A Splash Of Bourbon Takes Blue Cheese Dressing To A New Level

Not only is bourbon a rich and complex spirit to sip neat or incorporate into iconic bourbon cocktails like boulevardiers and mint juleps, but it'll also amp up classic food dishes. With common tasting notes like baking spices, sweets, and fruit, bourbon lends itself to dessert recipes, from cake glazes to pecan pies. However, nutty, smoky, and woody notes are equally prevalent in bourbon, supplying a great complement to savory recipes as well.

Blue cheese dressing is an especially savory recipe that will taste even better with a splash of bourbon. Bourbon has a strong flavor that will stand up to complement the funky, umami richness of blue cheese and cut through the creaminess of the dressing. In fact, blue cheese makers and spirit experts alike recommend slices or crumbles of blue cheese as a food pairing for bourbon drinks.

If you're making a cold blue cheese salad dressing, all you need is a teaspoon of bourbon to infuse it with flavor and provide a spicy alcoholic finish. Add it in with the rest of the ingredients, stirring to combine. You can also add bourbon to a blue cheese sauce by reducing it with butter and aromatics as a base for the heavy cream and blue cheese. Cooking bourbon will effectively burn off that alcoholic flavor, leaving you with a clearer taste of its underlying notes. Be aware that since you're reducing it, you'll need to add considerably more to the sauce than you would to dressing.

Bourbon blue cheese ingredient pairings

A splash of bourbon is a noticeable upgrade, but it won't drastically change the purpose of the sauce. Consequently, bourbon blue cheese dressing will pair well with dishes that typically call for regular blue cheese dressing or sauce. Bourbon blue cheese dressing will taste delicious on a classic Cobb salad alongside umami-rich bacon, chicken, and diced hard boiled eggs. Pour bourbon blue cheese dressing over a wedge salad with cherry tomatoes and thinly sliced red onions.

You could also add it to deviled eggs instead of mayonnaise and mustard for a sophisticated twist. Just as blue cheese and bourbon pair well with nuts and fruit, you could use blue cheese dressing for a pecan and grape studded chicken salad. Add blue cheese dressing to dipping sauce canisters for bacon-wrapped figs or candied bacon.

A hot, creamy bourbon blue cheese sauce would be the ultimate addition to a fine cut of steak or a bacon burger. Drizzle it over spicy buffalo wings or grilled chicken. You could smother roasted potatoes with bourbon blue cheese sauce or stir it into mashed potatoes. It would also complement the bitterness of roasted Brussels sprouts or seared cabbage.