Appetizer Cheese Trees

Appetizer Cheese Trees

Enjoy this creatively made cheese spread - a delicious appetizer perfect for Christmas celebration.

Prep Time



Total Time





About 7 cups spread

packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
cups shredded Cheddar cheese (16 ounces)
tablespoons pesto
tablespoon grated onion
teaspoon ground mustard (dry)
or 3 drops red pepper sauce
Have ready at serving time:
cup finely chopped parsley or cilantro
cup pine nuts
tablespoons chopped red bell pepper
Assorted crackers, if desired
  1. Mix cream cheese and Cheddar cheese; divide in half. Mix pesto into 1 half; mix onion, mustard and pepper sauce into other half. Cover each half and refrigerate about 4 hours or until firm enough to shape.
  2. Place cheese mixtures on cookie sheet. Shape each half into cone shape to look like Christmas tree. Roll trees in parsley, pressing parsley evenly onto trees. Press pine nuts onto trees in string form for garland. Press bell pepper pieces onto trees for ornaments. Top each tree with star shape cut from lemon peel if desired. Serve with crackers.
Makes About 7 cups spread
Make the Most of This Recipe With Tips From The Betty Crocker® Kitchens
Timesaving Tip
This is a great do ahead appetizer. After shaping cheese mixtures on the cookie sheet, wrap in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, label and freeze up to one month. Twelve hours before serving, remove the trees from the freezer. Thaw in wrapper in the refrigerator. Continue as directed.
New Twist
Here's an idea the kids will love! Instead of trees, make snowmen! Shape the cheese mixture into a Snowman Cheese Ball (you'll have enough to make 2 small snowmen or 1 large one). Omit parsley, pine nuts and bell pepper. Mix cream cheese and Cheddar cheese; divide into 3 equal parts. Mix 2 parts to equal two-thirds of mixture; mix in pesto. Mix onion, mustard and pepper sauce into remaining one-third of cheese mixture. Refrigerate as directed. Shape each cheese mixture into 2 balls; roll in 1/3 cup finely chopped blanched almonds. Arrange balls on serving plate with smaller ball on top for head of snowman; press together slightly. Insert pretzel sticks for arms. Decorate as desired with capers, sliced olives, chopped carrots, sliced cucumber, chopped bell peppers and fresh thyme leaves.

Nutrition Information:

1 Serving (1/4 Cup)
  • Calories 155
    • (Calories from Fat 125),
  • Total Fat 14g
    • (Saturated Fat 9g,),
  • Cholesterol 45mg;
  • Sodium 180mg;
  • Total Carbohydrate 1g
    • (Dietary Fiber 0g,
  • Protein 6g;
Percent Daily Value*:
    • 1 High-Fat Meat;
    • 1 Fat;
    *Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.