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Easy Pomegranate White Cheddar Cheeseball

 December 18, 2023

If you’re looking for a show-stopping appetizer to serve this holiday season, then look no further because this is it! My Easy Pomegranate White Cheddar Cheeseball is a fun and festive appetizer that takes a blend of sharp cheddar cheese and cream cheese and combines it with bright herbs, hearty nuts, and a coating of bright and beautiful pomegranate arils. It’s perfectly festive for the holiday season, and makes for a delicious appetizer for our office holiday party, potluck, or it can even stand alone as a fun and delicious white elephant gift!

A close-up image of the holiday cheese ball, sitting on a plate next to crackers

Friends, with Christmas right around the corner, it’s time to start whipping up your favorite holiday appetizer recipes. Whether that’s a sweet and sophisticated finger food like my Vegan Pesto Stuffed Mushrooms or my Viral Crispy Garlic Parmesan Potatoes that are taking the world by storm, there is no end to the amount of delicious and festive recipes that you can whip up this time of year. But if you’re looking for a classic Christmas appetizer recipe that will withstand the test of time (and be perfect at your office holiday party, potluck, or even stand alone as a fun and delicious white elephant gift), then look no further because this is it!

Growing up, one dish that was always at my family Christmas parties was an epic cheddar cheese ball. I used to watch with awe as my mom carefully took shredded cheddar cheese, packed it together with some fruit and nuts, and arranged it into a ball that was later served with crackers. It was always a conversation starter when the dish was finally brought out for everyone to enjoy. So, when I was dreaming up my new Christmas recipes for this year, I knew that a magnificent cheese ball had to be a part of it!

My take on the dish combines sharp white cheddar cheese with soft and fluffy cream cheese, crunchy pecans, dried cranberries, and chives, for a cheese ball that is packed with flavors and textures. And, to give it the perfect pop of color, the entire ball is rolled in right pomegranate arils. These bright little seeds not only add a delicious, slightly-sweet flavor to this cheese ball, but they’re also auspicious. In Armenian culture, pomegranate seeds are said to be a symbol of good luck and prosperity for the year ahead. So, whether you like the color or want the extra boost of luck, you can’t go wrong with this recipe!

What You Need to Make This Easy Cheese Ball

  • Cheese: To make this cheese ball, of course you need cheese! And this recipe calls for two types: white cheddar cheese and cream cheese. The cream cheese makes this cheese ball soft and fluffy, and the white cheddar cheese adds sharpness and that classic cheddar flavor that pairs perfectly with crackers.
  • Dried Cranberries: I like to make sure that the cranberries are unsweetened, so that this cheese ball doesn’t get too sweet.
  • Pecans: Chopped pecans add a healthy dose of fats and adds a crunchiness to this cheese ball that is the right amount of texture.
  • Chives: I love adding in freshly chopped chives for a fresh herby flavor and for color.
  • Worcestershire Sauce:  If you are gluten-sensitive, be sure to use gluten-free Worcestershire sauce!
  • Cayenne Pepper: A pinch of cayenne pepper adds just the right amount of spice to this cheese ball.
  • Pomegranate Arils: To give this cheese ball a burst of festivity and flavor, we’ll be using pomegranate arils – aka pomegranate seeds. These bright red seeds are slightly chewy and are paced with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
  • Fresh Rosemary: A sprig of fresh rosemary adds the perfect finishing touch to this cheese ball!
A food processor, filled with the processed cheese mixture, herbs, and nuts
Pulse and process the ingredients together until they’re fully combined with some texture left. You will need to stop the food processor and use a spatula to scrape down the sides, in order to ensure that the ingredients are fully incorporated.

How to Make This Fun & Festive Holiday Appetizer

To make this cheese ball, start by shredding the white cheddar cheese and adding it to a food processor alongside the cream cheese, cranberries, pecans, chives, worcestershire sauce, and cayenne pepper. Pulse and process the ingredients together until they’re fully combined with some texture left. You will need to stop the food processor and use a spatula to scrape down the sides, in order to ensure that the ingredients are fully incorporated.

Once the cheese mixture has come together, transfer it to a large plate and use your hands to form it into a ball. I recommend spraying your hands lightly with oil, to ensure that the cheese doesn’t stick to them. Then, pour the pomegranate arils onto the plate and roll the cheese ball in the pomegranate arils, until it’s completely covered in them. You might need to add some of the pomegranate arils to the cheese ball, by hand, in order to fill in some of the small gaps.

Once the cheese ball is fully coated in the pomegranate arils, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and place the cheese ball in the fridge to chill. You can allow it to chill as little as a few minutes, or as long as overnight, depending on when you want to serve it. When you’re ready to serve the cheese ball, remove it from the fridge and carefully unwrap it. Top it with a sprig of fresh rosemary. Then, transfer it to a plate, serve with crackers, and enjoy!

If you make this recipe, please be sure to leave a review and rating below! To see more recipes and behind the scenes, follow along on InstagramTikTok, and Youtube! I’m also now on Pinterest, so stop by and take a look at what’s new.

** Photography by Tanya Pilgrim
A close-up image of the holiday cheese ball, sitting on a plate next to crackers
gluten-free/Grain Free/Refined Sugar Free

Easy Pomegranate White Cheddar Cheeseball

No ratings yet
Nicole Modic
Prep Time 9 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
SERVES 10 Servings
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If you're looking for a show-stopping appetizer to serve this holiday season, then look no further because this is it! My Easy Pomegranate White Cheddar Cheeseball is a fun and festive appetizer that takes a blend of sharp cheddar cheese and cream cheese and combines it with bright herbs, hearty nuts, and a coating of bright and beautiful pomegranate arils. It's perfectly festive for the holiday season, and makes for a delicious appetizer for our office holiday party, potluck, or it can even stand alone as a fun and delicious white elephant gift!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 Cups White Cheddar Cheese shredded
  • 1 8 Ounce Container Cream Cheese
  • 1/3 Cup Dried Cranberries
  • 1/2 Cup Pecans raw and unsalted
  • 1 Bunch Chives finely chopped
  • 2 Teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce I make sure mine is gluten-free
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 1/2 – 2 Cups Pomegranate Arils
  • 1 Sprig Fresh Rosemary

Instructions

  • To make this cheese ball, start by shredding the white cheddar cheese and adding it to a food processor alongside the cream cheese, cranberries, pecans, chives, worcestershire sauce, and cayenne pepper.
  • Pulse and process the ingredients together until they're fully combined with some texture left. You will need to stop the food processor and use a spatula to scrape down the sides, in order to ensure that the ingredients are fully incorporated.
  • Once the cheese mixture has come together, transfer it to a large plate and use your hands to form it into a ball. I recommend spraying your hands lightly with oil, to ensure that the cheese doesn't stick to them.
  • Then, pour the pomegranate arils onto the plate and roll the cheese ball in the pomegranate arils, until it's completely covered in them. You might need to add some of the pomegranate arils to the cheese ball, by hand, in order to fill in some of the small gaps.
  • Once the cheese ball is fully coated in the pomegranate arils, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and place the cheese ball in the fridge to chill. You can allow it to chill as little as a few minutes, or as long as overnight, depending on when you want to serve it.
  • When you're ready to serve the cheese ball, remove it from the fridge and carefully unwrap it. Top it with a sprig of fresh rosemary. Then, transfer it to a plate, serve with crackers, and enjoy!

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