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Cream cheese balls make an excellent appetizer for parties and gatherings. They’re especially great when served with sliced vegetables and crackers.
You can make one big cheese ball that everyone can eat from, “dip-style”. But turn them into individual servings, and you’ve got a fun and festive appetizer each person can put on their own plate! These easy appetizers are sure to put a smile on everyone’s faces.
This makes a wonderful party appetizer for the Thanksgiving holiday! The little pumpkins look adorable sitting on everyone’s plates and the flavor is one that everyone will love. They also make a great snack! Just add a little crunch with some chips, crackers or veggies and you’re good to go.
What Is A Cheese Ball Made Of?
That depends on the recipe you use! There are so many ways to make a cheese ball that I can’t possibly list them here. But in general, they consist of cream cheese, sometimes grated cheese is added, and often times herbs and even bacon and nuts such as chopped pecans are added.
In this particular recipe, I only use cream cheese and herbs.
What Hers Do You Use For Cheese Balls?
In this case, it’s a ranch mix I make myself using dried onions, dried green onion, garlic powder and more. You can find that recipe here. It’s quick and easy to put together using very simple spices you probably already have in your spice cabinet.
What Is Good To Eat With Cheese Balls?
You can eat anything with these that you would normally eat with cream cheese or dip. Here are a few ideas:
- Wholegrain crackers
- Oat flour crackers
- Grain-free crackers
- Vegetable sticks
- Zucchini chips
- Wholegrain pita chips
- Wholegrain pretzels
How To Serve Cheese Balls
With this recipe you have a couple of options.
- You can skip the individual pumpkin-shaped balls and make one large ball. Coating it in paprika, while delicious, is totally optional. If you simply mix the ranch mix with the cream cheese and form it into a large ball, it can go in the center of a cracker tray with a knife.
- You can form these into individual servings. Again, coating them in paprika is optional but tasty. And if you want the pumpkin look for Halloween or Thanksgiving, you’ll definitely need the paprika. Opt for a more red paprika for apples, and a more orange or brown paprika for pumpkins.
How To Work With The Cream Cheese
By hand – If you make this by hand, you can use cold cream cheese and work the spices in with a fork as I did below. Cold cream cheese is the best option for rolling it between your hands to form the balls.
By mixer – If you prefer to keep your hands clean, you can use a hand mixer or stand mixer to blend the cream cheese mixture together. However, it does tend to whip the cream cheese into a softer texture, which will make it a little stickier to work with when rolling the balls. If it gets too soft, simply return it to the fridge for a couple of hours and it will be much easier to work with.
How Do You Eat Cheese Balls?
You dig in! With a chip, cracker or veggies stick, that is. It’s very spreadable so you can also spread it over your morning toast if you wish.
- Feel free to add some finely grated cheddar cheese to this. Sharp cheddar cheese is best for overall flavor, but mild can be used too.
- Minced jalapeños are also a good option.
- Ground black pepper
- Hot sauce
What You’ll Need
Cream cheese – This can be plain, dairy-based cream cheese, or you can make this plant-based by using vegan cream cheese. The one I like best for this recipe (and the one I used here), is the Miyokos brand. (Not paid to promote. Just sharing what I used.)
Paprika – This is regular, ground paprika. Do not use smoked paprika. They are very different in flavor. You may need more or less than what is called for in the recipe.
Small cinnamon sticks – These do not break nicely. They then to crumble a bit. So break them the best you can. They won’t be perfect, but they actually look nice that way.
Fresh parsley – Tear off each small stem from a larger stem. The leaves should be small for these little pumpkins.
How To Make Cream Cheese Balls
Place the cream cheese in a mixing bowl.
Add the ranch mix.
Using a fork, stir and mash it all together thoroughly.
Form everything into a ball using either your hands or a wooden spoon. The spoon tends to work best to gather everything together.
Put the paprika on a plate.
Cut the cheese ball into 8 equal pieces.
Roll each piece into a smaller ball in your hands.
Roll it in the paprika.
Break the cinnamon sticks into small pieces, and press a piece, along with a small piece of fresh parsley, into the cheese ball.
Press a toothpick gently into the sides of the pumpkins, all the way around to create the indents of a pumpkin.
Serve with your favorite crackers for veggie sticks.
How Long Do Cream Cheese Balls Last?
How Long Will A Homemade Cheese Ball Keep? If you wrap it in plastic wrap and then place it in an airtight container, it will keep just fine in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Can You Freeze Cheese Balls Made With Cream Cheese?
You can! Double wrap it as mentioned above, and then store it in the freezer for up to 1 month.
For this recipe, you’ll need a mixing bowl, a toothpick and some cinnamon sticks. You can find them on amazon by clicking any of the images here. (Affiliate links)
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Cream Cheese Ball Recipe Card + Video
Cream Cheese Balls Recipe
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- 1 Mixing Bowl
- 1 Fork
- 1 plate
- 1 toothpick
- 8 oz. cream cheese
- 2 tbsp. ranch mix (see recipe link above)
- 2 tbsp. paprika
- 2 small cinnamon sticks (broken into 8 pieces – they don't have to be perfect)
- 1 small sprig parsley (torn off at each small stem)
- Place the cream cheese in a mixing bowl.
- Add the ranch mix.
- Using a fork, mix it all together thoroughly.
- Form everything into a ball.
- Put the paprika on a plate.
- Cut the cheese ball into 8 equal pieces.
- Roll each piece into a smaller ball in your hands.
- Roll it in the paprika.
- Break the cinnamon sticks into small pieces, and press a piece, along with a small piece of fresh parsley, into the cheese ball.
- Press a toothpick gently into the sides of the pumpkins, all the way around to create the indents of a pumpkin.
- Serve with your favorite crackers for veggie sticks.