Unitasker Wednesday: The Panini Press

Panini PressPanini style sandwiches are, in my opinion, very delicious. Is there a way that I could recreate the panini in the comfort of my own kitchen? The Breville Ikon Panini Press does just that, but at 15 1/2″ x 12″ x 6 1/2″ high is it worth the space that it hogs up?

If you desire a panini to the point that you can’t stand it and you don’t want to part with the $100 and the cupboard space, you can probably survive by using items that you already have in your kitchen. Here is an easy step-by-step process to make a panini without a oversized panini press.

** Unitasker Wednesday posts humorously poke fun at the single-use items that seem to find their way into our homes.

20 Comments for “Unitasker Wednesday: The Panini Press”

  1. posted by Catheryne on

    Yeah, I just use my Forman grill!

  2. posted by christine on

    When we want paninis, we just throw a few bricks covered in foil into the oven. When they are nice and hot, we put the sandwich in between two of the bricks. Works like a charm!

  3. posted by Kris Twyman on

    I use a regular frying pan on the botttom, and put foil on top, then put the cast iron fryong pan on top of that. I heat the cast iron one first as well, to speed the process. Works perfectly.

  4. posted by wren on

    Catheryne, I’m with you. I use my Foreman grill. Works great. I like the step-by-step instructions in the link here too.

  5. posted by Lola on

    Yup, another Foreman grill user. Any sandwich tastes better when you press it!

  6. posted by John in Indiana on

    I have used the 2-skillet method with tasty results. I’m surprised that some actually LIKE the George grill. I always hated cleaning the thing, so during a kitchen de-clutter last week, I packed the Foreman, along with a 9-year unused Brita pitcher and a never-used waffle iron into a box and donated them.
    I like to “squish” my toasted cheese and Reuben sammiches…

  7. posted by Spacelord on

    We also use a George Forman grill for this task.

    The George Grills are easy to clean if you do one simple thing.. after removing the food, while its still fairly warm/hot.. put a wet paper towel in it, close the grill.
    Let it sit for a while. It steam cleans the hard to clean stuff. Then, wipe until clean with a couple more paper towels or rag. I hated cleaning it until I figured this out.

    Even if I forget to put the wet paper towel in and it cools off.. I turn it back on for a couple minutes then insert the wet paper towel.

  8. posted by erin rae on

    Too funny. I adore my panini maker.

    I never had a Foreman grill, so it essentially does the same thing –

    I grill chicken on it when I just want a couple of breasts cooked, grill shrimp, make paninis, grill vegetables, etc. I use it at least once a week…

  9. posted by Gayle on

    I’m so glad the sarcastic tone of Unitasker Wednesday is gone. I found that so unsettling.

  10. posted by radiantmatrix on

    Yeah, this thing should properly be called a “contact grill”. Cuisinart makes a model that is decidedly multi-tasking and uncluttered:

    1. has “grill” (lined) and “griddle” (smooth) plates
    2. opens flat to be used as a regular grill, or presses to grill e.g. chicken on both sides at once.
    3. the plates are removable and *dishwasher safe”.

    End result? Anything I grill during the colder months gets put on the contact grill, I make pancakes on it (used as an electric griddle!), and the cleanup is as easy as putting the plates in the dishwasher. It takes up less space than what it replaces:

    * a second skillet for panini and other “pressed” foods.
    * a stovetop griddle
    * a stovetop grill-plate

    And also works on low heat as a plate-warmer (nice when all burners on the stove are busy cooking!).

    Cusinart isn’t the only one who makes the multi-tasking version of this device, so I don’t know why people bother to buy the “panini-press-only” uni-tasking version…

  11. posted by Ryan on

    Man. I read it as, “The Panny Press”.

    Mind. Gutter.

  12. posted by Donna on

    This looks exactly like the sandwich press we have at home. We use it to grill vegetables and meat as well as all kinds of sandwiches, wraps, turkish bread etc. So for us it really is a multitasker.

  13. posted by thedesktop on

    You could just get a panini at a restaurant and save yourself the trouble.

  14. posted by jonathan tucker on

    another forman-panini user here!

  15. posted by rose on

    Why is it that an inordinate number of posts on this blog try to suggest you need to purchase more clutter to become uncluttered?

  16. posted by Joe on

    I have this model. I am stationed in Germany and it was hard to find a Foreman. I use it for lots of things besides sandwiches. Bratwurts, Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, Chicken, and even Fish Sticks have made it on my “Unitasker”… There is an adjustment on the side to allow you to set the hight of the grill on the top so if you have a sensitive item (like the fish sticks I made)it won’t get squished. I like it…

  17. posted by Pip on

    I have a similar grill too – works great for lots of things including French toast, veggies, heating up waffles, panini of course, brats, quesadillas, anything you would use a Forman grill for so same dealio. If that grill is a unitasker, so is a Forman grill.

  18. posted by Liz on

    Yes, I laughed when my DH brought a panini press home. But before you knew it, we dumped the Foreman–the panini thing is particularly good for salmon burgers and seared tuna. Ever so slightly easier to clean as you can drizzle water on it and it drains in the sink.

  19. posted by Meg on

    Anyone ever just use a cast-iron press in a pan or on a griddle? I haven’t used it to make panini yet, but it makes some outstanding bacon.

  20. posted by A year ago on Unclutterer | Unclutterer on

    […] Unitasker Wednesday: The Panini Press If you desire a panini that badly and you don’t want to part with the $100 and the cupboard space you can probably survive by using items that you already have in your kitchen. […]

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