9 Best Substitute For White Cheddar

White Cheddar Substitute

White cheddar is a classic staple in the world of cheese, celebrated for its distinctive sharp flavor, creamy texture, and exceptional melting properties. Originating from the English village of Cheddar in Somerset, it is a hard, aged cheese that offers a versatile culinary application. Whether it’s used to add depth to a sauce, create a gooey layer in a casserole, or simply enjoyed on its own with a glass of wine, white cheddar’s complex flavor profile and excellent meltability make it a preferred choice for many chefs and home cooks alike.

However, there might be instances when white cheddar isn’t available, or perhaps you’re seeking to explore a new flavor territory. In such cases, knowing the right substitutes can greatly influence the outcome of your culinary creations. This article presents the best substitutes for white cheddar, from the mellow Monterey Jack to the subtly sweet Gouda, providing a detailed guide on when and how to use these alternatives for optimal results. Discover how these substitutes can not only mimic the characteristics of white cheddar but also offer a unique twist to your dishes.

What is White Cheddar?

White Cheddar is a variety of cheddar cheese that derives its name from the town of Cheddar in Somerset, England. It is characterized by its sharp, mature flavor and smooth, firm texture. Unlike its cousin, orange cheddar, white cheddar’s color is natural and uncolored. Its taste can vary from mild to extra sharp, depending on how long it has been aged. This cheese is a staple ingredient in a wide range of dishes, from sandwiches and macaroni to gourmet cheese platters. However, if you don’t have it on hand, there are suitable substitutes that can provide a similar flavor profile.

A Cheese Board of Substitutes For White Cheddar

  • Colby
  • Monterey Jack
  • Gouda
  • Provolone
  • Emmental
  • Gruyère
  • Mozzarella
  • Fontina
  • Swiss Cheese

Best Substitutes For White Cheddar

Choosing a substitute for white cheddar depends on the specific qualities you’re looking to replicate. Whether it’s the sharp flavor, the texture, or how the cheese melts, here are the best substitutes detailed in the following sections.

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Colby is a semi-hard cow’s milk cheese native to the United States, specifically Wisconsin. Its flavor is mild, somewhat close to the milder versions of white cheddar, which makes it a good substitute for dishes where a strong cheese flavor is not needed. It also has a similar firm texture that works well in recipes requiring sliced or shredded cheese.

Like white cheddar, Colby cheese is versatile in its uses. It works well in sandwiches, grated over salads, or melted into casseroles and macaroni. However, it doesn’t quite have the tang or intensity that white cheddar can deliver, so consider the overall taste profile of your dish before making the swap.

Monterey Jack

Monterey Jack is another American cheese that works as a great stand-in for white cheddar. Its creamy, delicate flavor is a bit more subtle than cheddar’s, but it melts beautifully, making it perfect for dishes like quesadillas, grilled cheese sandwiches, or anything else where gooey melted cheese is desired.

Although Monterey Jack might not have the same sharpness as an aged white cheddar, it does bring a slightly sweet and nutty flavor to the table. For those looking to add a little spice, Pepper Jack, a variant with hot peppers, can offer an exciting twist to your dishes.


Originating from the Netherlands, Gouda is a semi-hard cheese known for its rich, creamy, and slightly sweet flavor. Aged Gouda often develops caramel notes and a bit of sharpness that can mirror the depth of flavor in matured white cheddar.

Gouda melts exceptionally well, making it an excellent option for baked dishes, fondue, or even just topping a gourmet burger. It’s also a great addition to cheese platters and pairs beautifully with fruitsand crackers. However, keep in mind that the flavor of Gouda is unique, and while it provides a similar creaminess to white cheddar, its sweetness might give a slightly different flavor profile to your dish.

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Provolone is an Italian cheese known for its smooth, semi-hard texture and mild, slightly tangy flavor. It’s comparable to a mild white cheddar, making it a good substitute in recipes where a subtler cheese taste is needed.

Provolone cheese is versatile, it melts well, and its flavor shines through in both hot and cold dishes. It’s a classic choice in sandwiches and is frequently used in Italian cooking, specifically in lasagnas or melted atop chicken parmesan. Remember, though, that while provolone provides a similar texture and meltability to white cheddar, it lacks the distinctive sharpness that cheddar is known for.


Emmental, or Swiss cheese as it’s often known in North America, is a yellow, medium-hard cheese originating from Switzerland. It’s recognized by its characteristic holes or “eyes” and has a savory but mild taste. Its flavor can range from buttery to fruity, depending on its aging.

Emmental cheese melts beautifully and can provide a comparable texture to white cheddar in most recipes. It’s popularly used in fondue, sandwiches, and can add a distinctive touch to casseroles. If your recipe requires the cheese to melt in a certain way, Emmental could be a good swap for white cheddar.


Another Swiss cheese, Gruyère, is an excellent substitute for white cheddar, especially when you’re looking to mimic a more matured cheddar flavor. It’s a hard cheese known for its slightly sweet and nutty taste.

Gruyère is excellent in gratins, fondues, and quiches, thanks to its superior melting qualities. It also shines in sandwiches, especially the classic French Croque Monsieur. As Gruyère matures, it develops a more complex flavor profile, which can echo the nuanced taste of aged white cheddar.


Mozzarella is an Italian cheese traditionally made from buffalo milk, but most versions available today are made from cow’s milk. It has a soft, moist texture and a milky, delicate flavor. While it doesn’t have the same sharpness as white cheddar, its superior melting ability makes it a good substitute in many dishes.

This cheese is a staple in Italian cuisine, particularly in pizza and lasagna. Its mild flavor and excellent meltability make it a versatile cheese that can be used in a variety of dishes, from baked pasta to stuffed chicken recipes.

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Fontina is an Italian cow’s milk cheese. It’s semi-soft with a gentle hint of nuttiness and a somewhat earthy flavor. Its creaminess and great melting capability make it a fitting substitute for white cheddar.

Commonly used in pasta, risotto, and fondue, Fontina can also be a suitable swap for white cheddar in casseroles and sandwiches. Despite its subtle flavor difference, Fontina can provide a similar textural experience in your dishes.

Swiss Cheese

Swiss cheese is a generic term in North America for several related varieties of cheese which resemble the Swiss Emmental. It’s known for its mild flavor and distinct holes or “eyes.”

Like white cheddar, Swiss cheese is incredibly versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes. Its melting capacity is commendable, making it suitable for sandwiches, casseroles, and fondue. The mild and slightly sweet flavor of Swiss cheese is a good fit for dishes that require a less dominant cheese flavor.

Substitutes forWhite Cheddar: Nutritional Profile

The following table gives an overview of the nutritional profile of some common substitutes for white cheddar. These values are for a 1/4 cup serving:

SubstituteGlutenCaloriesFat (g)Carbs (g)Fiber (g)Protein (g)
Monterey JackGluten-free10670.307
Swiss CheeseGluten-free1118.81.508

Please note that these are estimated averages and the actual nutritional value may vary depending on the specific brand and variety of the cheese.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to finding the perfect substitute for white cheddar, it’s crucial to consider the dish you’re preparing and what characteristics of the cheese are most important for that recipe. Whether it’s the flavor, the melting point, or the texture, you’re likely to find a suitable replacement among these alternatives.

Remember, experimentation is key in cooking. Even if a substitute doesn’t perfectly mimic white cheddar, it might still add a unique twist to your dish that could make it even more delicious. So, don’t be afraid to try different substitutes and explore new flavors. Happy cooking!

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