Pimento Cheese Recipe Video – scroll down for recipe card
Pimento cheese is a thing that is truly best when homemade. The stuff in the little plastic tubs just doesn’t do it for me: it’s sweet, it’s pasty, it lacks pizzazz! Homemade pimento cheese — especially mine — is rich and tangy and perfect for sandwiches, crackers, crudite, grilled cheese, or slapping onto a burger. Or mixing into mac and cheese as was suggested to me by a pal. Pretty much anywhere you’d use grated Cheddar, you can use pimento cheese instead with excellent results.
My pimento cheese has a couple of variations from the norm (the norm being cheese, mayo, pimentos). I use cream cheese instead of mayo as the base; I add a little brown mustard; I add pickled jalapeños and pickled jalapeño juice for spice and acidity; and I add a couple peppadew peppers when I have them handy. They add just a tiny bit of sweetness and a little more pepper flavor. In the past, I’ve also added a couple spoonfuls of jarred ajvar, a Serbian red pepper relish, and that is definitely worth trying if you can find some at an international grocery store.
Once you try my version, mix it up and add diced pickles or capers or green onions roasted red bell peppers.
Best Pimento Cheese RecipePrint
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Total Time: 10 mins
- Yield: 4 cups
- 8 ounces softened cream cheese (full or low-fat is fine)
- 8 ounces grated sharp Cheddar (about 2 cups grated)
- 2 tablespoons brown mustard
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
- 4 ounce jar diced pimentos, drained
- 2-4 tablespoons pickled jalapeños, diced
- 2 tablespoons pickled jalapeño brine
- Optional: 1-2 Peppadew peppers, diced
- In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese, Cheddar, mustard and mayo until fairly uniform.
- Add in the pimentos and peppers and brine. Mix well.
- Taste for salt and pepper (it likely won’t need either one)
- Serve now or refrigerate for up to 4 days. Best eaten at room temperature.