Christmas Tree Cheese Ball surrounded with crackers.
This Christmas Tree Cheese Ball will be the hit of your holiday party. An easy to make appetizer that may be too pretty to eat!
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Hosting a holiday party? This Christmas Tree Cheese Ball recipe is a fun way to trim your tree in edible form and makes a show-stopping appetizer that tastes amazing! 

Christmas Tree Cheese Ball with a star at the top.

Christmas Cheese Ball

Our festive Christmas Tree Cheese Ball is made from a simple ranch-seasoned creamy mixture with bits of bacon in every bite; it’s formed into a tree shape, decorated with fur and edible ornaments, and topped with the traditional star.

This Christmas cheese ball is not your average appetizer that tastes like a bland, tree-shaped cheese ball before being jabbed and jolted with crackers and crudites – it’s filled with tangy, smoky, salty flavors that make the most delicious spread.

Pair your cheeseball with an assortment of crunchy companions and turn a traditional holiday party platter into an adorable appetizer to accompany this year’s Christmas dinner menu.

Why We Love Christmas Tree Cheeseball Recipes

  • Quick and easy to make.
  • Uses a handful of simple ingredients.
  • This cheese ball spread is bursting with flavor and looks almost too beautiful to eat.
  • Every holiday party needs a crowd-pleasing appetizer–this is a fun way to feed a crowd! 
  • Gluten-free and low-carb recipe that you can customize and decorate with your favorite foods.
  • Perfect for holiday parties, potlucks, and family get-togethers.

Christmas Cheese Ball Ingredients

Christmas Tree Cheese Ball ingredients.
  • Cream cheese
  • Sour cream 
  • Fresh dill: You can also use fresh chopped parsley.
  • Dill pickles: You could use dill pickle relish instead. Just leave out the pickle juice. 
  • Pickle juice from the jar
  • Ranch seasoning powder: Make sure it’s seasoning and not the dip mix! 
  • Worcestershire sauce 
  • Monterey Jack cheese
  • Bacon
  • Yellow bell pepper 
  • Tomato

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

Substitutions and Additions

  • Choose Your Cheese: Any shredded cheese will do. Shredded cheddar cheese or Colby Jack cheese would be my next two choices. 
  • Vegetarian Version: Feel free to leave out the bacon to make this vegetarian. 
  • Swap The Star: An orange bell pepper, a star-shaped candy, or a thick slice of cheese will also work well. 
  • Switch The Shape: You can make this delicious appetizer any time of year for the perfect party snack. Just shape it like a Bacon Cheddar Ranch Cheese Ball instead of a cone and leave off the bell pepper star. For football fans, you can form a Football Cheese Ball or make mini cheese balls like my Cheese Ball Bites.
  • Other Ornament Ideas: You can use pomegranate seeds, chopped sundried tomato or red pepper instead of or in addition to the diced tomato.
Cracker dipped into Christmas Tree Cheese Ball.

How to Make Christmas Tree Cheese Ball

  1. Make The Mixture: Mix together the cream cheese, sour cream, dill, pickles, pickle juice, ranch powder, Worcestershire, Monterey jack, and bacon. (Image 1)
  2. Create A Cheese Cone: Wrap the “tree” in plastic wrap (Image 2) and then form the cream cheese mixture into a cone shape. (Image 3)
    Pro Tip: You can use a funnel to help form the cone if needed. 
  3. Chill: Chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour. 
  4. Cut: Cut a star or a circle out of the pepper and insert a toothpick half way into the bottom.
  5. Trim The Tree: Unwrap the tree and smooth out the sides (Image 4). Cover the tree in chopped dill (Image 5), add tomato pieces for ornaments, and then top with the bell pepper star. (Image 6)
  6. Serve: Serve with crackers and other snacks. Enjoy!
cheese ball mixture in a bowl. wrap in plastic wrap and place inside a cone. decorate with chopped dill and place a star on top.

How To Soften Cream Cheese

The best way to soften your cream cheese is by keeping it in the package for a few hours at room temperature. However, you can carefully heat it in the microwave (be sure to remove the wrapper first!) in increments of 20 seconds at a lower power. If you don’t soften your cream cheese, your mixture will become lumpy.

Tips For Making The Best Cheese Ball

  • The sour cream in this recipe is optional, but I like the way it breaks up the richness of the cream cheese. 
  • Using cream cheese softened to room temperature will make it easier to mix and prevent lumps.
  • If you decide to use a funnel to help shape your holiday cheese ball, I suggest a 5-inch standard funnel. 
  • If you don’t have plastic wrap, wrap parchment paper around the cone and seal it with tape (you want it to hug the tree tightly). Alternatively, place the cone in a large Ziplock bag, squeeze all the air out, and twist it around the cone. Do not use aluminum foil here. 

