One thing my Dad always requests around the holidays is a cheese ball. Super fancy and exciting, I know.
But I understand where he’s coming from.
I’m not sure what it is about them because they’re the simplest thing but they certainly jazz up a holiday or pot luck spread.
Maybe it’s the variety of flavor options. Maybe it’s the fact that you can pair it with a variety of crackers and dippers.
I know…maybe it’s because it’s a big ball of cheese supercharged with a ton of extra flavor that’s generously covered in chopped nuts and served with a variety of crunchy carbs.
Yep, that’s it.
This French Onion Cheese Ball was made for our family Christmas and it was created based on the ingredients and seasonings I had on hand – cream cheese (obviously), a few different kinds of shredded cheese and a handful of spices from the spice cupboard.
The fresh grated onion gave it a tangy bite, the Worcestershire sauce gave it a rich, deep flavor and using shredded Gouda cheese added an extra special level of flavor.
Now you may be wondering why in the world half of this cheese ball is coated in chopped almonds and half is covered with whole almonds. I’ll just say that’s what I get when asking my Dad’s opinion on which he would prefer. Why choose when you could have both?!
Most of us really enjoyed this French Onion Cheese Ball with Crunch Master multi-seed crackers and some of us (The Farmer) thought those crackers were “too healthy.” The multi-seed crackers were my favorite pairing but it was also delicious with the Toasteds wheat and sesame crackers and the pretzel thins.
Regardless of what each of us preferred to pair it with, six of us devoured it in less than an afternoon.
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French Onion Cheese Ball
This French Onion Cheese Ball recipe is the perfect easy appetizer for a holiday party that will please any hungry crowd.
- 8 oz. softened cream cheese
- 1/2 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup finely shredded gouda cheese
- 1 Tbsp. grated onion
- 5-6 dashes Worchestershire sauce, or to taste
- 1/2 Tbsp. dried parsley
- Garlic powder, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup chopped or whole almonds
Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl and mix until well combined.
Lay out a piece of plastic wrap and add the cream cheese mixture in the center. Gather the corners and twist the plastic wrap to seal the mixture and to help form the desired ball or log shape.
Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the cheese ball to firm up and take shape.
After the cheese ball is set and firm, remove from plastic wrap and roll the cheese ball in the chopped almonds or place whole almonds around the surface of the cheese ball. (Or cover in half chopped and half whole almonds as pictured if you have opportunistic family members who request both.)
Serve with an assortment of crackers, pretzels and/or tortilla chips.
TIP: For an extra special kick, roll the cheese ball in cooked, chopped bacon instead of nuts.