Classic Cheese Ball Recipe

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This take on a classic cheese ball is crazy good! A zesty seasoned cream cheese & cheddar base is rolled in a bacon pecan crust.

It has all of the basic ingredients with tons of flavor, perfect for scooping with chips, crackers, and veggies!

Classic Cheese Ball with crackers on a plate

A Classic for Good Reason

A cheese ball has been around a long time for good reason!

  • So much cheesy goodness and flavor!
  • It’s perfect for get-togethers because it can be made ahead of time.
  • This recipe is versatile, add in your fave seasonings, herbs, and cheeses!
  • It’s easy to make, no baking required!
  • It’s not just a dip, spread on a sandwich (or a bagel), add to a wrap with ham or melt it with a bit of milk for an amazing pasta sauce!

top view of ingredients to make Classic Cheese Ball

How to Make a Cheese Ball

Cheese balls are easy to make. Garnish with extra sprigs of parsley or green onions and serve with crostini!

  1. Beat cream cheese with seasonings (per recipe below).
  2. Fold in cheddar cheese and half the bacon bits. Cover and chill.

a bowl with cheese and bacon before and after mixing

  1. After the cream mixture has chilled (so it will hold its shape) roll it into a ball (or a cheese log) and roll in the bacon pecan topping.
  2. Chill again.

Serving Tip

Remove the cheese ball from the fridge about 30 minutes before serving. This allows it to soften enough for dipping.

If you’re serving with fragile crackers or chips, add a butter knife to the platter.

spices to roll cheese ball in to make Classic Cheese Ball

Tips to Make Ahead

Make classic cheese balls in advance and take them to a potluck or a party anytime the season calls for a tasty appetizer!

  • Cheese balls can be stored for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator if they are tightly wrapped (before rolling in the coating).
  • Freeze for up to two months and thaw in the fridge overnight.

Perfect Party Dishes

Did you make this Cheese Ball recipe? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

close up of Classic Cheese Ball with a bite taken out and crackers surrounding it on a plate
5 from 2 votes
Review Recipe

Classic Cheese Ball

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 55 minutes
Servings 24 servings
Author Holly Nilsson
Cheese Balls are so easy to make, and are full of savory flavors! Serve with crackers or veggies for a crowd-pleasing appetizer.

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces cream cheese softened
  • cup sour cream
  • 1 green onion thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese finely shredded
  • ¾ cup bacon bits or crumbled bacon, divided
  • ½ cup pecans
  • 1 tablespoon parsley finely chopped

Follow Spend with Pennies on Pinterest

Instructions

  • Bake pecans in the oven at 350°F for 5-7 minutes or until fragrant. Cool completely and chop.
  • Meanwhile, place cream cheese in a bowl and beat with a hand mixer until fluffy.
  • Add sour cream, green onion, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic powder. Beat until combined. Stir in cheddar cheese and ½ cup bacon bits. Chill in the fridge for 2 hours or up to 24 hours.
  • Remove from the fridge and shape into a ball. Combine remaining ¼ cup bacon, chopped pecans, and parsley on a small plate. Roll the cheeseball in the mixture pressing to adhere. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the refrigerator at least 15 minutes before serving.

Recipe Notes

  • Start with softened cream cheese (this can also be done in the microwave for about 10 seconds or so).
  • Sharp cheddar gives the best flavor.
  • If desired, a packet of ranch mix can replace the seasonings in this recipe.
  • If using store-bought real bacon bits, microwave them on a paper towel until crisp and cool.
Be sure to refrigerate the cheese mixture before forming it into a ball or it won't hold its shape.
To make-ahead, prepare cheese ball but do not roll in the topping. Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze for up to 1 month. Thaw in the fridge overnight. Once thawed, roll in pecan mixture as directed.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 2tablespoons, Calories: 140, Carbohydrates: 1g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 36mg, Sodium: 185mg, Potassium: 68mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 387IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 92mg, Iron: 1mg

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword cheese ball recipe, Cheese Balls, Classic Cheese Ball, how to make a Cheese Ball
Course Appetizer, Dip, Party Food, Snack
Cuisine American
Classic Cheese Ball with crackers and writing
Classic Cheese Ball with crackers and a title
Classic Cheese Ball with a bite taken out with a title
ingredients to make Classic Cheese Ball with plated dish and a title
About the author

Holly

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

More Posts by Holly

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Comments

  1. This was easy to make. I have arthritis and can’t stand for very long and was able to get everything together without to much trouble. I was able to mix it all on my lsh, with a proper size bowl and able to put it in my casserole dish well. I would recommend this to some one who may have trouble standing for any length of time.

  2. When I put this into the fridge, I use a plastic lined soup bowl. then remove from bowl remove plastic and roll top and sides in bacon mixture. It is flat on the bottom so it won’t roll around. Much easier to place crackers and such around it.

  3. WOW Holly, this sounds super tasty, so I gotta make it! My mom (a former Hippie) has several great cheese ball recipes which they made back in ‘the day’, & she still makes ’em for gatherings. I just shared this recipe w/her, & she replied with one word, “GROOVY!” LOL, yup-that’s my mom❤️. Thanks a bunch for this recipe. I’m anxious to make it. ✌

    1. Definitely an oldie but a goodie, I feel like groovy is the perfect description LOL!! Thank you so much for sharing Angelina!