Yes, yes, it’s finally here: the McDonald recipe for pimento cheese. What is pimento cheese, some of you are asking? It’s an appetizer, a snack, it makes a great sandwich, it pairs well with those best summer tomatoes we all long for, you can put it in an omelet (or omelette – whatever you like).

It is also a family tradition for my husband and a southern staple. My thanks to my SC mom, Rebecca, for sharing her recipe. Love y’all! ❤️


your cast of characters


1 package Cracker Barrel Extra Sharp Cheddar, grated. [You can use other extra sharp cheddar but you might need to add just a pinch of salt.]

scant 1/4 c ‘good mayonnaise’ (to be like Ina). [Note: This means, preferably, Duke’s mayo, but you can’t get that everywhere so Trader Joe’s organic may is a good sub, or be wild and make your own. Basically we need it to not be too sweet. Also: Hellman’s is not mayo. I don’t condone it, and in fact, I censure use of Hellman’s at any time but especially in this recipe. If you have more questions about mayo contact me, this is that rare area where I strongly believe there are right or wrong answers.]

4 oz container diced pimentos, not drained

1/2 tsp each, salt and white pepper

1/8 tsp onion powder (optional, adjust to taste)

1/8 tsp cayenne powder (adjust to taste but be careful it gets HOT very quickly even for us who love a little heat)

Ok, you got all your stuff. Let the cheese sit out a little bit to soften before grating. Then, grate into a bowl … (don’t you love my hand model here? I do, so much so, I married him!)

pro tip: grate into bowl, saves mess and waste.

Next, add your pimentos – don’t drain – and the scant cup of mayo. Add salt, pepper, cayenne (and optionally onion powder). My hand model wants me to tell you to sprinkle them around to make sure they mix evenly, as pictured below.

Now, gently stir together until fully combined and decant into cute jar of choice. Ideally, chill in fridge overnight (or a couple hours if you’re in a rush) for optimum time to ‘set.’


We like to serve with crackers – a nice classic Ritz goes well, or with cracker-width slices of seedless English cucumber. Enjoy!