14 Cozy Melted Cheese Recipes We Love to Make All Winter Long

These gooey cheese dishes are irresistible.

Photo: Marcus Nilsson

Melting cheese adds special magic to a winter recipe. Not only is it the perfect finishing touch, melted cheese is also an ideal main ingredient. Plus, it's a surefire method for getting everyone to the table, whether gathered around a plate of toasty nachos dripping with melted cheddar, or a classic French onion soup topped with bubbly, golden-brown Gruyère. And if one rich, gooey melted cheese is not enough, try a recipe like our creamy baked ziti, which calls for three kinds of cheese—and makes a welcome addition to any potluck, church lunch, or Sunday night supper.

There's nothing like melted cheese to make a cozy recipe even warmer and heartier. Stretch the way you think about melted cheese recipes with this delightful collection of comfort foods.

01 of 14

Arancini with Sage

Anna Williams

Every Italian nonna could tell you that the secret to a memorable arancini is the rice, but a perfectly stretchy Taleggio pull never hurt a crispy ball of rice.

02 of 14


khachapuri sitting on white cutting board with knife
Bryan Gardner

If you haven't tried making khachapuri, a Georgian cheese bread, it's time to whip out the feta and mozzarella for this hearty, craveable cross between pizza and fondue.

03 of 14

Meatball Casserole

Anna Williams

Don't make regular meatballs; make exceptional ones. Broil mozz on top of savory pork and beef meatballs, using the toasting power of a high-heat source to elevate this classic comfort dish.

04 of 14

Croque Madame

Con Poulos

Do you love a good Parisian croque monsieur, the ham-and-cheese sando? You're sure to fall for the even richer tastes of a croque madame, which has a fried egg on top. Creamy, nutty Gruyère is the right choice for this decadent lunch.

05 of 14


Anna Williams

Don't be intimidated by the fancy French name—the tartiflette is just a layered casserole of potatoes, bacon, and cheese. If you can't find the traditional Reblochon cheese, swap in brie or Robiola Bosina.

06 of 14

French Onion Soup

french onion soup served with cheesy bread
Jenny Huang

This super savory spin on a classic incorporates sweet Vidalia onions and Marsala, Madeira, or port for extra flavor, plus Gruyère broiled on top.

07 of 14

Fondue with Seared Steak

Anna Williams

If you put away your fondue pot in the '90s, it's time to get it out again. This flexible meal is the hot equivalent of a cheese board spread, with melted Gouda and Gruyère flavored with white wine, brandy, and freshly grated nutmeg.

08 of 14

Baked Camembert

Marcus Nilsson

Baked brie is great, but if you can find a wheel of Camembert, it's the ultimate aromatic French treat when baked and decorated with fragrant rosemary, crumbled bacon, and pine nuts.

09 of 14

Creamy Baked Ziti

creamy baked ziti
Bryan Gardner

Because three melted cheeses are better than one. Add cream cheese to your sauce, then layer mozzarella and Parmesan for an enticingly gooey treat.

10 of 14

Macaroni and Cheese

perfect macaroni and cheese
Bryan Gardner

Toss out the cardboard boxes—you've never made a homemade mac this good! With sharp white Cheddar and Gruyère, this main dish stunner is thickened with flour and finished with toasty breadcrumbs.

11 of 14

Hot Spinach Dip

hot spinach dip
Minh + Wass

Cream cheese and mozzarella are a tantalizing combination in this party table favorite, which is both utterly dippable and super spreadable.

12 of 14

Grilled Ham-and-Broccoli-Rabe Sandwiches

Anna Williams

This recipe takes a classic sandwich combo to a new level. A few tweaks—fontina cheese (which melts so well), fig jam, and peppery broccoli rabe provide sweet, salty, and pungent touches.

13 of 14

Skillet Chili Nachos

skillet chili nachos
Justin Walker

The flavor combinations in this dish contrast hearty chips, chili, and cheddar cheese with cool sour cream, piquant salsa, and creamy avocado. Plus, you can sub in Monterey Jack or American if you don't have cheddar.

14 of 14

Cheesy Soppressata Pull-Apart Bread

Lennart Weibull

Slices of whole-milk mozzarella and soppressata are tucked inside pizza dough and then drizzled with spicy honey in this decadent snack.

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