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Holiday Tree-Shaped Cheese Ball


Holiday Tree-Shaped Cheese Ball is the most delicious make-ahead cheese ball recipe to adorn your holiday table. Filled with the zesty flavors of fresh herbs, basil pesto, yellow mustard, cheddar cheese, and creamy cream cheese, this recipe is easy to make and makes a big impressive impact. Serve this recipe is the crackers of your choice or toasted bread points for smearing.

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Rate this recipe 4.3/5 (41 Votes)


  • 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 4 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 tablespoons basil pesto
  • 1 tablespoon grated onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • roasted red pepper sauce or hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup parsley or cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts or sliced almonds
  • 2 tablespoons red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 piece lemon peel, if desired
  • assorted crackers to serve


Servings 8
Preparation time 20mins
Cooking time 260mins
Adapted from


Step 1

Stir together cream cheese and cheddar cheese; divide in half. Stir pesto into 1 half; stir onion, mustard and 2 or 3 drops pepper sauce into other half. Cover each half; refrigerate about 4 hours or until firm enough to shape.

Place cheese mixtures on cookie sheet. Shape each half into cone shape to look like a pine tree.

If desired, wrap each tree, label and freeze up to 1 month. Twelve hours before serving, remove trees from freezer. Thaw in wrapper in refrigerator.

Just before serving, roll trees in parsley, pressing it evenly onto trees. Press pine nuts onto trees in string form for garland. Press bell pepper pieces onto trees for ornaments. Top each tree with star shape cut from lemon peel. Serve with crackers.

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