We have a serious problem on our hands. I KNEW I was going down a slippery slope with the whole "I'm gonna make my own cheez-it" project... I was totally right. Now I can't stop! At least I called the last ones "spiced cheese crackers" to try to disguise my addiction, but now I'm being open about it. Loud and proud. I'm making cheez-its and you can't stop me!
Really though, you won't want to stop me once you try these. If you haven't already made the normal ones (you can omit the spice and they'll be totally normal), make those first. Just to get on the bandwagon. Then — if you're a fan of pepper jack — make these suckers! Rewind: IF you're a fan of pepper jack? Come on. You MUST be a fan of pepper jack! It's the only way to go.
What I learned by second time around the cheez-it block, was that there is no need to cut the crackers and then transfer them to a baking sheet. Put the ENTIRE sheet of dough (thinly rolled out) ONTO the baking sheet (I had a silpat, you could use parchment too), then cut it right there. They don't need to be separated at all because they will immediately puff UP instead of o u t while they bake. Magical!
Be warned — this is not the last cheesy (I just wrote that with a Z [cheezy] accidentally!) cracker recipe I bring you. I.
Will. Can. Not. Stop. And for that, you should be glad.
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 8 ounces pepper jack cheese, finely grated
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1-3 tablespoon cold milk
- salt for dusting
- In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and grated cheese until smooth. It shouldn’t take long.
- Mix together the spices with the flour, then add it to the mixer. Mix on low-speed until mostly incorporated — it’s okay to be a little bit crumbly.
- Add milk, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together. It should not be sticky, but should hold together in a ball.
- Form the dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill for 30+ minutes.
- When the dough has chilled, preheat the oven to 400 F.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out very thin — ⅛” or less. Cut it into your desired shape, sprinkle salt all over, and bake on a parchment-lined cookie sheet for 10-12 minutes.
- Let the crackers cool at least 5 minutes before eating.