Learn how to make Mini Cheese Ball Appetizers, one of Rita's recipes for maintaining a routine during the holidays.

Mini Cheese Ball Appetizers


  • 2 tablespoons butter or no-trans at margarine, room temperature
  • 1 (8-ounce) package reduced-fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup grated 2% cheddar cheese


  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup crushed nuts – almonds, pecans or walnuts
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped green onion or parsley
  • 15 pretzel sticks


  1. In medium bowl place butter, cream cheese, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and ground pepper. Beat with an electric mixer until well combined and smooth.
  2. Stir in cheddar cheese.
  3. Use a spoon to divide the mixture into 15 tablespoon-size portions. Dip your clean hands in a little bit of water and smooth each portion into a small ball. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (or as long as you want to in advance).
  4. Before serving, roll the balls in cranberries, nuts, parsley or green onion. Place a pretzel stick in each. Serve immediately.
  5. Note: The cheese balls can be made a day in advance. Make them as instructed, but don't add the pretzels until just before serving.