Cream Cheese

Smoked Gouda Cheese Ball With Crispy Prosciutto

October 28, 2021
3 Ratings
Photo by Julia Garland Prop Stylist: Molly Fitzsimons Food Stylist: Lauren Lapenna
  • Prep time 30 minutes
  • Cook time 12 minutes
  • Serves 10 to 12
Author Notes

What’s better than a creamy, smoky cheese ball before the big Thanksgiving meal? With its endless versatility and explosion of flavor, a cheese ball is a simple, mouthwatering appetizer. Pair it with some crispy rustic crackers or crisp sliced veggies and you have yourself a decadent treat.

With this cheese ball, I wanted to go with something smoked and savory to complement all the dishes on the Thanksgiving table. You can make the cheese ball as big or small as you’d like, depending on the number of guests or saving room for the main meal. Don’t hesitate to dive into that velvety interior and express gratitude for the wonder that is cheese. —Marissa Mullen

Test Kitchen Notes

This dish is part of Residentsgiving—aka the Thanksgiving menu of our wildest dreams—created by Food52's resident experts-slash-superheroes. Devour the rest of the spread here, and while you're at it, learn how to Remix & Remaster your Thanksgiving. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 4 ounces smoked gouda, shredded (about 1¼ cups), plus more for garnish (optional)
  • 1 (8-ounce) block cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 3 scallions, chopped, divided
  • 1/2 cup raw pecans
  • 2 ounces prosciutto (3 to 4 slices)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Crackers, for serving
  1. Heat the oven to 400ºF. In a small bowl, stir the gouda, cream cheese, sour cream, 2 of the chopped scallions (about ¼ cup), the garlic powder, and onion powder. Season with black pepper. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill for about 30 minutes, until cold.
  2. Meanwhile, arrange the prosciutto slices on a foil-lined sheet pan and bake, turning once, for 12 to 15 minutes, until crispy. Let cool.
  3. In a food processor or by hand, chop the pecans until finely chopped, then transfer to a shallow dish. Gently pulse the crispy prosciutto in a food processor (or chop or crunch up by hand) until finely chopped, but not dust. Add the prosciutto to the pecans and toss to combine.
  4. Remove the cheese mixture from the refrigerator and mold into a ball shape with clean hands (use gloves if you’d like). Roll the cheese ball in the pecan mixture until coated.
  5. Place on a serving dish and top with the remaining scallions and a pinch of shredded gouda, if using. Serve with the crackers.
  6. Do Ahead: The cheese ball, without rolling or toppings, can be made 2 days ahead. Wrap in plastic and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • maryannerahm
  • FrugalCat
  • AAK
Marissa Mullen is a Brooklyn-based food stylist, recipe developer, photographer and cheese lover. She is the founder of That Cheese Plate and creator of the Cheese By Numbers method. She is also the author of the best-selling cookbook, That Cheese Plate Will Change Your Life, a step-by-step styling guide for crafting beautiful and delicious cheese plates as a form of creative expression. Featured on The Today Show, The Rachael Ray Show, Business Insider, Vox among others, Marissa is dedicated to bringing people together through creativity, food and entertainment.

3 Reviews

maryannerahm November 27, 2021
Loved this and relatively easy! One of my favorites!
AAK November 24, 2021
I love this recipe! Made it as a test to prepare for Thanksgiving and it was an instant hit. Best cheese ball recipe I’ve tried. Don’t be afraid to be generous with the Gouda and the prosciutto adds the best salty umami- not funky at all.
FrugalCat November 4, 2021
Instead of rolling it into one big ball, try making marble sized individual balls and putting a pretzel stick in each one. Much nicer as the cheeseball does not get that gnawed on look, and the pretzels mean no errant toothpicks to dispose of.