Here’s How To Pair Your Favorite Cheese With The Perfect Dish
Never let your fear of the unknown stop you from taking full advantage of a cheese sale at the grocery store. You might have your go-to pick, but it’s helpful to know the best uses for all of the important cheeses out there. Know when to slice it, when to grate it and when to melt it on a pizza. Better yet, know how to pair it with the right dish.
It’s hard not to love burrata. Mozzarella’s bougie cousin is gooey on the inside with a firm mozzarella-like skin on the outside. Burrata is best as the main attraction, whether it’s stacked between juicy red tomatoes, resting next to sliced peaches and prosciutto or drizzled with balsamic, olive oil and sea salt. It’s the secret ingredient to making any salad indulgent, like this heirloom tomato dish. Pizza is also burrata’s friend — just expect a little wateriness from the cheese when it goes into the oven.
This crumbly cheese is on the salty side. Serve feta with something sweet or acidic like slices of watermelon and balsamic. Feta also makes an awesome filling for pastries like Greek spanakopita. Add crumbled feta to an orzo salad or into your pan of eggs with a bunch of cherry tomatoes. Feta isn’t the best choice for pizza or grilled cheese since it won’t melt properly.
Any kind of blue cheese is usually an acquired taste. You either love it or can’t stand the smell. Similarly to its crumbly cousin feta, blue cheese shines in cold situations, but it can also come in clutch for hot dishes. A quality blue cheese like Stilton or gorgonzola can work as an ingredient in an omelet, mixed into a sauce for gnocchi or melted over a burger. You can also go the sweet and salty route with a grilled mango, honey and blue cheese dish.
Splurge on gruyère when you want the grilled cheese of all grilled cheeses. The creamy, semi-soft cheese has both fruity and nutty flavors and it’ll never disappoint on its own. Try this gruyère and sweet onion grilled cheese the next time your munchies hit. Gruyère also hits it out of the park with mac ‘n’ cheese and fondue. Any situation where you’re melting cheese is a situation where gruyère should be involved.
If you like mozzarella and you like BBQ, smoked mozzarella is right up your alley. Smoked mozz is perfect for grilled cheese, cold sandwiches and pizza. Pack a few slices into your quesadilla or melt it on top of a burger for all the smokey, cheesy vibes.
Let your hunk of Parmigiano Reggiano do its thing. If you want to get fancy, you could pair it with chocolate or bake it into parmesan crisps. Grate your parm reg over popcorn, buttered toast, pasta or veggie meatballs. Add it into a stuffing for artichokes or mushrooms. And you can never go wrong with a little parm over your salad.
The world is your oyster when you have a wheel of brie on hand. Whether you’re baking it with a bunch of nuts and honey, making a grilled cheese with fig and apple or spreading it on a piece of crostini, you can’t go wrong with brie. It’s best when you let it soften up a bit on the counter. After about 15 minutes or so, it’ll spread like butter. Here’s more brie inspiration to satisfy your cheesy cravings because you can never really have enough.
For the tangy cheese lovers out there, goat cheese is probably your go-to fromage. Goat cheese is the perfect combination of all cheeses since it can crumble, spread and melt. You can crumble pieces of creamy goat cheese on your salad, spread it on a piece of sourdough or melt it into a pot of mac ‘n’ cheese with pesto.
You can also make all of the appetizers with a log of goat cheese, from goat cheesecake bites to stuffed jalapeño poppers to roasted corn quesadillas. Add a little bit of goat cheese to your soup for tanginess, spread it over flatbread or make a dip for veggies.
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