These buttery Cheddar-Parmesan crackers will likely become a mainstay in your repertoire. Not only are they crispy, rich, and well, addictive, but they can be partially made up to a month in advance. Once the dough is formed, it can be frozen and simply “sliced to order” as you need it. Just be sure to freeze it in small portions so that you don’t have to defrost it all at once. Although these Cheddar-Parmesan crackers are great plain, you can draw on the age-old “apples and Cheddar” theme by topping them with a dollop of apple-butter.–Laura Werlin

LC Channeling Cheetos Note

Let’s just call a spade a spade, shall we? Though these simple Cheddar-Parmesan crackers are all sorts of suave and sophisticated, they also have something of a cheesy crunch that, to us, channels a little Cheetos mojo (minus the creepy orange finger fuzz). We’re not criticizing. Just saying…

A person breaking a Cheddar-Parmesan cracker in half.
Cheddar-Parmesan crackers on a black wire rack with a few on a black oval plate beside the rack.

Cheddar-Parmesan Crackers

5 / 12 votes
These Cheddar-Parmesan crackers are hard to believe they’re homemade given how they’re filled with all kinds of cheesy goodness along with some cayenne for a little pop of heat. They’re completely irresistible. Consider yourself warned.
David Leite
Servings36 crackers
Calories40 kcal
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time2 hours 40 minutes


  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 2 ounces Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 4 tablespoons (2 oz) unsalted butter, softened and cut into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons water, plus more if needed


  • In the bowl of a food processor, place all the ingredients except the butter and water. Pulse 5 times. Add the butter and pulse again until the butter pieces are the size of BB's. Add the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse just until the dough holds together. If the dough is still crumbly, add more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until it reaches the right consistency.
  • Turn the dough out onto a large piece of wax or parchment paper. Roll the dough into a log 9 or 10 inches long and square off the ends. Wrap well and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days. (You can freeze the dough for up to 1 month. You may want to cut the log in half or in thirds prior to freezing if you think you'll want to defrost a small amount at a time.)
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Cut the log into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange the slices about 1 inch apart on a baking sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the crackers are a light golden color. Turn the crackers and bake for 3 to 5 more minutes, until they are golden around the edges.
  • Cool the crackers on a wire rack. Serve at room temperature.
    Cheddar-Parmesan crackers on a black wire rack.
The All American Cheese and Wine Book by Laura Werlin

Adapted From

The All American Cheese and Wine Book

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Serving: 1 crackerCalories: 40 kcalCarbohydrates: 2 gProtein: 2 gFat: 3 gSaturated Fat: 2 gMonounsaturated Fat: 1 gTrans Fat: 1 gCholesterol: 8 mgSodium: 61 mgFiber: 1 gSugar: 1 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2003 Laura Werlin. Photos © 2020 Cenk Sönmezsoy. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

These buttery little crackers are delicious and really easy to make. Who knew that making your own crackers could be so easy and taste so good? You basically dump all the ingredients into a food processor and then bring it together with butter and water like pie dough. No rolling or fussing with the dough—just form it into a log and then it’s simply a slice-and-bake process. So easy!

These crackers have a crispness around the edges as well as a bit of a chewy texture in the middle from the Parmesan. They’re tangy from the Cheddar, salty from the Parmesan and spicy from the cayenne. It’s an addictive snack that would be a great addition to any party.

These crackers came together so easily. I shredded the cheeses and mixed the dough using my food processor. Be sure to use the best-quality cheeses you can, because they really are the star of the show. I often make the Parmesan-thyme crackers from Ina Garten’s “Back to Basics” cookbook. The flavor in her crackers is more intense, but I find the dough a little more difficult to work with than this cracker dough. The hint of heat gives them a nice bite, and these are wonderful with a glass of wine.

These crackers are addictive little flavor-bombs. The dough is an absolute cinch to mix together in the food processor, and is easy to form into logs.

One caveat: After removing the log from the freezer, I had to let it thaw for about 15 minutes before I could slice the dough into crackers. Also, the crackers are definitely best eaten the day they are made.

These crackers are easy to make and have a wonderful spicy and cheesy flavor. They’re hard to walk away from—I had to put them away so I wouldn’t keep eating them. They’re great alone, and as an hors d’oeuvre topped with prosciutto.

This dough came together beautifully. I found that using wax paper to roll it into a log was helpful. Putting parchment paper down on the baking sheet might also be a good idea for next time because there was a little sticking. The crackers’ flavor is cheesy, with a little kick from the cayenne.

About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I’ve tried lots of cracker recipes, and this is the first time I felt like I ended up with crackers and not little bits of vaguely flavored sheetrock. This simple recipe turns a short list of common ingredients and easy-to-follow instructions into the most delightfully savory crackers. Think about it as old-fashioned refrigerator cookies meets Goldfish crackers, and you begin to get the idea. I didn’t have my kitchen scales, so I guesstimated the amount of cheese needed. This recipe isn’t fussy — it’s simple and satisfying. I used Tillamook extra sharp cheddar and real Parmigiano Reggiano. (I thought that a recipe this uncomplicated deserved the best ingredients.) One note: Making them a day ahead is not recommended. The cracker I saved to eat the next day was a bit disappointing, being kind of oily and chewy. But if you’re in the mood for warm and nearly instant gratification, try this cracker recipe.

    1. Jodi, “little bits of vaguely flavored sheetrock.” I just sputtered out my drink. So glad you liked these decidedly un-sheetrock crackers!

  2. 5 stars
    Great recipe! I am looking for cracker ideas to spiff up the raw-food dehydrated crackers I’m making. I start with almond meal (after making almond milk) and ground carrots (pulp remains of juiced carrots) and start adding stuff. They are really good. Only catch is that they are dehydrated at low temp so as not to destroy the nutrients so I’ll have to see how it goes adding cheese in. I think the Parmesan is going to work well. Happy holidays! Bonnie

  3. 5 stars
    The crackers were awesome! I thought I had cheddar but I didn’t, so I used Gruyere instead, and I decided to add a bit of rosemary too. These were really easy and super tasty, and I will definitely make these again. I’ve always wanted to make crackers, but just never got around to it for some reason- so much fun! I love that you can freeze the dough too.