I don’t eat breakfast on-the-go very often, usually opting for a simple bowl of cereal and some OJ at the kitchen table with my kids. Very Norman Rockwell. But on rare occasions — like if between the baby and me it’s been a 3-diaper-change morning, or one where I have to shave, put the garbage out, AND explain why you can wear the sparkle shoes or the pink shoes but not the pink sparkle shoes — well, I might have to skip the suburban flakes and grab something on the way. When that happens, it’s always Dunkin’ Donuts and I invariably get the same thing: a bismark, and a chocolate glazed (January-August) or pumpkin donut (September-December). This does not change, because while there are other donuts I like, those are the best. Feel free to disagree (everyone should take up a lost cause once in their life), but it should help you understand why I recently confused myself by walking into DD and not only not getting my usual order, but not getting a breakfast food whatsoever.
That is, of course, due to DD’s latest offering, the Texas Toast Grilled Cheese. Sort of a lunchtime offshoot of the recent Big N’ Toasty Breakfast Sandwich, your first thought on seeing one might be that it looks like they took the BN’T and stripped out the bacon and eggs. And… there would be a lot of truth to that, as it does play sort of the basic model compared to the fully loaded BN’T. To be specific, the new sandwich is two thick pieces of Texas toast with two slices of American cheese and one slice of cheddar in between. The whole thing is ironically oven toasted rather than grilled, served hot (or in my case, kinda warm).
Any good grilled cheese sandwich obviously lives or dies by the cheese. If you were hoping the Double D was going to get esoteric with their diary selection, guess again — American and cheddar are about the most predictable options they could’ve gone with. The other side of that coin is that those are the most popular cheeses because they’re both really good. However, I still think DD might’ve increased this sandwich’s mass appeal by giving us a few options to choose from, like Monterey Jack or Swiss. But they didn’t, so you’ll get American and cheddar and like it. And I did, mostly. The cheddar had just a bit of kick to it, slightly sharp, which I like in a cheddar. But it was mostly overwhelmed by the decent but standard American cheese, no doubt due to the 2:1 ratio. Both kinds were melted well, another key component of any successful grilled cheese. Overall, my impression of the cheeses was that they’re pretty good, but not exactly lighting the world on fire.
Ironically, my favorite part might’ve been what’s traditionally the most boring aspect of a sandwich, namely the bread. Texas toast is one of those foods that’s fantastic when done well but really disappointing if it’s either under-toasted or burned. Fortunately mine was just the right texture, toasted perfectly so that it was soft enough to easily dig into, but with enough crunch to feel satisfying. It also tasted buttery, another must-have.
But that’s really it, because the cheese and the bread are the only two components of the sandwich. Apparently it can be customized with bacon or ham, but DD might be shooting themselves in the foot by not better advertising that — I didn’t see any such option listed on the menu and my server didn’t offer it. Which is a shame — I would’ve been willing to throw in a few more cents or a saucy wink in exchange for meat, because that’s the kind of carniv-whore I am. Other than the missing pork, I didn’t mind too much because I’m a sandwich minimalist, but those who like to indulge in things like “pickles” and “condiments” and “fixins” will no doubt be left wanting worse than my high school girlfriend. You know, when she didn’t get into the college she wanted. Obviously.
Finally, not for nothing, but the fat and sodium content are more worrisome than my longstanding crush on Erin Esurance. (Whatever, I’m not the only one. The internet told me so!) The sandwich is pretty filling, but unless it’s the only thing you’re eating for lunch, it could easily have you packing on the ell-bees. I know, unlike the rest of Dunkin’ Donuts’ fare, but still. Moderation is advised.
(Nutrition Facts – 1 sandwich – 510 calories, 270 calories from fat, 30 grams of fat, 13 grams of saturated fat, 940 milligrams of sodium, 41 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of sugar, and 18 grams of protein)
Item: Dunkin’ Donuts Texas Toast Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Size: 1 sandwich
Purchased at: Dunkin’ Donuts
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Breaking out of your routine. A little bite to the cheddar. Melty, melty, melty. Crunchy Texas toast. Buttery flavor. Fairly filling. Ability to add meat.
Cons: Not publicizing the ability to add meat. High fat and sodium content. Lacking in the ingredients department. No additional cheese selections. I can make this exact sandwich in my kitchen in 5 minutes.