Know It All: Pimiento Cheese

The Southern spread is hitting it big. Whip up a batch!

02_ITK_00032.tif

Photo by: Charles Masters

Charles Masters

Pimiento cheese, the beloved spread known as "caviar of the South," is fast becoming an all-American favorite: It has shown up in the sushi at Costco, on burgers at Johnny Rockets and even as a fan-favorite contender in Lay's Do Us a Flavor potato chip contest. Pimiento cheese is based on a few common ingredients, yet the variations are countless: No two family recipes are the same, and die-hard pimiento cheese lovers swear that every little twist makes a huge difference. (People can't even agree on the spelling: Some go with -iento, others go with -ento.) Taste for yourself!

Fun Facts

  • Pimiento cheese originated in the North. It became associated with the South when Georgia farmers began growing pimientos in the early 1900s.
  • Southerners argue over which mayo is best in the mix: Hellmann's (known as Best Foods in the West) or slightly tangy Duke's.
  • The recipe for the famous pimiento cheese sandwich at the Masters golf tournament in Georgia remains a secret. The inventor took it to his grave in 2015.

Take Your Pick

Three stars dish out their signature recipes.

Next Up

What Is Pâté?

Discover how this French dish with humble origins is made.

How to Make a Roux

Roux is used to thicken sauces and impart rich, toasted flavor to some stews. Here’s how to make it.

What Is Venison?

Everything you need to know about the red meat alternative and how to prepare it.

What Are Pork Rinds?

And how exactly are they made?

When I Think of New Year's Gatherings in the Lowcountry, I Think of Gizzard Perloo

Celebrating Watch Night with my church community is one of the most meaningful nights of the year — and the food takes center stage.

What Is Praline?

You’ve probably heard the name and eaten it. But what exactly is praline?

What Is Okra? And How Do You Use It?

What it tastes like, how to minimize sliminess and its nutritional benefits according to Food Network's resident dietician.

How to Cook Black Eyed Peas

There's a lot to love about the good-luck bean.

What to Know About Vegan Cheese

A professional cheesemonger explains how it's made and what it tastes like.

Latest Stories