Aunt Louise’s Cheese Ball


Aunt Louise Cheese Ball


Louise was my Grandmama Lucy’s sister. She always had a twinkle in her eye and a mouth that curved up every so slightly at the corners, as if she were going to burst into a smile at any moment. She was a good hearted person who, like my grandmother, had lived a hard life but always came out on top because she chose to focus on the good  instead of amplifying the bad.

I wrote about her in my first book, in the “Everybody’s Favorites” chapter. I had almost finished the book when I woke up at 3:00 one morning with the image of Louise leaning down over her crochet work, racing against time, trying to use what waning sunlight she had to finish just one more project.

The story I included in my book just began writing itself inside my head and it was almost as if Louise was tugging at me to get up and write it. I actually said out loud “I’m tired Louise, I don’t want to get up now.” But then I could see her again so clearly, and my heart felt a spark of warmth as it always did when she smiled, so I got up and quietly walked into the den to sit down at my computer.  Her story just flowed out of me and onto what would become the pages of my book.

Everything Louise made always tasted unusually good. Folks would have her beef stew (recipe in my first book) expecting it to be just a beef stew but people would remark how really good Louise’s beef stew was. Whenever Mama shares her cheese ball recipe, she inevitably gets a call back saying “That was a really good cheese ball!”. Everything she made seemed to be really good in some hard to pinpoint way, but I have always felt her secret was her easy smile and kind heart. People like that can’t help but spread their attitude into all that they do.

You just enjoy being around them, and it’s always a treat to get to taste their cooking :) We sure do miss her, and this year we are missing Grandmama something fierce, but I know the two of them are up in heaven cooking up some awfully good food this Christmas.

This is an unusually good cheese ball, perfect for a party, family get together, or snacks before a meal. For best results, smile as you make it, and think of the folks you love :)

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

 You’ll need: Onion or Garlic Powder, Salt, Cream Cheese, Margarine or Butter, Feta Cheese*, Worcestershire Sauce, Sharp Cheddar, and Mayo (the mayo was camera shy, so it’s not pictured).

Note: You are seeing too much cream cheese here. You just need one brick. But these blocks had become quite close during their short stay in my fridge and I hated to tell one “Well, you’re not really needed so you stay behind.” So I took him out and got his picture made and he was all happy, felt like he was part of the gang really, then went back to the fridge. In truth, I didn’t have enough sharp cheddar to make a whole recipe so I ended up halving it but forgot to take the full recipe amount of cream cheese out. Hey, I’m tired.

**Louise’s recipe calls for Bleu Cheese in place of the feta. If you are a bleu cheese person, you should definitely use that. There are certain foods that I have found to be highly polarizing, I mean people either love love love them or hate hate hate them. Coconut is one of these. I love that stuff and could eat it pretty much in any form all day long but I’m always amazed at how many people really can’t even bear the thought of eating one bite of it.

Cilantro is also one of those things, only with it, some folks actually have a genetic disposition that causes cilantro to taste like soap to them! I’m not one of those, I love me some cilantro, too.

Where I come into play is bleu cheese. Man, that stuff tastes and smells absolutely horrendous to me. I have no idea how or why people eat it. Although, I have eaten it before, when I did TV for Southern Living and even back when I was filming Beat The Chefs, but those times I ate it because it was part of my job. It is no longer part of my job right now and I knew Louise really well and know she’d totally approve of me using feta in it’s place since it is along the same lines in term of texture, but I actually enjoy eating -it versus having to take a deep breath and try to temporarily leave my body :)

Now listen, one of the crazy things about the internet is that when you mention not liking something, there are all of these folks sitting around waiting to be offended so they jump on that. But please don’t take it personally if you love bleu cheese. Rejoice! You can have my share! I’m all generous that way :)

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

Grate sharp cheddar and set aside, covered, at room temp for about an hour.

Let Cream Cheese come to room temp as well, then put all ingredients into a mixing bowl.

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball


You saw that coming didn’t ya?


Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

Now this part is totally optional, especially considering how expensive pecans are…

Scatter some pecan pieces on top of a piece of plastic wrap.

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

Dump and scrape your cheese onto this.

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

Roll it up into a ball a little bit and sprinkle pecans on the bald spots.

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

Wrap it up in the plastic wrap and cover with more, then shape it into a smoother ball and refrigerate for a couple of hours.

Or, if you are in a hurry like me, pop that puppy in the freezer for about ten minutes :)

Aunt Louise's Cheese Ball

Serve with crackers and enjoy!

 Thanks, Louise :)

You can read a story of what Christmas was like for Louise and Grandmama when they were kids, back during the great depression, by clicking here. 

