Sweet Vidalia Onions balance tangy goat cheese and fragrant basil to create an irresistible flavor combination in this Goat Cheese, Basil and Vidalia Onion Cheese Ball.
Cheese balls often only make an appearance at the holidays, which I think is a shame because who doesn’t love a good cheese ball? They are crowd-pleasing appetizers any time of year, but we think they make especially great options for football season and tailgating because they can be made ahead of time. This flavorful but simple Goat Cheese, Basil and Vidalia Onion Cheese Ball is sure to be a bit hit at your next game day party. But you need to act fast…
Why? The secret to the irresistible flavor of this cheese ball is Vidalia onions, and they are only available for a limited time every year. Vidalias are grown exclusively in Georgia where the combination of soil, water and climate contribute to their unique sweetness. Some people claim they are so sweet you can eat them out of hand (I have never tried this), but I can vouch for their rich flavor in this Goat Cheese, Basil and Vidalia Onion Cheese Ball Recipe.
We love to scoop up this yummy cheese ball with salty, crunchy pretzel crisps, but feel free to swap in your favorite cracker. It’s equally tasty on toasted crostini, fresh baguette slices or even with carrot and celery sticks.
Vidalias will only be available at grocery stores until early September, so stock up now so you can munch on this cheese ball all month long. Plus don’t miss other great Vidalia onion recipes created by some of our favorite bloggers and enter for the chance to win a $1000 Visa gift card plus other goodies from the Vidalia Onion Committee. See entry details below.
Goat Cheese, Basil and Vidalia Onion Cheese Ball
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 large Vidalia onions, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 8 ounces goat cheese, softened
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 1/2 tablespoons minced basil
- salt and pepper
- 1/3 cup minced basil
To make the caramelized onions:
- Place oil and butter in a 12-inch skillet and heat over medium-low heat. Place onions in skillet and stir to coat. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt, stir, and cook for another 40 minutes or until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Allow to cool and coarsely chop. Set aside or refrigerate until ready to use.
To make the cheese ball:
- Place goat cheese and cream cheese in a small bowl and mix until thoroughly incorporated. Stir in 2 1/2 tablespoons of basil and caramelized onions. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Remove cheese mixture from refrigerator and scoop onto a piece of plastic wrap. Mold into a sphere and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
- Remove plastic wrap from cheese ball and roll ball in remaining 1/3 cup minced basil. Serve immediately.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by the Vidalia Onion Committee. All opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the organizations that make Garnish with Lemon possible.