Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball (Video!)

 Super easy, make ahead (AKA stress free!) Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball takes just minutes to whip up and is always a total show stopping appetizer!

This  supercharged Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball recipe is not only loaded with bacon and cheese but COATED in bacon, cheese, green onions and pecans for can’t-stop-eating-party-deliciousness!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Hidden Valley® & Glad®. The opinions and text are all mine.

Watch: How to make a Cheese Ball

Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball


 

This Ranch Cheese Ball with bacon is a show stopping appetizer

To me, every good party needs an amazing cheese ball or log.  They are the the ideal cracker spread because it’s basically loaded cheese bursting with flavorful ingredients (just when you didn’t think cheese could get any better) and looks absolutely beautiful.  So far I’ve made Bruschetta Cheese Ball, Cranberry Pistachio Cheese Log and Garlic Herb Cheese Log.  They have all been runaway hits so I decided the holidays need a cheese ball every year.  I need a cheese ball every year.  So if you answer yes to the following questions, I’ve found you the perfect cheese ball recipe!

Do you love bacon?

Do you love ranch?

Do you love cheese?

Me too!  And so does everyone at your next party and they will love YOU for uniting them with their three loves once more with this Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball!

Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball with crackers.

Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball ingredients

If you aren’t familiar with Hidden Valley seasoning and dip mixes, they are awesome!  They add bold ranch flavor to anything you heart desires from popcorn to veggies to any dip or appetizer.  I love that you can infuse anything with delicious ranch flavor without having to add any caloric ranch dressing!

I buy everything Hidden Valley at my local super Walmart which makes shopping easy with everything I need all in one place!  Hidden Valley Original Ranch Seasoning Mix is located in the dressing aisle, next to the dry mixes.

How to make a Cheese Ball

This Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball comes together very quickly.

  1. First, add cream cheese, sour cream, garlic powder, pepper Jack cheese, sharp cheddar, bacon, green onions and 1 package Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Salad Dressing & Seasoning Mix to a large bowl.
  2. Mix to combine – hello flaaaaaavor!
Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball adding Ranch Hidden Valley seasonings.
  1. Next, we drop the mixture onto a large piece of plastic wrap, cover tightly, and shape into a ball. Don’t worry about the shape being perfect – you can refine it later when you coat the cheese ball. (For the plastic wrap, I use Glad® Press’n Seal.  This has always been my (and my husband’s!) favorite plastic wrap.  Unlike many plastic wraps, the Glad Press’n Seal actually sticks and seals tightly on a variety of surfaces including paper, plastic, metal and wood –  without having to use layers and layers of wrap.  It’s also BPA-free safe to use in the microwave!)

Preparing Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball.

  1. Next, we place our Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours to harden up a bit.  The amount of time really depends on how soft your cream cheese was to start with.  Once the cheese ball is firm enough to roll in the Coating, you can either roll it right away if you are serving it within a few hours OR you can leave it in the refrigerator until the next day and then Coat it – totally up to you and your schedule.

Mixing ingredients for Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball.

  1. When ready to coat your Bacon Ranch Cheeseball, we roll it in our already made and refrigerated mixture of crispy bacon, sharp cheese, green onions and chopped pecans…

Rolling crumb crust on the Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball. Showing how to make Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball.

…to create the ultimate layered flavor and textural bliss – nutty, crunchy on the outside, tangy and creamy on the inside and absolutely delicious all over.

Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball with a bite missing.

Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball – quite possibly the world’s best party food.

How to serve the Best Cheese Ball Recipe

To serve the best cheese ball recipe, follow these steps:

  1. Accompaniments: Provide an assortment of crackers, bread slices, and/or vegetable sticks (carrots, celery, bell peppers) around the cheese ball. Varying textures and flavors are ideal arranged neatly around the cheese ball.
  2. Garnishes: Add some fresh herb sprigs as garnish around the cheese ball for a pop of color.
  3. Temperature: Take the cheese ball out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes before serving to allow it to soften slightly. This makes it easier to spread and enhances the flavors.
  4. Provide Serving Utensils: Have a cheese knife or spreader handy for guests to use when serving themselves.

Best crackers for Cheese Ball

  • Artisan crackers: made with whole grains for a nutty and earthy flavor and crispy texture that pairs nicely with cheese.
  • Butter crackers: such as Ritz or Club crackers, have a rich, buttery taste that complement the creaminess of the cheese.
  • Multi-grain crackers: made with various grains for an added depth of flavor. Crunchmaster makes fabulously crispy gluten free options.
  • Herb crackers: crackers with herbs, like rosemary, thyme, or basil, can add an extra layer of taste.
  • Flatbread crackers: often come baked with herbs and salt for a flavorful, crispy bite.
  • Seeded Crackers: crackers with seeds like sesame, poppy, or flaxseed can add a pleasant crunch and extra texture to the pairing.

How to store this Simple Cheese Ball Recipe

Tightly cover the cheese ball with plastic wrap, and refrigerate.

How long is a Cheese Ball good for?

A cheese ball is good for up to 4 days; however, the nuts will start to lose their crunch. If making ahead, wait to add the nuts until ready to serve.

Bacon Cheese Ball FAQs

How long should a cheese ball sit out before serving?

