What To Eat With Cream Cheese? Here Are 17 Things To Try

Cream cheese is a great addition to a dish, but you might find yourself using it for the same purposes over and over. You might even start thinking it doesn’t go well with very much, but we’re here to let you know that this is simply not true.

And to prove that, we’re going to show you a wide swath of things that we believe go great with cream cheese, seventeen of them to be precise! With no further adieu, let’s get rolling!

What Goes Well With Cream Cheese?

#1. Toast

This is perhaps the most obvious answer but for good reason. It’s a fine one! Toast is perfect for frosting with whatever you’d like, cream cheese definitely included. 

You’ll want to spread that cream cheese on the toast while it’s still hot, then add your favored ingredients on top. The heat of the toast should slightly melt the cream cheese, and that’s a good thing. It blends the two and should make for a nice mouth feel. 

You can add in a lot of other things along with the dynamic duo of toast and cream cheese. These most frequently include bacon, fruit, honey, jelly, jam, cucumbers, prosciutto, roasted tomatoes and smoked salmon. 

#2. Macaroni & Cheese

Who doesn’t enjoy some nice mac and cheese, right? You might think they’re already cheesy enough, but another kind of cheese being added in couldn’t possibly hurt…

And it turns out, mac & cheese and cream cheese are perfect for each other. The cream cheese should add a very nice, unsurprisingly creamy texture to the dish.

For best results, add in a few cubes of the cream cheese into the mac and cheese blend before you start baking. The result will be a very rich and delicious meal.

#3. Tomato Soup

This might sound a bit oddball, but we can vouch for it. Both the flavor and texture of tomato soup can be improved with a little bit of cream cheese. 

This is because cream cheese also pairs really well with tomatoes in the first place. Just drop the cream cheese in and give it a good stir until it’s properly mixed.

You’ll know your job is done once the signature deep red color of the tomato soup turns into a creamy orange. And that’s all there is to it, you hardly need much time at all to make this combination happen!

Some toasted slices of bread coated in melted cheddar are a fine addition to serve as a side for this one.

#4. Pasta Sauce

You’ll want to melt down your cream cheese for this one, get it all smooth and silky. At that point it’ll be perfect for adding some zest to your pasta sauce. 

There is a bit more preparation needed for the best results here compared to some of the rest of the list, but it’s more than worth it. 

You’ll want to sauté some garlic in olive oil, then mix that in with pasta cooking water and add in grated parmesan along with, of course, the cream cheese! Stir that up nicely, then let the pasta drain and add it to your sauce. 

From there continue mixing, until the pasta is combined nicely with the sauce. What you have after that will no doubt be delicious, but you can keep adding on with a nice helping of olive oil, maybe some extra parmesan or a little bit of freshly ground black pepper.

#5. Puff-Pastry Filling

Cream cheese doesn’t just have to go on top of things, or mixed into liquids. Another way it can be used is as a filling, and puff-pastry is a great thing to fill with cream cheese.

It can be used to make a very tasty sweet or savory filling with ease, just a handful of added ingredients can make a big difference. So what you want to add here depends on which you’re looking for.

For those with a sweet tooth, it’s recommended that you add sugar and vanilla extract in there with the cream cheese, plus some kind of berry fruit. As in, strawberries, blackberries or raspberries. 

Meanwhile if you’re in the mood for something savory instead, you can add bacon, parmesan and baby spinach among other things to help achieve this. This goes to show the versatility of cream cheese.

See also  Orange Chicken vs Sesame Chicken: How Do They Differ?

#6. Pastry Dough

Here’s another thing that can be either sweet or savory, depending on your taste and what you have a hankering for. Pastry dough, too, can go either way and cream cheese can be helpful no matter what.

Cream cheese can be added in pies, strudel, tarts and plenty more. It helps the consistency of the dough, making it easy to roll into very thin bits without ever getting torn up. 

So if you’re looking to make a pastry that’s tender and flaky, adding some cream cheese into the dough early on in the process will help you out in the long run. 

#7. Ice Cream

On first blush, this might sound a little strange. Cream cheese isn’t something you’d associate with any of the most popular ice cream flavors taste-wise. 

But like the pastry dough entry above, the cream cheese is added less for taste and more for ensuring you have the proper texture. Cream cheese acts as a powerful stabilizer in ice cream.

This is because it can keep water from seeping away from the milk and cream, and it also helps in the prevention of ice crystallization. These things would otherwise detract from ice cream’s… well, creaminess. 

The result is a much denser and smoother texture and a tang that seems to go well with just about anything. 

#8. Brownie’s Mix

Another one for the stabilization pile and this one might seem even more oddball. The taste of cream cheese is a far sight from brownies, but it blends into the mix well.

As a result, the texture is the big difference made once again and a brownie made with cream cheese in the mix will be a beautiful sight to see. Smooth, creamy and rich for sure. 

#9. Crepe Filling

Here’s another place where cream cheese works magnificently as a filling and once again it can be turned to the sweet or savory side, depending on your preference.

