Pimento Cheese Popovers
Reprinted with permission from Tanya Holland’s California Soul: Recipes from a Culinary Journey West by Tanya Holland, published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Text copyright © 2022 Tanya Holland. Photographs copyright © 2022 Aubrie Pick.
Yields 12 Servings
AuthorTanya Holland

“If you’ve ever traveled down South, I hope you’ve enjoyed some piquant pimento cheese,” says Tanya Holland, of now-shuttered Brown Sugar Kitchen in Oakland, California. “Here, a mixture of sharp Cheddar cheese, cream cheese, onion, and pickled jalapeños adds richness to a simple popover. The pimento cheese can be served with crackers, toasted bread, or crudités.”

How to Make It

1

Place a wire rack in the bottom third of the oven. Preheat oven to 450°F. 


2

Make the pimento cheese: In a 
large bowl, mix together the Cheddar cheese, cream cheese, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, paprika, jalapeño, onion, garlic, and dill pickles until thoroughly combined. This mixture can be made up to 1 day in advance, but it should be at room temperature when making the popovers. 


3

Make the popovers: Place a 12-well muffin tin in the oven. In a bowl, whisk the eggs until well combined and lightly frothy. Add milk and salt, whisk until the mixture is very well combined and there is a layer of froth on the top, about 30 seconds of vigorous whisking. Add the flour and whisk just until combined; it’s okay if some lumps remain. Let the mixture sit for 2–3 minutes, then whisk one more time. 


4

Remove the muffin tin from the oven and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Fill each muffin well three-quarters full of batter. Top each with 
 a heaping teaspoon of the pimento cheese, and gently press the cheese down into the batter. Bake for
 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 350°F and bake an additional 15 minutes, until the popovers are a deep golden brown and well puffed. Do not open the oven during this baking time.

5

Remove the popovers from the oven and transfer them from the muffin tin to the wire rack. Make a small hole in the bottom of each popover to allow steam to escape. Drop an additional teaspoon of pimento cheese into the top hole of each popover. These are best served immediately.

Ingredients

FOR THE PIMENTO CHEESE
 1 ¼ cups grated Cheddar cheese
 ¼ cup cream cheese
 1 tsp hot sauce
 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
 ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
 ¼ tsp paprika
 1 tbsp finely chopped jalapeño
 1 tbsp finely chopped yellow onion
 1 tbsp minced garlic
 1 tbsp finely chopped dill pickles
FOR THE POPOVERS
 3 eggs, room temperature
 1 ½ cups whole milk, room temperature
 1 tsp fine sea salt
 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

Directions

1

Place a wire rack in the bottom third of the oven. Preheat oven to 450°F. 


2

Make the pimento cheese: In a 
large bowl, mix together the Cheddar cheese, cream cheese, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, paprika, jalapeño, onion, garlic, and dill pickles until thoroughly combined. This mixture can be made up to 1 day in advance, but it should be at room temperature when making the popovers. 


3

Make the popovers: Place a 12-well muffin tin in the oven. In a bowl, whisk the eggs until well combined and lightly frothy. Add milk and salt, whisk until the mixture is very well combined and there is a layer of froth on the top, about 30 seconds of vigorous whisking. Add the flour and whisk just until combined; it’s okay if some lumps remain. Let the mixture sit for 2–3 minutes, then whisk one more time. 


4

Remove the muffin tin from the oven and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Fill each muffin well three-quarters full of batter. Top each with 
 a heaping teaspoon of the pimento cheese, and gently press the cheese down into the batter. Bake for
 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 350°F and bake an additional 15 minutes, until the popovers are a deep golden brown and well puffed. Do not open the oven during this baking time.

5

Remove the popovers from the oven and transfer them from the muffin tin to the wire rack. Make a small hole in the bottom of each popover to allow steam to escape. Drop an additional teaspoon of pimento cheese into the top hole of each popover. These are best served immediately.

Pimento Cheese Popovers

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