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Celebration Cheese Balls Recipe

Celebration Cheese Balls Recipe

A handful of simple ingredients that go together in minutes, three fun flavorful options…these creamy cheese balls from our Test Kitchen are a darling, do-ahead delight for busy holiday hostesses! Why not whip up several batches? —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + chilling YIELD:12 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • PINE NUT-PESTO CHEESE BALL:
  • 2 tablespoons prepared pesto
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
  • 10 tablespoons toasted pine nuts, divided
  • HORSERADISH-BACON CHEESE BALL:
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon
  • 1 green onion, finely chopped
  • SALSA CHEESE BALL:
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced seeded jalapeno pepper
  • Assorted crackers

Directions

  • 1. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, Parmesan cheese and garlic until blended. Divide into three portions.
  • 2. For Pine Nut-Pesto Cheese Ball: Beat one portion of cream cheese mixture and pesto until blended. Stir in basil. Chop 2 tablespoons pine nuts; stir into cheese mixture. Shape into a ball; roll in remaining pine nuts. Wrap in plastic wrap; chill until firm.
  • 3. For Horseradish-Bacon Cheese Ball: Beat one portion of cream cheese mixture and horseradish until blended. Stir in bacon and onion. Shape into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap; chill until firm.
  • 4. For Salsa Cheese Ball: Beat one portion of cream cheese mixture, tomato paste and salt until blended. Stir in cilantro, onion and jalapeno. Shape into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap; chill until firm.
  • 5. Can refrigerate up to two weeks. Serve with crackers. Yield: 3 cheese balls (1 cup each).
Editor's Note: Wear disposable gloves when cutting hot peppers; the oils can burn skin. Avoid touching your face.

Nutritional Facts

1/4 cup: 57 calories, 5g fat (3g saturated fat), 16mg cholesterol, 98mg sodium, 1g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 0 fiber), 2g protein.

Reviews for Celebration Cheese Balls

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MY REVIEW
pants11 User ID: 8161039 215007
Reviewed Dec. 15, 2014

"I've made these several times and they are always a hit. I frequently get asked for the recipe. Delicious, festive and very easy to make!"

MY REVIEW
BlessedOut User ID: 2693864 171909
Reviewed Jun. 20, 2009

"EVER since I first made this, I have gotten a request (actually, a DEMAND) to bring these to that holiday event ever since. I have not found a single person who has not enjoyed these. :)

In fact, I'm kinda getting tired of making them! :) But the end product always makes me grateful that I did. SO yummy!"

MY REVIEW
chrismmcmaine User ID: 1057642 209402
Reviewed Jan. 18, 2009

"I only made the Pine Nut-Pesto ball and it was wonderful."

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