Grilled Halloumi is grilled cheese, taken to the literal max. As in, we are grilling cheese, char marks and all!
Halloumi is a firm cheese that originated in Cyprus. It’s made with some combination of goat, sheep, and cow’s milk and is popular throughout the Mediterranean.
Halloumi has a high melting point that allows it to be cooked directly on the hot grill plates without melting into total oblivion.
Cooking it feels a little bit like magic!
What Does Halloumi Taste Like?
Halloumi’s flavor is mild and buttery. It is a little bit like a cross between a tamer, less salty feta and mozzarella. Halloumi tastes creamy and absolutely delicious!
5 Star Review
“It’s amazing! I love its flavor with olive oil.”— Rebecca —
Grilled halloumi makes an unexpected, impressive appetizer that will delight your friends, a vegetarian main, or use the grilled Halloumi cheese to make an actual grilled cheese sandwich.
However you enjoy grilled halloumi, you can’t go wrong!
How to Grill Halloumi Cheese
While you can eat Halloumi raw, it’s best enjoyed cooked—grilling and pan frying are popular, easy ways to prepare it.
Cooking Halloumi improves both its taste and texture. It becomes creamier and some of the saltiness from brining mellows to a pleasant amount of saltiness.
- Halloumi. This mild, firm cheese shines on the grill. It’s also quite the party trick!
- Herbs. While you can enjoy Halloumi cheese all on its own, I love to give a nod to its Mediterranean roots by adding oregano and thyme.
- Lemon Juice. A squeeze wakes up the flavor and nicely balances the creaminess of the Halloumi.
- Olive Oil. While you can pan fry Halloumi in a nonstick skillet without adding any oil (the fat content of the cheese is sufficient), when grilling, oil is an important insurance policy.
- Preheat the grill. Then mix the marinade.
- Slice the Halloumi cheese.
- Brush both sides with the marinade.
- Grill for 2 to 6 minutes, turning once or twice, until grill marks appear.
- Sprinkle with the remaining olive oil, lemon, and thyme. Serve warm with pita, mixed into a salad, or however you ENJOY!
No grill? No problem! You can make oven grilled Halloumi or grilled Halloumi BBQ on your stove using a grill pan like this one.
To Bake the Halloumi Instead of Grilling: Spread the slices in a single layer in a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil. Bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes or until warmed through, flipping it halfway though.
Ways to Serve Grilled Halloumi
- Appetizer. Pile it on a plate alongside pita or toasted baguette slices. As an appetizer is my favorite way to serve halloumi, and my friends go crazy for it!
- Grilled Halloumi Salad. Cut the grilled Halloumi into bite-sized pieces and mix it into your favorite salad. This Mediterranean Chickpea Salad, Israeli Couscous Salad, and this Arugula Salad would all be tasty.
- Grilled Halloumi Sandwich. Tuck your grilled Halloumi into pita or between slices of toasted bread with thinly sliced, roasted or grilled vegetables and a smear of Edamame Hummus for a filling vegetarian main.
- Grilled Halloumi Wrap. Use pita or a whole wheat tortilla to create a tasty grilled Halloumi wrap.
- To Store. Refrigerate leftover grilled Halloumi for up to 2 days.
- To Reheat. Rewarm it in a nonstick skillet over medium heat.
Meal Prep Tip
Slice the Halloumi up to 5 days in advance. Rewrap and refrigerate until ready to grill.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Measuring Spoons. Magnetic measuring spoons keep organized in your drawers.
- Tongs. These stainless steel tongs have lasted years. Plus, they lock for easy storage.
Now THIS is my idea of grilled CHEESE!
Grilled Halloumi Cheese
- 8 ounces chunk halloumi cheese cut into 1/3 to 1/2-inch slices
- 2 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided, plus additional for the grill
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 lemon halved
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
- Pita bread optional, for serving
- Heat a grill to medium high (about 400 degrees F). Make sure your grill is VERY clean or the halloumi may stick.
- In a small bowl, stir together 1 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil and oregano.
- Slice the Halloumi cheese into 1/3- to 1/2-inch slices.
- Brush the marinade over both sides of the halloumi.
- Generously oil the grill. Grill the halloumi for 2 to 6 minutes, turning once or twice, until grill marks appear. When lightly pressed the halloumi should give but not be runny (halloumi is a firm, not melty cheese). Place the lemon on the grill with the cut-sides down and let cook until grill marks appear. (To grill the pita, brush it with olive oil, then cook a minute or two on each side, until hot.)
- Transfer the grilled halloumi and lemon to a platter. Drizzle the cheese with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil. Squeeze the grilled lemon over the top. Sprinkle with thyme. Serve warm with pita, mixed into a salad, or however you please.
- TO STORE. Halloumi is best enjoyed immediately after cooking but can be refrigerated up 2 days.
- TO REHEAT. Rewarm it in a nonstick skillet over medium heat.
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