Fiesta Cheese Ball with Baked Tortilla Chips

Who doesn’t love a good cheese ball?    Especially during a Super Bowl watch party?

2013-12-31 13.26.25

Fiesta Cheese Ball with Homemade Baked Tortilla Chips

This recipe is based on “Mexican Black Bean Ball” from  Great Balls of Cheese by Michelle Biffardi and is alternatively called “Everything That’s Great about a Burrito in a Cheese Ball Form.”   Since that was the case, I started thinking about my favorite burrito combinations and added a few items to Biffardi’s original recipe.


Fiesta Cheese Ball
slightly adapted from “Mexican Black Bean Ball”

2 c. Monterrey-jack cheese, shredded
8 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese, at room temperature
1 T. dried shallots (or dried onion flakes)
2 t. ground cumin
2 T. pickled jalapenos, chopped
1/4 t. sea salt
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/8 c. chili powder
cilantro for garnish (optional)

Equip a stand mixer with the paddle attachment.  Place shredded cheese, cream cheese, shallots, cumin, jalapenos, and salt the bowl of a stand mixer and mix until well combine.   Add black beans and mix quickly to incorporate but you don’t want to mash all the beans.

Lay out a large piece of plastic wrap and sprinkle the chili powder on it.   Form the cheese/bean  mixture into a ball and using the plastic wrap as an aid, coat the ball evenly with the chili powder.   Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or over night.

Before serving, you may garnish with a bit of chopped cilantro.    Serve with homemade tortilla chips (see below) or pita chips or crackers.

Baked Tortilla Chips

12 flour tortillas (Your preference on size).
1-2 T. olive oil
Fine sea salt
Chili powder (or other favorite seasoning)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Lightly, brush both sides of the tortillas with the oil. Stack and cut into triangular wedges.

Place cooling racks on a baking sheet.   Spread the chips out in a single layer on the racks and sprinkle with the sea salt.

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Baking tortilla chips.

Bake until slightly brown and crisp, flipping the chips once halfway through for about 12 to 15 minutes.

Sprinkle with chili powder while still warm from the oven.

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Biffardi  was right; this is “Everything That’s Great about a Burrito”!   Just wrap up the leftovers in a tortilla and you will see what I mean.

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