These Christmas Pine Cone Cranberry Cheese Balls are the most simple and fun appetizer to celebrate the upcoming holidays.
Ready in just 5 mins, to make these cute cheese balls you only need a few simple ingredients: dried chopped cranberries, soft goat cheese or even better if you have ricotta ( just add a little almond meal to thicken it up), and of course whole toasted almonds and few sprigs of fresh rosemary.
All you have to do is combine the cheese with cranberries and decorate with almonds and fresh rosemary, it couldn’t get easier than that. It’s so fun to make, you can actually ask the kids to help you out, they will love to make these little cuties and eat them too.
You can customize this easy recipe to meet your own taste. Add hot paprika for a spicy note, swap goat cheese with a dairy-free alternative or throw in different dried fruits like apricots or mango.
These Pine cone Cranberry Cheese Balls are completely vegetarian, but if you want them all-meaty, just add some smoked bacon bits for serious flavor.
Make the pine cone cheese balls in advance and refrigerate until ready to serve. Give them a try, they’re sure to impress your guests at your next winter party.
- 8oz/200gr whole unpeeled almonds
- 8oz / 200gr soft goat cheese or ricotta (well drained)
- ½ cup soft, dried cranberries
- 2 sprigs of rosemary
- zest of ½ lime
- 8oz/ 200gr whole organic almonds
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Crackers or crostini, to serve
- To toast the almonds, heat a pan until medium hot. Add almonds and sautee' for 2 mins, until crisp and hot.
- Transfer into a plate and set aside until needed.
- In a large bowl mix together the cheese and cranberries, season with freshly cracked salt and red pepper. Add lime zest and mix until just combined.
- Transfer the cheese mixture in the freezer for 5 min, then shape into 4 little pine cones or 2 large ones.
- Beginning at the narrow end of each shape, arrange almonds in overlapping rows. Garnish with small sprigs of rosemary and serve with your favorite crackers or crostini. Enjoy!