You’re guaranteed touchdown status at your next game day party with this Buffalo Ranch Football Cheese Ball! This crazy easy appetizer can be made in advance and is portable and DELICIOUS!
You guys have no idea how excited I am to FINALLY be sharing this recipe with you! I’ve been keeping this baller Buffalo Ranch Football a secret for entirely too long and I’m so happy to finally be able to shout it from the rooftops.
While I know that football season is *supposed* to be more about the actual football and less about edible footballs, let’s not kid ourselves here.
The best part about watching the game is the food!
Buffalo sauce, ranch dressing, and copious amounts of cheese reign supreme when it comes to game day favorites and this crowd-pleasing appetizer rocks ALL THREE.
Buffalo Ranch Football Cheese Ball
The flavors here are unreal, y’all! You can make it ultra-spicy by adding extra hot sauce and jalapeños or keep it as is for a delightfully zesty spread that’s great on everything from crackers to pretzels to veggies.
I think celery sticks and buttery crackers are tied for my favorite dip delivery method, though I’m fairly certain y’all can put this on everything! Think of it as a jazzed up pimento cheese that turns everything it comes into contact with into instant party food.
As written this feisty football yields about 24 (2 TBSP) servings. You can go all out and double the recipe to feed a massive crowd or also halve the recipe and make a mini football for a super small gathering if need be, it’s uber flexible and so. flipping. delicious.
Let’s do this!
Buffalo Ranch Football Cheese Ball
- 2 8 oz packages cream cheese
- 2 jalapeños (save 3 TBSP for outside)
- 1 bell pepper (added all but 3 TBSP to interior)
- 1/4 cup green onion inside 2-3 TBSP outside
- 1 cup chopped walnuts (1/4 cup reserved)
- 1/4 cup “Red Hot” hot sauce or Buffalo sauce
- 1 packet ranch dip seasoning mix
- 1 8 oz package grated cheddar cheese
- sour cream for the football laces
- Add your cream cheese to a large bowl and set aside.
- Remove seeds + stem from peppers and finely dice.
- Chop green onion and walnuts.
- Remove 3 TBSP of your jalapeño, 3 TBSP bell pepper, 2-3 TBSP of green onion, and about 1/4 cup of walnuts and set aside. This will coat the outside of your cheese ball.
- Add the rest of the veggies/nuts to your cream cheese along with the hot sauce, ranch dip seasoning mix, and cheddar cheese. Mix well using a fork or spatula. You could also use an electric hand mixer if you prefer!
- Making it spicy? Give the mixture a little taste test on a cracker and add more hot sauce and jalapeño if desired. Try not to eat it all right then and there!
- Once ready, scoop out mixture with a rubber spatula and add to a sheet of plastic wrap or parchment paper and form into an oval shape. Flatten the top of the oval, pinching the ends and pressing the sides while shaping it into a football. You’ll want to press down on the middle and sort of pinch the sides while you press it into an edible football. I promise it’s super duper easy, relive those childhood play dough days and have fun with it!
- Place in fridge for 10-15 minutes to set the football. If mixture appears super soft, allow longer chill time.
- For the optional (but awesome!) laces: Place a few spoonfuls of sour cream in a quart-sized plastic baggie and press into one corner of the bag. Twist the excess bag to make a faux piping bag and snip the end. Pipe laces by making one long vertical line in along the center of the cheese ball and several short horizontal lines. This takes only seconds to do and looks SO COOL!
Choose your favorite dippers: crackers, pretzels, chips, carrot sticks, celery sticks
:: pin it for later ::
I’m kind of freaking out over how good this is.
You probably won’t believe me when I say that I shared this touchdown dish with friends, but I swear I actually shared this time!
I mean…. Paul and I did eat like half of it before making it to their house but that comes as no surprise right? Of course I *HAD* to run quality control on this bad boy, right? It’s not my fault that it’s irresistible!
I mean, ok, it IS but whatever! I’ll behave next time.
We couldn’t keep our hands off of it!
SAVE TIME! Make Ahead Option
Make this crazy flavorful buffalo ranch football cheese ball in advance for your game day spread. It requires zero cooking and tastes fantastic the next day.
For a crunchy coating, you can chop up your walnuts and peppers and store them separately in airtight containers until just before serving, then press them into the football.
Store the chopped peppers in the fridge and the chopped walnuts on your counter, easy peasy! The cheeseball itself can be mixed, formed into a football, and stored in your fridge for up to 4 days. Awesome, right?!
Bonkers for Buffalo Sauce? Try my Cheesy Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash Bowls and Buffalo Shrimp Dip next!
This looks so good, would like to try it…but is there something I could use instead of nuts? Maybe chopped celery?
Hey Kathy! You could use more peppers or any other veggies your heart desires! Celery sounds awesome and bacon would also be amazing!xo
AMAZING recipe. The cheese is smooth and creamy and the veggies add the perfect amount of crunchy texture. So much flavor — gets devoured during all get-togethers!
All about the hot wings!!
Your football-shaped dip sounds wonderful
Thank you Anita!!!
I absolutely love pickle and onion wraps!!!
My favorite tailgate appetizer is jalapeño poppers or buffalo dip and chips.
