This fast and flavorful Jalapeño Pimento Cheese is a fun twist on the classic! It’s a delicious make-ahead snack that always vanishes fast!
Living in the South all these years has taught me that a good pimento cheese is basically spreadable gold.
The first time I tried a store bought spread I wasn’t a fan, but after giving it a second shot at a little local spot in Charleston, South Carolina, I finally saw what the hype was all about.
The restaurant was Butcher and Bee and I still think about the fantastic Pimento Cheese Burger that forever changed my mind about this sassy spread.
Since the start of my pimento cheese love affair, I’ve made it a million and one times, always tweaking and experimenting along the way.
A quality cheese is *key* here so I rarely use anything other than Cabot’s sharp cheddars. They’re so insanely flavorful and really add that extra oomph.
Another thing I’ve learned over the years is that I straight up love love LOVE jalapeños in my pimento cheese. Hence the title of this recipe, eh?
Give me all the peppers!
The jalapeños, along with a little sprinkling of spicy cayenne pepper, add the most delicious flavor and spice to the spread. I can’t get enough of it! You can use both the seeds from the peppers and the cayenne to control the heat. Make it mild, medium, or hot — it’s great every which way.
This snazzy Jalapeño Pimento Cheese has become my go-to for game nights and cheese boards and, since it can easily be made in advance, I love diving into the jar for a mid-day snack with crackers and carrot sticks.
Pimento Cheese Serving Suggestions:
When it comes to pimento cheese (and this deeeeeeelish jalapeño pimento cheese) there are so many ways to scarf it.
My favorite way is part of an epic cheese board or veggie tray complete with sliced carrots, celery, and all sorts of crackers and extras.
I also have it on good authority that it makes a rockin’ grilled cheese sandwich!
This dip is also amazing baked and served it as a hot dip. The possibilities for pimento cheese are truly endless!
Jalapeño Pimento Cheese
This is one of those dips/spreads that is just utterly amazing made in advance, so feel free to save yourself precious party or potluck prep time by making it the day before.
Same goes for snacking — having it already on hand in your fridge makes life oh so easy.
I like to keep little containers of sliced carrots and celery in the fridge as well so I can whip up a little cheese, cracker, and veggie board whenever the craving strikes.
Jalapeño Pimento Cheese
This fast and flavorful Jalapeño Pimento Cheese is a fun and fiery twist on the classic! It's a delicious make-ahead snack that always vanishes fast!
- 1-2 jalapeño peppers (I always add two!)
- 4 oz plain cream cheese (½ a block) softened
- ¼ cup quality mayo
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp ground cayenne pepper
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 3-4 TBSP jarred diced pimentos
- 5 oz sharp cheddar cheese
First off, decide how spicy you'd like your pimento cheese. The cayenne pepper will determine the spice as well as how many jalapeños you add and you add any jalapeño seeds to the dip. I always add 2 medium jalapenos to mine (most of the seeds removed) as well as 1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne for some extra kick. For a more mild dip you can use sweet paprika in place of cayenne.
Remove stems from jalapeños and cut in half. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Finely dice or mince.
Soften cream cheese and combine with mayo, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and salt. Whip using an electric hand mixer (my method of choice) or mash well with a fork until well blended.
Add diced/minced jalapeño and diced pimentos. Freshly grate sharp cheddar cheese and add to the bowl. Blend with a hand mixer on lowest setting or mix well with a fork.
Allow to chill in the fridge until ready to dive in. It's great the first day and fantastic the next!
Serve with an assortment of crackers and veggies. It's also amazing as a sandwich spread, stuffed into sweet mini peppers, in grilled cheese, and melted on burgers/veggie burgers too!
Jarred diced pickled jalapeños will also work great here. You can use them for a swap for the fresh jalapeños if needed *or* use the pickled jalapeño peppers in place of the pimentos for an extra jalapeño-y spread. It’s delicious every which way!
Recipe yields approx. 2 cups of pimento cheese dip/spread or 16 servings at 2 TBSP each.
Nutrition Facts below are estimated using an online recipe nutrition calculator. Adjust as needed and enjoy!
If you get a chance to try this jalapeño pimento cheese recipe, let me know!
Leave some love in the comment form below or tag your photos with @peasandcrayons on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creation. I can’t wait to see what you whip up!