If you’re looking for the crispiest, crunchiest panini sandwich, all you need to do is pull out your air fryer!
As you already know, I recently fell in love with making air fryer grilled cheese. It got me wondering what other sandwiches I could make in there. Would an air fryer panini work?
It turns out, air fryers are a great way to cook a panini! The bread gets extra crunchy and toasty and the cheese gets super gooey and melted.
I love making air fryer panini with all of my favorite fillings. 9 times out of 10 that means Caprese. I just can’t get enough of that classic tomato, mozzarella, and basil combination! Sometimes I’ll add a chicken breast, like I did here, to make a chicken Caprese panini. Yum!
Chicken Caprese Panini Ingredients
For this recipe, you just need a few basic ingredients.
First up, is a crusty roll, like ciabatta, or a hunk of Italian bread. You can make panini sandwiches on sliced bread, but using something with more crust helps it get extra crispy.
You’ll also need a tomato and some fresh mozzarella.
Basil is my favorite part of a Caprese panini. Fresh basil is nice, but for even more flavor I like to make pesto mayo by mixing together equal amounts of pesto and mayonnaise. It really adds that special something to my sandwich!
How to press a panini in the air fryer
A panini that isn’t pressed is just a sandwich, so you’ll need to press yours.
If you have a panini press that fits in your air fryer, that’s ideal. Otherwise, see what you have on hand that might work. I like to use a 3 pound barbell weight that I wrap in foil. A small cast iron pot lid also works.
If you don’t have anything that fits inside your air fryer, you can press down on your sandwich for a few minutes with a heavy pot to smoosh it before it cooks. If you do this route, it’s helpful to use a few toothpicks to hold the top piece of bread in place; otherwise it the air fryer fan might blow it off.
I'm Christine Pittman, a cookbook author and busy mom of two. My recipes are made from scratch, they're quick, and they're fresh. I started this website over 10 years ago and I'm delighted that over a million people now come to visit every month to try my recipes. Thank you for visiting and for joining me on this delicious journey!Find out more about me here.
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