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Prepare a Disney-worthy meal at home with this delicious Disneyland grilled cheese and tomato soup recipe! The homemade tomato soup is richly flavored and oh so creamy, perfect for dunking the ooey, gooey grilled cheese. Your kids will go wild for it! 

A grilled cheese sandwich, bowl of tomato soup, and a spoon on a polka dotted plate.

Best Disneyland Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup Recipe

If you get a chance to visit Disneyland, you’ll find this Jolly Holiday combo comes at a little restaurant inside the castle. They make the most wonderful version of this classic soup and sandwich combo that is so much better than you’d expect!

This homemade Jolly Holiday grilled cheese sandwich has the perfect amount of crunch from the buttery toasted bread and the most amazing melted cheese. My kids love dipping it in the creamy tomato soup. It’s such a fun way to eat those veggies!

Fortunately, you can bring this Disney experience home with this simple recipe. It’s the easiest and tastiest weeknight meal!

For more kid-friendly meals, you’ll also want to try this Kids Chili Con Carne!

A sideview of a grilled cheese sandwich cut in half with the cheese oozing out of it, next to a bowl of tomato soup on a plate.

Why We Love This Delicious Combo

  • Healthier version of the classic combo 
  • Lower in fat and sodium than most versions 
  • Perfect for kids!
  • Ready in just 30 minutes
  • Comforting way to warm up on cold and chilly days
  • Bring back memories of your special trip 

Ingredient Notes

Individually portioned ingredients for the tomato soup.

For the tomato soup:

  • Olive oil: To sautee the veggies.
  • Aromatics: Dice the onion and mince the garlic. 
  • Diced tomatoes: Use low sodium tomatoes to keep the soup safe for babies and toddlers.
  • Sun-dried tomatoes: These add a punch of concentrated tomato flavor that tastes this soup over the top. 
  • Seasonings: Season to taste with Italian seasoning, onion powder, salt, and black pepper.
  • Fresh basil leaves: Mince fresh basil leaves to add extra flavor and color.
  • Evaporated milk: Most versions use heavy cream, but I love using skimmed evaporated milk for creaminess without the extra saturated fat.
Individually portioned ingredients for the grilled cheese sandwiches.

For the grilled cheese:

  • Sourdough bread: Sliced sourdough has the perfect texture and flavor, but you can use your favorite bread. Just be sure to use bread that’s not too thick(stick to about 1.3-1.5 cm thickness) so that the cheese will melt properly.
  • Butter: I prefer to use unsalted butter to spread over the spread for the cheese sandwiches. Olive oil is a good alternative to crisp up the bread.
  • Cheeses: Use a mixture of freshly grated cheddar and mozzarella cheese for the perfect cheese pull. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

To make tomato soup: 

  1. In a medium saucepan or Dutch oven, heat about a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until softened, about 3-4 minutes. Place the garlic in the pan as well and cook for 30 seconds.
  2. Add diced tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, Italian seasoning, onion powder and basil to the saucepan. Bring to a simmer, lower heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Add in the evaporated milk.
  3. If using an immersion blender, blend soup until smooth. You may need to tilt the pot for the blender to work effectively. If using a regular blender, allow the soup to cool for 10 minutes before transferring it to the blender and blend until smooth and creamy. If soup is too thick, you can blend in a little broth or additional milk. Return to saucepan.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste. Reheat over medium heat if necessary.
  5. Garnish with a sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan cheese and thinly sliced basil if desired. 

To cook grilled cheese: 

  1. Spread both sides of each piece of bread with the butter or brush with olive oil.
  2. Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet or nonstick skillet over medium low heat (you don’t need oil or butter). Place two pieces of bread in the skillet and lightly toast for 1 minute to warm them through and start to crisp up the bread. (This will give the cheese a head start when we add it).
  3. Flip one slice of bread, then add ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese followed by ¼ cup shredded mozzarella. Place the other slice of bread on top, with the warm toasted side in contact with the cheese.
  4. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the bread is evenly golden and crispy, pressing down lightly with a spatula occasionally. If it’s browning too quickly, remove from the heat to cool down a bit and lower heat.
  5. Turn the sandwich over, and cook the other side for 2-3 minutes or until the bread is golden brown and the cheese is melted. Repeat with remaining bread and cheese.
  6. Transfer sandwich to cutting board. Cut in half with one swift motion and enjoy with a cup of the tomato basil soup.
Keep scrolling to the recipe card below for the full printable recipe!

RECIPE TIPS

  • If you prefer a thinner tomato soup, add some extra evaporated milk or broth.
  • All canned tomatoes are different. If your tomatoes taste acidic, you can add 1-2 teaspoons of honey or other desired sweetener to cut some of the acidity.
  • For extra smooth and creamy soup, blend tomato soup in a high power blender. Just wait for the soup to cool slightly before transferring to the blender.
  • We like to use sourdough bread for the grilled cheese, but you can use whole wheat bread if preferred.
  • Be sure to use freshly grated cheese rather than pre-grated cheese since pre-shredded often contains additives that prevent it from melting properly.
A close-up of a grilled cheese sandwich being grilled in a pan.

Recipe FAQs

What is the best cheese for grilled cheese and tomato soup?

The best grilled cheese sandwiches have that stretchy cheese moment when you pull the two halves apart, and that requires a really good melting cheese. You can get this with American cheese, but it is so processed that I recommend using mozzarella instead.