Louise’s Cheese Ball
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar
  • 2 ounces Bleu Cheese or Feta (eyeball half of a 4 oz box)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 Tablespoons softened butter or margarine
  • 1 Tablespoon worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon garlic or onion powder
  • Chopped pecans, optional
  1. Grate cheddar cheese and allow to sit at room temp for one hour (cover it so it doesn't dry).
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, place all ingredients. Mix until smooth and well blended.
  3. Turn out onto plastic wrap that has been sprinkled with chopped pecans (can skip the pecans if you like). Shape into a ball and press pecans in to cover, if desired. Wrap in plastic wrap and form into a ball.
  4. Refrigerate for a few hours before serving.

“Christmas, my, child, is love in action.

Every time we love, every time we give, it’s Christmas.”

~Dale Evans

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  1. Sue Wilkins says

    My granddaughter, Rachel, just said I want a cheese ball at Christmas with Paa..kahnss on it….lol. Perfect timing, Christy.
    Thank you so much for the great recipes and most of all the wonderful stories.

  2. MARSHA G says

    Loved the story! I agree with you on the bleu cheese. I can’t stand the smell, taste or even the look. The little dark spots remind me of either mold or dirt. There’s another cheese like feta in with the Mexican cheese called cojita and it will crumble with just your fingers and not as expensive as feta but tastes almost the same. I always use it on corn. You can take canned corn season it with butter salt pepper, then put some on your plate give it a squeeze of lime juice, a dab of mayonnaise, and sprinkle cojita cheese on top. It is very yummy. I will make the cheese ball in smaller sizes and send to my daughters teachers along with some crackers as a token of appreciation. Thank you Christy for all you do!!!!!!!!!

    • Sheryle says

      Your kernel corn sounds a lot like Mexican Street Corn…a really delish recipe! However that uses fresh corn on the cob, which is not really available all year. This version will let you enjoy it all year round! Thanks!!

    • MARSHA G says

      I think walnuts would be great I was wondering about using toasted Panko for a crush since pecans costs so much. I sure love the fact that Christy doesn’t get offended when we make a substitute when we don’t have something or it just costs too much. I know when I was little (YEP many, many moons ago) my mom and neighbors would roll the cheese balls or logs in parsley. Back in the day we were proud to have the cheese so whatever we put on the outside was just for prettiness.

  3. Sue Tait says

    Hi Christi, (and everyone),
    I’m trying to look at my saved recipes and I keep getting the ziplist sign in page, but it won’t let me sign in Or create a new account (I DO have one already, have a saved list of several recipes.) Is anyone else having trouble with the website or is it just me?
    Sue Tait

  4. says

    My sister-in-law Kimberly Stillwell Venable makes this every year for us at Christmas, she calls it “Grandmama’s cheese ball” . We love it esp the bleu cheese!! I wonder since this is such an unusual recipe if they were related? I only knew her as Grandmama?

  5. Marilyn says

    I know this is going to sound insane but I guess I have the genetic thing going in regards to cilantro!! I absolutely hate it :(
    To me it tastes like caterpillars smell. If you have ever handled caterpillars when you were a kid they have an odor that you can smell on your hands and that is what I taste when there is any cilantro in something!!
    Here in Texas it is used in a lot of dishes….caterpillars’ smell everywhere!!!!

    • Sheryle says

      LOL! I’m sorry that you are one of those genetically opposed to Cilantro! For me, finding out about it (as a young cook) gave me that A-Ha moment..that’s what makes Mexican food…GOOD! Luckily, my husband likes it too! For that good food, I wish I lived in Texas! Some pretty poor Mexican food here in MI!

  6. coloradocookie says

    I must have known Aunt Louise in another life- this is the cheese ball my family has been making for years. Yummy and easy. Keeps well for several days. I make mine into a log. Somehow it doesn’t look as messy when it is half devoured. Thanks for a good reminder and for sharing with everyone.

  7. Eva says

    Looks good, may try it with both feta and blue cheese, and I will do the pecans, which I simply buy anyway. They may cost a lot but hey, they are good for you and delicious.
    I am one of those cilantro haters, and the stores around here stock it all the time in the fresh herbs and don’t stock the Italian parsley that I once got it by accident because they were supposed to be parsley. Its not soapy just has a terrible lingering taste. It must be genetic because my half brother didn’t like it either, and fortunately I am married to another genetically cursed person who also hates it. Its kind of like, walnuts, I am not overly fond of them, love pecans, and butternuts, and just about any other nut, but I can eat walnuts, but give me a choice and I will use pecans over walnuts anyday!

  8. Rose says

    I can’t get over your trick for coating the cheese ball in nuts! Envision my gooey hand as I have held the blessed ball and tried to coax nuts onto it with the other. Mercy me you’re such a smart lady! Might even make a cheese ball again this year since I now know how! LOL

  9. Mary Ann Bendily says

    Can’t wait to try this Christy! Just want you to know that I had an Aunt Louise, in fact the little white dish I gave you in New Orleans was from her. So you see it was meant for you to have it. Enjoyed visiting with you in New Orleans. And New Orleans is driving distance from Huntsville! :) hehe

  10. says

    As you, I am not fond of bleu cheese at all nor do I like feta that well unless it is mixed into a recipe. I am anxious to try your grandmother’s cheese ball anyway. I know if I decide the feta is too strong for me my family will devour it. They are all bleu cheese and feta fans…go figure…lol!

