So I’ve mentioned before that Mike and I taking a break from dairy and meat. Meat has been really easy to cut out of our everyday lives. I actually prefer making dinner without preparing a meat or poultry. However dairy has been a little harder because when you’re our and want a bagel the majority of bagel shops don’t carry dairy-free cream cheese or butter. We don’t want to miss out on those little indulgences that we love so occasionally we have a dairy product but that shakes out to be maybe once a week. At home though we don’t keep any dairy products. Our butter is vegan, we only drink almond milk, and we only keep dairy-free yogurt and cheese. Dairy-free cheese is pricey. We like Go-Veggie, but one pack of shredded cheese costs about $4, so basically double the price of dairy cheeses. I’d say though, it’s definitely worth it because it keeps this whole process feeling as normal as possible. and since we don’t reach for it every day it lasts us.
Occasionally, when I’m short on time (or patience) for making dinner I like to pull out my panini grill (one of our favorite wedding gifts) and make a tasty sandwich. Mike and I both love a good “fancy” panini, so I messed around one day in the kitchen and came up with this dairy-free berry mozzarella panini. This panini is awesome for brunch, lunch, and casual dinners and it pairs perfectly with a side salad or some chips (we like sweet potato chips)! Also, if you’re not dairy-free feel free to use actual mozzarella – we don’t judge over here!
Dairy-Free Mozzarella Berry Panini
- bread of your choice (we like multigrain)
- 1 bag dairy-free mozzarella cheese shredded
- spring mix
- 1/4 cup blue berries
- 1/4 cup strawberries cut into quarters
- 1/4 cup organic coconut sugar
- 2 tbsp natural maple syrup
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Heat your panini grill. If you're working with a grill pan over the stove, keep it heating over a low flame. Set aside bread slices, cheese, and spring mix.
In a post over medium heat, add blue berries, strawberries, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, and coconut sugar. Mix together and allow it to come to boil. Then let simmer until berries break down and sauce thickens. If the sauce doesn't appear to be thickening add more sugar.
Place healthy layer of cheese on your bread, followed by the berry sauce, more cheese, and the spring mix. Top off with second slice of bread. Repeat for all sandwiches.
Lightly spray grill pan or panini press with some olive oil or non-stick spray. Grill the sandwiches until the cheese is melting and bread is toasty.