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Give your next party an extra dose of fun with this spicy Jalapeno Pimento Cheese—easy and classic Southern Pimento Cheese with a kick from diced jalapeno peppers!
There’s rarely a gathering of any sort in the South that does not include someone’s favorite pimento cheese. This iconic classic has graced Southern tables for decades, and there are probably as many variations of the recipe as there are types of cheese! I’ve always stuck to the simple classic version of pimento cheese: Cheddar cheese, mayonnaise, and pimentos.
And although I’m a purist when it comes to my pimento cheese, for this year’s holiday parties I wanted to tweak it just a bit by adding some diced jalapenos—largely because, whenever my friends and I opt to buy store-bought pimento cheese, we always pick the one that has jalapenos!
I thought the diced jalapeno peppers would add a touch of green to complement the red pimentos and give my dish a holiday feel. And then I upped the fun by using cookie cutters to form the pimento cheese into festive shapes. David actually worked on the cookie cutters for me and I think he did a great job, don’t you? We went with Christmas trees but you could do snowmen or stars or even ornaments or presents—you could use sprinkles of paprika as the ribbon!
And of course, in our house, there is no party without RITZ Crackers. If I put out those fancy thin crackers, which I happen to like, my husband will go to the store just to buy RITZ Crackers. He says Your friends may want to eat paper, but MY friends want real crackers! You can always find RITZ Crackers at your local Walmart, either in the regular cracker aisle or on a special display like this one:
Here’s a coupon you can use for purchasing RITZ Crackers:
How to Make Jalapeno Pimento Cheese
You’ll need two blocks of good-quality Cheddar cheese (I use Cracker Barrel), about 3/4-1 cup of mayonnaise (I only use Duke’s), one 7-ounce jar of diced pimentos that have been drained, and 1-2 jalapeno peppers that have been ribbed, seeded, and somewhat finely diced. You can also add 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
Use a regular box grater to grate the cheese and then place everything in a large bowl and stir with a heavy wooden spoon until well-mixed. I suggest starting with one jalapeno pepper and tasting before adding the second one. I did use two and everyone who tasted it love it, but some people prefer a little less kick.
To make the holiday shapes, place the cookie cutters on the platter and fill with pimento cheese. Use a knife to gently go around the inside edges to help the pimento cheese release. You may have to push it out lightly with your fingertips.
Enjoy your holiday entertaining! For more great party ideas, visit the RITZ Crackers recipe hub!
Jalapeno Pimento Cheese
- 2 10-ounce blocks Cheddar cheese
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1 7-ounce jar diced pimentos, drained
- 1-2 jalapenos, ribbed, seeded, diced
- Place all ingredients in large bowl and stir until well blended. Store in refrigerator for 4-5 days.