Pimento Cheese Toasts

So...you thought this was a southern recipe, right? Not so. According to author and food historian Robert Moss, pimento cheese actually began with Northern cheese manufacturers who wanted to spread the word about their new popular product, cream cheese. (Which is amusing because there isn't any cream cheese in MY recipe, although some people do add it along with the cheddar.) Georgia does lay claim to pimentos, however, as it became the leading grower and producer of pimentos in the nation in the early 1900s. No matter, really, as pimento cheese is now identified as a Southern food...with varying recipes. 
This is the one I've always used and while some people like Velveeta cheese, onions or olives or jalapeno peppers, along with various seasonings like Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, or garlic, I keep it simple...two kinds of cheese, mayo and a kick of cayenne, with a switcheroo on the pimento: roasted red pepper. I used to make it often when I had Derby Day parties.

Now, I always go to the Delray Beach Club on Derby Day. The women go all out in the hat department, the place is decorated to the nines, there are betting booths and tons of large screen TV's all over the dining room so the run for the roses can be seen from every corner. Because there are floor to ceiling windows overlooking the ocean here, they even lower the hurricane shutters to darken the room just for the race. I always get a chill when everyone stands up and sings My Old Kentucky Home. We have a great time and I wouldn't miss it for worlds.

But if you're the one hosting a Derby party this year (or have been asked to bring an appetizer to someone else's home), consider making these Pimento Cheese Toasts. With a twist....no pimento! This recipe uses roasted red pepper and when broiled, these cheese toasts turn into sheer heaven, perfect for a party.

Pimento Cheese Toasts 


10 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, coarsely grated (4 cups) Use half orange cheddar and half white cheddar for best results.

1/8 teaspoon cayenne

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup finely diced bottled roasted red pepper (rinse and pat dry first)

1 baguette

Preheat broiler.
Stir together all ingredients, except baguette, plus 1/8 teaspoon pepper and salt to taste.
Slice baguette crosswise 1/3 inch thick and spread bread thickly with cheese mixture. Broil 5 to 6 inches from heat until cheese is bubbling and browned, about 2 minutes.

Cheese spread can be made 3 days ahead and chilled, covered.


  1. Dear Barbara, That sounds like such fun!! I wish I could join in!!
    The Pimento Cheese Toasts are a lovely way to celebrate. Blessings, Catherine

  2. Hi Barbara,

    Oh yes, what fun! and can only imagine the chill and excitement when singing 'My old Kentucky home'. the pimento cheese toast would be the perfect party food.
    Happy weekend

  3. Tiene que estar deliciosa estas pequeñas tortas me encanta,abrazos

  4. Delicious! A tasty combination.



  5. When I was growing up there was a jar of pimento cheese made with my mother's homemade mayonnaise in the refrigerator always, no exceptions. I too have switched from pimentos to roasted red peppers and will never look back. I wish we had a nice place to go for Derby Day where people actually get dressed up. How fun!

  6. Scrumptious! I could easily finish the whole plate.
    Have a lovely weekend, Barbara.

  7. Yum! And the best cheddar comes from the north, so I'm not too surprised this is a northern recipe. Happy Derby Day!

  8. I made pimiento cheese today in honor of Derby Day! It didn't look nearly as good as yours though. I'm definitely trying the roasted red peppers next time. :)

  9. No Kentucky Derby parties here but I would love to try this delicious appetizer anytime! Love the substitution of the roasted red pepper in them. Your club's Derby event sounds like so much fun. My son-in-law's grandparents used to winter in Delray Beach. They might have been members about 10 years ago or more.

  10. I went to the horse races once at the Santa Anita race track in So. California. I thought it was fun and exciting but I'm sure it's no match for the Kentucky Derby. It looks like you've got the special food covered.
    Mireya @myhealthyeatinghabits

  11. What fun. Too bad you couldn't take pictures. It would be fun to look in on this special party.

  12. I'd love to see something like this one day, but until then, I'll settle for a cheese toast, they look great!
    *kisses* H

  13. Your little cheese toasts look perfectly delicious!
    :) ela@GrayApron



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