I always beeline for both! Thanks for entering Mary! 🙂
Antipasto skewers for the win!
Ooh those sound good! Thanks for entering Kimmy! 🙂
I love loaded nachos.
My family loves buffalo chicken dip!
Such good flavor! Thanks for entering Tracie!
mostly taco dip and Hubs must have pigs in a blanket too.
Love a good taco dip! Thanks for entering Stella! 🙂
My favorite is tortilla roll ups with cheese and ham
Yum!!! Thanks for entering Carol!
Cheese and veggies with buffalo dip.
Always a great choice! Thanks for entering Eileen! <3
My favorite would be queso dip!
Yesssss! I always hog the queso! Thanks for entering Kayla!
I always make swedish meatballs for tailgate parties.
Sounds fantastic Erin! Thank you for entering! 🙂
Always delicious! Thanks for entering Judith!
Not only does this sound amazing but it looks amazing too!
Thank you Krista!!
This is perfect for every Sunday!
I’m with you on that! Edible footballs all weekend- every weekend!!
Oh my word, my husband and our friends are going to flip over these flavors! YUM! So perfect for Saturday!
What a pretty football. *words I never thought I’d say*
Bahahaha thank you Renee! 🙂
What a perfect recipe for the gameday snack table! Yum!
Thank you Sabrina!
Sliders and wings are my go to but this is absolutely adorable. Love it.
Thank you Paula! That sounds like a great combo for game day!
I love to make Frank’s buffalo dip!
Woot! Thanks for entering Emily!
I’m such a sucker for anything buffalo cheese! This is perfect for tailgating.
Meeee tooooo! Thanks Jenny!
My favorite is buffalo chicken dip. I’m intrigued by this spin on it. I’ll have to give it a try.
Thanks for entering Lisa 🙂 It’s such a great dip! Hope you get a chance to try this as well – we’re LOVING it and already plan on making another one this month!
I love dips and cheeseballs! Oh and meatballs too! I could live off of those three items!
I love hot wings!
Spicy grilled wings are my favorite
SO good! Thanks for entering Susan!
Now that is quite the deal! 22 cent jalapenos is amazing! WOW and this looks gorgeous!
Right?! They were so fresh and crisp too 🙂 Thanks Vicky!
I like pigs in a blanket
Those are always so tasty! Thanks for entering Deborah! 🙂
Buffalo chicken wing dip
Love it – thanks for entering Ashley!
Great for game day! Great for tailgating! Love easy to transport dishes.
Thank you Ellen!
I love buffalo wings
Meeeeee too! Buffalo sauce FTW! Thanks for entering Manda 🙂
Oh wow! This looks seriously amazing, Jenn!! And you’re totally right, the best part about watching the game is ALL about the food.
Yessss! Football food is the BEST! Thanks Chris 🙂
Oh my gosh, this is so cute! Perfect for parties and game day eats! My hubby is a football coach so I definitely need to try this!
I like a good pot of home made chili.
cshell090869 at aol dot com
Me too Shelly! Thank you for entering the giveaway 🙂
This is adorable! And it looks so good too.
Thank you Patty!
A favorite in this house is sweet and sour kielbasa. It is usually the first thing to go.
Sounds awesome Nancy – thanks for entering!!
My favorite tailgate appetizer is tortilla chips with salsa and I also love pigs in a blanket w/ mustard.
Chips and salsa are always a win here! Thanks for entering Janice 🙂
Bring on the game! Such a perfect game day treat!
Thank you Valentina!
i always make crockpot grape jelly meatballs. everyone’s fave.
Yum!!!! My mom makes those and I love them so! Great idea + thanks for entering Kim 🙂
My favorire are Asian style sweet & spicy wings.
YUM!!! Thanks for entering Kristen!
Your football-shaped dip is adorable! I bet it’s delicious too. I’m a long-suffering Browns fan, so football is more about the food, for sure.
Soooooo delicious, thanks Andrea! Haha my team is doing awful this year so we’re def in it for the food and moral support to our losing team! xo
I’ve got to say that’s one of the prettiest cheese balls I’ve ever seen. We are new to an area and my husband has found the Save-A-Lot. I need to go with him!
Thank you Ginny! I was really impressed by the low prices and the produce was top quality too! 🙂
My favorite tailgating appetizer is barbecued rope sausage wrapped in a tortilla. I grew up in Texas and we called that a Texas corndog!!
Thanks for entering Tim! Texas Corndogs sound awesome!
This is seriously the cutest thing I’ve seen for game day parties. Definitely gonna make this one!
Thank you Lisa! Hope you adore it!
That is such a cute way to plate a cheeseball! So much more easier to scoop and than a rolly polly ball! I love how your cheeseball is PACKED with yummy ingredients too! 😀
Thanks Joyce! I could seriously eat this all season long… so good! 🙂
My favorite tailgate appetizer is nachos and cheese.
Nachos are LIFE! Thanks for entering Kelly! 🙂
I love this, it looks so perfect. And delicious! I must try making this. I wish I was eating it right now, yum.
Thank you Edwina! I wish I was eating it right now too – we need to throw a football party stat! 🙂 xoxo