This easy, festive, and super adorable Snowman Cheese Ball is the perfect appetizer made with two different kinds of cheese for the body and fun add-ons for the face! It’s a simple, cost-effective way to delight your friends and family during the holiday season!
Christmas Cheese Ball
This wintry take on the classic cheeseball falls pretty high on the list of favorite holiday appetizers.
We’re making a snowman, which is almost too cute to eat. Then you remember it’s a ball of delicious cheese so there’s no resisting diving in.
It’s made with 2 different kinds of cheese, a bit of seasoning, chocolate chips for the eyes and buttons, and a baby carrot for the nose.
With just 15 minutes of prep time, the hardest part is waiting for it to set, but the oohs and ahhs you’ll get from this simple and impressive crowd pleaser, is definitely worth it.
Whip up some cranberry prosecco spritzers for everyone to sip on as they mix and mingle and your guests may never leave!
Why you’ll love making a Snowman Cheese Ball
It’s an easy recipe! – No doubt having easy delicious recipes in your back pocket around the busiest time of the year comes in handy. The fact that it’s fun, festive, and super cute is a bonus! Make it in advance and spend less time in the kitchen and more time with friends and family!
Perfect party appetizer – Whether it’s a Christmas dinner centerpiece or an appetizer for all your upcoming holiday parties, this cute little guy is a hit no matter what. It will become a scrumptious tradition in your home from now on!
Budget-friendly – You can get as fancy or as basic as you’d like. If you like high-quality cheese from boutique cheese shops, have at it! If not, use whatever you’ve got on hand from your local grocery stores and keep it within budget.
Customizable – Use any kind of cheese you want, swap the chocolate chips for various other items, and the same goes for the nose. This recipe is a jumping-off point, but you can get as creative as you like. See below for ideas.
Equipment you’ll need
- Mixer – Either a stand mixer, hand mixer, or just a good ole spoon.
- Mixing bowls – If a stand mixer isn’t in the budget at the moment, a great set of stainless steel bowls will do just fine.
- Cheese knife – I actually don’t have a cheese knife and had to borrow one from my neighbor lol
- Cheese grater – I love this thing & how easy it makes grating your own cheese.
Below is a list of the ingredients you’ll need to gather to make this recipe. Scroll all the way down for the full recipe card.
- CHIVE CREAM CHEESE – Remember to bring your cream cheese to room temperature at least 30 minutes ahead of time. This way you’ll be able to cream it and form it nicely without leaving behind lumps. Use a block, not a container of cream cheese.
- MONTEREY JACK CHEESE – I always recommend using freshly grated from a block rather than buying it pre-shredded. It tastes better because it’s not coated in any anti-clumping agent. It’s also easier to control the grating size. You want to divide it into regular and finely grated cheese. Mozzarella cheese or white cheddar cheese are great alternatives.
- GARLIC POWDER & ONION POWDER – A simple way to add even more flavor to this fun appetizer.
- BABY CARROT – For the nose! You may need to cut the tip of a baby carrot so it points, or just leave it as is.
- CHOCOLATE CHIPS – A sweet way to add the eyes, mouth, and buttons to your snowman cheese ball.
How to make a Snowman Cheeseball
The base recipe is the cream cheese and the amount of shredded cheese, you are free to use your creativity after that.
- STEP ONE: First, you’ll combine both kinds of cheese and seasoning in the bowl of a stand mixer. Use the paddle attachment to mix until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go. If you don’t have a stand mixer, use mixing bowls and a spatula instead. Scoop out the mixture onto a clean surface.
- STEP TWO: Then, divide cheese mixture into two different-size balls. You want the largest ball to be used as the snowman’s base (body), and a smaller cheese ball to be used for the head. Wrap each one in its own sheet of plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours.
- STEP THREE: Next, remove the plastic wrap and roll each ball in finely shredded cheese to give it the snowflake look. This is great to do just before serving because once it’s been rolled, you want to place it in the center of a serving platter. Start with the large one and follow this with the small one and place it on top, making the snowman shape.
- STEP FOUR: Last, make the snowman’s face by adding chocolate chips for the eyes, mouth, and buttons, and small carrot cut in a triangular shape for the nose. How cute is this?!
What to serve with a Snowman Cheese Ball
A cheese ball recipe is traditionally served as a spread or a dip so you want to serve it with a variety of dippable items. Things like crackers, bagel chips, pretzel sticks, homemade soft pretzels, celery sticks, homemade tortilla chips, bread, squash chips, you name it.
If it’s the centerpiece of a dinner table, I’m going to be serving it with my classic holiday fare like slow cooker turkey breast, gravy, garlic mashed potatoes, and classic cranberry sauce, of course!
However, if it’s part of an appetizer spread, I’ll always include a few other of my 10 homemade dips for chips, crackers, and veggies.
Possible Substitutions/Additions ⛄️
- The cheeseball itself is very versatile, you can use flavored cream cheese, such as chive. You could also use a white cheddar or Colby cheese.
- If you want to flavor the plain cream cheese you already have on hand, sprinkle in some ranch seasoning mix or everything bagel seasoning for added flavor.
- For the eyes & mouth, if you don’t have any chocolate chips, whole peppercorns, black licorice, black olives, raisins, or black jelly beans will work too.
- Add sprigs of fresh rosemary around the serving plate for a rustic winter theme, or use them as arms!
- To add a little heat to the snowman cheese ball, sprinkle in some cayenne pepper along with the garlic and onion powder.
How to store leftovers
Once you’ve started eating it and dipping in it, it will soon no longer look like a snowman cheese ball and just be a pile of cheese! Maybe the snowman melted?
Any leftovers can be kept in plastic wrap. You can transfer the wrapped cheese to a container or a zip-top bag if you prefer, or keep it as is.
How long will a Snowman Cheese Ball last in the fridge?
It’s always nice to eat it the same day, but if you have to store it, it’ll keep fresh in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Can I freeze it?
Technically you can, but that doesn’t mean you should. I don’t enjoy the texture of it once it’s been frozen and thawed. However, yes, it’s possible.
Can I make this ahead of time?
Absolutely! You can form and wrap the cheeseballs up to 3 days ahead of time. Just before serving, roll them around in the finely grated cheese, stack them, then add the chocolate chips and carrot nose.
You can also assemble it completely ahead of time and bring it out ready to serve.
Is it best served room temperature or cold?
I bring mine out about 30 minutes before serving so that way it’s warm enough not to break the crackers! You’re not trying to serve hot cheese, but warm enough so that it’s easy to dip into. Don’t leave it out for more than 2 hours.
Should I avoid any types of cheese?
I’d avoid hard cheeses like parmesan, there isn’t enough moisture in them to make them creamy, which leads to gritty cheese balls.
Why is my cheese ball crumbly?
This can be caused by not giving the cheese enough time to set once it’s been formed into a ball. It’s important not to skip this step!
Need more delicious holiday appetizer recipes? Try these:
Click here for my entire collection of appetizer recipes.