Halloumi, a sheep and goat's milk cheese from Cyprus, is salty, squeaky, and perfect for grilling. Learn how to cook it with this simple guide!
If panzanella is my favorite summer dinner, then grilled halloumi cheese is unquestionably Jack’s. He doesn’t care how I serve it: in a summery grain bowl, in sandwiches, or just plated up with sliced tomatoes and a side of crusty bread. He loves its charred, salty flavor and rich, squeaky texture. I can’t blame him – I’m a big fan of it too!
What is halloumi cheese?
If you’re thinking, “Wait, cheese on the grill??”, I get it! A slice of cheddar or mozzarella would melt right through the grates. But not halloumi. This cheese, which hails from Cyprus, has a uniquely firm texture and high melting point, so it can stand up to all sorts of cooking methods: pan-frying, roasting, broiling, grilling, or frying. Depending on your chosen method, the outside sears and becomes crisp and charred or browned, while the inside becomes deliciously warm.
Halloumi is traditionally made with a mix of goat’s milk and sheep’s milk, though today, you can find commercial halloumi made with cow’s milk as well. It tastes salty and savory, and it has a bit of a funk. Though I cook with halloumi all year round, I especially love it in the summer. It’s an amazingly flavorful, satisfying vegetarian protein that’s super easy to throw on the grill!
How to Grill Halloumi Cheese
Ready to try grilling halloumi cheese? The process couldn’t be simpler! Here’s how it goes:
First, slice the halloumi into 1/2-inch-thick planks. Drizzle the planks with olive oil and use your hands to coat them on both sides.
While you prep the halloumi, preheat an outdoor grill or grill pan. You want it to be nice and hot when you add the cheese! This helps prevent sticking.
Finally, grill the halloumi. Cook it until grill marks form on both sides. This shouldn’t take long – just 2 to 3 minutes per side. That’s it!
Find the complete recipe with measurements below.
How to Serve Grilled Halloumi
Grilled halloumi is pretty darn versatile, so I encourage you to have fun finding different ways to serve it. Here are a few of my favorites:
- As an appetizer. Set it out with sliced baguette, fresh herbs, and a tasty sauce for drizzling. I like it with mint and Greek dressing or, for a yummy sweet and savory combo, honey.
- In a salad. Make an unconventional Caprese salad with grilled halloumi cheese instead of mozzarella. It’d be great in a panzanella or Greek salad, too! You can also find it in this cucumber and tomato salad recipe.
- In a sandwich. Try it in the Charred Cauliflower Pitas with Halloumi & Harissa on page 211 of Love & Lemons Every Day, or sub it in for the fresh mozzarella in these Caprese sandwiches. I also love a sandwich with the cheese, grilled eggplant and zucchini, grilled onions, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, and romesco sauce.
- In a bowl. Pair it with cilantro lime rice or coconut rice, black beans, and a fruity salsa like mango salsa, pineapple salsa, or peach salsa. Add drizzles of my cilantro lime dressing to tie it all together. A bowl with grilled halloumi, cooked farro or couscous, roasted tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, chopped cucumbers, olives, and Greek dressing is great too.
How do you like to serve grilled halloumi cheese? Let me know in the comments!
More Favorite Grilling Recipes
Loved grilling cheese? Try one of these easy grilling recipes next:
- Grilled Tofu
- Best Veggie Burger
- Black Bean Burger
- Favorite Grilled Tomatoes
- Grilled Mushrooms
- Perfect Grilled Sweet Potatoes
- Grilled Watermelon
- Or any of these 31 Best Grill Recipes!
- 6 to 8 ounces halloumi cheese
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Preheat a grill or grill pan to high heat. Slice the halloumi into ½-inch-thick planks. Rub both sides with olive oil and place on the hot grill. Reduce the heat to medium and grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until well-charred.
Check our latest recipe by Drashti’s Cooking tour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqjtCGleLOE
really nice alternative dish for me, great appetizer for a summer grill, as you write or just main dish, thank you!
I wonder. This seems as though it might be similar to a cheese that is popular here in Wisconsin – Juusto cheese. Perhaps it’s popular because we have a dairy that produces it and that’s how I discovered it. Juusto is a Finnish cheese; maybe not similar. Thanks for this recipe. I will keep my eye out for this here in the Midwest.
This is also delicious in tacos!!