Perky Pimento Cheese

Pimento Cheese Recipe

Never underestimate the power of a good pimento cheese recipe. Bold and creamy pimento cheese spread is a right-of-passage here in the south. A feather in your cap. A jewel in your crown.

Southern cooks are serious cooks.

Don’t be misled by the warm hospitable smile or charming southern draw; cooking is business down here.

If someone states they’ve got a great recipe for strawberry pie, you can bet it’s been passed down in the family for generations, and has won a few blue ribbons at the county fair. I’ve never lived in a place where so many people are avid cooks with years of home training from momma, granny, and great-gran-nanny as well.

Pimento Cheese SpreadStriking Wooden Tray from Villeroy & Boch.

Certain dishes must be conquered with skill and finesse in order to call yourself a southern cook.

Hidden under a frilly toile apron, the southern cook has an arsenal of dishes that will make your head spin. Shrimp and grits, squash casserole, spiced ham, tomato pie, corn pudding, collard greens, cornbread and red velvet cake are considered the big guns.

But DO NOT… under any circumstances, forget to pack a good pimento cheese recipe in your holster.

Consider yourself warned.

Southern Pimento Cheese

Pimento cheese spread is the quintessential southern snack. A killer pimento cheese recipe must be thick and creamy, not runny and overly mayonnaise-y. It also needs to have a good amount of diced pimentos and a little extra something that no one can quite put their finger on.

Pimento cheese spread is fantastic on crackers, veggies, apples, sliced bread and as a topper for baked potatoes or broccoli.

Pimento Cheese

My pimento cheese recipe is a little spicy. The “extra something” I add is a nip of Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. I also use a combination of Extra Sharp Cheddar and Pepper Jack Cheese, instead of the traditional use of Cheddar and Monterrey Jack.

It is important to let the pimento cheese spread sit for a little while after it’s prepared to thicken and absorb all the flavors. Then set it in the middle of a crowd, put on your southern badge of honor, and watch it disappear at bullet-speed!

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Yield: 12 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Pimento Cheese

Ingredients:

8 oz. cream cheese
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 very small clove garlic, minced
1 Tb. chopped onion
1 Tb. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tb. hot sauce
8 oz. shredded extra sharp cheddar (2 cups)
8 oz. shredded pepper jack cheese (2 cups)
1/3 cup chopped pimentos, drained
Pepper

Directions:

Place the cream cheese, garlic and onion in the food processor. Puree until smooth.

Then add the mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce and puree again.

Scrape the bowl and add half the shredded cheese. Pulse until well combined.

Pour the mixture into a large bowl. Add the remaining cheese, pimentos and pepper to taste. Mix, cover and place in the fridge. Allow the pimento cheese spread to chill and thicken for 30 minutes.

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31 Responses to “Perky Pimento Cheese”

  1. #
    1
    Heather @girlichef — April 18, 2012 @ 6:13 am

    Oh, I could eat that up right now – I’m a pimento cheese fan, for sure! I love your cracked pepper flecked through the cheese. Lovely.

    Reply

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    2
    Belinda @zomppa — April 18, 2012 @ 6:40 am

    Truly is! I didn’t realize it til I moved to NC how southern (and delicious) this is!

    Reply

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    3
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — April 18, 2012 @ 7:01 am

    This is something I’ve been meaning to try for quite some time! It looks lovely.

    Reply

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    4
    Jen @ Juanita's Cocina — April 18, 2012 @ 8:58 am

    Hellooooooooooo my one true love! (pimento cheese)

    Reply

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    5
    Heather (Heather's Dish) — April 18, 2012 @ 11:16 am

    i’m almost ashamed to admit this but i never grew up with pimento cheese, in spite of my texas heritage. how sad, right?! good news is that i love cheese so it’s not like i’d have trouble finding a way to love this :)

    Reply

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    6
    Kiri W. — April 18, 2012 @ 12:16 pm

    Oh my – this is the kind of snack I don’t snack on, but feast on! Looks utterly fantastic :)

    Reply

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    7
    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — April 18, 2012 @ 12:23 pm

    Yum! What a wonderful spread! I love cheese and crackers together. It’s one of those snacks that makes me feel sophisticated if I have a glass of wine eith it or a kid when I have it with my ice tea. :)

    Reply

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    8
    NanaScriv — April 18, 2012 @ 1:37 pm

    Ooohhhhh too wonderful! This is one of Pop’s favorite foods. He buys it ‘ready made’ if I don’t make it and this is far better than any store brand mix. I am trying it for sure.

    Reply

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    9
    Hester @ Alchemy in the Kitchen — April 18, 2012 @ 3:06 pm

    Sommer, can you believe! I have never had a pimento cheese but that’s all about to change. Your photos are absolutely beautiful. How do you get such light into them?

