appetizer/ Christmas appetizer/ Christmas Recipes/ Holiday Entertaining/ New Years Eve

Classic Cheese Ball Recipe

Easy Classic Cheese Ball Recipe

This Classic Cheese Ball is a perfect party appetizer!  This delicious no-nut cheese ball recipe is made with cream cheese, old cheddar and a crust of dried apricots, cranberries, bacon and green onion.  So good.

Hello friends!  I’m so happy you’re here…I think you’re going to love what’s on the menu today!  Today is all about holiday entertaining…more specifically, appetizers!  I don’t know about you but I’m always looking for new appetizer recipes to add to my recipe box!  I’m joining Krista of The Happy Housie and a group of my blogger friends as part of the Seasonal Simplicity Christmas Series.  We’ve come together to share some delicious appetizer recipes for the holiday season.  So if you’re looking for something yummy to serve up at your next gathering, you’re in the right place!

If you missed any of my previous posts as part of this Seasonal Simplicity Christmas Series, make sure to check out my DIY Winter Wonderland Snow Globe Forest, Cinnamon Stick and Orange Slice Ornaments, Cinnamon Sugar Scrub, and my Christmas in the Kitchen home tour!  And today, I’m sharing a delicious recipe for a Classic Cheese Ball.

I love that cheese balls have risen in popularity once again!  Why did they ever disappear?!  They’re so good.  What’s not to love about a ball of cream cheese and old cheddar, covered in a delicious crust of flavourful ingredients?!

Making the Cheese Ball Crust

The great thing about cheese balls is that you can tailor them to your tastebuds!  For this Classic Cheese Ball I kept the traditional cheese centre, but made a no-nut crust.  Most cheese balls have nuts, but I was sharing this with a friend that has a nut allergy, so I decided to make mine a no-nuts cheese ball.  I used minced apricots, cranberries, cooked bacon, parsley and green onion.  The key is to mince the ingredients so they are really small, as shown in the picture below.

To do this I like to use a food processor.  The key is to make sure that you process each of the ingredients individually, otherwise you will end up with a mushy looking mess.  You want each of the ingredients to stand out.  You can read more about how I do that in the recipe card below.

Now you’ll have a bit of everything in every bite!  Flavour.  Explosion.

Dig in!  Serve your cheese ball with an assortment of crackers and even fresh veggies…carrot and celery sticks are delicious with it.

Cheese Ball Recipe Tips:

  • You can make the base of the cheese ball a day or 2 ahead of when you want to serve it.  Just add the crust later on the day you are serving it, or your toppings will get soggy.
  • If you like nuts on your cheese ball, feel free to add them.  Just make sure to chop them up small as well.  Pecans are particularly delicious.
  • Make sure you give yourself enough time to let the finished cheese ball rest in the fridge for at least 1 hour.  This makes for a firm cheese ball, and also lets all the flavours come together.
  • Cheese balls hold their shape really well, making them perfect to take to potlucks!

So easy and delicious…a definite crowd pleaser!

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Classic Cheese Ball Recipe

  • Author: Jo-Anna Rooney
  • Total Time: 80 minutes
  • Yield: 8 - 10 people 1x


This Classic Cheese Ball is a perfect party appetizer!  This delicious no nut cheese ball recipe is made with cream cheese, old cheddar and a crust of dried apricots, cranberries, bacon and green onion.  So good.



Cheese Ball:

  • 28 oz packages of cream cheese
  • 2 cups grated old cheddar cheese
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (I used Frank’s Red Hot)
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp finely minced green onion
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground pepper

Cheese Ball Topping:

  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp fresh green onions
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 8 dried apricots
  • 8 slices cooked bacon (well done)


Making the Cheese Ball:

  1. Using a mixer whip the cream cheese until it is nice and smooth.
  2. Mix in the grated cheddar cheese, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, minced onion, salt and pepper.  Mix well.
  3. Using your hands, (you can grease them slightly with butter), shape the mixture into a ball.
  4. Set aside and prepare the ingredients for the crust.

Cheese Ball Crust:

  1. I like to use a food processor to cut up the ingredients that make up the crust.  The key is to make sure that you process each of them individually, otherwise you will end up with a mushy looking mess.  You want each of the ingredients to stand out.
  2. First start with processing the dried apricots until they are like minced apricots. Scrape them out onto a plate as shown in the picture above.
  3. Then process the cranberries.  Scrape them out onto the plate.
  4. Then the bacon. Scrape them out onto the plate.
  5. Then the parsley and onion together.  Scrape them out onto the plate.
  6. Then mix together all the processed ingredients.

Putting the Cheese Ball Together:

  1. Now it’s time to cover the cheese ball in all of the crust ingredients.  To do this lightly press the crust ingredients into the sides of the cheese ball.  Cheese balls are not easy to roll, so I find it best to press the ingredients into the ball.  Press until all of the ingredients are used.
  2. Cover the cheese ball in plastic wrap then place it in the fridge for at least one hour to chill.
  3. Serve with crackers.  Fresh vegetables like celery and carrot sticks are great too!

Keywords: cheese ball recipe, cheese ball with no nuts, classic cheese ball

More Delicious Cheese Appetizer Ideas:

More Delicious Appetizer Recipes to Make:

Now make sure to check out these delicious appetizer recipes from my blogger friends…I’m sure you’ll find something tasty to make this holiday season!

Baked Brie, Fig, and Walnut Phyllo Cups at The Happy Housie
Classic Cheese Ball Recipe at A Pretty Life
Cheesy Butternut Squash Bites at Jenna Kate at Home
Fresh Cranberry Salsa at We’re the Joneses

Easy Holiday Party Appetizer at a Rooms FOR Rent
Baked Goat Cheese Bites at Modern Glam
Smoked Turkey with Cranberry Orange Muffins at My 100 Year Old Home
Caprese Salad Skewers at Cherished Bliss

Easy Cranberry Brie Tarts at The DIY Mommy
Christmas Tree Charcuterie Board at Cassie Bustamante
Carmelized Onion and Goat Cheese Tarts at Life is a Party
Swiss Cheese Bacon and Beer Dip at Clean & Scentsible

Snowman White Cheese Ball at Tatertots and Jello
3 Ingredient Stuffed Mushrooms at My Sweet Savannah
Easy Christmas Pinwheels Festive Holiday Appetizer at This is Our Bliss
Festive Bacon Wrapped Chestnut Holiday Appetizer at Kim Power Style
Red Pepper Jelly and Cream Cheese Appetizer at She Gave it a Go

Have a delicious day!

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  • Reply
    cassie bustamante
    December 10, 2019 at 5:22 AM

    love how colorful and festive your cheeseball is! gorgeous photos!

  • Reply
    December 10, 2019 at 1:58 PM

    5 stars
    This looks so delicious! And your photos are always so pretty!

  • Reply
    December 10, 2019 at 10:30 PM

    Did cheese balls ever go out of style?!! Looks delicious and can’t wait to try it. Thanks for sharing Jo-Anna.

  • Reply
    Ashley Stringfellow
    December 11, 2019 at 12:31 PM

    Beautiful! I’ve never tried a cheese ball because I don’t like cheese and nuts together – but this looks good!

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      December 11, 2019 at 12:59 PM

      Most cheese balls have nuts, but I really wanted to make one without…the dried fruit and bacon is a perfect no-nut option!

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