How to Store a Cheese Ball

  • To Store: Wrap the cheese ball in a double layer of plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 
  • To Freeze: I do not recommend freezing this cheese ball because it does not thaw well.
Christmas Tree Cheese Ball with crackers on a plate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I eat my cheese ball warm or cold?

Eat this cheese ball cold. It’s best to keep this cheese ball Christmas tree chilled until you serve it. 

How do I cut the star?

I used scissors to cut my star, but you could use a sharp knife instead. Just be very careful not to cut your fingers. If a star feels too tricky, cut a circle out of the pepper instead. You can even make your life easier by using a ½ inch star cookie cutter! 

Why is My Cheese ball So salty?

Ensure you use the ranch seasoning and not the ranch dip/dressing mix! It’s much higher in sodium, but the seasoning is just the right amount. If you forget which one to purchase at the store, just compare sodium levels on the packaging.

More Easy Holiday Recipes

Christmas Tree Cheese Ball with a star on top surrounded with crackers.

Other Easy Holiday Recipes

If you tried this Christmas Tree Cheese Ball Recipe or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below. Thanks for visiting!!!

5 from 1 vote
Christmas Tree Cheese Ball surrounded with crackers.

Christmas Tree Cheese Ball

Serves — 8
This Christmas Tree Cheese Ball will be the hit of your holiday party. An easy to make appetizer that may be too pretty to eat!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Chill Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Ingredients
  

  • 32 ounces (2 16-ounce) blocks of cream cheese softened at room temperature
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup chopped fresh dill divided
  • ¼ cup chopped dill pickles
  • 1 tablespoon pickle juice from the jar
  • 1 tablespoon ranch seasoning powder
  • teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • ½ cup chopped cooked bacon divided (about 6 slices)
  • ¼ yellow bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons diced tomato

Instructions
 

  • Mix. Mix together the cream cheese, sour cream, 1 teaspoon of dill, pickles, pickle juice, ranch powder, Worcestershire, Monterey jack, and bacon.
    32 ounces (2 16-ounce) blocks of cream cheese, ¼ cup sour cream, ½ cup chopped fresh dill, ¼ cup chopped dill pickles, 1 tablespoon pickle juice from the jar, 1 tablespoon ranch seasoning powder, 1½ teaspoons Worcestershire sauce, 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, ½ cup chopped cooked bacon
  • Make a cheese “ball”. Form the cream cheese mixture into a cone shape (to represent a Christmas tree). Use a funnel to help form the cone if needed.
  • Chill. Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and chill the “tree” in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
  • Cut. While the tree is chilling, cut a star or a circle out of the pepper. This will be the star for the top of your tree. Place a small toothpick half way into the bottom of the star.
  • Finish. Remove the tree from the fridge. Unwrap it and smooth out the sides with the back of a spoon or clean hands. Add the chopped dill to the tree either by rolling it through the dill or, taking a pinch of dill and dabbing it along the sides of the cone until it is fully covered. Add random tomato pieces around the tree for ornaments and then top with the bell pepper star by pushing the other end of the toothpick into the top of the tree.
    ¼ yellow bell pepper, 2 tablespoons diced tomato, ½ cup chopped fresh dill
  • Serve. Serve with crackers and other snacks.

Jenn’s Notes

Serving Size: about 8 servings, ¼ cup each
Storage:
  • To Store: Wrap the Christmas tree cheese ball in a double layer of plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • To Freeze: I do not recommend freezing this cheese ball because it does not thaw well.
Tips:
  • The sour cream in this recipe is optional, but I like the way it breaks up the richness of the cream cheese.
  • Using cream cheese softened to room temperature will make it easier to mix and to prevent lumps.
  • If you decide to use a funnel to help shape your holiday cheese ball, I suggest a 5-inch standard funnel.
  • If you don’t have plastic wrap, you could wrap parchment paper around the cone and seal it with tape (you want it to hug the tree tightly). Alternatively, place the cone in a large Ziplock bag, squeeze all the air out, and twist it around the cone. Do not use aluminum foil here.

Nutrition Info

Calories: 507kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 47g | Saturated Fat: 27g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 138mg | Sodium: 783mg | Potassium: 256mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1927IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 235mg | Iron: 1mg

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Comments

  1. I want to try this out for Christmas and wondering if I could substitute the p cream cheese for goat cheese?
    Thanks !