Mini pumpkin cheese balls can be served at your Halloween party or Thanksgiving dinner. These bite-size cheese appetizers are easy to make and only take minutes to put together.
At the end of this post you can also find more Thanksgiving appetizers or Halloween recipes. All of them are easy to make. And, you don’t need an oven to make them which is always a plus when looking for easy Thanksgiving snacks to keep the crowd happy until turkey is served. Right?
How to make mini pumpkin cheese balls
You don’t need any fancy tools or kitchen gadgets to make these Halloween appetizers. All you need is a small bowl (a soup bowl will do), a spatula, aluminum foil and that is pretty much it.
In the bowl, mix together cream cheese, pesto and paprika. Then, cover a plate or chopping board with aluminum foil (baking parchment is also fine to use) and turn the mixture into mini pumpkin cheese balls.
The balls should be small – maybe the size of a large cherry. They will be easy to roll but the mixture will be very sticky. The reason is that I don’t put it into the fridge to chill, I just roll the balls right away.
Chill these almost-ready pumpkin cheese balls in the fridge for 3 hours. This should be plenty of time for them to harden.
After, place each cheese ball onto a Ritz cracker and press down slightly to achieve the squashed-like look. Take one pretzel stick and use it to draw lines going from the bottom of the balls up to the top, like you see on a pumpkin.
Then, all you have to do is insert the pretzel sticks in and decorate with chives.
Serve these mini pumpkin cheese balls appetizers shortly after the pretzel sticks are in as they will go soggy when sitting long in the fridge.
If you need some easy Halloween recipes, you might wanna check out these easy appetizer recipe ideas:
- Hot Dog Mummies – These are without a doubt one of the easiest appetizers to make for Halloween. And they are so fun to make!
- Halloween Deviled Eggs
- Halloween Coffin Sandwiches
- RIP Halloween Dessert Shooters
If you are just after Thanksgiving appetizer recipes, then what about these:
Caprese Salad Bites are so easy to make. All you need is to grab the ingredients from your local store and assemble these tasty bites. They are so easy to make, even kids can make them!
Wasabi Deviled Eggs take a little longer to assemble but they are worth it. Add as much wasabi as you like!
If you are looking for easy slow cooker appetizers then why not try Slow Cooker Sweet & Spicy Meatballs?
Garlic Cheddar Cheese Dip is ready in 5 minutes so why not give it a go? It’s a tasty dip but you can also turn it into bite-size appetizers by spreading it over some toasted baguette slices.
- 8 ounces cream cheese, chilled
- 2 tablespoons red pesto
- 1.5 teaspoons paprika
- 12 Ritz crackers
- 6 pretzels sticks, ends only
- chives (optional), see note 4
- In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, red pesto and paprika. Mix well.
- Take a plate or chopping board and line it with aluminum foil or baking parchment.
- Take a small amount of the cream cheese mixture and roll it into a bite-size ball. It will be sticky but that’s OK. Place the ball onto the plate/chopping board and repeat until you have used all the cream cheese mixture. You should get 12 balls.
- Refrigerate for 3 hours. After 3 hours, take them out and place each cheese ball onto a Ritz cracker. Using your finger press down each ball so that they look more like pumpkins. Now, insert a little piece of a pretzel stick into each ball and decorate with chives (I took a chive stem and split it in half (lengthwise) and again in half. It naturally curled up so I cut it smaller and stuck in the ball).
- Best served right away.
- You should get about 12 balls out of this recipe. Because they are bite-size appetizers I recommend rolling them small – to fit the Ritz crackers. About the size of a large cherry.
- The cream cheese mixture should not be too runny. If this is the case, add more cream cheese.
- If the pesto you bought contains a lot of oil, make sure to drain it (if possible – usually it stays on top of the jar) before you scoop out the amount you need for this recipe.
- The balls can be kept in the fridge for longer than 3 hours. Just make sure to add the pretzel sticks as well as the chives right before serving.
- Chives – you can use fresh flat-leaf parsley instead of chives.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 152Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 278mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 3g