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Spicy Pimento Cheese

When it comes to pimento cheese recipes this spicy pimento cheese with peppadews and green chiles is over the top good. If you want something to disappear fast, than this is your magic ticket!

(This is an updated post from 2013)

Yes, I took liberty on the myriad number of pimento cheese recipes out there and came  up with this.

This pimento less cheese that looks like pimento cheese but is really peppadew cheese, well, it is might tasty.

Perhaps it’s the Hatch chiles that I bought fresh roasted over on Federal Blvd.  (Yes, they took a long time to peel and seed, but hopefully they will get us through the winter. A half bushel didn’t make it through last year, so we upped our game.)

But maybe it’s the peppadews.

Then again it could be the garlic and the jalapeno cheese mixed with the sharp Cheddar.

I can’t tell you. BUT…I can tell you that this pimento cheese recipe is good.

Pimento cheese recipes were not on my radar when I was young.

I recall seeing it in a plastic tub at the grocery and well, it just never looked that good.

In fact, it didn’t look good to me at all, but I didn’t eat much cheese as a tyke.

American cheese was standard in our home and I never took to it, so cheese and I weren’t close friends for a long while.

Then I married a guy from Texas and started hearing about Mom’s pimento cheese, but even then, he didn’t sway me.

Well, to make things short, which you know I’m not very good at, I decided to reach out and see what all the fuss was about.

It began at Costco where they have their own version of pimento cheese, which is quite good.

However you always have to choose three tubs of any variety and I don’t like to do that.

Cheese is dangerous stuff to have around. Especially when you are watching your figure…so to speak.

pimento cheese/white bowl/blue napkin

Finally I decided it was time to venture into Southern territory and Fall is the perfect time to make this pimento cheese recipe where peppadews sub in for pimentos. Or not.

And not wanting to buy three tubs of cheese meant making my own. Manservant was thrilled. After all, jalapeno cheese and green chiles are two of his favorite ingredients.

So if you are looking for new pimento cheese recipes, please try this!

What exactly is a peppadew?

Peppadews are described as a cross between a tomato and a pepper, however it is actually a  spicy, piquant pepper discovered in South Africa in 1993.

After growing for 6 – 8 weeks these spicy peppers are then picked, de-seeded and bottled in a unique sweet brine mixture.

This gives them that incredible sweet and spicy profile.

Peppadews look like pimentos when mixed into this recipe but they give this recipe some extra zip. However no peppadews? No worries! Pimentos are just fine. 

Other than making the cheese red, I couldn’t ever figure out the addition of pimentos.

I could never really taste them, though they did make the cheese look pretty. 

Peppadews lend a spicy sweetness that I really enjoy. Plus they are from South Africa and I love South Africa. And I miss South Africa, but don’t get me started…

Green Chile Pimento Peppadew Cheese

Pimento Cheese Recipes:

There are a zillion! Pimento cheese is often referred to as “caviar of the South” or “pate of the South” and pimento cheese sandwiches are one of the most popular food items at the Master’s Tournament in Augusta, Georgia.

So… pimento cheese is famous and this pimento cheese recipe should make it to the Master’s! If I say so myself…

Ways to use this green chile peppadew/pimento cheese?

Well it’s easily plopped on a tortilla for a quick and awesome quesadilla.

Or plopped on a burger to make a great cheese burger. It is great mixed into eggs, or as is on a cracker, chips of any variety and don’t get me started with the thought of grilled cheese.

Or on a BLT. Or mixed into mac and cheese. Or stuffed into peppers or even peppadews!

Pimento cheese sandwiches are a classic as is stirring this savory spread into grits.  My mind is overflowing which it has done a lot of lately…

Peppadew green chile cheese has a nice ring to it.

If you are looking for pimento cheese recipes, this is a good one. Enjoy with a beer. With a margarita.

With bacon. With crackers. With a football game. With your fingers. Just sayin’!

spicy pimento cheese/knife/blue napkin

How To Make Spicy Pimento Cheese:

This easy pimento cheese spread is made in a food processor with sharp cheddar cheese and pepper jack cheese.

No cream cheese required.

My homemade pimento cheese spread is so much better than that found in grocery stores.

Like I said, that stuff just held no appeal for me.

Mine is made with peppadew peppers instead of pimento peppers or roasted red peppers, which helps give this pimento cheese dip much more flavor.

For extra spiciness I add roasted green chiles and if you want it even spicier keep a bottle of hot sauce near by or mix some cayenne pepper in with the seasonings.

Don’t want it that spicy? Try black pepper instead.

