My kids love “snacks.” And most of their favorite snacks come in brightly colored packages that we purchase from our favorite big-box retail store. But packaged snacks can get expensive, and it’s nice to have a better understanding of what I’m putting into my kids’ lunch boxes (and then their stomachs). When I first made these cheese crackers, I was so excited – they taste nearly identical to the popular kind you find on the store shelves, are easy (and fun!) to make, and I know exactly what’s in them. Because the dough has to sit for a little while, I like to make a double batch and freeze the uncooked dough to bake at a later date. They’re a win with my kids, and they don’t last long in our house.
Here’s what you need:
- 3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (about ¾ cup when you grate it yourself)
- ¼ cup of grated parmesan cheese
- ½ cup flour
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3 Tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into Tablespoons
- 1 Tablespoon cold water
- optional: additional kosher or sea salt for sprinkling on top
Here’s what you do:
- In a food processor, place cheeses, flour, cornstarch and salt. Process until combined, about 20 seconds or so.
- Add in cold butter slices and process again until the dough looks crumbly, about 10-15 seconds.
- Add in water and process until mixture forms a dough you can hold as a ball in your hands, about 5 seconds.
- Remove dough from food processor and spread out onto a floured work surface. Using your hands, shape dough into a square and press dough down until it’s about 1/4 inch tall.
- Wrap square in plastic wrap and chill in fridge for about 30 minutes (or up to 2 days).
- When ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- Place your unwrapped, chilled dough onto a lightly floured surface and flatten more, to about 1/8 inch high or about an 8 to 9-inch square. You can use a rolling pin to make it more uniform and roll the dough out.
- Cut the dough square into small crackers. I usually make 8 strips on each side of the square, coming up with about 64 crackers. I have a crinkle cut knife I use that makes the fun edge below, but you can also use a pizza roller for easy cutting. (Note: if you end up doubling the batch to freeze dough, I like freezing half the crackers here, already cut, so they’re ready to go)
- Arrange crackers onto prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with additional sea salt (optional).
- Bake in oven about 17-20 minutes until crackers are slightly browned and crisp. Let cool completely before eating – they’ll be a little soft coming out of the oven but will harden and get crispier/more cracker-like after sitting.
Storage note: If you store these in the fridge or in a closed container, they can soften up. They’re still good, but they won’t be as crunchy. I like to keep them in a container with the lid partially off.
Note: I like to make a double batch of the dough and freeze half the dough before cooking to have a quick snack ready to make. I like to freeze the dough after the crackers are already cut, but before I bake.