  11. Loretta Rush says

    This sounds wonderful! Thank you for sharing the life of your grandmother and aunt. My parents got married in 1931 and I used to love to hear about their lives as newly weds. Also, my mother had 7 siblings and their treat at Christmas was a big bowl of basic fruit salad. It was always interesting and makes us appreciate what we have now.
    Thank you for sharing so much of your life and your wonderful recipes. I love your new book and am hoping to get the first one soon! By the way, I don’t like blue cheese either! Lol
    Have a blessed day!

  12. Karen says

    I can’t wait to try this! This reminds me of the cheese balls that were popular when we were growing up. It seems that most of the ones I remember were more savory than sweet. I have been looking for one like this for a while.
    Thanks for sharing!

  13. Karen says

    Hey Christy!
    I made this Tuesday afternoon for the Court of Honor Scouts Banquet. It was easy to make and must have been delicious. I set it up along with two types of crackers for the Potluck. By the time I went through the line… it was gone! Thanks again! Merry Christmas!

  14. Kim Sills says

    I’ve been sitting here reading the Cast Iron Jan/Feb issue. There’s some really good recipes in there and seen a photo of croquets on an onion bun with sliced tomato and a sauce, lettuce, bacon!!!!!:) looks so good I’m going to have to go to store and buy some salmon:) Also, I have been thinking about making a cheese ball for New Years Eve and this recipe will do fine all except the bleu cheese. I am going to use Velvetta, cream cheese, and sharp. Today, I made homeade potato soup and figured out the trick to that was to shred my potatoes on the handheld shredder:) but that salmon croquette recipe really topped my taste buds tonight lol I can taste that right now, I’m not going to be able to sleep for that good recipe haha but wanted to thank you for sharing all these recipes each and every one is so good and gives me great ideas on what to cook for my family. Thank you and have a great New Years!!!!!

  15. says

    Yum yum yum, must make this ASAP! I’ve never met a cheese ball I liked, but that’s just because I really cannot stand the flavor or texture of processed cheese, and every cheese ball I’ve had has included it. Also don’t like blue cheese at all, so I wholeheartedly approve of your feta substitution! Can’t wait to make this. I’ll bet it would be fantastic with fat slices of bell pepper, don’t you think?

  16. Mary says

    My Mom made a similar recipe by using all Sharp Cheddar Cheese, Miracle Whip for the mayo (only thing we ever used Miracle Whip for) and she used a meat grinder to grind together the cheese’s with young onions (scallions for those not from the South). She also rolled them into logs and then rolled each log in the pecans. Lots more nuts that way and we just loved it. I miss Mom and feel truly blessed each year at Christmas as my daughter and I make these and remember the happy times we shared with her.

  17. Jane says

    I made this cheese ball yesterday. We are thoroughly enjoying it. It is DELISH! Thanks for the recipe. (I went right by the recipe – used Feta cheese, not bleu, since that’s what I had on hand.) Very good!

  18. MARSHA G says

    i made this at Christmas it was AMAZING as is all of your recipes. The only thing I changed was I didn’t use the bleu cheese but used a crumbly Mexican cheese called cojita and made little truffle size balls rolled in different things anyways the cheese ball truffles were to die for scrumptious and easy for me to pass out to the elderly that lives alone as they didn’t end up with a ton of cheese, plus more people got to share your great recipe. Oh, and i used garlic and onion powder both just because I could make up my mind which to use.

  19. Sharon says

    This sounds really good! I would think using blue cheese versus feta would make a significant difference in the taste. I think blue cheese is a much stronger flavor. Which way do you like it best, Christy?


    I look at a lot of recipes on the internet. Started to scroll past this on Facebook until saw it was from you. I’m partial to your post. I just whis you had your own cooking show. I’m also looking forward to your next “print cookbook” :)

  21. Cheryl Bone says

    Was looking at cheese ball recipes and thought I’d share something I’m doing this year. My pecan tree did not bear this year and my social security budget just can’t bear the cost at the store. So I just crush up the crackers or chips I am serving with the cheese ball and roll the cheese ball in the crushed crackers or chips. Looks good and serves the purpose since everyone wants what is inside the ball not just the outside.

  22. Leigh says

    Sounds absolutely scrumptious! I’ll definitely make this for the holidays…and will most likely use your share of bleu cheese since you’re all generous that way. 😉

    That’s how I am with eggs. I am a 51 year old Southern country girl, and my daddy still asks me every time we visit: “Leigh-Honey, how do you want your eggs?” My response is always: “On somebody else’s plate, Daddy.” Then we all chuckle while I sit down to my fried taters, biscuits and bacon, and grits.

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