Cheez-its are arguably one of the best crackers ever made. In fact, I've never met anyone who didn't like them. I don't need to tell you this (cause if you've had a Cheez-it you know), but they are the perfect amount of crunch and cheese and salt. There is almost always a box of them in our house and when there's not, I'm thinking "We need some Cheez-its." A trip to the grocery store a few days ago (to get Cheez-its) really opened my eyes to the expansion of this cracker's empire. There are at least 10 varieties of these cheesy squares, but the original flavor is my favorite by far. The next logical step for me was to make them myself.
With very few ingredients and steps, these were super easy to make. I decided to shred my own block of cheese, however, you could make this recipe even easier and use a bag of your favorite shredded sharp cheddar cheese. I also had the opportunity to use the dough blade on my food processor for the first time and it worked awesome! They are totally worth the investment if you have the dough (pun intended).
I'm a little weird in the sense that I like raw dough. I like the texture and this dough was no exception, I had to have a taste. Good thing I did, because I realized I forgot the salt!! What I initially thought was a rookie mistake turned out pretty well in the end. I decided to add salt after the dough had been rolled out. I also lightly salted them after they came out of the oven. Turns out, it doesn't really matter when you add the salt, as long as it gets added.
These were gone in minutes. No lie. It helps when you have hungry mouths to feed.
Homemade Cheez-its adapted from The Thin Chef
makes about 40 crackers
ingredients found in your kitchen...
1 cup of all purpose flour
4 tablespoons of cold, unsalted butter cut into pieces
7 ounces of shredded sharp cheddar cheese (i used a 10oz block and eyeballed it)
1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
5 tablespoons of cold water
1 teaspoon of salt
Now what to do with those ingredients...
Combine flour, butter, cheese, and cayenne pepper in a food processor. Pulse until combined. Add each tablespoon (one at a time) of cold water as you pulse the mixture. Pull out the dough (careful it's sticky!!), wrap in plastic wrap and place in fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 350. Line your baking sheet with parchment. I have stoneware so no need for parchment there. Place the ball of dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll it out to about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Peel back the top piece of parchment and cut your dough with a pizza cutter into desired sized squares. I also used a toothpick here to poke tiny holes in the middle of each cracker to resemble a Cheez-it. Place cut crackers onto baking sheet and salt generously. Bake for 25 minutes in the oven. You're gonna love this step because you're so close to enjoying an amazing little cracker these smell so cheesy as they bake. Once 25 minutes is up, pull them out and lightly salt them again. Give them a few minutes to cool and enjoy. You won't be disappointed.