Pineapple Cheese Ball with cream cheese, chopped ham, crushed pineapples, and toasted pecans is a delicious medley of sweet and savory flavors! It’s easy to make, and a guaranteed party hit!
Cheese appetizers are my favorite things to serve for special gatherings. They are a breeze to make and go well with the fresh fruits, cracker crisps, crusty baguette slices, and cured meats. I like to assemble my party platters.
Along with brie en croute, this pineapple cheese ball regularly appears on our holiday menu year after year. Chock full of cream cheese, crushed pineapple, chopped ham, green onions, red bell peppers, and crunchy pecans, it’s an addictive medley of sweet and savory flavors.
It’s always the first to disappear from our table. Guests can’t get enough!
- Cream cheese- softened to room temperature to make it easier to beat into a creamy and fluffy consistency.
- Crushed pineapples– drain very well lest the excess liquid makes the cheese ball overly soft.
- Chopped deli ham– you can swap it with crisp, crumbled bacon for variety.
- Celery, bell peppers, and green onions– add color and crunch. Want a kick of heat? Replace the bell peppers with chopped jalapenos!
- Seasoning salt– feel free to switch it up with other seasoning blends such as lemon pepper or Ranch seasoning.
- Pecans– toast in a dry skillet over medium heat until lightly browned and aromatic to add depth of flavor. Feel free to substitute your nuts, such as chopped walnuts, pistachios, or macadamia.
Make it ahead
This cheese appetizer is super easy to make and can also be prepped ahead of time, leaving you one less thing to worry about on the day of the event.
It benefits from sitting in the fridge for a few hours or even overnight as it firms up for easier handling and the flavors to meld. Wrap the shaped mixture in a plastic film to keep the outer part from drying out, and coat with the chopped pecans when you’re ready to serve so the nuts stay fresh and crunchy.
- Form the mixture into a ball or other shapes depending on the event or holiday, such as a pine tree for Christmas, football for game day, or pumpkin for Thanksgiving.
- Serve with sides like buttery crackers, bagel crisps, pita chips, and fresh veggies, and expect a party in your mouth!
Wrap in plastic film and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
- 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- 1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple, well-drained
- 1 cup deli ham, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup celery, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
- 1/4 cup green onions, chopped
- 2 teaspoons seasoned salt
- 1 1/2 cups toasted pecans, chopped
- In a bowl, beat cream cheese at low speed for about 1 minute or until smooth and fluffy.
- Add crushed pineapple, ham, celery, red bell pepper, green onions, and seasoned salt. Stir to combine.
- Divide mixture into two portions and shape each into a ball.
- Wrap each cheese ball with plastic film and chill in the refrigerator for about 2 to 3 hours.
- When ready to serve, gently roll cheese ball in chopped pecans to fully coat, pressing down nuts to adhere.
- Serve with cracker crisps, bagel chips, or fresh vegetables.
“This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.”