I love cheese. There have been a couple of times in my life I have given up dairy for a brief period of time. It is so difficult to not eat cheese. I really do miss it and I'm glad those periods of time were short. My whole family likes to snack on block cheese. It's easy to slice it up and serve with salami, pepperoni, and crackers. I also use it in many of my recipes such as my Hot Cheddar Onion Dip.
My cousin will cut cheddar into little chunks and put them on a toothpick with a grape tomato and green olive. They are the perfect bite with that myriad of flavors. Cheese is a great source of protein and calcium and is naturally gluten-free.
I also love bacon. I knew I wanted to pair bacon with sharp cheddar cheese. And I knew I wanted it to be a quick and easy appetizer. This time of year is especially busy. There have been times I am asked to bring an appetizer to a party and thirty minutes before I'm staring into the fridge wondering what to make. I always have chunks of cheese, cream cheese, and bacon crumbles. Always. This is a great last-minute app for my family.
These cute little bite-sized mini cheese balls are kid-approved. My kids gobbled them up. If you need a healthy, easy appetizer for a family gathering try this recipe.
How to make Bacon Cheddar Mini Cheese Balls
In general, three-ingredient recipes have to be simple. What can you do with just three ingredients that is hard? Not much. And these mini cheese balls are as simple as can be.
You mix together softened cream cheese, shredded cheddar, and roll it in bacon. That's it but they are SO good.
Bacon Cheddar Mini Cheese Balls Ingredients:
shredded sharp cheddar
Ingredient Substitutions & Add-ins:
Cheese - You can sub any shredded cheese for the cheddar. Mozzarella, Monterey jack, pepper jack, gouda, swiss, they all taste great.
Cream Cheese - There isn't a good sub for this and you definitely can't make this dairy-free, sorry!
Bacon - Who would want to sub anything for bacon? Just my vegetarian mother. If you want to make these without bacon you can roll them in nuts.
Ranch Seasoning - Add in a bit of my homemade ranch seasoning (found here) to kick these up a notch
Jalapenos - Add some chopped jalapeno for a kick!
A cute way to serve these for a party is to put a thin piece of carrot or celery in them. Then guests can just pick them up and pop them into their mouths. Toothpicks work too!
More Easy Keto Appetizers:
Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms with Sundried Tomatoes
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- 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese shredded
- 8 oz cream cheese softened
- 2 cups bacon crumbles
- Microwave the bacon crumbles for about thirty seconds. This crisps them up so they taste fresh. (If you do not have a microwave you can just skip this step or pan fry them for a minute or two).
- Stir together the cream cheese and shredded cheddar. Use a small cookie scoop to scoop tablespoon sized balls. Roll them in the bacon crumbles. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later.
- This makes about 30 mini cheese balls.
Originally Published November 18, 2017. Revised and Republished November 7, 2019.
Dice some jalapeno peppers and saute them then mix with the cream cheese/cheddar cheese. You'll have jalapeno poppers! Thanks for the recipe and the inspiration!
Patti Moore says
Great idea! Love spicy snacks
Sheila Wacloff says
Do these go good with soup? Can I make these a week ahead of time? Last question, can I fry up bacon and cut it into small pieces for the crumbles?
These are more of an appetizer than a side for soup. You can make them a week ahead but the bacon on the outside might get soggy. But, yes you can make crumbles from fresh bacon.
So how much bacon do I need for 2 cups of crumbles?
According to this list you would need 32 slices which is about 1.5-2 pounds. https://culinarylore.com/measurements:how-many-slices-of-bacon-for-crumbled-cups/
Omg, I just made these, and they are the “bomb”. Great recipe! I only a tad of finely chopped green onion.
Can you freeze these?
I don't think so. They are primarily cream cheese and cream cheese can get a little funky when frozen.
We like to eat sliced green peppers drizzled w/italian dressing. So for our Super Bowl party, we made these cheeseballs and set them atop our green peppers. Yum! Thanks for sharing!