Cream cheese isn’t only for bagels and bread; you can make a whole bunch of amazing recipes for every meal with cream cheese. It’s a super versatile ingredient that you can eat at any time of the day. What’s more, this is an affordable addition to your culinary repertoire.
Let’s start with a tip – leave your cream cheese out of the fridge for half an hour. It speeds the whole recipe up and improves the flavor! Most things taste better when they’re not ice-cold.
Cream cheese is soft, creamy, and made of milk and cream with some extra lactic acid bacteria, which comes with extra health benefits.
We’ve gathered a bunch of great recipes for you to try. In fact, we made it a whole baker’s dozen, so you’re not short on options. There’s a whole range of ideas, from easy to hard, so everyone will find one to suit their cooking ability. Read on to see our top picks.
1. Mac N Cheese
Are you looking for the creamiest mac n cheese you’ve ever tasted? Add some cream cheese to your pasta sauce to achieve this brilliant texture. You can add onion, garlic, and Parmesan for the loveliest sauce.
If you fancy giving your taste buds an extra surprise, try adding some breadcrumbs on top and cooking it under the grill for ten minutes for an added crunch.
2. Red Velvet Pound Cake
To get the perfect flavors, top off your red velvet pound cake with soft cream cheese icing. Make sure the cake is fully cooled before you start to frost it. Remember to add some pecans for extra crunch on top.
3. Tomato Soup
Tomato soup might seem one of the more unusual options to pair with cream cheese, but it’s a heavenly combination. The best part is you can make it on a budget and with time constraints. The best tomato soup is made with a teaspoon of salt and sugar to balance the flavors.
This is best served with slices of bread or toast with melted cheese on top. Or go the whole way and make a grilled cheese to dunk! This gives a great contrast to the dish.
4. Dips Galore
If you have leftover cream cheese to use up and aren’t sure what to eat with cream cheese, making a variety of dips is the best course of action.
Mix your cream cheese into a bowl with sour cream or mayo, and then mash in whatever you think might taste nice. You can fill little ramekins with different kinds. The nicest options are always fresh herbs, preferably homegrown, and onion never goes amiss. Some other sure bets include garlic, roasted peppers, avocado, mustard, and olives – the world is your oyster.
You can dip chips or use these as sandwich spreads, but they also taste great on crackers. It might even be a great children’s dip to include more apples, carrots, and celery sticks into their diet.
5. Scrambled Eggs
If you’re looking for simple ideas of what to eat with cream cheese, look no further. To enjoy the most divine scrambled eggs, simply add some cream cheese during the scrambling process – it makes the dish creamier and adds a subtle sweetness. One or two ounces of cream cheese can take your scrambled egg up a level.
Another top tip for leveling up your omelets and eggs is to add some mixed herbs or wrap in a nice piece of Italian ham – what are you waiting for?
6. Crêpe Filling
Add a taste of Paris to your crêpe by adding some cream cheese. The best part is that you can make these sweet or savory by adding different ingredients. For example, if you want a sweet pastry, add strawberries, raspberries, or even a sprinkling of chocolate chips.
However, if you’re looking for a more savory filling, think about adding salmon and chives or pulled pork. You might even want to think about adding lemon, fresh herbs, or capers.
7. Stuffed Chicken Breasts
If you’re thinking about having chicken breasts with cheese inside and wrapped in ham, why not push your culinary skills up a level? A great idea for what to eat with cream cheese is an Italian ham, like prosciutto, and stuff the cream cheese inside the chicken breasts.
Remember that salt, pepper, and herbs go a long way in this dish. You could even think about adding garlic and chives. It’s even better if you wrap them in bread crumbs and then pan-fry fry them to sear them.
Breakfast can be a little dull so think about spicing this meal up by adding a spoon or two of cream cheese. This makes for a brilliant start to your morning. You might even want to add cinnamon and vanilla.
For added goodness, you can add fresh fruit and nuts on top – this adds a whole new texture but also extra nutritious value.
9. Upgrade Any Dessert
One of the best ways to use up cream cheese is to add it to your desserts. If you’re scratching your chin about what to eat with cream cheese, this has to be one of the best solutions.
Mix the cream cheese with a splash of alcoholic liqueur (a nutty liqueur like amaretto is a good choice), and then use this cream mix on fruit or any other pudding. This adds a whole layer of thick, luscious cream that’s lightly sweetened but also adds a sharp pang – a wonderful contrast between the two.
One of the easiest dessert ideas is to pop this in a glass and add some fruit, like strawberries, poached pears, or even some meringue, for a quick, easy, tasty meal.
10. Mashed Potato
The best type of mashed potato is the creamy, melt-in-the-mouth variety – this can be tricky to achieve. A simple trick is to add a few spoonfuls of cream cheese.
Add butter, milk, salt, and pepper to enjoy the best mash you’ve ever tasted. It’ll melt in your mouth.
By serving chives on top, you will have a dish worthy of a foodie magazine cover. You can serve your mashed potatoes as a side for a main dish like meat or fish. It’s also excellent as a side for meatballs and lashings of luscious gravy.
11. On Toast
If you have leftover cream cheese and are unsure what to eat with it, you could do worse than spreading it on toast. This may seem strange at first, but it’s delicious and an incredibly cheap brunch.
You can spread it on your crunchy toast and then top it with salmon, roasted tomatoes, or Italian ham. Parmaand Prosciutto are the most popular with this dish. However, if these don’t appeal, you can top it with bacon, fruit, cucumber, or even some jelly.
Given the hot toast, the cream cheese will melt, and the contrast of textures will be delicious.
12. Homemade Jelly
If you want to make your jelly but don’t know where to start, try this easy recipe. This is a great option if you need help deciding what to eat with cream cheese, as it’s incredibly simple yet versatile. The best part is that you can follow this recipe’s basis but change it to suit your needs and tastes.
For example, if you don’t like honey, you can use maple syrup, or if you don’t have berries, you can add grapes instead. Making a nut butter can be adapted to you and your needs – melt it all down together with some cream cheese, and voilà, you’ve made your own jelly/nut-butter combo.
13. Use As A Healthier Option To Cream Or Ice-Cream
Cream cheese can be a healthy alternative to traditional heavy cream or ice – cream. Try switching it in when enjoying your usual desserts. It’s also sweet, and you can add brown sugar, vanilla, and fruit to sweeten it up. On the flip side, you can add lemon zest if you want a tangier taste.
When you add cream cheese to a warm dessert, it melts perfectly into the dish. It’s an easy and quick option instead of making a cream cheese topping.
A (Baker’s) Dozen Of Options
Cream cheese is a popular ingredient and something you might be wondering what to do with if you have leftovers in your fridge. Try some of these fantastic ideas, and let us know how you get on.
The unique taste and texture of cream cheese mean that it melts when put onto hot dishes and can be used in both sweet and savory scenarios. There are a whole host of recipes you can use cream cheese for. The limit is your imagination.
If you’re unsure where to start, just stir this versatile ingredient into scrambled eggs or spread it on your sandwich. Start small and work up to trying more complex recipes. You’ll gain confidence with each idea you try since it tastes that good!
Good luck and happy cooking with an ingredient that simply begs to be used in your dishes.