This jalapeño pimento cheese recipe has a few simple adjustments to make it just a bit healthier than the classic recipe, with all of the same creamy and spicy flavor!
Jalapeño pimento cheese is one of those southern comfort foods that I just can’t turn down. I’ve already been back in Georgia for about a month, and in that time I’ve really taken a deep dive into my favorite comfort food classics: classic vegan zucchini bread, black eyed pea soup, creamy vegan mac and cheese. It was only a matter of time before jalapeño pimento cheese showed up on Cozy Peach Kitchen.
I think my late introduction to pimento cheese (at the humble age of 15) is what ruined all hope of myself ever having a normal relationship with it. I used to work at a restaurant that served pimento cheese, and it took everything in me to not spend my shift with a constant stream of crackers and pimento cheese directed toward my mouth.
It’s Pimento Cheese…but healthier!
Okay. Pimento cheese is my weakness. You probably get that at this point.
I (kind of) found a way to fix that – healthier pimento cheese! Say bye-bye to your mom’s mayo, this spicy pimento cheese is made with non-fat Greek yogurt and olive oil mayonnaise. And it tastes just like the original thing!
This pimento cheese is
Traditional pimento cheese is a relatively high fat (saturated and unsaturated fat) dish, due to mayonnaise and shredded cheddar cheese. By replacing half of the mayo with nonfat greek yogurt, the total fat is cut down and the protein content is increased. Olive oil mayonnaise is used because it is higher in heart healthy monounsaturated fats than traditional mayo.
I recommend using already shredded cheddar cheese for pimento cheese. Shredding your own cheese may cause the cheese to mush up when combined with the wet ingredients.
Let’s not forget the best part of this recipe: the spiciness!
Use your favorite hot sauce (I use Tabasco or extra spicy Texas Pete) and an entire jalapeno for a spicy kick. You can add as much or as little hot sauce as you want to meet your desired level of jalapeño pimento cheese spiciness.
Ready to whip up one of the South’s favorite appetizers? Pair with snap peas, celery, or carrots. Or use as a dip for everything bagel whole wheat crackers, in a grilled cheese, or at your next tailgate.
Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Made Healthier
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup nonfat plain greek yogurt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 4 ounces canned pimentos, drained
- 1 medium jalapeno, diced fine
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce of choice
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except for the cheddar cheese. Stir to combine.
- Fold in the cheddar cheese until thoroughly combined. Taste for heat. Chill in the fridge until cold. Enjoy!
Nutrition information is an estimation and may differ based on brands used and method of preparation.