Remove cheese ball from the fridge 30 minutes before serving so the cheese has time to soften and become more spreadable.

Why is my cheese ball too soft?

A cheese ball can be too soft if reduced fat or nonfat cream cheese is used. Stick to regular, full fat block-style cream cheese. Additionally, excessive amount of moisture from ingredients like sour cream, mayonnaise, or other wet components can make it soft. Lastly, care the cheese ball has sufficient time to firm back up in the refrigerator after forming to better hold its shape. If the cheese ball is still too soft, try incorporating more dry ingredients, such as finely grated cheese, nuts, or breadcrumbs, to help absorb excess moisture and improve the texture.

LOOKING FOR MORE PARTY RECIPES?

Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball on a cracker.

WANT TO TRY THIS BACON RANCH CHEESE BALL?

Pin it to your APPETIZER, PARTY or HOLIDAY Board to SAVE for later!

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©Carlsbad Cravings by CarlsbadCravings.com

This Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball is a hit every time I make it and is always the first appetizer gone! Its super easy and make ahead for stress free entertaining!

Ranch Bacon Cheese Ball Recipe

Super easy, make ahead (AKA stress free!) Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball takes just minutes to whip up and is always a total show stopping appetizer! It’s not only loaded with bacon and cheese but COATED in bacon, cheese, green onions and pecans for can’t-stop-eating-partaaaaaaaaaaaaay-deliciousness!
Servings: 18 servings
Total Time: 15 minutes
Prep Time: 15 minutes

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Ingredients

  • 2 8 oz. bricks cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 (1 oz.) pkg Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Salad Dressing & Seasoning Mix
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Pepper Jack cheese
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons finely grated sharp cheddar cheese divided
  • 6 slices bacon,cooked and diced divided
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions divided
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans

Serve With

  • crackers, celery, carrots, etc.

Instructions

Cheese Ball

  • Add cream cheese, sour cream, ranch seasoning, garlic powder, pepper jack cheese, 1 CUP cheddar cheese, half of the bacon and 2 tablespoons green onions to a large bowl and mix until well combined.
  • Drop mixture onto a large piece of plastic wrap, cover tightly, and shape into a ball. Chill in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours to firm up (up to 24 hours if serving the next day) before rolling in coating.

Coating

  • Meanwhile, add remaining 2 tablespoon cheddar cheese, bacon and green onions to a medium bowl. Refrigerate.
  • When ready to coat cheeseball, whisk in pecans until evenly combined.

Assemble

  • Spread Coating in an even layer on cutting board/parchment lined counter. Remove cheese ball from refrigerator and roll in Coating mixture, pressing to adhere, until evenly coated. At this point you can refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Serve with crackers, celery, carrots, etc.

Video

Notes

Don’t miss the “how to make” recipe video at the top of the post!
If you have leftover cheese ball, try adding it to scrambled eggs – soooo goood!

Did You Make This Recipe?

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©Carlsbad Cravings Original

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Hidden Valley® & Glad®. The opinions and text are all mine.

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62 Comments

  1. Pam A says

    Can I use Real Bacon Bits instead of cooking bacon? I hate cooking bacon.

    • Jen says

      Have you tried baking it? Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, add the bacon in a single layer and bake at 400 degrees for 18-22 minutes, until crispy. So easy! I haven’t tried bacon bits but those could probably work too.

  2. Ashley says

    Hi, Jen! I’m making this for New Year’s Eve tonight, so not sure if you will see this question in time, but I was wondering if I should use both the white and green parts of the green onion, or just the green parts? I watched the video but it was hard to tell! Thank you, have a Happy New Year

    Ashley

    • Jen says

      Sorry I didn’t see this in time Ashley! You should just use the green parts. Generally, when a recipe calls for green onions it means the green parts only unless it specifically says to use the whites as well. Hope that helps. Happy New Year!

  3. Barb says

    This recipe looks yummy, I’m planning on making it for Christmas. Do you think finely chopped jalapeño peppers would taste good in this?

    • Jen says

      Hi Barb, it depends on if your guests like spicy! You may want to only add them to half, or divide the mixture into two balls. We personally love spicy over here, but not everyone does!

      • Candice says

        Hi Jen can you please tell me how long it is safe to store this in the fridge after making? Like 3 days or a week?

        • Jen says

          It is good for about 5 days, enjoy!

  4. Kasey says

    My family loved it made it for a New Year’s party and was basically all gone for me I feel like is maybe do a little less ranch mix just thought it was a little to much salty but everyone else really enjoyed it!

    • Jen says

      Thanks Kasey, I’m so pleased it was a hit!

  5. Tom Beach says

    Can we put relish in the cheese balls

    • Jen says

      Totally personal preference!

  6. Mka1979 says

    What other kind of nuts would be as good to use instead of the pecans?

    • Jen says

      I think pecans taste the best but you could also try almonds. Pistachios are tasty too but won’t be quite as crunchy. Enjoy!

  7. Karri Patterson says

    Do you toast the pecans?

    • Jen says

      I didn’t, but you are welcome to!

  8. Karen Eichhorn says

    This is one of the best cheeseballs I have ever had! I could eat it with a spoon! It is so easy to make too. Your recipes are always so flavorful!

    • Jen says

      I could too haha! I’m so glad that you love it!

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