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Cheese balls were so popular in the years gone by as an appetizer, and I can see why.  They are good that is why!  This appetizer helps still the appetite a bit.  I made my homemade Cinnamon Crackers for this cheese ball. They are very crunchy and sturdy crackers that are easy to make.  You can make a couple of batches, if you like, so that you have extra. They keep well at room temperature in a sealed cookie tin.  They even keep well in our humid climate in the tropics which says it all.

If you want to make this cheese ball a bit more festive for Christmas, you can use chopped up dried cranberries, or you could use very finely chopped red and green bell peppers (easy to do using a food processor and the pulse button).  So you see this cheese ball is not only a good appetizer, it is also great for the holidays.  If you decide to go with the chopped peppers, I would skip the green onions.

You can make the cheese ball ahead of time and refrigerate.  Then just before serving press the pecans onto the outside of the cheese ball.  This ensures that the pecans are still nice and crispy for that extra crunch.  Delicious!

I used fresh pineapple; however, you are welcome to use canned drained, crushed pineapple. Store any leftover cheese ball (if there are any!) in the refrigerator.  It will taste almost as good the next day.

Did you know fresh, chopped pineapple freezes beautifully.  Yep, so need to keep temptation sitting around.



12 oz cream cheese, softened (340 g)

1 cup chopped ham (250 ml)

1/4 cup chopped fresh pineapple (60 mL)

  (Freeze the remainder - chop it and freeze)

1/4 cup chopped green onions (60 mL)

2 tsp sweetener, optional (10 mL)

1/2 cup chopped pecans (125 mL)



Bring cream cheese to room temperature.  Stir in ham, pineapple, green onions and sweetener, if using.  Line a small bowl with plastic wrap.  Place mixture inside the bowl and wrap the plastic around the cheese ball (use more, if necessary).  Form a round shape and refrigerate.  Just before serving press chopped pecans all over the outside of the cheese ball.  Serve with low-carb crackers (a recipe below and another linked to below) or sliced English cucumber rounds, bell pepper sticks, celery, etc.

Yield:  8 servings

1 serving

233.1 calories

10.9 g protein

19.7 g fat

0.6 g fiber

3.2 g net carbs 



 These are some of my favorite cracker recipes; so easy to make which is a bonus for sure.  There is a recipe which uses the oven and then the microwave oven to finish hardening the crackers.  There is also a recipe that just uses the microwave oven. There is also a savory cracker recipe for soups and other uses.


1 cup Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2 (250 mL)

1 tsp cinnamon (5 mL)

1/2 tsp glucomannan powder (2 mL)

1/4 tsp salt (1 mL)

2 eggs

Liquid sweetener equal to 1/4 cup sugar (60 mL)


Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).  Spray 10 x 15-inch (25 x 38 cm) jelly-roll pan with nonstick cooking spray.  Line with parchment paper; cut off excess paper.  In medium bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2, cinnamon, glucomannan powder and salt.  In small bowl, beat eggs with fork and add liquid sweetener. Add to well in dry ingredients and mix well.


Place dough ball on parchment paper.  Cover with another large piece of parchment paper and roll out to cover pan, almost completely.  Leave top parchment paper in place.  Bake 5 minutes.  Cut crackers (right through) into 8 x 5 pieces (40 crackers).  Bake a further 10 minutes.  Remove and carefully carry parchment paper holding crackers to the microwave oven.  Nuke 2 minutes, or until the crackers are nice and hard.  Allow to cool and then store in a sealed tin at room temperature.


Yield:  40 crackers

1 cracker

16.4 calories

0.8 g protein

1.1 g fat

0.6 g carbs


Variation:  Savory Crackers for Soup:  These crackers are great for crumbling into hot soup, however, omit the sweetener and cinnamon. Add some onion powder, if desired.

Jiffy Cinnamon Cookie Crackers:  Make half the recipe and roll into a rectangle or big circle between two pieces of parchment paper. Leave the parchment paper in place and nuke in microwave oven 1 minute, remove paper, score crackers, flip, nuke 1 minute, flip again and nuke another minute.  I usually nuke it another 50 seconds and then it's nice and hard.  It hardens a little more upon cooling.  2 servings: (6 g carbs)


Helpful Hints:  I have a Panasonic Inverter, 1200 watts microwave oven.  Your timing may be different for these crackers, so keep that in mind.  You could also finish baking the crackers in the oven and skip the microwave oven, if desired.  You may need another 5 to 10 minutes, but keep an eye on them and remove the crackers around the outer edges of the pan that are turning very crispy and brown.  I used the oven and microwave oven method to avoid the fussy stage, just described – so easy just to nuke the crackers before that stage.

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