Simple Turkey Sandwich Recipe with Black Pepper California Fig Jam

valleyfiggrowers@alkalyne.solutionsJams + Spreads, Recipes, Sandwiches

turkey panini with black pepper jam

This hot turkey sandwich recipe features a sweet black pepper fig jam made from California Sun-Maid Calimyrna figs (though you can also use Orchard Choice Golden Figs too). California dried Golden Figs meld perfectly with the fruity notes of black pepper and balances out the tang from the mustard. The fig jam is easy to make and is perfect on a cheese board, on crackers for an easy appetizer or spread on toast with ricotta. If you don’t have a panini press, this simple turkey sandwich recipe can be made on a skillet, the same way you’d make a grilled cheese, using a spatula to press down on the sandwich to help melt the cheese.

Hot Turkey Sandwich Recipe with Black Pepper California Fig Jam

What can make a turkey sandwich recipe simple but adds flavor? Quick homemade black pepper fig jam! Our simple turkey sandwich recipe is then panini-pressed.
turkey panini with black pepper jam
Servings 4 people


  • 6 ounces Sun-Maid California Calimyrna Figs
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • Pinch of salt
  • 8 slices sourdough bread
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 3/4 pound sliced turkey chicken or ham
  • Mayonnaise
  • Mustard
  • Butter


  • Make the jam: add the figs, water, sugar, pepper, and salt into a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium low. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, then remove from heat. Uncover, and let sit for 5 minutes before processing in a food processor or blender until a chunky jam/chutney mixture starts to form.
  • Make the paninis: spread a thin layer of the fig jam on 4 slices of bread followed by about 1/4 cup of cheese, 1/2 cup of the baby arugula, a quarter of the sliced meat and then another 1/4 cup of the cheese. Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise and mustard on the other 4 slices of bread. Then, top the sandwiches with those pieces of bread, buttering the tops of the bread. Place buttered side down in a panini press and butter the other side. Press according to the directions on the panini press (I pressed mine for about 4 1/2 minutes).


Recipe and photos by Esteban Castillo

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and tag us @valleyfig —we’d love to see what you’re cooking on Instagram and Facebook!

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