Tomato Bisque + Vegan Grilled Cheese = Delicious, Dairy-Free Lunch

I thought I hated tomato soup. And then I met Tal Ronnen's Tomato Bisque, from his beautiful cookbook The Conscious Cook. And then I made a vegan grilled cheese sandwich and dipped in that bisque. And it was very good. 

tomato bisque and grilled cheese

Working lunch? Yes, please! 

I have some conflicting feelings about re-posting a recipe from a cookbook, because I think the point of cookbooks is for people to buy the actual book. Will you take my word for it that you should add this one to your collection? It has a range of recipes from the simple to the complex, uses mostly ingredients that are easy to find, and the soup recipes alone are worth having it on your shelf. If you do an internet search for "tomato bisque conscious cook" you can find others who have posted the recipe. 

Here's how I made that crunchy, creamy, totally satisfying grilled cheese, though: 


  • Two slices sandwich bread
  • Earth Balance vegan butter, enough to well-butter one side of each piece of bread
  • 1/3 c. Daiya vegan cheddar shreds (we get ours at Whole Foods or our local co-op)
  • Extras: a slice of tomato, some fresh spinach or basil, or a few slices of tempeh bacon, for instance

Heat a cast iron pan (or whatever you like to use to saute things) over medium heat. Butter one side of one piece of bread and place the buttered side down in the pan, then add your sandwich fixings, being careful not to lose too much of your delicious filling to the bottom of the pan). Butter one side of the remaining piece of bread and place onto the top of the sandwich fixing, taking care to leave the buttered side out. Depending on the heat of your burner, let the sandwich sit for 3 minutes or so, until the side touching the pan is nice and brown and toasted. Flip the sandwich carefully and toast the other side for a few minutes. The Daiya will melt a little better if you use your spatula to press the sandwich into the pan after turning. When both sides are toasted to your liking, remove the sandwich from the heat, slice in half, and serve. Dipping in soup highly encouraged.