A Derby Pie Cheese Balls is all the delicious gooey parts of a classic Derby Pie with chocolate, caramel, pecans, and bourbon, stuffed inside this sweet chocolate cheese ball and rolled in toasted pecans. Perfect for watching the Kentucky Derby!
If you’d rather skip my essential cooking tips and tricks and get straight to this delicious recipe – simply scroll to the bottom of the page where you can find the printable recipe card.
DERBY PIE CHEESE BALL
You guys know I love a great cheese ball, especially a sweet dessert one! And in the spirit of the upcoming Kentucky Derby I decided to do a riff on Derby Pie! I mean, who doesn’t love chocolate, pecans, and bourbon?!?!
It’s not a completely new idea for me as I stuffed my Almond Joy Cheese Ball with fudge sauce and it’s so amazing when you scoop into it. All the gooey fudge pours out and adds a whole other level of flavor and texture to the cheese ball.
Same concept but this time, I am stuffing the cheese ball with all the chocolate bourbon pecan pie goodness. Reversing the texture profile is a little surprising but oh, so, tasty!
A deconstructed Derby pie if you will!
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CHOCOLATE BOURBON PECAN PIE CHEESE BALL
To make the Derby Pie Cheese Ball we have to start by making the derby pie filling. The filling can be made a few days ahead of time, along with the cheese ball mixture, and assembled when ready. Let’s get to cooking the pie!
- cook the corn syrup and butter and mix with eggs and vanilla (1)
- add the bourbon, chocolate chips, and toasted pecans (2)
- pour mixture into a pie pan and bake (3)
- cool finished pie and remove 1/2 cup of cooked filling (4)
Try to contain yourself while the chocolate bourbon pecan pie is baking because the smell of all that goodness will have you drooling like crazy! Don’t worry, you will get to try some because the cheese ball only requires 1/3 to 1/2 of this finished pie.
Brooks and I ate the remaining filling with two spoons sitting on the counter. The filling is also very tasty over some vanilla ice cream if you are looking to be a little classier than we were.
HOW TO MAKE A DERBY PIE CHEESE BALL
After the derby pie filling is cooled, we need to prepare the chocolate cheese ball.
- combine the cream cheese, cocoa, and powdered sugar (1)
- combine and spread into a circle on plastic wrap (2)
- chill for 15 minutes
- add the 1/2 cup derby pie filling (3)
- slowly roll up the edges and seal on the top (4)
- seal up and chill another 5 minutes
After the derby pie cheese ball has chilled and you are ready to serve, roll the cheese ball in toasted pecans to coat and then serve with crackers. I prefer either shortbread cookies or thin salted pretzels. The saltiness of the pretzels really balances out the sweetness of the chocolate and pairs well with the bourbon.
It’s a fun and new way to enjoy a Kentucky Derby Pie while watching the horses don’t you think?
HOW FAR IN ADVANCE CAN I MAKE IT?
Up to 4 days ahead of time! I like to make the pie mixture at least a day ahead of stuffing the cheese ball.
WHAT CAN I DO IF I DON’T HAVE TIME TO MAKE THE DERBY PIE MIXTURE?
If you don’t have time to make one, nor can you find one already baked at the store, feel free to use the filling of a pecan pie. Just be sure to add 1 tablespoon of bourbon is you like:)
IF I AM ALLERGIC TO PECAN, IS THERE AN ALTERNATIVE?
If you are not allergic to other nuts feel free to switch to another nut. If you want to use a chess pie filling for the center and roll the cheese ball in crushed shortbread cookies, that would be great too!
I use a lot of plastic wrap and aluminum foil and I prefer to have mine extra wide so I buy the professional size boxes. Having extra wide plastic wrap and foil and easier to use and much cheaper than buying those small boxes that aren’t wide enough to cover your baking sheets!
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OTHER EASY APPETIZERS TO MAKE
Prep Derby Pie Filling
- Prep derby pie filling and bake as instructed in Derby Pie Bites post.
- Chill before using in Derby Pie Cheese Ball
Prepare Pie Cheese Ball
- Combine cream cheese, cocoa, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt.
- Spread onto plastic wrap.
- Chill for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Place 1/2 cup Derby Pie mixture in center of cream cheese mixture.
- Fold edges of cream cheese mixture over Derby Pie mixture.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and smooth into a ball.
- Chill for 30 minutes.
- Roll in toasted pecans.
- Serve with salted pretzel crisps or cookies!
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 248Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 43mgSodium: 179mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 17gProtein: 3g
This nutrition information was generated via a third party, Nutritionix, and can not be held liable for any discrepancies in the information provided.
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