Authentic French Croque-monsieur recipe

The croque-monsieur is a French sandwich very easy to cook and a perfect meal for your lunchbox with a green salad! This is the traditional French recipe but you can imagine many variations.

A piece of history about the Croque-monsieur

A croque-monsieur (French for « mister crunch ») is a baked ham and cheese sandwich. The dish originated in French cafés and bars as a quick snack. A croque-madame (French for « mistress crunch ») is a variant of the dish topped with a fried egg.

The name is based on the verb croquer (« to bite, to crunch ») and the word monsieur (« mister »). The sandwich’s first recorded appearance on a Paris café menu was in 1910. 

Ingredients for 4 Croque-monsieur

  • 8 thin slices of sandwich bread
  • 8 slices of ham
  • Freshly grated Cheese (Gruyère, or parmesan)
  • 4 tbsp of heavy whipping cream

Preparation of Croque-monsieur

  1. Preheat oven to 425° F. 
  2. Place 4 slices of bread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  3. Top each with a piece of ham, a handful of cheese. Then, place remaining slices of bread on top.
  4. Then top with each croque monsieur with 1 tbsp go heavy whipping cream and the remaining cheese.
  5. Finally, bake at 425 °F for about 5-6 minutes, until cheese is melted, and then turn the oven to broil and broil until the cheese on top is golden, 2-4 minutes.

Variants of the sandwich with substitutions or additional ingredients are given names modeled on the original croque-monsieur, for example:

  • Croque provençal (with tomatoes)
  • Croque auvergnat (with bleu d’Auvergne cheese)
  • Croque norvégien (with smoked salmon instead of ham)
  • Croque tartiflette (with sliced potatoes and Reblochon cheese)
  • Croque bolognese (with Bolognese sauce)
  • Croque señor (with tomato salsa)
  • Croque Hawaiian (with a slice of pineapple)

If you need more ideas for your lunchbox, you should try our Quiche Lorraine recipe or our French club sandwich recipe!