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Ok I don’t know about you but it seems like every party or social or family get together I’ve attended there is a cheese ball. It reminds me of my Midwest roots for some reason. As much as I have had it at a gathering I’ve only made it once. Why? I have no idea and wonder about myself. So here is my version and I have a feeling I’ll be making this a lot. It’s a simple appetizer and most people love having it at a party.
The one ingredient that is a constant is cream cheese. Now it’s up to you to let your imagination go. I didn’t stray too much from a classic version but did add in a few ‘extras’. If you haven’t made a cheese ball before, do it. It’s easy, it’s an elegant appetizer and it tastes oh so delicious. \
And we would like to introduce in our zoom call:
Yvonne Kucharek- Harrison TWP Michigan
Jamie Van Brocklin Burt Michigan and daughter Laura Van Brocklin
Alissa Zimmerman and Carly (daughter) Temperance Michigan
Classic Cheese Ball
- 2 8oz packages of Cream Cheese, soften
- ½ cup Roasted Red Pepper, finely chopped
- 1 Tbsp Goat Cheese soften – Optional but I like the tang
- 2 cups Med Cheddar Cheese, shredded and rough chopped (prefer the block and not pre-shredded cheese) reserve ½ cup for the outer coating of the Cheese Ball
- ¼ cup Sour Cream
- 2 – 3 Green Onions, finely chopped (depending on size of the onion)
- 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- ¼ tsp Onion Powder
- ½ tsp Oregano
- ½ tsp Hot Hungarian Paprika
- 1 Tbsp Parsley, chopped
- Dash Salt
- 1 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp Chives, chopped
- 1 ½ cups Walnuts, finely chopped
- ½ cup Med Sharp Cheddar Cheese shredded and chopped again
- ½ cup Sunflower Seeds finely chopped
- Parsley and Chives for garnish, if desire
- In a large bowl, using a hand mixer, blend the cream cheese.
- Pat the roasted red peppers to soak up any water that may be there
- Add in the next 12 ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined. Butter or spray your hands with non-stick cooking spray and form the cheese ball into a ball or another shape you desire. Then place in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.
- About 15-20 minutes before serving, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, add the finely chopped walnuts, finely chopped shredded med sharp cheddar cheese and finely chopped sunflower seeds. Butter or spray non-stick cooking spray on your hands – prevent the cheese ball from sticking to them – and gently roll the cheese ball in the nut mixture. Place in the refrigerator for about an hour and take out about 15 minutes before serving.
- Place on a platter and add your favorite items – crackers, vegetables, pita chips, pretzels or any other favorites of yours. Top with a few Parsley leaves and Chives.
- Use softened cream cheese. It will be easier to mix.
- Adding in sour cream is optional but I really like how it helps to keep the cheese ball just a little soft and not too firm when you chill it.
- There are a variety of ingredients you can add to your cheese ball. Using cream cheese is pretty much a must. A cheddar cheese is next. Then the rest is up to you.
- Use cheese you shred or grate – better flavor and doesn’t have that extra coating or additives- not the pre-package shredded cheese.
- I chose walnuts but pecans work well here plus a few other nuts. It’s nice to have that contrast of soft and a little crunch.
- If you make it ahead of time don’t roll in the nuts until you are ready to serve. The same for if you want to freeze it. Let it rest in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Then roll in the nut mixture.