Mix the cream cheese up with a berry of some sort, most commonly strawberries, for that sweetness.

But if you’re looking to get that umami sensation, what better than meat? Pulled pork or smoked salmon mixed in for a hearty crepe indeed. 

#10. Stuffed Chicken Breasts

This is a flavorful one for sure, stuffed chicken breasts with cream cheese? Amazing. 

To do this one right will require a bit of elbow grease. Before anything else, you’ll want to season your chicken breasts with salt and pepper. 

Then you stuff them full of cream cheese, of course. But it doesn’t have to be alone in there, dill, garlic, chives and parsley can all join it. From there, you’ll want to either pan-sear or roast the chicken until it’s cooked to a golden brown.

#11. Miso Spread

Not too much to say about this one, other than it’s an easy one to prepare, albeit you have to do it a ways in advance.

Marinate the cream cheese in a mixture of mirin and miso for around three days. From there this snack can be served sliced on crackers, whipped or with a nice side of wasabi. 

#12. Cream Cheese Frosting

This is effectively just taking cream cheese and upgrading it to become a great frosting for all sorts of pastries. Cookies, muffins, cakes and cupcakes would all be well served with some cream cheese frosting.

To achieve this, mix the cream cheese with butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Whip all that up and the end result is a thick frosting with a flavor to die for! 

#13. Mashed Potatoes

Mashed potatoes is another dish that would benefit a lot from cream cheese, but only if you want them to be particularly thick and creamy. By this point you’ve probably caught on to that, though.

To try this out, add it into the mix alongside milk, butter, garlic, salt and freshly ground black pepper. The end result here should be a melt-in-your-mouth serving of mashed potatoes, packed with flavor and creamy goodness.

See also  What Goes Good with Chicken Pot Pie: Delicious Side Dish Ideas

#14. Meatballs

Another thing that’d be great if stuffed with cream cheese is meatballs. To get this done, you simply have to put down a small piece of cream cheese within the meatballs before baking them.

Not too much this time around, but if you sear the meatballs in a pan with hot oil, you’ll end up with something very tasty indeed. 

Cheddar cheese spices and perhaps some jalapeno peppers could be added into the mix there too, to add some spice and zest.

#15. Crackers

This is a classic option. Crackers are maybe the thing most commonly associated with cream cheese, definitely one of it’s best friends. You can add in jelly or jam for an extra sweetness factor, if you like.

But the truth is, you don’t need to do anything here other than get some cream cheese ready and then dip the crackers into it one at a time as you eat them.

Cream cheese and crackers go together deliciously, and this is probably the best way to simply consume cream cheese if you’re in it for that mild, tangy flavor.

#16. Polenta

Polenta, when combined with a mix of cream cheese, creates a dish that is both creamy, yet light and fluffy at the same time. This is made with coarsely ground cornmeal and all sorts of fresh herbs. These include chives, thyme, oregano, parsley and sage.

Polenta goes well with a number of meats, such as chicken, pork, ribs and veal. Roasted veggies work nicely alongside it too. 

#17. Bagels

We bookended this list with cream cheese staples, starting with toast and ending with bagels. What is there to be said here? Cream cheese and bagels are like chocolate and peanut butter!

It’s actually a bit hard to imagine a bagel without cream cheese, if you picture one, odds are it came with a nice creamy frosting.

Most commonly bagels are eaten with the frosted side up, or two bagels are put together, in which case the cream cheese is more of a filling.

All of the previous recommendations for sweet or savory fillings apply here. 

Can Cream Cheese Be Eaten By Itself?

The answer is, yes, but it’s not really recommended. Rather, in moderation eating cream cheese by itself isn’t so bad. 

After all, you can take it straight from the fridge and dip it up onto crackers and eat that. It’s not much different than just eating it whole.

However this isn’t really the most nutritious thing. So if you really like the taste of cream cheese by itself and are tempted to try it, your best bet might be to make it into a cheese ball instead. 

This dish has cream cheese as the main ingredient for sure and it’s a delight. What you’ll want to do is mix cream cheese with another semi-soft or semi-hard grated cheese. Then add in some herbs or spices, your call really. 

Mix these ingredients up nice and thoroughly and pack them up into a ball. Chill it in the refrigerator, enough to where it’ll retain it’s shape. Then roll it around in a mixture of nuts, to give it that crunchy exterior. 

It can be served with a side of crackers from there.

How Does Sour Cream Compare To Cream Cheese?

Sour cream and cream cheese are actually pretty different. Cream cheese is more thick and sloshy, while sour cream has a light, whipped quality to it. 

Cream cheese is generally used more to add sweet creaminess in comparison to sour cream which, as you’d imagine, is on the sour side! 

In Conclusion…

So you can plainly see, cream cheese can go with a number of things. And while it’s more known for being turned into something sweet, it can also play it’s part in a savory dish as well.

And even if you don’t care for the flavor of cream cheese, it can be useful as a stabilizer in a number of dishes, fading in the background but playing a key role in enhancing the texture. 

Never underestimate the versatility of cream cheese!