This Cranberry Pecan Cheese Ball is the perfect appetizer or snack for entertaining! It’s easy to make with simple ingredients and can be served with your favourite crackers or veggies!
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I don’t know about you, but I definitely have a thing for appetizers. In fact, I’d be more than happy with just an entire meal of appetizers! This Cranberry Pecan Cheese Ball is one of my favourite appetizers to serve during the holidays and it’s always a crowd pleaser!!
I’ve shared lots of my favourite appetizers with you before, like this Apricot Pecan Baked Brie and these Salad Bites. But this Cranberry Pecan Cheese Ball takes appetizers to another level of simplicity. It’s truly almost as easy as buying a pre-made cheese ball in the deli section of your grocery store, and it’s definitely more cost-effective!
Looking for more delicious holiday appetizers? You’ll love this Apricot Pecan Baked Brie and these Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Mushrooms.
How to make a Cheese Ball
Here are some tips to make the best cheese ball every single time:
- Use full fat cream cheese. Low fat cream cheese contains a high water content and therefore doesn’t solidify properly, even in the fridge. To help the cheese ball keep its shape, use full fat cream cheese.
- Don’t forget the seasonings. Nothing is worse than a bland cheese ball – make sure to use lots of delicious flavours including dried fruit, herbs and spices.
- Use freshly grated cheese. Pre-grated cheese sold in bags at the grocery store contains fillers to prevent the cheese from clumping up in the bag. This can make your cheese ball difficult to shape, so using freshly grated cheese is best.
- Refrigerate before serving. Wrap the cheese ball in plastic wrap (tightly) and refrigerate for about 2 hours or overnight before serving. This will help the cheese ball keep its shape when you serve it to your guests.
- Don’t forget the crust. Roll the cheese ball in chopped nuts, chopped dried fruit, crumbled bacon, or crushed tortilla chips or pretzels to create the perfect crust!
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I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! Let me know in the comments below, what’s your favourite recipe for holiday entertaining? I’d love to know!
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Looking for more recipes for holiday entertaining? You’ll LOVE these:
Cranberry Pecan Cheese Ball
- 16 ounces full fat cream cheese (about 500 grams)
- 1/4 cup full fat sour cream
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (we like 1 cup each white and orange cheddar)
- 1 cup chopped dried cranberries
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- sea salt (to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 3/4 cup chopped pecans (for the outside of the cheese ball)
- crackers, pretzels, or veggies for serving
- In a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese, sour cream and shredded cheese with a rubber spatula or with a hand mixer (if desired).
- Add the chopped cranberries, lemon juice, chopped pecans, pepper, salt (to taste), and garlic and onion powders.
- Stir well to combine and using your spoon or spatula, roll the mixture into a rough ball shape.
- Place a large piece of plastic wrap on your work surface and add the cheese ball onto the plastic wrap. Using the plastic wrap, roll the cheese ball into a smooth ball shape wrapping it tightly in the plastic.
- Chill the cheese ball in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
- Before serving, remove the cheese ball from the plastic wrap and roll it in the 3/4 cup chopped pecans until the cheese ball is covered evenly with the chopped pecans.
- Serve immediately on a platter with your favourite crackers, pretzels, baguette slices, or veggies.