These easy make ahead cheese ball bites are the perfect elegant appetizer for any gathering!
These ultra creamy cheese ball bites practically melt in your mouth, they’re such a fun and unique snack for a special event.
These cheese balls are as fun to look at as they are to eat, it’s a super colorful way to celebrate!
I am a sucker for a good cheese ball, they’re on every appetizer table for a reason! These cute little cheese ball bites have the same great flavor as a regular sized cheese ball, but they’re more elegant looking and can be rolled in a variety of toppings. Once you’ve tried these mini cheese balls, you won’t want to go back to the full sized ones!
How to make cheese ball bites
These cheese ball bites are made with a combination of cream cheese, sharp white cheddar cheese and mascarpone cheese.
Mascarpone cheese is an Italian cheese similar to cream cheese, except that it’s a little sweeter and a lot creamier. You can find mascarpone cheese in tubs in your deli section or sometimes near the cream cheese.
The mascarpone cheese gives these cheese ball bites a melt in your mouth texture, it’s definitely worth using! If you can’t find mascarpone or don’t want to use it, you can substitute more cream cheese or a soft goat cheese. I like to use a high quality, extra sharp white cheddar and I grate it finely so that it’s easier to fully incorporate it into the soft cheeses.
Flavoring your cheese ball bites
I like to roll my cheese ball bites in holiday colored ingredients to flavor them, they come out so pretty and festive!
Here I’ve got chopped candied pecans, cranberries and herbs. Other great choices would be cooked crumbled bacon, walnuts, pistachios, dried apricots, pomegranate seeds, smoked paprika, almonds, there are so many different options. You just want to make sure that the toppings are finely chopped so that they easily adhere to the little cheese balls.
Serving your cheese ball bites
Traditionally, cheese balls are served with crackers. You can serve these cheese ball bites on top of crackers, or simply serve them on a platter with some toothpicks so people can grab their favorite flavor.
I like to serve my cheese balls almost as you would a cheese board with grapes, nuts, and other accompaniments that pair well with cheese. You could even serve toasted baguette slices on the side for a little different twist.
These mini cheese balls can be made up to 8 hours before you plan to serve them. Simply follow the recipe, cover the cheese balls with plastic wrap, and remove them from the refrigerator about 10 minutes before you plan to serve them. They’ll be the first snack to go at your party, and everyone will ask for the recipe!
More great party appetizers
- Cranberry Meatballs
- Bacon Ranch Dip
- Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
- Homemade Chex Mix
- Mexican Tortilla Pinwheels
Cheese Ball Bites
- 1 8 ounce block cream cheese softened
- 4 ounces mascarpone cheese softened
- 6 ounces finely grated sharp white cheddar cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup finely chopped pecans regular or candied pecans
- 3/4 cup chopped dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced chives
- 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
- Place the cream cheese and mascarpone cheese in a bowl; using a mixer or a large spoon, mix until thoroughly combined.
- Add the cheddar cheese and salt and pepper to taste, mix until well combined.
- Roll the mixture into bite sized cheese balls.
- Place the cranberries and pecans on two plates. Mix together the chives and parsley and put the herbs on a third plate.
- Roll 1/3 of the cheese balls in the pecans, 1/3 in the cranberries and 1/3 in the herbs.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.