Garlic Cheese Ball {with Parmesan and Italian Herbs}

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This Garlic Cheese Ball pairs perfectly with Italian herb crackers for a simple, 5 minute appetizer that is full of garlic and Italian cheese flavors. It will be one of your party favorites for holiday entertaining.

Garlic Lover's Cheese Ball

Garlic Cheese Ball

One of our family Christmas traditions is to have a buffet on Christmas Eve.  If there’s any time of year that we know how to put out a spread of good food, it’s Christmas Eve. And we repeat all of it on New Year’s Eve. Meatballs, taco salad, vegetable pizza, cookies, cheese and crackers are just some of the fun foods that show up on our Christmas decorated table. We have these comfort foods other times of the year, but when they all show up on the table at one time, well…it’s pretty much guaranteed we won’t hear Santa on your roof because we’ll be in a deep food coma.

Cheese and crackers are a must-have this time of year. And not just for your Christmas parties.  Have a simple garlic cheese ball and a box of crackers on hand will  ensure that you have something quick and easy to share with guests (with cute cheese spreaders!)  that happen to stop by.  The crackers that I like to have on hand? Italian herb crackers.  These little crispy crackers are packed full of flavor that will have your taste buds singing.

Cheese Ball Ingredients

I created the recipe for this garlic cheese ball from some of my favorite ingredients. Cream cheese, sour cream, Italian shredded cheese, Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning….and garlic. I wanted the garlic flavor to take center stage and added the Italian cheeses to complement the garlic.

Garlic Lover's Cheese Ball

The recipe for this garlic cheese ball comes together quickly. It takes just 5 minutes to mix up all of the ingredients. I like to refrigerate the cheese mixture for an hour or two so that the cheese is easy to roll into a ball, then cover it in chopped pecans.

Garlic Lover's Cheese Ball

It’s a great, make-ahead appetizer because the flavors only enhance as it sits. You can store it in your refrigerator for a week.  But if it lasts that long, I’ll be impressed. Serve it as an appetizer to these delicious meatballs!

Garlic Lover's Cheese Ball

What are your Christmas Eve traditions? Leave a comment sharing with me how you’re planning to wow your guests this year!

Garlic Lover's Cheese Ball
Garlic Lover's Cheese Ball

Garlic Cheese Ball

4.84 from 30 votes
This Garlic Cheese Ball pairs perfectly with Italian herb crackers for a simple, 5 minute appetizer that is full of garlic and Italian cheese flavors. It will be one of your party favorites for holiday entertaining.
Servings 15 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes

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  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese shredded
  • 1/4 cup Italian shredded cheese (or mozzarella cheese)
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans


  • In a small bowl, mix the cream cheese until it is smooth. Add the garlic, sour cream, cheeses and Italian seasoning. Mix until well combined. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
  • Place the chopped pecans on a plate. Form the cheese mixture into a ball, then roll the ball in the chopped pecans until the outside of the cheese ball is completely covered.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until serving.
  • Serve with crackers.



I’ve not tried this recipe using reduced fat cream cheese or sour cream. You could definitely make this substitute, but it will make the cheese ball a lot softer.


Calories: 96kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 90mg | Potassium: 41mg | Vitamin A: 255IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 0.2mg
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian
Calories 96

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4 years ago

5 stars
We have a monthly dinner club, and quite honestly, we could skip the dinner because the appetizers are ALWAYS the biggest hit! This was no exception! I skipped the pecans due to a nut allergy of one of my guests, but it only took a moment for someone to start smearing this deliciousness on a black olive…..we ALL agreed that stirring a can of chopped black (or green….we tried those too) olives into the mix, made it all the more amazing. Recipe is great as is, but next till will add the black olives as well!

7 months ago

Hi. I’m thinking of making this into small, individual cheese balls sticking a cracker or two in each for our annual appetizer night. Does anyone have an idea on approximately how many I could get out of about 1-1 1/2 size? Thank you.

4 years ago

Could you roll it in Panko Italian bread crumbs instead of the nuts?

Carrie Peck
4 years ago

5 stars
Thanks for the recipe. I made it into one small cheese ball and a bigger one. I made it look like a turkey for Thanksgiving. I added cut up olives for the eyes and carrots and celery for the feathers, neck and feet. I didn’t do nuts because we had someone that was allergic to them. Everyone one loved it.

5 years ago

5 stars
I added dried cranberries to add sweetness and color….AMAZING!!

5 years ago

Sounds delicious! My son is allergic to tree nuts, including pecans. What else could I use to roll it in?

6 years ago

5 stars
I made this to take to my step-daughters for Christmas, everyone loved it.

Amy @ Auckland SEO Services
7 years ago

5 stars
It’s not Xmas at our residence without a cheese ball. Going to pin this to my board to keep it for later!

Ruth @ Doctor Consultation at Home
7 years ago

Exactly what a fantastic collection of components and enjoy that garlic! I love all them, so thanks for this dish that binds all them with each other!

Sabrina B
7 years ago

what a wonderful set of ingredients and love that garlic is the star! I love all of them, so thank you for this recipe that binds all of them together!

Joy @ Yesterfood
9 years ago

5 stars
Absolutely beautiful- I can’t wait to dig in! Thank you for sharing- this will be good for Christmas Eve and New Years Eve! 🙂

9 years ago

I’m such a garlic lover…this sounds like an awesome Christmas appetizer!

Cheese Sticks
9 years ago

We are definitely garlic lovers in this house – and it’s so good for you, too. Cheese and garlic are a perfect combination – I will have to try this recipe.

9 years ago

It’s not a holiday without a cheeseball … or three! 🙂 I need to give this one a try! 🙂

Deb @ Cooking on the Front Burner
9 years ago

I love appetizers this time of year! Looks like a great (and easy) recipe! Merry Christmas!