Cheese (Foot)Ball

Cheese Ball, football

Everyone likes a good cheese ball

I once saw someone refer to a cheese ball as the Brad Pitt of appetizers: always looks good, everyone likes it, and you’re always glad to see it. Sounds about right, yes? 😀

A cheese ball is quite simple and fun to make (certainly easier than getting Brad Pitt to your party) and easy to customize to individual tastes. This particular recipe is a product of combining my recipe cards with my mother’s.

Cheese balls are easy to form into shapes

Cheese ball fun comes from forming it into different shapes. Of course, the classic round ball never goes out of style. But since it’s football season, why not a football shape?

How to make a Cheese (Foot)Ball

To begin, mix softened cream cheese with a little sour cream and spices. Once this mixture is smooth, add shredded cheese. I did not use pre-shredded cheese for this; but I think using it would work just fine. I had a block of sharp cheddar already on hand, so that sufficed. If sharp isn’t your thing, use medium or mild cheddar.

Once the cheese is incorporated, refrigerate the mixture for an hour. This “firms up” the mixture in preparation for the ”shaping up.” Once firm and ready to be shaped, remove the mixture from the bowl. Shape it, first with a spatula and then by hand, before rolling in chopped nuts (Note: using wax paper as your work surface really helps with this step).

A mold isn’t necessary but it is a nice shortcut

I took a slight detour for the shaping step. Turns out, I have a plastic container shaped like a football.

plastic mold

I purchased this at the grocery store in the produce section filled with grape tomatoes. Keeping the container for something football-y seemed like good sense.

dip in mold

For this dip, I lined the football shaped mold with plastic wrap and then spooned the dip inside. Once it was full, I covered the mold and placed it in the fridge to set for an hour.

In my case, the mold has done 90+% of the shaping. But finishing touches are still needed. Invert the molded ball (flat side down) onto a work surface.


Once the plastic wrap is peeled away, the shape is first smoothed out, either with lightly greased hands or a piece of plastic wrap.


Then, chopped nuts are pressed into the surface all the way around, to cover all visible surfaces. At this point I transferred the ball to the serving platter.

Cheese Ball Football

The final touch? Laces, made with thin strips of white cheese. Fun!

Cheese ball

Serve with your favorite crackers.

pin for football shaped cheese ball

Feeds enough for all members of Ocean’s Eleven!

Cheese Ball, football
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Cheese Ball

Make it football shaped this Fall!
Prep Time15 mins
Refrigeration time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Servings: 20
Calories: 165kcal
Author: Sula


  • 16 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 8 oz shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • Dash of pepper
  • 1 cup pecans chopped


  • Place cream cheese, sour cream and spices in a bowl and mix with an electric mixer until smooth.
  • Add cheese and mix in using the mixer.
  • Cover the bowl and refrigerate for one hour.
  • Remove from bowl and shape into a ball using a spatula and then lightly greased hands.
  • Roll ball in chopped nuts and/or press the nuts into the sides of the ball with your hands.
  • Serve with crackers, with a knife to help spread.


Calories: 165kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 146mg | Potassium: 68mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 445IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 112mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.

More appetizer ideas

For all you Packer fans out there, check out this Packer Party Taco Dip.

No get together is complete without salsa and guacamole, but maybe you’d like to combine the flavors with Pico-Avocado Dip. And everyone loves Queso Dip. Or add some Mini Pepper Poppers and Cilantro-Lime Sauce to the selection.

For a different cheese ball flavor, try a Pepperoni Cheese Ball. So many possibilities!


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