’s entirely because of this post! This just looks so, so good.

    • Reply
      July 31, 2013 at 8:24 pm

      I couldn’t justify a standalone panini press, so I bought a Griddler and I LOVE it. Normally I’m not a fan of Cuisinart products, but that one is totally worth it.

  • Reply
    Robin (Masshole Mommy)
    August 1, 2013 at 6:57 am

    Oh man does that sound good!!

  • Reply
    August 2, 2013 at 1:52 am

    your sandwiches always look so pretty! love the zukes and corn in these

  • Reply
    Kelly @ Texas Type A Mom
    August 4, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Somehow this sounds like the perfect combination of hearty sandwich but light at the same time! Perfect for summer!

  • Reply
    Lisa @ Greek Vegetarian
    August 5, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    One of the reasons I can’t wait to go to Greece is for the barbecued corn street stalls. Char-grilled, salted and wrapped in a paper towel – everyone walks around munching on these things. Your paninis look brilliant, and I want one of those cheese graters!!

    • Reply
      August 7, 2013 at 8:36 pm

      That sounds like the perfect snack! Or meal, really–I could totally make a meal out of corn. 🙂

  • Reply
    Melanie @ Just Some Salt and Pepper
    August 8, 2013 at 3:30 pm

    This sounds delicious! I almost always have some type of squash on hand that I need something to do with. I also just got a panini press yesterday!

    • Reply
      August 11, 2013 at 7:50 pm

      Perfect! We love our panini press–I’m sure you will get a lot of use out of it!

  • Reply
    August 12, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    I just made this recipe and ate it for dinner… Yum! I’m also very, very full now because I only made one sandwich and I put a LOT of pepper jack cheese, corn and zucchini in it. Total comfort food with a healthy twist! *happy sigh*

    • Reply
      August 15, 2013 at 9:43 pm

      Thank you for your comment–I’m glad you enjoyed it! 🙂

  • Reply
    June 19, 2015 at 12:49 pm

    YUM and just what I need .. I”m in a food rut .. need something (anything) different! Will give this a try 🙂


  • Reply
    August 3, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    This sandwich is SUPER good. 10 out of 10 stars, would panini again.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2019 at 6:34 pm

    5 stars
    This was delicious! I added a fried egg on top with some siracha mayo for added kick. I had a simple garden salad on the side. Felt like a fancy brunch meal! Thanks for the inspiration!

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