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Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches

These easy Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches are perfect for a quick lunch or dinner, served alone or with some chips, fries, salad, or soup!

Smoky, salty, sliced deli ham fried in butter until lightly browned, topped with melted cheese, and piled on a soft bun…this is the sandwich of my childhood. And I’ve missed it, so I’m bringing it back around!

Okay. Right up front, I’m going to admit that this is one of those so-easy-you-don’t-really-need-a-recipe recipes.

Yep, it’s ridiculously simple. Yep, it’s a no-frills, plain ham and cheese sandwich. BUT there’s something about this hot ham and cheese sandwich that makes it totally crave-worthy!

When I was a kid, my mom made these sandwiches all the time. I think it might have been partially due to her love of the original (appropriately-named) Yumbo hot ham and cheese sandwich that Burger King offered and subsequently discontinued waaay back in the day.

In our house, fast food was a rare treat, so Mom made her own homemade version of the Yumbo. But hers was even better! She fried the ham in some butter until it got a little browned and even just a little crisp along the edges.

And let’s not forget that melty cheese. Mmm… They were sooo good!

But, after I grew up and moved away from home, I kind of forgot about them. Until recently, that is. They just popped into my mind out of the blue one day, and now these delicious sandwiches are back in my life to stay!

So, even though you probably don’t need a recipe to make them, I still decided to share them…because sometimes you just need to be reminded of things like I did. Or maybe you never had a hot ham and cheese sandwich and you’d like to try one.

Either way, they take just minutes to make. And if you like ham and cheese, I think you’ll really enjoy them!

overhead view of two hot ham and cheese sandwiches on a white plate with a bowl of potato chips on the side

Ingredients you need:

  • Butter
  • Sliced deli ham (your favorite) or leftover ham
  • American cheese
  • Water
  • Soft sandwich buns

Here’s a look at how to make Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches:

Note: This is just a quick overview of the steps. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full recipe with detailed instructions.

2 images; one of butter melting in a pan with text that says melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat; the other of ham cooking in the pan and tongs with text that says add the ham, cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned
2 images; one of the ham in the pan separated into 2 piles with cheese on top with text that says separate the ham into 2 piles, top each with a slice of cheese; the other of water being added to the pan with text that says add 2 tablespoons of water to the skillet
2 images; one of the pan covered with a lid with text that says reduce heat, cover with a lid, cook until cheese is melted; the other of the ham and cheese on buns on a plate with text that says put the ham and cheese on buns, enjoy

Tips & Tidbits:

  • Use your favorite deli ham. I like a good-quality Black Forest ham, ham off the bone, or something similar.
  • I wrote this recipe to use deli ham since that is probably what most of us have on hand. BUT if you’ve got it, leftover baked ham from dinner or a holiday meal makes a truly amazing and extra-special sandwich!
  • It’s American cheese for me on these sandwiches, but you can use any kind of cheese you like that melts easily (cheddar and Swiss are good options).
  • Feel free to add some mustard, mayo or your favorite condiment to your sandwich.
  • This recipe makes 2 sandwiches, but you can easily scale it up to make as many sandwiches as you need.
  • If you happen to have leftovers, once they cool, wrap them up in foil and store them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, just pop them in a 325°F oven (in the foil) until they are heated through, about 15 minutes.
hot ham and cheese sandwich on a plate with chips and a pickle with another sandwich in the background

Give me one of these sandwiches with some potato chips and a pickle, and I am one happy camper.

And here’s a bonus: you can turn this into a yummy breakfast sandwich by adding a fried egg or scrambled egg on top!

I hope you try this recipe for Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches and love it as much as I do. Thanks for visiting today!

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hot ham and cheese sandwich on a plate with another sandwich and a bowl of chips in the background

Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches

These easy Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches are perfect for a quick lunch or dinner, served alone or with some chips, fries, salad, or soup!
4 from 1 vote
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Author: Michelle / Now Cook This!
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 12 minutes
Servings: 2
Estimated Calories: 430

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 8 ounces sliced deli ham
  • 2 slices American cheese
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 soft sandwich buns

Instructions

  • Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat (I use an 11" skillet).
  • Add the ham; cook, turning the ham occasionally, until it is lightly browned in spots.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low. Separate the ham into to 2 equal-sized piles (try to make them a size that will fit nicely on your buns).
  • Place one slice of cheese on top of each pile of ham (if needed, cut it in half and overlap it so that, once the cheese melts, it will stay on top of the ham rather than melting down into the pan).
  • Add the water to the pan and immediately cover the pan with a lid (this creates steam that will help the cheese melt faster); continue cooking just until the cheese melts.
  • Place the ham and cheese on the buns; serve immediately.

Notes

  • Use your favorite deli ham. I use a good-quality Black Forest ham, ham off the bone, or something similar. 
  • Leftover baked ham from dinner or a holiday meal would make a truly amazing and extra-special sandwich!
  • You can use any other kind of cheese that melts easily, such as cheddar or Swiss.
  • Any soft roll, such as club rolls, hamburger buns or potato buns will do.
  • If you happen to have leftovers, once they cool, wrap them up in foil and store them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, just pop them in a 325°F oven (wrapped in the foil) until they are heated through, about 15 minutes.
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Recipe Rating




Cynetta

Thursday 21st of October 2021

Swiss cheese would also go well here

Michelle

Thursday 21st of October 2021

Agreed! Thanks, Cynetta!