Simple Croque Monsieur Recipe

Jul 12, 2011 2:16 pm

How to make a perfect croque monsieur in 4 steps

Simple Croque Monsieur Recipe
Photo: kimberlykv on Flickr
The croque monsieur, a perfect union of ham, cheese, béchamel sauce and bread

Béchamel, like bacon, makes everything better. So it's no wonder that the sandwich of ham and cheese smothered in béchamel sauce that the French call a Croque Monsieur* is so damn delicious. To be honest, a croque monsieur is probably best eaten while seated at a Parisian café reading Sartre and smoking a Gitane cigarette. But that doesn't mean that you can't make a tasty croque at home. Once you master this, step it up a notch and add a poached or fried egg on top to make a Croque Madame (though you may want to consult the footnote first). 

*Did you know that the croque monsieur gets its name from the French verb "Croquer," or to crunch and Monsieur, or Mister. That makes it a Mister Crunch sandwich! 

Servings: 2 sandwiches


Béchamel sauce
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for toasting bread in the pan
2 tablespoons all- purpose flour
1 pinch nutmeg
1 cup warm milk
4 thick slices white bread
Dijon mustard, for spreading
4 ounces ham, sliced, we like Black Forest but any will do
4 ounces gruyere cheese, sliced
1/4 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
Béchamel Sauce
  1. In a small heavy bottomed pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Once it starts to bubble and foam add the flour and whisk for another 30 seconds, stirring continuously. Add the warm milk and stir until smooth.


  1. Spread the Dijon on one side of each piece of bread. Top 2 pieces of bread with even amounts of the ham and cheese. Then place the other two pieces of bread on top to make the sandwiches.
  2. In a large pan melt another tablespoon of butter. Add each sandwich and lightly brown on both sides.  
  3. Place the sandwiches on a sheet pan and top with the béchamel sauce. Top each with the grated Gruyere and place under the broiler until golden brown and bubbly. 
Level of Difficulty: 
Prep Time: 
15 minutes
Cooking Time: 
20 to 25 minutes
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