`Pan-Seared Halloumi with Fig Jam and Olive Oil - Olive Oil Times

Pan-Seared Halloumi with Fig Jam and Olive Oil

This classic mediterranean grilling cheese is a great option for a light appetizer for your next dinner party. Halloumi is best served with both sweet and savory toppings and pairs perfectly with fig jam and kalamata olives.
Jul. 30, 2021
Paul Kostandin

Halloumi is the orig­i­nal grilling cheese. Originally from Cypriot and made from sheep or goats milk, hal­loumi is a firm, hard-pressed cheese that is able to be grilled or seared directly on a grill or in a pan. With a firm, chewy tex­ture and a rich caramelized fla­vor from the grilling process Halloumi is an amaz­ing snack or mezze appe­tizer.

Thanks to the rich, but the neu­tral fla­vor of Halloumi cheese you can really use it as a palate for so many dif­fer­ent fla­vor com­bi­na­tions. I like to serve my hal­loumi with sweet and savory ingre­di­ents that keep me com­ing back bite after bite. Ingredients like jams, jel­lies, syrups, and oils allow you to cre­ate a dip­pable, din­ing expe­ri­ence that will have your friends and fam­ily think­ing you’ve gone into cook­ing pro­fes­sion­ally.

When it comes to cook­ing hal­loumi, you’ll want to make sure you have a nice clean saute pan and olive oil that can han­dle higher tem­per­a­tures to prop­erly sear the cheese. Personally, I find it eas­ier to use a non­stick pan for the cook­ing process as it helps keep clean up to a min­i­mum and pre­vents stick­ing which can be really frus­trat­ing.

For the final dressing/garnish go ahead and use lighter fruitier extra vir­gin olive oil that will allow all the deli­cious fla­vors to shine through with­out over­pow­er­ing the dish. I like to use fig jam for the plat­ing of this recipe, but you can use what­ever pre­server or jam you have on hand, the pome­gran­ate molasses adds a tart sweet­ness that helps liven up the palate as you enjoy the rich, salty hal­loumi. If you can’t find pome­gran­ate molasses you can use a bal­samic reduc­tion instead for much the same effect! Feel free to exper­i­ment with the sea­son­ings and top­pings as you become more com­fort­able cook­ing and work­ing with hal­loumi.


Pan-Seared Halloumi with Fig Jam and Olive Oil

Course: Appetizers, Snacks, SidesCuisine: MediterraneanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



This clas­sic Mediterranean grilling cheese is a great option for a light appe­tizer for your next din­ner party. Halloumi is best served with both sweet and savory top­pings or accom­pa­ni­ments and pairs per­fectly with the fig jam and kala­mata olives in this recipe!


  • 16 oz pkghal­loumi cheese, sliced into 1/2 inch slices

  • 2tbspextra vir­gin olive oil

  • 2tbspfig jam

  • 1tsppome­gran­ate mol­lasses

  • 6 – 8eakala­mata olives, pits removed

  • 1tsporange zest

  • 4tbspextra vir­gin olive oil


  • To sear the hal­loumi
  • Heat 2 tbsp of extra vir­gin olive oil in a saute pan over medium/high heat.
  • Once the oil is hot, place the hal­loumi into the pan and allow it to sear on one side before flip­ping the cheese over and allow­ing it to sear on the other side.
  • Once you have seared the hal­loumi on both sides, remove the cheese from the pan and set it aside as you plate the hal­loumi dish.
  • To plate the hal­loumi
  • On a serv­ing plate spread the fig jam over the plate in a large cir­cle.
  • Arrange the seared hal­loumi cheese on the plate on top of the fig jam.
  • Drizzle the hal­loumi with olive oil and pome­gran­ate molasses.
  • Sprinkle the orange zest over the hal­loumi and arrange the olives around the plate.
  • Enjoy!

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