Since mozzarella has such a mild flavor, I like to pair it with regular cheddar cheese to add a tanginess to balance out the flavor of the soup. A mixture of cheddar cheese and mozzarella is just right!

Can you make grilled cheese sandwiches ahead of time?

If you’ve ever tried to reheat a grilled cheese sandwich, you know that it’s definitely not as good as the original. You can either bake or griddle the sandwich in a dry pan to reheat the bread and melt the cheese, but the bread slices may become dry and crunchy instead of crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. The remelted cheese never has the same pull, either.

The good news is, they’re quick to make! I recommend making however many you need and leaving the extra supplies in the fridge to make a fresh sandwich any time you need one.

How do you make multiple grilled cheese sandwiches at once?

The easiest method is to use an electric or stovetop griddle. The large surface area makes it easy to make 2-3 sandwiches at the same time. You can also try making grilled cheese in the oven! Prepare the sandwiches like normal, but bake them on a sheet pan at 450 degrees for about 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway. The butter will toast the outside, and the cheese will melt perfectly in the middle. So easy!

Storage Guidelines

  • The leftover Disney tomato soup will reheat very well and can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. The sandwich is best served fresh.
A birds-eye view of a plateful of Disneyland copycat grilled cheese and tomato soup.

Serving Suggestions

This grilled cheese tomato soup combo is truly a complete meal on its own, but you can add some extra raw or cooked veggies on the side, if desired. We love serving it with roasted cauliflower!

It can also be nice with a dollop of sour cream in the soup for extra creaminess or a handful of sweet potato crackers. That’s all it needs!

Recipe Variations

  • Change the bread: We like to use sourdough bread for the grilled cheese, but you can use whole wheat bread or even gluten-free bread if required.
  • Cut the bread into fun shapes: If you’re feeding little ones who won’t eat a whole sandwich, you can use your favorite cookie cutters to trim out small flowers or stars. Kids always love this!
  • Use tomato paste: The sundried tomatoes add a really wonderful, concentrated tomato flavor that makes the soup incredibly tasty. If you don’t have those or want to reduce the sodium, feel free to try canned tomato paste instead.
  • Use garlic butter: If your kids like savory flavors, mix the butter with garlic powder before buttering the slices of bread. It ends up tasting like garlic bread!
A grilled cheese sandwich cut in half next to a bowl of tomato soup on a polka dot plate.

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Grilled cheese sandwich cut in half on a plate with a bowl of tomato basil soup.
Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup {Disneyland Copycat}

Created by Elysia Cartlidge
Servings: 4 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Prepare a Disney-worthy meal at home with this delicious Disneyland grilled cheese and tomato soup recipe! The homemade tomato soup is richly flavored and oh so creamy, perfect for dunking the ooey, gooey grilled cheese. Your kids will go wild for it! 

Ingredients
 

For Tomato Soup

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, low sodium
  • 1/4 cup sliced sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 5 fresh basil leaves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups partly skimmed 2% evaporated milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Grilled Cheese

  • 8 slices sourdough bread (about 1.3-1.5 cm thick)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
  • 1 cup freshly grated medium cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup freshly grated mozzarella cheese

Instructions
 

To make tomato soup:

  • In a medium saucepan or Dutch oven, heat about a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until softened, about 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Add diced tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, Italian seasoning, onion powder and basil to the saucepan. Bring to a simmer, lower heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Add in the evaporated milk.
  • If using an immersion blender, blend soup until smooth. You may need to tilt the pot for the blender to work effectively. If using a regular blender, allow the soup to cool for 10 minutes before transferring it to the blender and blend until smooth and creamy. If soup is too thick, you can blend in a little broth or additional milk. Return to saucepan.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste. Reheat over medium heat if necessary.
  • Garnish with a sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan cheese and thinly sliced basil if desired. 

To cook grilled cheese:

  • Spread both sides of each piece of bread with the butter or brush with olive oil.
  • Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet or frying pan over medium low heat (you don’t need oil or butter). Place two pieces of bread in the skillet and lightly toast for 1 minute to warm them through and start to crisp up the bread. (This will give the cheese a head start when we add it).
  • Flip one slice of bread, then add ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese followed by ¼ cup shredded mozzarella. Place the other slice of bread on top, with the warm toasted side in contact with the cheese.
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the bread is evenly golden and crispy, pressing down lightly with a spatula occasionally. If it's browning too quickly, remove from the heat to cool down a bit and lower heat.
  • Turn the sandwich over, and cook the other side for 2-3 minutes or until the bread is golden and the cheese is melted. Repeat with remaining bread and cheese.
  • Transfer sandwich to cutting board. Cut in half in one swift motion and enjoy with a cup of the tomato basil soup.

Notes

  • If you prefer a thinner tomato soup, add some extra evaporated milk or broth.
  • All canned tomatoes are different. If your tomatoes taste acidic, you can add 1-2 teaspoons of honey or other desired sweetener to cut some of the acidity.
  • For extra smooth and creamy soup, blend tomato soup in a high power blender. Just wait for the soup to cool slightly before transferring to the blender.
  • We like to use sourdough bread for the grilled cheese, but you can use whole wheat bread if preferred.
  • Be sure to use freshly grated cheese rather than pre-grated cheese since pre-shredded often contains additives that prevent it from melting properly.

Nutrition

Calories: 505kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 58mg | Sodium: 740mg | Potassium: 945mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1830IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 1022mg | Iron: 3mg
Grilled cheese sandwich cut in half on a plate with a bowl of tomato basil soup.

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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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