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A grilled sandwich made using specialty bread such as ciabatta, rosetta or michetta, the panini is stuffed with a wide range of delicious fillings – hopefully including some gooey, melty cheese. National Panini Month is here to show appreciation for this sandwich and hopefully try to give it the worldwide recognition that it deserves! 

History of National Panini Month

While the exact location origins of the panini is a bit unclear, most food historians will say that this tasty melty sandwich got its start in the 1960s, in little sandwich shops throughout large Italian cities, such as Milan. At the time, the name for these little sandwiches was “paninoteche”, but it has since been shortened for ease and convenience.

The first National Panini Month was celebrated in 2008 when it was founded by an American company called Sargento Foods. Although this event takes place all throughout the month, some people also celebrate National Panini Day specifically on August 11. But, honestly, every one of the thirty-one days of this month could be used to honor and celebrate this sandwich in a wide variety of ways!

How to Celebrate National Panini Month

It’s super easy to get involved with and celebrate National Panini Month! Check out some of these ideas:

Enjoy Eating a Panini Sandwich

One of the best ways to pay tribute to National Panini Month is, of course, to head out and order up a panini sandwich to enjoy! A number of different restaurants, delis and sandwich shops across the US now sell, or even specialize in, the making of delicious paninis.

Some of the traditional paninis might include some sort of ham with provolone cheese, tomato slices and pesto. Others might change it up with roasted turkey and Swiss cheese that is topped off with a sun-dried tomato mayo. The options really are endless when it comes to enjoying these delightful grilled sandwiches for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Get Creative with Panini Sandwiches

While some people use a special panini sandwich maker, it’s also possible to make these at home with a simple grill pan and a regular stove. In celebration of National Panini Month, this is a perfect time to step outside the box of that regular ham-and-cheese combo and groove into something more unique.

Hop online for some panini recipe inspiration, or get started with some of these:

  • Brie, Apple and Bacon Grilled Panini Sandwich 
  • Tuna Melt Paninis with dill pickles 
  • Peanut Butter and Jelly Panini on seedy bread
  • Philly Cheesesteak Panini Sandwich 

Host a Panini Cook Off

Gather those culinary-type friends together and host a little event where everyone makes their favorite panini sandwich recipe and then shares with each other to find out whose is best. It’s a great way to get into the spirit of National Panini Month and build community too.

Also, every time a grilled sandwich is finished, don’t forget to take a photo and share it with friends on social media to let more people know about this delicious event!

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