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Sweet and savory Pineapple Cheese Ball is a delicious classic appetizer for the holiday season! Cream together seasoned cream cheese, pineapple, and green bell pepper, then roll in crunchy pecans and serve with buttery crackers. This easy appetizer is always a crowd pleaser!
Without a doubt, this classic pineapple cheese ball makes a regular appearance on our holiday table. Served with crackers, it’s salty, sweet, and totally addictive!
Not only is it always devoured at our New Year’s Eve Party it’s just as popular for game days, March Madness, and other gatherings.
Why you’ll love this Hawaiian cheese ball recipe!
- Cream cheese — Use full-fat cream cheese for a decadent and creamy cheese ball.
- Crushed pineapple — Be sure the pineapple is well drained. It helps to put it in a fine mesh strainer and press the liquid out with the back of a spoon.
- Bell pepper — Though I normally prefer red bell pepper, I think the bitterness of green peppers works best with this recipe.
- Green onions — Minced white onion is a good substitute.
- Seasoned salt — Found in the spice aisle, seasoned salt is a combination of salt, paprika, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, and black pepper. If you don’t have it in your pantry, you can easily make your own.
- Pecans — Feel free to use another type of nuts, like walnuts or hazelnuts.
How to make a Pineapple Pecan Cheese Ball
Mix it up, chill, and roll in nuts — how easy is that?!
STEP 1 | Combine the ingredients
Place softened cream cheese in a large mixing bowl. Use a hand mixer to combine cream cheese with the drained pineapple, green pepper, green onion, and seasoned salt.
If you prefer, mix all the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer instead.
STEP 2 | Shape the cheese ball
Next, use a rubber spatula to shape the cream cheese mixture into a ball. Cover and refrigerate for two to three hours (or overnight) until the mixture is a little more firm.
STEP 3 | Roll in pecans
Place the chopped pecans in a single layer on a bowl or a large sheet of plastic wrap. Gently roll cheese ball in the pecans until the outside of the cheese ball is coated all over.
STEP 4 | Wrap and chill
Finally, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Chilling first is recommended, but if you are in a hurry, you can roll the cheese ball in the chopped nuts before refrigerating.
Variations and substitutions
If you have a nut allergy, you may wish to roll your cheeseball in one of these toppings instead:
- Crushed pretzels
- Toasted panko crumbs
- Chopped parsley and herbs
- Crisp fried and crumbled bacon
- Pineapple Cheese Ball can be made ahead of time and will keep well for two weeks in the refrigerator.
- To freeze, don’t roll the cheese ball in nuts until you are ready to serve. Wrap the cheeseball tightly in a couple of layers of plastic wrap, then store it in a resealable freezer bag for up to a month. Let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then roll in chopped nuts and serve.
Frequently asked questions
A cheese ball will keep well in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. If you want to make it ahead of time, store the cheese ball wrapped in plastic wrap and wait to roll it in the chopped nuts. That way, the nuts will not get soggy.
My favorite crackers to serve with Pineapple Cheese Ball are Keebler® Toasteds® Buttercrisp crackers or Ritz Crackers. Both are buttery and salty and complement the sweet pineapple and cream cheese.
The cheese ball ingredients are completely gluten-free but look for gluten-free crackers at the grocery if you have guests with celiac disease. Or, serve the cheese ball with veggie sticks, like carrots and celery, for a healthier option.
Place your Pineapple Cheese Ball on a holiday serving plate and garnish with fresh cranberries and sprigs of fresh parsley or rosemary for a festive touch.
Crackers are usually the favorite dippers for a cheese ball, but bagel chips, pita chips, toasted baguette slices, and even fresh fruits are all great options.
Must-Have Cheese Board
This pretty wooden charcuterie board set comes with four cheese knives which are stored in a magnetic hidden drawer.
Behind the recipe: Pineapple Cheese Ball
In our family, there are a certain number of foods we must consume before we feel we have sufficiently celebrated Christmas.
Like the Spinach Dip we make from the recipe on the back of the Knorr Vegetable Soup box and always serve with plenty of Triscuits.
Oh, and we must bake Ginger Cookies and a batch of Nutty Caramel Corn—even if we don’t share with anyone else!
Then, there’s this Pineapple Cheese Ball recipe that my sister-in-law’ always made for the family Christmas Eve gathering. We definitely always look forward to that!
This year, our extended families will be celebrating in smaller groups, so I’ll be making the cheeseball to enjoy at our house on Christmas Eve.
Like this recipe?
Don’t forget to comment below the recipe and please give it a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating!
Pineapple Cheese Ball
- 2 8-oz. pkgs. cream cheese, softened
- 1 tablespoon seasoned salt
- 1 8-oz. can crushed pineapple, drained
- 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 2 tablespoons grated onion
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- In a large bowl, cream together the softened cream cheese, pineapple, green bell pepper, onion, and seasoning salt until well combined.
- Use a rubber spatula to shape the cream cheese mixture into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for two to three hours (or overnight) until the mixture is a little more firm.
- Unwrap the cheese ball and roll in chopped pecans until coated all over.
- Serve with crackers.
- Refrigerate leftovers for up to 2 weeks.
- Pineapple cheese ball may be frozen for up to a month before rolling in the nuts. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then roll in chopped nuts when ready to serve.
Life Love and Good Food does not claim to be a registered dietician or nutritionist. Nutritional information shared on this site is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.
About Sheila Thigpen
Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer
Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.