Last updated on February 5th, 2020 at 01:56 pm
Creamy, cheesy Pimento Cheese Spread is a great party spread! You can make it ahead of time, it keeps for a few days – if it lasts that long, and you can serve it in a bowl or roll it into a cheese ball and sprinkle with toasted pecans! Serve with crackers or on a burger for a new twist!
Those that have seen my Pimento Cheese Straw post (and hopefully read it) know about the Southern Staple, and Waycross favorite, know as pimento cheese.
If not, click over to the post (Pimento Cheese Straws) and read it while we wait for you to catch up! If you have done so already thank you, loyal followers, I am sharing my recipe for actual pimento cheese spread that can be used for a variety of dishes.
How do you eat Pimento Cheese Spread?
A classic way is to use it as a substitute for those gross, pre-packaged cheese food squares and make a better and more delicious grilled cheese sandwich. It’s also great smeared on top of some fried green tomatoes or eaten by the heaping spoonfuls like a Southern frosting!
What makes up a pimento cheese spread you ask? I’m glad you are asking because I had that same question when I first encountered pimento cheese.
The basic ingredients are cheddar cheese, mayonnaise, and chopped pimentos. A sprinkle of classic seasonings like consisting of salt and pepper and garlic powder. Let’s start with the cheese, shall we?
Cheddar is the most common but I like to mix things up if you haven’t noticed. And because I like some spice, I am going with pepper jack cheese mixed in with the cheddar.
Next, comes the ingredient to hold the cheese together, the mayonnaise. The traditional recipe is just mayo but I have seen many adding cream cheese. I am not a fan of using cream cheese because I think it “dulls” the flavor of the cheddar and pimentos but it does make it creamier.
And I do use a lot of cream cheese in other recipes! You can make the cream cheese decision for yourself!
Let’s talk about pimentos!
A pimento or pimiento is a red cherry pepper that has the lowest rating on the Scoville scale which means it is not hot. You can find them on olive bars or in jars already pickled. The ones I use for the pimento cheese spread are found in the pickle aisle come already chopped in a brine in a small jar.
Yes, you can substitute red bell pepper but they are technically not the same thing. They say that all pimentos are peppers but not all peppers can be called pimentos. If you can’t find the prepared pimentos feel free to use roasted red peppers.
Real pimentos are sweet so if you want your pimento cheese spread to lean toward the spicy side, try switching it up.
To finish off the pimento cheese spread, we need our spices. I love salt and pepper but I feel it needs a little more. Instead of garlic powder, I prefer fresh garlic ground up or mined.
This recipe doesn’t use it but I have added it in the past. I add Worcestershire for a little smoke and savory, crushed red pepper flakes for the spice, and some onion. Onion makes everything taste better. For more spice, I throw in a few dashes of hot sauce.
Because pimentos are typically added to olives to round out the bitterness, I like to add some olive juice. If you don’t have olive juice in your fridge you can use pickle juice instead.
I know you have a jar of olives tucked in the back of the fridge along with all the other half used condiments that are waiting to be thrown out next year. Jalapeno juice works well too!
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Simply mix all the ingredients, store in the fridge to set, and then eat as you like. I have used this Pimento Cheese Spread recipe to stuff large green olives for an appetizer or just simply as a dip for some bread and crackers.
I’m sure you will enjoy this recipe and find lots of other ways to use it.
Comment and let me know what you do with your pimento cheese spread!
- 16 ounces sharp cheddar cheese (finely grated)
- 8 ounces pepper jack cheese (finely grated)
- 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise (you can substitute plain Greek yogurt)
- 1 7 ounce jar pimentos (drained)
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoon onion (minced)
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive juice (you can substitute the juice drained from the pimentos)
- 1 dash Tabasco
- 1 green onion stalk (thinly sliced for garnish)
- Mix all the ingredients in a mixer or by hand.
- Stir until completely combined.
- Store in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
- Lasts about a week in the refrigerator.
*If you like this recipe, leave me a comment don't forget to rate it with some stars!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 629Total Fat: 59gSaturated Fat: 21gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 34gCholesterol: 99mgSodium: 997mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 21g