Fried Pimiento Cheese Balls with Ranch Dipping Sauce
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Fried Pimiento Cheese Balls with Ranch Dipping Sauce

Course Appetizer

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces sharp white cheddar, finely grated
  • 4 ounces sharp yellow cheddar, finely grated
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 ounces diced pimientos, drained
  • 1 tablespoon grated onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup panko crumbs
  • salt
  • Peanut oil for frying or Canola oil
  • 1/2 of a .4-ounce package Hidden Valley Buttermilk Ranch dry mix
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

Instructions

  • To make dressing, whisk together ranch mix, buttermilk, and mayonnaise in a bowl and refrigerate.
  • In a medium bowl, combine all 3 cheeses, mayonnaise, pimientos, onion, cayenne pepper, and bacon. Mix well and refrigerate 2-3 hours or overnight.
  • Form cheese mixture into 1 and 1/2 inch balls. Place milk, flour, and panko crumbs in 3 different bowls. Season flour and panko crumbs lightly with salt. Dip balls in flour, then in milk, and finally, coat with panko crumbs. Place on a tray and freeze for 1 hour.
  • Pour 2 inches of oil into a Dutch oven and heat oil to 350 degrees. Fry balls 4-6 at a time for about 2 minutes, then flip and cook another 2 minutes or until lightly browned and warm and gooey in the center. If needed, keep cooked balls warm in a 200 degree oven.