This Christmas Tree Cheese Ball recipe is a fun and festive sun-dried tomato and herb cheese ball perfect for holiday entertaining.
This Christmas Cheese Ball serves 12 people and costs about $4.47 to make. So that’s just $0.37 per serving!
The holidays are a fun time to get creative in the kitchen. Playing with your food is allowed when you are making art with it! For example, when I want to make themed Christmas recipes, I love making these Christmas Tree Brownies, this Christmas Lasagna, and these Christmas Wreath Cookies.
With all the parties around the holidays, it can be hard to know what to bring to contribute to the party. But, I’ve got you covered with this Christmas Tree Cheese Ball recipe. It is festive, merry, and bright!
The cheese ball is full of cream cheese, grated cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, and seasonings on the outside and then shaped like a tree and covered in fresh herbs on the outside to look like a tree. An edible Christmas tree that is impressive yet simple to make!
This pretty appetizer is a crowd-pleaser for its looks and taste. Make this for your next holiday party, and the most challenging part will be being the first to dig into it and “mess” up the design.
Ingredients and Cost
Per Serving Cost: $0.37
Recipe Cost: $4.47
- 8-ounce package cream cheese – $1.96
- 3 Tablespoons sundried tomatoes – $0.66
- 3 Tablespoons warm water – $0.00
- ½ teaspoon dried basil – $0.10
- ¼ teaspoon onion salt – $0.02
- ¼ teaspoon garlic salt – $0.01
- 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese – $1.28
- ½ cup fresh parsley OR finely chopped pecans (pecans will obviously make the price of the recipe go up) – $0.44
NOTE: The recipe prices are calculated by using grocery store websites. The actual cost of the recipe will vary depending on what ingredients you already have.
- First, using a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
- Next, using a blender or food processor, process the sundried tomatoes and warm water until smooth.
- Add the sundried tomato mixture and seasonings to the cream cheese. Mix together until combined.
- Then mix in the grated cheese, just until combined.
- Place the cheese ball mixture into a mound in the middle of a large sheet of plastic wrap on your countertop. Gather the plastic wrap around the cheese ball and use your hands to shape it into a Christmas tree.
- Cover the cheese ball in the plastic wrap to chill in the fridge for one hour.
- Using herb scissors or a knife, cut the fresh herbs into small pieces. Place the herbs in a shallow container and roll the cheese ball in the herbs until it is all covered.
- Use a cookie cutter to cut out a star out of a thinly sliced piece of cheddar cheese. Place it on the top of the Christmas tree.
- Finally, serve with crackers, sliced and toasted baguettes, and/or veggie sticks.
- Instead of fresh herbs, you can use ½ cup of finely chopped pecans to coat the cheese ball with.
- Instead of sundried tomatoes you can use craisins for a sweet twist.
- For a Jalapeno Popper Christmas Tree Cheese Ball, ditch the sundried tomatoes, parsley, and basil, and instead use 2-3 chopped fresh jalapenos in the filling. Roll the tree in ½ cup of crumbled bacon (this will be about 8 slices of cooked bacon).
- You can use low-fat cream cheese in this recipe, but please fon’t use fat-free. You loos a lot of flavor and the texture just isn’t right with fat-free cream cheese.
SERVE: As with most recipes with dairy products in them, you shouldn’t leave this cheese ball out for longer than 2 hours.
STORE: Wrap the Christmas Cheese ball in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for about a week.
FREEZE: If you’d like to freeze this, I suggest freezing it before you roll it in fresh parsley. Wrap the cheese ball in two layers of plastic wrap and foil and place it in a freezer-safe Ziploc bag. Frozen this way it will keep for 2-3 months.
DEFROST AND FINISH: Defrost in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for 2-3 hours. Once defrosted, roll the cheese ball in the herbs until it is all covered. Top with the cheese star and serve.
- Stand mixer
- Blender or food processor
- Mixing bowl
- Measuring spoons
- Box grater
- Herb scissors or chef’s knife
- Cutting board
- Star cookie cutter
A few of my favorites include pita chips, pretzels, crackers, veggie sticks, apple slices, and sliced baguettes.
Place the cheese ball on a platter. A cake stand is charming, with the cheese ball in the middle. Arrange the crackers, veggie sticks, and other items around it. Place a butter knife on the tray for people to use to place some of the dips on their plates.
Typically, it is too soft if it does not have enough time to set or firm up in the fridge. Make sure to let it chill for at least one hour before covering it with the herbs. Also, do not put the outer layer of herbs on until just before serving. The herbs can become too soft if they are put on too soon and placed in the fridge for too long.
- Homemade French Onion Dip
- Crescent Roll Pizza Appetizer
- Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Dip
- Velveeta Queso Blanco Dip
- Chile Con Queso
- Loaded Potato Skins
- Baked Jalapeno Poppers
- Shrimp Cocktail
- Crockpot Little Smokies
- Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
Christmas Tree Cheese Ball
- 8 ounce package cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 3 Tablespoons sundried tomatoes
- 3 Tablespoons warm water
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon onion salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic salt
- Fresh ground pepper
- 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
- ½ cup finely chopped fresh green herbs such as parsley, rosemary, and oregano – or a combination of them all
- Small piece of cheddar cheese for the star
MIX CHEESE MIXTURE:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
- Place the sundried tomatoes and warm water in a small chopper, blender, or food processor, and process until smooth.
- Add the sundried tomato mixture to the softened cream cheese, along with all the seasonings, and mix until well combined.
- Add in the grated cheese and mix until just combined.
SHAPE AND CHILL CHRISTMAS CHEESE BALL:
- Place a large sheet of plastic wrap (about 12 inches long) on the countertop. Mound the cheese ball mixture in the middle of it. Pull up the plastic wrap around it and use your hands to shape it into a Christmas tree.
- Wrap the cheese ball in the plastic wrap.
- Chill for at least 1 hour.
- Use herb scissors or a knife to cut the fresh herbs very small.
- Transfer the herbs to a shallow container or dish and roll the chilled Christmas tree-shaped cheese ball in it until it is well coated.
- Slice a thin piece of cheddar cheese and use a cookie cutter to cut out a star. Gently push it into the top of the Christmas tree to make a tree topper.
- Serve the Christmas Cheese Ball with crackers, sliced and toasted baguettes, and/ or veggie sticks.
- This cheese ball can be made ahead of time. I like to wait to roll the cheese all in the herbs until right before serving it.
- Cheese balls are also a great gift to give to hostesses. Present it on a pretty plate with a few boxes of crackers.