Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Baked Tex-Mex Pimiento Cheese Dip

I have an obsession with both Mexican food and Southern food.  My weekly menu could easily be Mexican and Southern food 7 days a week.  But more specifically, I love it when a traditional dish is given a Mexican or southern spin.  So imagine my delight when I came across this recipe for Tex-Mex Pimiento Cheese.  It's a traditionally southern dish, that's given a Southwest makeover - genius!

Actually I should amend my above statement to say that I really have a major obsession with pimiento cheese.  Love love love it!  On a sandwich, mixed with bacon, spread on some crackers, spread on a fried green tomato, on a burger, deep-fried, you name it.  And this dip is no exception.  Instead of exclusively using cheddar, it uses a mixture of cheddar and Pepperjack.  Extra herbs and spices play up the Tex-Mex flavor, and tortilla chips are the vessel of choice for shoveling it into your mouth. 

We had some friends over for dinner last week, and since it was Cinco de Mayo week, I wanted to do something Mexican-inspired.  I decided to go with a Mexican-Southern fusion menu, and this dip was a perfect way to start the meal.  We pretty much demolished half a dish of this in no time flat. This is also incredibly low-maintenance and can be prepped ahead of time, which makes it an ideal dish for entertaining or bringing to a potluck.

Baked Tex-Mex Pimiento Cheese
inspired by Southern Living, January 2011
  •  1/2cup mayonnaise
  • 6 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature (reduced fat is fine)
  • 3/4 cup chopped roasted red bell pepper
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, seeds and ribs removed, chopped finely
  • 8 oz extra sharp cheddar, grated (about 2 cups)
  • 8 oz Pepperjack cheese, grated
  • 1/3 cup minced scallion (2-3 scallions)
  • 1/3 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • tortilla chips, for serving
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients for the dip, reserving 1 tablespoon of each cheese for topping.  Mix well with a spatula or wooden spoon.  Adjust seasonings if necessary, and spoon mixture into the baking dish.

Top with the reserved cheese and bake 20-25 minutes, until hot and bubbly.  Garnish with additional cilantro, and serve with tortilla chips.


Caitlin said...

That looks delicious! I can't wait to try it. And pimiento cheese is great stuffed into chicken breasts and grilled too, in case you wanted another excuse to have some ;).

Val said...

This dip looks great, and as I have some pepperjack cheese already shredded in the freezer, I think I might have to give this a try soon!

I have to tell you that I just found your blog the other day, and was completely delighted. I've already printed off several of your recipes. I made one - your taquitoes - last night for dinner, and my husband was thrilled. I suspect that I'll be a regular visitor here!

Mika said...

I have to try this! Pimiento cheese and Mexican are two of my favorites! Thanks for sharing!!

Amy - OPC said...

This looks DELICIOUS!!! I cannot wait to make it for friends at the beach next weekend. Yum!

KatiePerk said...

Yum! I love cheese!!!

J said...

Excuse me while I wipe the drool off of my face. This looks so delish! Now I need an excuse to have a dinner party so I can make it!

Made in Sonoma said...

This looks like a perfect appetizer for a party. Can't wait to try it. Anything cheese is a winner in my book.

Anonymous said...

I love the look of this dip! Yum!

Jun said...

Mmmm, love the fact that it has Mexican in it and low maintenance!

The Blonde Mule said...

This looks amazing! Can't wait to try it. Thanks for sharing!


Anonymous said...

Can you believe I've never had pimiento cheese!? I must be missing out. This looks like a really flavorful dip!

Tania said...

So I made this last weekend and it was super delicious. The only change I made was to use plain Jack instead of Pepperjack (I could only find a huge block that I had no other immediate use for) and I use olive oil mayo.
My problem was that it came out EXTREMELY greasy. I mean it was bad.
Did you have this problem? Any suggestions?

Josie said...

I don't remember it being particularly greasy, though if there was any grease on top I probably dabbed it off with a paper towel (like you would on pizza). The only thing I can think of is that I do use reduced fat mayo and cream cheese when I make it, so maybe that helped with the grease? I guess it could have also had to do with the brand of cheese, but I wouldn't think that would make a huge difference. So sorry, but I hope you still liked it!

Nicole@HeatOvenTo350 said...

Whoa. This looks like it needs to be my next pimento cheese creation. I love foods with a Mexican flavor twist, too.

Madison said...

OMG, this dip was amazing! I made it for a potluck at work and everyone loved it! It's the perfect combination of Southern and Mexican flavors. One of my coworkers recently moved to the South from the NW and had never had pimiento cheese before this dip...let's just say she's converted now!

Natasha Langley said...

I'm a low carber here and can't wait to make this! We low carbers have what we call oopsie rolls that are very much like bread that I will use to dip in this!!!

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