Homemade Cheez-Its

You may be thinking to yourself, what kind of moron makes crackers?  They’re like $2.50 at the grocery store, just go buy a box.  And, you’d be right.  If it weren’t for this blog, I probably would not be spending time making crackers.  But, trust me when I say, they were EASY to make.  My two year old helped me.  If he can do it, so can your pet monkey.  Don’t have a trained monkey?  Too bad, I guess its left to you then.

My inspiration:

Cheez-Its: The best cracker EVER.  Is there any argument here?  However, have you ever looked at the nutrition facts for Cheez-its?  27 crackers = 160 calories, 8g of fat, and 250 mg of sodium.  Which in moderation, wouldn’t be that bad.  I don’t know about you, but to me, a serving size of Cheez-its is the entire box.  To me, moderation is thrown out the window. 

This being said, we try to eat as little boxed, pre-made, preservative laden food as possible.  I stumbled upon this recipe and thought I’d give it a try.  Do they taste just like Cheez-Its?  No, but they’re pretty darn close.  Close enough that I’ve eaten about half the tray…

Homemade Cheez-Its

1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon salt
Dash ground pepper
1 1/2 C coarsely grated orange sharp cheddar cheese
1 C finely grated Parmesan cheese–Not that gross powdered stuff, the real thing
4 tablespoons cold butter, sliced into chunks, you can use oil instead
3 – 4 tablespoons water

Place the flours, cornmeal, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a standing mixer.  Mix on low.

Distribute the butter over the top of the flour mixture. Run the mixer until the butter mixes in and the mixture resembles crumbs.  Some big clumps are ok.  

While you are mixing, add the water, one tablespoon at a time.  Continue to mix until the dough begins to clump up or ball.

If you can’t form a doughy ball in your hand, you’ll need to add more water.  

Divide the dough and push down into a cookie like shape.  Wrap this in plastic and let set for at least 1 hour, but you can let it set overnight, if you want.  If you put it in the fridge, bring it back to room temp before rolling it.

Roll the dough evenly on parchment paper.  You might have to just slowly push down at first with your pin.  I found mine just broke apart when I tried to roll fast.  When its completely even, and beautifully thin, cut the squares into 1″ squares with a pizza cutter.  Move the parchment paper to a cookie sheet.  

Bake for about 20 minutes, but start checking after 15.  You’ll find that the edges brown more quickly than the center, so you may want to remove those before they burn.  They should be golden and crispy when you remove the sheet.  Let them cool on a wire rack, and you’ll find they crisp even more.  

Store in an airtight container or freeze.  

Prep time: 20 minutes

Inactive time: 1 hour to overnight

Bake time: 20 minutes

Trip to grocery store, if you’re not weird like me: 15 minutes


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