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20 Best Goat Cheese Substitutes

Need recommendations for a great goat cheese substitute? We’ve got you! Goat’s cheese is a popular ingredient in many cuisines because of its creamy texture and sharp flavor.

If you are one of the people who are not a fan of its distinct flavor or high-fat content, worry no more! We compiled a list of goat’s cheese substitutes to suit everyone’s tastes and dietary preferences.

small log of goat cheese next to cutting board served with crackers topped with white cheese and jam

What is goat cheese? 

Goat cheese, also known as chèvre, is a dairy product made from goat’s milk. It has a wide range of flavors and textures, from crumbly to creamy, young to old, mild to sour. It contains a flavorful fatty acid called capric acid, which aids in the formation of healthy gut bacteria for humans. Not just that, people who are lactose intolerant may find it simpler to digest goat’s milk products than cow’s milk due to its low lactose content. 

The Best Goat Cheese Substitutes

For people who do not like or cannot find goat cheese, below is a list of the best substitutes for goat cheese for you to try in your recipes. Note, however, that these may or may not work depending on how the goat cheese is used. 

Now, let’s explore and find the best substitute for goat cheese so you won’t panic the next time you can’t find one in your fridge. Try one of these ingredients to effectively replace goat cheese in your recipe.

1. Feta Cheese

Feta cheese, compared to goat’s cheese, has a stronger and saltier taste. It has a rich and soft texture while having a crumbly consistency. Because of these characteristics, it is a good crumbled goat cheese substitute for salads and pizzas.

It is a great substitute for firm goat’s cheese in sandwiches, salads, and omelets. You may effectively replace goat cheeses with this one, especially in Greek dishes. Feta cheese is famous in Greece for its soft, white texture. Hence, it is widely used in Greek and Mediterranean cuisine, from appetizers to main courses to desserts. 

Lastly, this is perfect for people who are highly conscious of their diet, as it gives extra flavor to their dishes without compromising their healthy diet.

2. Labneh

Labneh, a Mediterranean yogurt cheese, is a great sub for goat’s cheese, especially when used as a spread. 

This soft cheese is produced from goat’s milk yogurt by straining the excess liquid. Sometimes, it is also made from cow’s milk yogurt. It has the same flavor as goat cheese, which is tangy, and it also has a thick texture. Most people describe it as a creamy Middle Eastern cheese that lies between cream cheese and Greek yogurt.

3. Ricotta cheese

Ricotta cheese, like Labneh, can substitute goat cheese when used as a spread because of its loose texture. When compared to goat’s cheese, both have a similar texture but different taste. Ricotta cheese is also a good low-fat goat’s cheese substitute.

This Italian cheese is made from cow’s or sheep’s milk. It is a fresh cheese made from the water separated from the cream during the process of separating cream to make cheese. It is soft and white in color.

In terms of its taste and nutritional value, it is slightly sweet and very low in fat, making it popular for making Italian desserts. Some examples are cheesecakes, cookies, and even pasta and pizzas.

4. Blue Cheese

Blue cheese is the perfect sub for goat’s cheese because they are highly similar in taste. The only difference is that blue cheese is creamier and softer but still is very flavorful. Remember that the taste and smell of this cheese will get stronger as it gets older, just like goat milk and cheese. 

So, if you want to copy goat’s cheese’s taste exactly, you might want to get a fresh blue cheese rather than an aged blue cheese. This is because the latter one is richer compared to goat’s cheese.

This cheese is perfect for pairing with fruits, crackers, or wine. As you can observe, it has blue, bluish, or bluish spots. This component is responsible for giving it the characteristic flavor it produces. It also has a distinct smell and taste that not everyone might appreciate.

You may want to skip this substitute if you do not like smelly cheese.

5. Fromage Blanc

Fromage blanc, among all the substitutes, has the most similar consistency and aroma to goat cheese. Even though its taste and texture are comparable to goat cheese, because of its smooth, creamy, and silky texture, it is often mistaken for cream cheese. 

