Are you looking to make a recipe with feta cheese, but you don’t have any on hand? Or, you just don’t like the taste of feta cheese. You’re in luck! Below is a list of surprising substitutes and great alternatives for feta cheese that you can use for your next recipe! But first, what is feta cheese?
Feta cheese is a crumbly yet firm, salty, and versatile cheese from Greece. Feta adds flavour to salads, souvlaki wraps, Greek fries and is even delicious on its own! It has a creamy but slightly grainy texture. It’s easy to find in grocery stores in small blocks with brine or already crumbled.
Feta cheese is traditionally made from goat’s milk and sheep’s milk. But, today, many companies are making feta with cow’s milk. The result is a cheese that’s less tangy and milder in flavour.
Alright, let’s get to the feta cheese substitutes!
Cotija cheese is a perfect substitute because it has a creamy and crumbly texture and is an ideal substitute for feta in salads. In addition, cotija cheese has a high melting point and is popular in Mexican dishes like tacos.
Cotija cheese is made from cow’s milk and has enough flavour (but not as salty as feta) that it’s an excellent substitute for feta. It’s white in colour and firm, and dry in texture. It has a slightly salty yet more milky flavour.
It may not be as easy to find in grocery stores, but it can come in blocks that you can grate yourself, or you can find it pre-grated. When looking for a suitable substitute, a softer, younger cotija cheese is the best substitute for feta.
Queso Fresco is easy to find at your local grocery store and is a Mexican soft cheese. It has a crumbly texture and mild taste that won’t overwhelm your recipe. It’s made with raw milk and best when enjoyed fresh, that’s how it gets its name! Queso Fresco gets soft when heated, but it isn’t easy to melt.
Halloumi is a semi-hard, brined white cheese originating from Cyprus made with goat’s milk and sheep milk. Halloumi is a versatile, grillable cheese with a higher melting point, making it the perfect cheese for meat replacements in wraps or on its own.
Halloumi is an unusual cheese in that it has a rubbery texture when eaten raw. Halloumi can be eaten raw but is best when it’s cooked. Once cooked, halloumi has a crisp golden brown texture on the outside and squeaks as you chew it.
It’s a soft, milky and chewy cheese when it’s cooked. Overall, the flavour of halloumi is slightly salty but not overpowering.
Halloumi is milder than feta cheese and doesn’t have the same crumbly texture. Overall, halloumi is probably a better substitute for feta when it’s cooked instead of raw.
Mizithra is made from goat’s and sheep’s milk. But, it has a milder, less tangy flavour than feta. It’s a Greek cheese that works well on salads and veggies. Fresh mizithra has a softer texture similar to ricotta cheese. Hard or dried mizithra is easy to grate finely and goes well with pasta dishes.
Kefalotyri is a hard, salty white cheese traditionally from sheep’s milk or goat’s milk. It’s a Greek-Cypriot cheese that has a salty and sharp flavour. It has a very high melting point and is often used in the Greek dish saganaki.
The flavour of kefalotyri is similar to feta, but it doesn’t have a crumbly texture. As a result, it works well in baked dishes where you need to match feta’s saltiness and tangy taste.
Originally from Northern Italy, gorgonzola is made from unskimmed cow’s milk and is a type of blue cheese. It has a buttery texture but is also crumbly and semi-firm. It has a sharp taste that is great as a replacement for feta in salads.
Gorgonzola is full-flavoured, salty, and earthy. The texture of gorgonzola cheese can range from creamy to soft to semi-firm and crumbly. It has a more robust flavour than feta, so you probably won’t want to put the equivalent substitute amount.
White Sharp Cheddar
Young, white cheddar cheese will have a similar sharp flavour to feta. Originally from England, cheddar cheese is made with cow’s milk, and there are a few varieties to choose from.
White cheddar has a nutty, strong flavour with a perfect crumbly-creamy texture. White cheddar has a similar taste to orange cheddar, but it doesn’t have any annatto food colouring.
Grated or cubed mozzarella can be a good substitute for feta cheese in salads. When cooked, mozzarella has a milky flavour with a soft and gooey texture and is so delicious! There’s a reason kids and adults love mozzarella cheese. It definitely has a milder taste but is versatile in that you can enjoy mozzarella fresh or cooked.
Panela cheese is a fresh Mexican cheese with a soft and creamy texture. You can easily slice panela cheese, but it is not very crumbly. It has a milder flavour than feta but would be a good substitute for feta in cooked dishes instead of raw on top of salads. It has a high melting point and is common in baked dishes or as a grilling cheese.
Tofu is a popular vegan feta cheese substitute made by curdling fresh soya and cooling it. Tofu is sold in blocks ranging from soft to extra firm. I would suggest using extra firm tofu for recipes that call for feta.
Tofu does not have a lot of flavour on its own, so although it won’t be overpowering in recipes, you may want to add some seasoning to your tofu. Tofu can get a crispy golden brown exterior when fried with olive oil or baked in the oven.
If you follow a dairy-free or vegan diet, then tofu can take the place of feta cheese in most recipes.
Ricotta is an Italian cheese with a similar texture to cottage cheese. However, ricotta is not as salty as feta and has a sweeter taste. Ricotta is commonly used in pasta sauces or served as whipped ricotta due to its milder flavor and thick consistency. Ricotta is a delicious cheese that is light, creamy, and slightly sweet.
Goat cheese makes a great substitute for feta cheese. Goat cheese is very soft but can be crumbled on top of salads and has a similar flavor to feta.
It also has a creamy texture that makes it very easy to spread, similar to cream cheese. In addition, goat cheese has a unique flavor that’s slightly tangy and can be used in cooked dishes as well as enjoyed raw.
Feta cheese adds a unique flavour to Greek salad, baked dishes like meatballs, or on top of Greek fries and Greek potatoes. But, if you can’t find feta cheese or want to have some fun in the kitchen experimenting with different flavours, then these popular substitutes will do the trick!
Popular recipes with feta cheese that you can easily substitute with feta alternatives!
Surprising Feta Cheese Substitutes (The 12 Best)
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