Taste Test Thursday: Pimento Cheese

Grab some crackers and bread, and you're good to go.

Cheese, cheese, cheese, cheese.

I love cheese.

In fact, I’m inhaling it right now. As a hardcore Southern-Asian-American gal, one of my favorite snacks is a tub of pimento cheese with a pile of crackers. Who doesn’t love mayo, cheddar, and veggie bits all smushed up together? One of my favorites in Dallas is made by We Me Dallas, but I didn’t exactly have the time to visit her at the farmers market this weekend. Instead, I went out and got these five other ones.

A. Empire Baking Co.’s pimento cheese – Dallas, TX

B. Festive Kitchen’s pimento cheese – Dallas, TX

C. Kuby’s pimento cheese – Dallas, TX

D. Palmetto’s pimento cheese Pawleys Island, SC

E. Central Market’s pimento cheese Dallas, TX

Ingredients: Cheddar cheese, pimento, onion, red onion, black pepper, salt, fresh dill, mayo

  • “Looks like tuna helper. Green onions are over-powering”
  • “Dilly and delicious. Nice onion finish.”
  • “Veggies are good, but cheese isn’t sharp enough to even take it.”
  • “Colorful, but a little too much mayo flavor. Cheese has a sharp finish, though.”
  • “Tastes like a loaded baked potato that’s taken a few spins in a food processor.”


Ingredients: sharp cheddar cheese, pimientos, mayo, white pepper. Contains dairy and soy.

  • “Neon orange color is a turn off.”
  • “It’s like someone emptired a 5-lb bag of Sam’s Club shredded cheddar into a bucket”
  • “Looks like Spanish rice. Toxic orange color, straight up.”
  • “Looks like melted cheetohs. Tastes like a ball of stale cheddar and not much else.”
  • “This is more like the pimento I grew up with.”

Ingredients: cheese, mayo, oil, water, egg yolks, green onion, vinegar, corn syrup, salt, pimentos, parsley, black pepper, granulated garlic

  • “Tastes like someone put a block of white cheddar and a jar of mayo in the food processor.”
  • “Smoky, tastes like gouda. Or maybe someone got crazy with liquid smoke. Maybe would get overwhelming.”
  • “Odd onion powder taste; kind of tastes like fried rice?”
  • “Sick. Tastes like feet.”
  • “Nice mix of cheeses. Fresh.”

Ingredients: sharp cheddar cheese, cream cheese, mayo, sugar, lemon juice, natural flavors, pimentos, onions, spices, novagard, potassium sorbate.

  • “Here we go. Sharp on the end with a healthy kick.”
  • “Like cold mac ‘n’ cheese. Not the worst thing. But not what I would want.”
  • “Too sweet and slimy.”
  • “Very creamy. Has a kick to it, which is nice. Pretty delicious.”
  • “I think I just ate a tablespoon of mayo with onion and garlic powder.”

Ingredients: mozz cheese, cheddar, salt, calcium, chloride, powdered cellulose, mayo, pimentos, sugar, garlic, dill

  • “Way better taste than looks”
  • “Loads of red pepper, yet not enough cheese flavor”
  • “Man, this just tastes like cheese.”
  • “Pretty neutral piment cheese, but it’s at least not heavy on mayo”
  • “Really sharp tasting. Too much cheese, not enough everything else. Kind of pasty, also.”



4 votes for (D) Palmetto
2 votes for (A) Empire Baking Co.
1 vote for (C) Kuby’s
1 vote for (E) Central Market


Well, national brand Palmetto took the cake on this one. It definitely had the sharpest cheddary taste, the best mayo to cheese ratio, and no weirdness about it. Everyone immediately dismissed Festive Kitchen’s pimento cheese, because it looked like it could actually glow in the dark. (To be tested later.) “That one’s been dosed with some radiation!” cried Nancy, as soon as she saw it.

Empire Baking Co.’s had lots of dill and lots of… stuff. It was almost like a pimento cheese salad. Kuby’s, on the other hand, had this big ‘ole chunk of cheese still in there, that hadn’t been processed. It was mild, heavy on the mayo, and a little too wet. My personal favorite was Central Market. It had a mix of mozzarella and cheddar chopped into small pieces. It was just the right amount of sharpness.

All caps recap:



  • kindallas

    Palmetto is my favorite as well. Like Central Market a lot, except there’s a little too much heat/spice in it for me. That cayenne bite hurts weenies like me ;-).

  • Sassy

    Thank you for including Palmetto Cheese in your taste test. We are glad to come out on top. Palmetto Cheese is now available Costco and Kroger in Dallas and Houston!

  • twinwillow

    I can’t believe you left out Wholefood’s palmetto cheese (available with or without jalapeno). It’s the best I’ve had. But, I will try the winner just to compare.

    • BradfordPearson

      I agree, twinwillow. Had it last week for the first time and couldn’t slow down.

  • twinwillow

    Sorry, I wrote “Palmetto” but I meant, Pimento.

  • Carol Shih

    This is your fault, Brad. Something you said about it discouraged from buying it. But now I can’t remember what you said.

  • blissful

    Haven’t eaten it lately, but Whole Foods used to have a delicious jalapeno pimento cheese.

  • Gipson

    Never buy pimento cheese. It’s dumb.

    Making pimento cheese takes all of 45 seconds and it’s vastly superior to anything you will ever buy.

    Sharpest cheddar you can find, grated
    A little mayo
    A hefty spoon of sambal olek chili paste

    Puts all five of today’s competitors to absolute shame.

  • Joanna

    Try Corner Market’s – pretty perfect traditional version.

  • Dubious Brother

    You chose the wrong Kuby for the taste test. Try Elke’s (maiden name Kuby) from her place in
    Allen. It is the best.

  • Txreed

    Aw man you missed these:
    – Central Market’s pimento cheese with cilantro & chipotle peppers
    – Chocolate Angels’ jalapeno pimento cheese…especially grilled on sandwich with bacon and strawberry jam
    – Highland Park Pharmacy’s classic pimento cheese
    – Price’s grocery store brand is all right, too

  • CCheese

    You can find WeMe at the new Cox Farms at Ft Worth Ave and Sylvan now, too. And every Saturday at Coppell Farmers Market.

    • gourmetmama

      I bought that Wee Me cheese to try something local and it made my teenager sick. Never again.

  • Zoe

    Like Central Market’s a lot but for the past 2-3 weeks it has much less mayo & have had to add some when I get it home. I look forward to trying Whole Food’s.
    Highland Park Pharmacy’s grilled pimento cheese is great and a throw back to the typical pharmacy pc of my childhood.

  • blsmith01

    The best in the metroplex isn’t even listed, Market Street makes a smoked gouda pimento cheese that’s to die for….I’m sure it would beat all of the sharp cheddar counterparts 😉

  • Attygreen13

    Chocolate Angel’s ‘Some Like it Hot’ sandwich (grilled pimento cheese with bacon, jalapeños, and pecans) is literally the BEST THING EVER. Definitely on my short list of last-meal options.

  • gourmetmama

    I couldn’t agree more! Palmetto Cheese is the best!

  • heather

    Two Sisters Catering on Gaston and the location on Monticello, has been making pimento the same way for a long time and it is great!