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Cranberry Orange Cheese Ball

This cranberry orange cheese ball is so simple and so delicious! With colorful cranberries in every bite and a hint of fresh orange, it’s the perfect holiday appetizer!

scoop taken from cranberry cheese ball
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Easy Holiday Appetizer

I don’t know about you, but with the hectic-ness of the holidays, I am always looking for recipes that are simple, quick to prepare, and delicious. This cranberry orange cheese ball fits the bill!

It only takes a few minutes to make, and it can be prepared ahead of time. It’s would be perfect to add to your Thanksgiving appetizer ideas along with this baked brie or this cranberry brie bites recipe, I know both will be a hit at your gathering!

It is slightly sweeter than a classic cheese ball, which I thought was a perfect compliment to the salty crackers. It is rolled in candied pecans, which makes it extra scrumptious. I made my own, and it was much easier than I thought it would be. They are so tasty it was hard for me to stop snacking on them! Of course, if you are really in a hurry, you can buy them.

knife in cranberry cheese ball

How to Make Cranberry Cheese Ball

The recipe couldn’t be more simple; it’s just five ingredients. Just beat all the ingredients till smooth, then chill. To make it easier to roll into a ball, I like to press the mixture into a bowl lined with plastic wrap. Fold up the edges of the plastic wrap, then chill for an hour or two.

wrapping cream cheese mixture in plastic

It will harden up enough that you can use the plastic wrap to roll it in a ball, then just peel it off and roll it in the nuts. I like to chop my nuts, then roll the cheese ball into the nuts while they are still on the cutting board. One less dish to wash. :)

Orange and cranberry is a classic flavor combination, and it shines in this cheese ball. Just a warning, this stuff is addicting, so if you have a large crowd you may want to double the recipe. You can make one large cheese ball, or two smaller ones. Or give these mini cheese ball bites a try!

5 star review

“I made the cheese ball and the candied pecans.  It is delicious!  The cream cheese is sweetened perfectly.   The cranberries and orange go so wonderful together.  The candied pecans cooked up so nice and sends the cheese ball over the top.  You are correct, it is addicting!”

– Karla
cranberry cheese ball with pecans and crackers

More Holiday Appetizers:

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scoop taken from cranberry cheese ball

Cranberry Orange Cheese Ball

5 from 2 votes
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Author: Jamielyn Nye
This cranberry orange cheese ball is so simple and so delicious! With colorful cranberries in every bite and a hint of fresh orange, it's the perfect holiday appetizer!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Refrigerate: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 16



  • 18 oz cream cheese , softened (see note below)
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh orange zest
  • ½ cup Craisins , coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup candied pecans


  • Beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. Then mix in the orange zest and Craisins until well blended.
    mixed cream cheese and cranberries in bowl
  • Press plastic wrap tightly over the top, then chill in the refrigerator for about 1-2 hours.
    wrapping cream cheese mixture in plastic
  • Once chilled, form the mixture into a ball and roll in the chopped candied pecans until well coated.
    rolling cheese ball in pecans
  • Place on a platter with crackers and serve. Enjoy!
    scoop taken from cranberry cheese ball


Cream cheese: I like to use light or Neufchatel, it makes a softer cheese ball.
Make-ahead: Follow steps 1 & 2, then let chill in fridge overnight. Before serving, roll in chopped pecans until well-coated. 
Storage: Will keep in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks if covered or stored in an airtight container. 


Calories: 147kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 116mg | Potassium: 46mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 429IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American

Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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