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This simple and Healthy Cheese Ball Recipe is ready in 15 minutes. Made with healthy ingredients that are lower fat, the flavors meld to create a spicy cheese ball that is packed with flavor, but not with guilt.
I love a cheese ball with crackers or celery. I have taken a classic cheese ball and used healthier ingredients to make it lower in fat.
Even though healthier options were used in this appetizer, it is still full of flavor and toasted pecan crunch.
Cheese Ball Ingredients
This cheeseball uses two types of low-fat cheese. Neufchatel cheese, which is an American version of French cheese, and low-fat shredded cheddar cheese.
You can find Neufchatel cheese in the refrigerated dairy section of your grocery store right by the higher fat cream cheese.
To add creaminess to the recipe, I added just a bit of low-fat Greek yogurt. You can add more based on how your cheeses blend together.
For flavor, I added chopped Jalapeno peppers (#ad), olive juice, and grated onion. The cheeseball is finished with a crust of chopped and toasted pecans.
Flavor Tip: one tablespoon of chopped Jalapenos was perfect for me, and will meld into mild heat in this recipe. But if you prefer more heat, add another tablespoon for more spicy flavor.
Tips and Substitutions
This is a super easy recipe that comes together in about 15 minutes. For the best flavor, refrigerate overnight.
Jalapenos: I used chopped Jalapenos from the Relish section of the grocery store. you might also try pickled Jalapenos for a slightly different flavor. Skip the olive juice if you use the pickled version
Onions: I grated onions for this recipe. Onions can have a strong flavor. Start with a teaspoon or two. You might also substitute chopped green onion. This would add a bit of green to the ball.
Pecans: Toasted pecans add flavor and a bit of crunch. Sliced almonds, pine nuts, or walnuts are easy substitutions.
Want to skip the nuts? Consider chopping fresh parsley or another herb. Roll the cheese ball in the chopped herb until covered.
How to Toast Nuts
Toasting the nuts gives your healthy cheese ball recipe a little crunch and smoky flavor. You can easily toast nuts on the stove top or in the microwave.
To toast on the stovetop, add nuts to a frying pan and heat over medium-low heat. Stir regularly to ensure the nuts don't get overdone. Remove from heat when you can smell the nuts and they have just started to brown.
In the microwave, place nuts in a single layer on a microwave safe plate. Heat the nuts for 30 seconds. Stir the nuts and repeat several times until you begin to smell the nuts.
To chop the nuts, I use my favorite new appliance the KitchenAid Mini Chopper. (#ad) I love this chopper. It fits in my tiny kitchen and chops and purees.
What to Serve with a Healthy Cheese Ball Appetizer
For those avoiding carbohydrates or wheat include a stack of celery.
You might also enjoy these healthy appetizers: