Zesty Turkey Bell Pepper Panino


I know, I know, but trust me when I say this is the last panino recipe for some time! It was a beautiful sunny day, the boyfriend and I had no set plans other than cleaning, and suddenly it came to me: what a wonderful day for a picnic! I called to get his thoughts on the subject, and as it involved eating food, he naturally wasn’t opposed, and thus I set about making picnic food: panino and potato salad, put together a canteen of orange juice, package up a few cookies and berries, and we’re set! Ah, right, back to the panino…

This one has turkey in it, but the real ‘meat’ of this sandwich is the roasted red bell pepper. You can roast it yourself or get it in a can at the market- just make sure they’re large and whole so that you can get the full effect, rather than small pieces! Spinach and fresh mozz round out this sandwich to make it flavourful and delicious. And what’s that particular zesty taste? It’s a mix of my house-made shallot pesto + some oregano-basil tomato sauce! These all melded together to make an incredibly delicious picnic food.

Zesty Turkey Bell Pepper Panino

Ingredients (makes 1 panino):

  • 2 slices cut approx. 1-inch thick of rustic bread of your choice (french boule, rustic/country bread, a fairly dense ciabatta, etc- so long as it’s got few holes and a good crust)
  • 2 slices thinly-cut oven-roasted deli turkey
  • 1.5 medallions fresh mozarella cheese
  • 1/2 tablespoon of parsley-shallot pesto (spread on only one slice of bread- can be substituted forvirtually any other type of pesto)
  • 1 large roasted red bell pepper
  • 8-10 leaves of fresh spinach
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano+basil pasta sauce
  • 1 tsp grated parmesan
  • 1 tsp minced fresh parsley


  • Heat panini press or grill pan
  • Spread pesto onto ONE bread slice
  • Spread tomato sauce onto the other bread slice
  • Place spinach leaves, deli turkey, and mozz over one of the bread slices
  • Place minced parsley, bell pepper, and parmesan over the other bread slice
  • Put bread slices together carefully so as to not spill ingredients
  • Place sandwich on panini press and pull down the top; or, place on grill pan and place pressing tool on top; or, place on grill pan and if you do not have a panini press, put a heavy weight on top
  • Grill/press for 4-5 minutes, then if browned to your preference, flip over and grill for another 4-5 minutes
  • Remove from heat, slice in half at a slight diagonal, and dig in :)
  • The tomato sauce + pesto + roasted bell pepper makes this one a powerful punch of flavour, so be prepared for a bit of a kick! For an added burst,  add in 2 tsp (1 per side) of caramelized onions or shallots. Yum!

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