San Francisco’s beloved Bi-Rite Market is an easy place to source both ingredients and inspiration. Culinary director Jason Rose oversees all of the market and catering business’ delicious prepared foods. Now he’s sharing his secrets for Bi-Rite’s Pimento Cheese Dip, punched up with smoky peppers, as the perfect example of an easy thing we can make at home.
He chose this, he says, “because it’s just about the greatest thing on earth. Because it’s SO COMFORTING, and because you can eat it with so much stuff, from bagels to raw vegetables to biscuits. Our recipe at Bi-Rite is quickly developing a cult following.”
There are two simple tricks to the dish:
- First, be sure to soften the cream cheese before mixing in the other ingredients. Easiest method: Let it sit at room temperature for an hour.
- And second, the peppers: Every pimento cheese recipe calls for minced, roasted red peppers, but this recipe amps up the flavor by adding chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, too.
“I’ve developed dozens of pimento cheese recipes over the years,” Rose says, “and have settled on this one as my all-time favorite, mainly for the addition of smoky chipotles. They add a much-needed depth of flavor that is utterly crave-inducing.”
So wow your Super Bowl party guests with a big batch of the dip — but save a little bit for your sandwich the day after. It makes, Rose says, “an AMAZING spread.”
Pimento Cheese Dip
- Makes 1 quart
- 1 pound cream cheese, softened
- 12-ounce jar roasted red peppers, such as piquillo peppers, drained and diced (1 cup diced)
- 1 cup coarsely shredded medium-sharp yellow cheddar, such as Tillamook
- 1 cup coarsely shredded sharp white cheddar, such as Cabot
- 2 chipotles in adobo, stemmed and then minced, seeds and all (about 3 tablespoons)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients, mixing with a rubber spatula until evenly incorporated. You can also use a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment set to low speed; just make sure you don’t overmix or it will become grainy.