Beyond Mozzarella: 11 Other Cheeses for Your Pizza

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Add extra flavor to your pizza by combining mozzarella cheese with cheeses that have fruit, smoky, and grassy notes
Beyond Mozzarella: 11 Other Cheeses for Your Pizza

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Mozzarella aside, there are plenty of other cheeses that work well on pizza. While science may consider them second-best, we deem these other cheeses delicious, flavorful, and just plain great as pizza topping options.

If you want a saltier bite to accompany your pizza topped with sweet caramelized onions, try swapping the typical mozzarella for creamy gorgonzola. Additionally, don’t be afraid to blend flavors and cheeses to optimize meltability and taste. Mix mozzarella with pecorino, Gruyère, or fontina, which will ensure proper browning (thank you, mozzarella), but with an additional kick of flavor that mild-mannered mozzarella just doesn’t have.

The Daily Meal shares 12 cheeses you should consider topping your homemade pizza with. after you make your fresh pizza dough

Beyond Mozzarella: 11 Other Cheeses for Your Pizza

Beyond Mozzarella: 11 Other Cheeses for Your Pizza

Thinkstock

Mozzarella aside, there are plenty of other cheeses that work well on pizza. While science may consider them second-best, we deem these other cheeses delicious, flavorful, and just plain great as pizza topping options.

If you want a saltier bite to accompany your pizza topped with sweet caramelized onions, try swapping the typical mozzarella for creamy gorgonzola. Additionally, don’t be afraid to blend flavors and cheeses to optimize meltability and taste. Mix mozzarella with pecorino, Gruyère, or fontina, which will ensure proper browning (thank you, mozzarella), but with an additional kick of flavor that mild-mannered mozzarella just doesn’t have.

The Daily Meal shares 12 cheeses you should consider topping your homemade pizza with. after you make your fresh pizza dough

Chandoka

Chandoka

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Made with a mix of cow and goat milk, this cheese is mild and sweet with subtle tangy hints. An American cheese that is aged for one year, Chandoka goes well with salty toppings, for instance those called for by Craig Priebe’s Darkwing Duck Pizza recipe

Cheddar

Cheddar

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Cheddar cheese ranges from mild to sharp in flavor, with subtle fruity and tangy notes. When it comes to choosing Cheddar, the sharper the cheese the less meltable, so stick with mild Cheddars if you want to add some of this classic American-style cheese to your pizza. We suggest grating Cheddar in addition to the pecorino on top of this breakfast pizza.

Feta

Feta

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Feta has a high salinity and won’t melt into luxurious pools, so it is best to combine with another cheese, like mozzarella. Create a Mediterranean pizza with kalamata olives, fresh tomatoes, and peppers for a delicious pizza. 

Fontina

Fontina

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This Italian cow’s milk cheese has a bright grassy aroma. Try topping your next pizza with flavors that complement fontina’s distinct grassy flavor like bright fresh flavor of scallions, acidic sun dried tomatoes, or sweet caramelized onions, which aren’t overpowered by the strong flavor. 

Gorgonzola

Gorgonzola’s smooth texture and robust flavor gives it a rich, buttery, and salty bite. Add Gorgonzola to pizzas topped with sweet fall grapes or to a Buffalo chicken pizza, as an alternative to game day Buffalo wings.

Gruyère

Gruyère

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Gruyère is a hard yellow cheese from Switzerland, and while similar in flavor to Swiss cheese, it is firmer with an earthier flavor. Traditionally you would find Gruyère on tarte flambé, so it is not a stretch to imagine this cheese on a pizza. 

Parmigiano-Reggiano

Parmigiano-Reggiano

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Better than the flaked, processed Parmigiano-Reggiano you find in the shakers at pizza parlors, fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano can add lots of flavor to your pizza. Again, because it is sharp, Parmigiano-Reggiano doesn’t melt into the same gooey pools of cheese that mozzarella does, but in a blend it delivers lots of umami flavor to a pizza, as with this Shrimp Scampi Pizza.

Pecorino

Pecorino

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While pecorino has some of the same umami characteristics as Parmigiano-Reggiano, it is made from sheep milk rather than cow milk. This salty Italian cheese also fairs best in a blend of cheeses so its strong flavor does not overwhelm. It could easily be used in place of the Parmigiano-Reggiano on this Verduran pizza.

Provolone

Provolone

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Provolone is an Italian cheese with a mild, smoky flavor. It melts easily because, like mozzarella, it is a pulled and stretched cheese. Try adding provolone to your pizza topped with barbecue chicken or swap it for mozzarella on a traditional simple Margherita pizza.

Ricotta

Ricotta

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This Italian whey cheese is mild, has a lower salinity than many of the other cheeses on this list, but its texture means that it doesn’t melt into a smooth topping. Ricotta is very popular on sauceless, white pizzas and butternut squash tarte flambé — the“pizza” of France's Alsace region.

Stracciatella

Stracciatella

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This Italian Buffalo milk cheese is soft and runny. When mixed with cream and stretched, it forms rich, buttery, burrata cheese, which is essentially stracciatella encased in a mozzarella skin. Use this cheese fresh on top of pizzas by itself, as in  this burrata pizza recipe or blended with Parmigiano-Reggiano.