It’s such a basic pairing: bread and cheese. But the art of making a boast-worthy grilled cheese sandwich is something many restauranteurs don’t take lightly. The quintessential comfort food for kids and adults alike may be savored in its classic simplicity or taken to new heights of culinary craftiness with add-ons and clever twists to the ingredients. Here are six family-friendly eateries (one is a food truck!) in Los Angeles that serve up the best grilled cheese sandwiches you’ll find flipping on a grill near you.

The Grilled Cheese Truck
A literal meal on wheels, the Grilled Cheese Truck brings the beloved sandwich to the streets of Los Angeles with a mouth-watering menu including Plain and Simple melts combining cheese and bread of your choosing to meaty concoctions including their famous Cheesy Mac and Rib with BBQ pork and caramelized onions. Perfect side orders such as tater tots and tomato soup really up the comfort food factor, and kids might just chase after the truck after experiencing one of their S’more Melts: Nutella, marshmallow cream and crumbled graham crackers served on sweet brioche bread. This is one truck stop you don’t want to miss.

To see where the truck is visiting next, check online: thegrilledcheesetruck.com

Clementine
This family owned neighborhood bakery and cafe sources seasonal ingredients from local farmers markets, and they make all of their delicious dishes and baked goods from scratch and by hand. The ‘build-your-own grilled cheese’ option will please diners with both timid and adventurous tastes. Choose your bread from varieties including country white or olive — choose your cheese, selections run the gamut from cheddar to feta, then add-on anything from applewood-smoked turkey to tomato chutney, and top it off with ‘the works’: mayo, pickled jalapenos, red onion, and lettuce. In honor of Halloween, Clementine is offering special treats kids will devour if they have room left in their tummies: chocolate spider web and red velvet eyeball cupcakes!

1752 Ensley Avenue
Los Angeles, Ca
310-552-1080
Online: clementineonline.com

The Melt
Grilled cheese, all day, all night – nothin’ but grilled cheese.  As they say, “yup, it’s just cheese and bread”.  But it’s the choices that get us – and that will get your kiddos.  From “The Kid” (cheddar on artisan white with slices of apple on the side) to custom jobs where you can pick any kind of cheese, any kind of bread (including gluten-free), and any add-ons (like tomatoes, portabello ‘shrooms, short ribs, bacon and more).  There’s even a dessert melt that will melt your heart, and breakfast melts that jump start a day.  And you can pre-order online and have yours waiting for you.  And when you’ve got hungry kids who hate to wait, that’s pretty great.

With locations in Downtown LA, Hollywood and now in Burbank.  Check website for locations and hours:
themelt.com

Lunch
The name says it all — although they serve breakfast, too! This Culver City eatery boasts a fun, unique, and expansive hot and cold sandwich menu, which includes The Super Melty: grilled cheddar and provolone on white sourdough. Recommended add-ons of brie, tomato, and bacon up the flavor ante, and you can make your grilled cheese into a tuna melt as well. Pair the gooey goods with a cup of tomato basil so your tot can dip his sandwich in it and get a dose of veggies!

3829 Main Street
Culver City, Ca
310-837-6200
Online: eatatlunch.com

Cafe Surfas
If you’re raising a little foodie with discerning taste, head to Cafe Surfas to wow her taste buds with their pressed Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich, which elevates the standard fare to new heights: white cheddar, fontina and blue cheese mayo on pecan raisin bread. But don’t fret if your kid doesn’t want to veer from the basics. The menu also includes a ‘Kid’s Grilled Cheese Sandwich’ comprised of cheddar cheese, fontina and mayo on sourdough, served with a side of fruit.

8777 West Washington Boulevard
Culver City, Ca
310-558-1458
Online: cafesurfas.com

Doughboys Cafe & Bakery Restaurant
Doughboys is renown for its rich selection of comfort food, served in a casual environment, and of course the mainstay of any feel good menu is a delectable grilled cheese sandwich. Their version is butter toasted French pan de mie filled with gooey swiss, white cheddar and fontina cheese. Split a giant bowl of one of their hearty, fresh homemade soups with your tot, and you’ve got a meal that may even satiate your little one from lunch through dinnertime!

8136 West Third Street
Los Angeles, Ca
323-852-1020
Online: doughboyscafe.gimmegrub.com

Where is your family’s favorite spot to grab some grilled cheese in Los Angeles?

— Beth Shea