    Reply

    • Sommer — April 18th, 2012 @ 3:12 pm

      Your so sweet! I usually take my final shots outside because my kitchen is pretty dark. Natural light makes all the difference.

      Reply

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    Michele Gerhard — April 18, 2012 @ 3:18 pm

    Fabulous! I’ve eaten a WHOLE lot of pimiento cheese in my time and have lots of pimiento cheese rescipes, but you have my undivided attention here! Craig Claiborne’s recipe has been my go-to for many years, but I have to try this! Thank you! :)

    Reply

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    Jen @ Jen's Favorite Cookies — April 18, 2012 @ 4:17 pm

    Ooh, yum-oh! I work hard to be a celery fan, but spreadable pimento cheese just NEEDS a cracker!! This looks like a great snack to share with a crowd! Love it!

    Reply

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    12
    danielle — April 18, 2012 @ 4:51 pm

    I am definitely saving this one in my arsenal! I have my moments where for dinner I just want a crusty baguette and some dip. Man if i didnt have a weigh in tomorrow, tonight would be one of those nights!

    Reply

  13. #
    13
    Judy@Savoring Today — April 18, 2012 @ 6:46 pm

    I like this flavor combination. I am always looking for new, easy appetizer spreads and this one sounds really good.

    Reply

  14. #
    14
    Kathy - Panini Happy — April 18, 2012 @ 10:37 pm

    I finally tried my first pimiento cheese a few months ago – that’s good stuff! Makes a great grilled cheese too. :-)

    Reply

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    15
    Aldy @ Al Dente Gourmet — April 18, 2012 @ 11:11 pm

    Delightful bites! This pimiento and cheese is making me drool :)

    Gorgeous shots!

    Hugs <3

    Reply

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    16
    Sandra — April 19, 2012 @ 4:43 am

    No respectable NC gal would be caught dead without a passed-down-for-generations pimiento cheese recipe in her arsenal & yours ranks up there with some of the best! One thing we love is a grilled burger dressed with a fried green tomato & a liberal amount of homemade pimiento cheese. We also love our pimiento cheese as a grilled cheese sandwich.

    Reply

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    17
    Aileen — April 19, 2012 @ 4:54 am

    If only I could have a taste of this! You made it spicy, that’s why I’m sure I’m going to love it even more.

    Reply

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    18
    Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. — April 19, 2012 @ 8:00 am

    I am a huge Pimiento Cheese Fan! Looks great!!

    Reply

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    19
    Jersey Girl Cooks — April 19, 2012 @ 4:40 pm

    I love Pimiento cheese but have not made it myself. Not sure why. This must be the recipe to try.

    Reply

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    20
    Stephie @ Eat Your Heart Out — April 20, 2012 @ 9:35 am

    Pimento cheese is one of my favorite things in the world! My momma’s family is from Mississippi, so even though I was raised above the Mason-Dixon line, I know exactly what you mean about southern food and cooking. Your recipe for pimento cheese has my stomach growling and it’s not even lunchtime!

    Reply

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    Sheila — April 24, 2012 @ 9:56 pm

    I love Pimento Cheese! I cant’ wait to give this a try. I always just buy it. My favorite is from Zingermans

    Reply

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    caite@a lovely shore breeze — April 26, 2012 @ 12:07 pm

    Born and raised in NJ, I never tasted Pimento Cheese until I made this recipe. I am sold, totally sold! Excellent.
    Oh Pimento Cheese, where have you been all my life……

    Reply

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    23
    Doodler — May 7, 2012 @ 2:08 pm

    I am a pimento cheese fanatic. I am not southern. I made some for New Years Eve and it was a hit. I had some leftover and the it in sandwiches and on burgers and such. Can’t get enough of it. I definitely feel that it all depends on the cheese you use – it has to have flavorful cheeses to make it. I agree that pepper jack works really well.

    Reply

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    24
    Tammy — June 2, 2013 @ 6:07 pm

    My husband just made this recipe for the first time. I have to stop and tell you that this is the BEST pimento cheese we’ve ever eaten! Thank you!!!

    Reply

    • Sommer — June 2nd, 2013 @ 7:49 pm

      Oh Thanks Tammy, That’s so nice to hear! :)

      Reply

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    Edith @MoodyDunbarInc. — August 31, 2013 @ 10:03 pm

    I love this recipe for pimiento cheese. It reminds me of the spread my father always makes. Part of my father’s (and grandfather’s) company is canning the Dromedary pimientos that are found in grocery stores all over the country. We love to see people eating pimiento cheese and using it in so many different ways! Thanks for sharing such a great recipe and southern favorite!

    Reply

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