No matter what time of year it is, this Everything Bagel Cheeseball is sure to delight your guests as the perfect fall appetizer. Shaped into a pumpkin, it makes the perfect fall treat.
I assume you found your way to this recipe from my “Fall Entertaining in the Kitchen” post. If so, welcome back. I am thrilled to share these recipes with you. (In case you haven’t yet seen that post, you can catch up here.)
Truth be told, I love a tasty cheeseball. (Well, to be completely honest, I love cheese in any form.) Unfortunately, it seems that the humble cheeseball has gotten a bad rap. It’s been around forever and is viewed as boring by some. That’s why I decided it was time for a little makeover.
Everything Bagel Cheeseball Recipe:
First, I started with the flavor.
The concept for this cheeseball was inspired by the super trendy everything bagel. Obsessed with the “Everything But the Bagel” seasoning blend from Trader Joe’s, I assumed a cheeseball covered in the spices would be incredible. Boy, was I right!
It’s that classic flavor we’ve all come to love.
While this cheeseball is outstanding on its own, I decided to take it one step further and shape it into a pumpkin. To do that, I removed a stem from a small pumpkin and inserted it into the top of the cheeseball.
To remove a stem from a pumpkin, I recommend cutting off the very top of the pumpkin like I did here and then peeling away the pumpkin flesh. This will lessen the risk of breaking the stem.
While the stem clearly made this look like a pumpkin, I also used a chopstick to create grooves from the base of the pumpkin to the stem. This extra step makes this illusion more realistic, don’t you think?
Serve the cheeseball with bagel chips (which I couldn’t seem to find) for the ultimate flavor combo. Let’s dig in!
And because all of that wasn’t enough, I decided to make three smaller pumpkin cheeseballs. I simply doubled the base recipe for the sun-dried tomato ball and divided it into three parts.
I wanted an intense orange color for these three cheeseballs, so I busted out my secret ingredient: Nacho Cheese Doritos. I put them in a large plastic baggie and smashed them with a rolling pin. Pulverized, they were the perfect shade of orange, and they added a delightful flavor to my mini cheeseballs.
For the stems of these pumpkins, I used thin breadsticks that I drizzled with balsamic vinegar and toasted in the oven to deepen the color. A pretzel rod would also work nicely.
And that’s it. With all the cheeseballs plated, I set everything up using a long wood cutting board and a matching cake stand to add height. Crackers and breadsticks filled various containers, while produce from the farmers market provided more color and seasonal flare. Operation fall entertaining complete.
I hope you get a chance to enjoy both of these recipes during the cool months to come.
If you liked these pumpkin-inspired cheeseballs, I bet you’ll love these too:
- Sun-Dried Tomato Cheeseball
- Apple-Shaped Cheeseballs
- Mini Cheeseballs (Cheeseball Truffles)
- Buffalo Chicken Cheeseball
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese softened
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
- 1 cup finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 scallions chopped
- 6 slices bacon cooked and chopped
- About 1/2 cup Everything But the Bagel seasoning blend*
- Bagel chips and/or crackers for serving
In a bowl, mix together the cream cheese, sour cream, horseradish, cheddar cheese, scallions, and bacon. Form the mixture into a ball, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill for an hour.
Once the cheeseball has set, roll it into the Everything But the Bagel seasoning blend to evenly coat.
(To make your cheeseball resemble a pumpkin, add a real or faux pumpkin stem to the top. Then use the tip of a chopstick or the back of a butter knife to create grooves.)
Serve with bagel chips and crackers.
*You can make your own seasoning blend by combining equal parts dehydrated onion, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, and garlic flakes. Add kosher salt and black pepper to taste.