I add onion powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder and Worcestershire sauce.

The smoked paprika gives this pimento cheese  dip a slightly smoky twist, but if you want to add a few drops of hickory smoke that would be awesome, too!

Plus don’t forget some extra raw onion or green onion and fresh jalapeno pepper that are totally necessary for this spicy pimento cheese dip!

I mix all this up with mayonnaise in the processor, but a hand mixer can be used, also.

To keep this a Southern favorite, use Duke’s mayonnaise from South Carolina, which I actually just ordered from Amazon.

Though I’m not turning my back on dear old Hellman’s, I must say Duke’s is tangier because it has more vinegar and also no sugar!

spicy pimento cheese on wood board

I love having this delicious cheese spread in my fridge during the summer because it’s perfect to bring out on sweltering days for happy hour.

But also I am sure Manservant won’t mind spreading this jalapeno pimento cheese on crackers or celery sticks while he’s watching the Avs in the Stanley Cup play-offs!

Yes, any kind of game day is perfect for eating this Southern staple.

Don’t forget this makes a great sandwich spread on good old white bread and my favorite way is to add crisp bacon strips to that simple pimento cheese sandwich.

Make sure to grate your own cheese. Pre-grated cheese is often old and contains anti-caking agents so the cheese doesn’t stick together.

I promise you won’t be sorry if you grate it yourself!

It will be the best jalapeno pimento cheese you’ve ever made!

And it never hurts to add a few pickled jalapenos on top!

This Southern classic keeps well in the fridge which means it’s great to have on hand when you want to make an extra special grilled hamburger.

It gilds the lily on top of fried green tomatoes. Imagine it broiled on nachos or quesadillas. Pure fusion at its finest!

And I love it with this Tomato pie!

Whatever you do, ignore what you see at the grocery store.

Make your own spicy pimento cheese and everyone will be asking for the recipe.

Green Chile Pimento Peppadew Cheese


BLT sandwich

Creamy Shrimp and Grits

Creamy shrimp and Grits in green and blue bowl with blue napkin

Green Chile and Cheese Dip

Party Dip with green chiles, pepper jam and cheese

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Green Chile Pimento Peppadew Cheese

Spicy Pimento Cheese

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 3 reviews
  • Author: Abbe Odenwalder
  • Prep Time: 15 Minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Cuisine: American


When it comes to pimento cheese recipes this peppadew and green chile version is over the top good. This will disappear fast!


Units Scale

8 oz freshly grated Cheddar
8 oz freshly grated jalapeno jack
1 c chopped green chilies or 1-2 4 oz cans (to your liking) Well drained
1/4 c chopped minced onion
1/2 c chopped, drained peppadews or pimentos
1/2 t smoked paprika
1/2 t garlic powder
2 t Worcestershire
1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped (but if you want more spice leave some seeds in)
1/2 to 3/4 c mayonnaise (This depends on how spreadable you want this)


Use your food processor with the shredding blade to grate the cheese. Or grate it by hand.

Throw it all in a bowl. Mix it up gently with a large spatula. Let it sit as long as you can, to let the flavors meld together.

I do not mix this in a food processor because I am always worried it may turn out too gummy. If you do, beware to not over mix.

Always serve at room temperature. It tastes so much better than cold! However it keeps well in the refrigerator.




Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star


Sunday 19th of June 2022

Kankakee must have had more gourmet options than Ames, IA!! This would be perfect for summer entertaining! Happy Father's Day to your hubby!

Linger A Little, Kristy

Friday 17th of June 2022

This is just in time for Father's day as my husband absolutely loves pimento cheese. But you have taken this recipe to a whole new level with the peppadews and the green chiles. There are not a lot of peppadew recipes out there except stuffed. They are such a hidden treasure in my book. Also, I've never had homemade pimento cheese. I'm so impressed and desperately want to try yours now.

John / Kitchen Riffs

Thursday 16th of June 2022

I LOVE pimento cheese. One of those things we make several times a year. Yours looks great! And a bowl of this would do me for dinner. :-)

David @ Spiced

Monday 23rd of September 2019

I absolutely love pimento cheese, so you know I had to stop over and see this version with peppadews. What a cool substitution! A good pimento cheese sandwich is a thing of beauty, and I miss those up now that I live way too far in the north. I'm going to have to try your version with peppadews soon. You've got me craving it!!

Healthy World Cuisine

Friday 13th of September 2019

Have not had this dip in ages. Love this stuff as it is so addicting. Might eat that whole bowl, if not monitored. LOL