A cheeseball is one of those party ingredients that are always a sure thing. I mean, who doesn’t love a cheeseball? They’re a perfect complement to crackers, chips or a slice of deliciously crusty bread. You know what party-goes love more than a cheeseball? They’re own personal cheeseball bites. No sharing with anyone else. In fact, you don’t even need crackers, chips or a slice of deliciously crusty bread.
These mini cheeseball bites have a touch of spicy with salsa as a supporting ingredient and a delightful surprise with rice as a main ingredient. That’s right, rice! I served these over the weekend and one person after another asked for the recipe and then quickly followed the request up with an “is that rice that I tasted in there?” So technically this appetizer also counts as a side dish too.
Fresh cilantro makes these mini cheeseball bites a perfect complement to a Mexican-themed dinner. Skip the cilantro and roll the bites in crushed pecans or get creative with chopped dried cranberries, raisins or breadcrumbs.
MINI SPICY CHEESEBALL BITES
Makes approximately 28 balls.
- 1 bag Riceland Boil-In-Bag white rice
- 2 eight-ounce blocks of cream cheese
- 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese mix
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 tablespoons salsa (heat intensity according to your liking)
- 2 cups fresh cilantro, minced
- Pretzel sticks, as garnish
- Pre-cook Riceland Boil-In-Bag white rice according to instructions on box. Approximately 10 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. This step can be made in advance.
- In a large mixing bowl, add cream cheese, shredded cheese, onion powder, black pepper, sea salt, garlic powder and ground cumin. Cream together.
- Add rice and salsa and mix thoroughly.
- Form into balls and roll in cilantro.
- Place on platter and insert pretzel sticks as “handles.”
- Serve and enjoy!
Post and recipe by The Women Bloggers member Lyndi Fultz of nwafoodie, a hub for food happiness.