This Pumpkin Cheese Ball Will Be the Star of Your Thanksgiving Spread

And it's easy to make with kitchen staples!

<p>Dotdash Meredith Food Studios</p>

Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

This pumpkin cheese ball recipe is flavorful, creamy, and delicious. It’s the perfect appetizer for all your fall festivities!

Pumpkin Cheese Ball Ingredients

These are the ingredients you’ll need to make this festive pumpkin cheese ball recipe:

<p>Dotdash Meredith Food Studios</p>

Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  • Cream cheese: This decadent pumpkin-shaped cheese ball starts with two packages of cream cheese.

  • Hot sauce: Spice things up with a tablespoon of bottled hot pepper sauce.

  • Paprika: Add smoky flavor with a teaspoon of ground paprika. The paprika also helps deepen the autumnal color.

  • Garlic: Minced garlic takes the flavor up a notch.

  • Cheese: Shredded yellow Cheddar lends creaminess and cheesy flavor.

  • Bell pepper stem: The stem from a bell pepper acts as the pumpkin stem. If you want, you can slice up the bell peppers and use them for serving.

  • Crackers: Serve crackers with the pumpkin cheese ball with crackers for dipping.

How to Make a Pumpkin Cheese Ball

You’ll find the full, step-by-step recipe below — but here’s a brief overview of what you can expect when you make a homemade pumpkin cheese ball:

  1. Process the cream cheese with hot sauce, paprika, and garlic.

  2. Add 1 ½ cups of the cheese and process until the cheese is finely chopped.

  3. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on a piece of plastic wrap.

  4. Scoop the cream cheese mixture into a mound on top of the cheese.

  5. Wrap the plastic wrap tightly around the mixture to form a ball.

  6. Wrap four wide rubber bands around the ball to create indentations.

  7. Chill for at least three hours, then remove the rubber bands.

  8. Remove the plastic wrap and place the stem atop the ball.

Test Kitchen Tips

This recipe was developed in our test kitchen. Check out some tips and tricks from culinary experts that might make the cooking process easier:

<p>Dotdash Meredith Food Studios</p>

Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  • Double wrap the cheese ball with rubber bands for deeper indentations.

  • Recipe developer Sarah Brekke recommends putting a dollop of the leftover cheese ball mixture on top of a burger or using it as a spread on a sandwich.

  • You can easily substitute your favorite type of shredded cheese or flavored cream cheese — just note the color might be impacted.

Can You Make a Pumpkin Cheese Ball Ahead of Time?

Yes! This pumpkin cheese ball is a great make-ahead appetizer for fall. Follow the recipe through Step 8, then store it in the fridge until ready to serve. Right before serving, unwrap the ball and attach the bell pepper stem. Try to enjoy the cheese ball within three days. 

GET THE RECIPE: Pumpkin Cheese Ball

Read the original article on All Recipes.