March 28, 2011

Anti-recipes: Homemade Pimento Cheese


I’ll never forget the first time I ate pimento cheese…and liked it. Oh I’d had it plenty of times while I was growing up, but considered it slimy and gross. Maybe it was how it looked in those little deli tubs it came in. Maybe it was the consistency. I just assumed it was one of those things I would force myself to eat (as a good southern girl).


Then I attended the art show of a precious family friend where pimento cheese sandwiches (among other things) were served as refreshments. Specifically homemade pimento cheese on white bread, cut into triangles. I think I heard an angel chorus when I took that first bite. How had I never attempted homemade pimento cheese? I just couldn’t see how it would be that much better than store-bought. Dear little naïve me, I had so much to learn.


Now I make it at least every other week or so. I also like to pronounce it puh-men-nah just in case you were wondering. There’s really no recipe…I just add things as I go. It helps if you have your granny’s vintage pyrex dish (with lid), but any container will do.

Homemade Pimento Cheese

  • 1 block of extra sharp cheddar (grated finely) Do NOT use pre-shredded cheese! It’s coated in something weird and you’ll be sorry.
  • 1 cup real mayonnaise (the good stuff)
  • 3 heaping tablespoons of chopped pimentos plus a little juice
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • Onion salt, Coarse black pepper, and red pepper (a few shakes of each to your liking)

Now stir everything together and you’re good to go. I like to mash mine until it becomes more of a paste. Eat it alone on crackers or bread or use it to make grilled pimento cheese sandwiches. Add bacon if you’re really daring! Enjoy! Posted by Kate Spears


  1. This was the best pimento cheese recipe ever. I took it to work and they loved it even used it as a spread for wheat crackers. Will use this recipe from now own.

  2. I love this recipe. It's just like my grandmother's. Plain & simple but oh so good. Not a bunch of junk added to it. I love it. Thanks for the post.

  3. My aunt and uncle make pimento cheese for us when we come to visit them in Tennessee. They use american cheese and Miracle Whip. It makes me shudder to think of it. I can barely bring the sandwich to my lips with all of that slimy stuff plus I personally hate Miracle Whip (except in tuna salad, go figure!) This recipe looks like a MUCH better version and I might even try it sometime....

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