This is an acceptable replacement for goat’s cheese, but it may not be the choice all the time. This cheese is fatter and sweeter, which may ultimately affect the taste of the dishes you are preparing.

Due to its high water content, chances are high that it spoils faster than the regular standard goat’s cheese.

This cheese is often used as a spread, hors d’oeuvre, or main course. Sometimes it is also served with fruits, which vegetarians enjoy.

6. Manchego

Manchego has neither a smooth nor a solid texture that is very similar to goat’s cheese. It has a very similar taste to traditional goat cheese. The flavor it produces is nutty, deep, and has an aged flavor. It also has a fruity and acidic aroma that is distinct to this type of cheese.

Manchego is usually served with sun-dried tomatoes, crusty bread, olives, and red wine or dry sherry.

7. Queso Añejo

If you are cooking dishes and want that aged goat cheese effect, then the Queso Añejo cheese packs might be what you need. 

It has a sharp, acidic flavor and a hard, crumbly cheese consistency that will take your taste buds to a whole different level. This is perfect if you want a good substitute that is also something different from what you usually prepare.

This Mexican cheese is perfect when preparing food snacks for an afternoon family day. It is a good cheese to be used in baking or grilling, usually sprinkled on top of or stuffed into Mexican foods like tacos, enchiladas, and burritos.

8. Halloumi

Halloumi cheese is the best goat’s cheese alternative for salads and veggie intakes. In terms of its taste, it has a salty, briny, tartness to it, making it a great pairing for recipes with warm goat’s cheese. However, its texture is a little bit hard and chewy, which is different from traditional goat’s cheese.

This type of cheese is made from a mixture of sheep’s milk and goat’s milk, and sometimes cow’s milk, too. One property it has that is different from other types of cheese is having a high melting point. Because of this, it is an excellent cheese choice for frying and grilling.

9. Parmesan

Parmesan cheese is the best substitute for goat’s cheese when you are after its flavor. It is just perfect! It has the same salty, nutty, and tangy taste. With regards to its texture, it also has a hard and crumbly texture that is quite similar to goat’s cheese.

Remember, however, that substituting goat’s cheese with parmesan cheese may not work in all recipes. It may only be used if the recipe being followed is not entirely dependent on the goat’s cheese. Since parmesan’s flavor is not too strong, it will not drastically change the flavor.

10. Gruyere

Gruyere is the goat’s cheese alternative you are looking for if you are on the hunt for a substitute that does not have a strong flavor. It highly replicates the aroma and texture of mature goat’s cheese. It also has a slightly salty taste and a mild aroma, similar to goat’s cheese but also with a sweet, milky, and mild flavor. 

With these characteristics, Gruyere becomes the substitute of choice for any dish that requires goat’s cheese.

11. Emmental

If you dislike the strong taste of goat’s cheese, Emmental cheese is the right substitute for you because it has a similar texture but with a more pleasant taste. 

Emmental cheese’s taste can be described as salty yet mild and flavorful. Its texture, on the other hand, is fatty, hard, and chewy, which means it can be added to any cooked dish. This is the choice when you are in dire need of crumbled goat cheese but have not been able to stock up.

Emmental cheese is an excellent replacement for goat’s cheese in savory baked food products, dishes, or goods that are not supposed to have melted cheese products.

12. Tofu

Tofu might just be the best vegan goat’s cheese substitute out there because of its crumbly texture, which is similar to mature goat’s cheese. When it comes to flavor, however, it might lack the milk-like flavor that a standard goat’s cheese has. But still, it is the best choice for those who are on a diet, as it has fewer calories and fat content compared to goat’s cheese.

Since it is made from soybeans, people who are on a diet and who want to consume nutritious yet delicious food often switch to tofu. Studies also show that eating tofu is highly beneficial for people with neurasthenia (physical or mental fatigue) and malnutrition.

13. Cream Cheese

Cream cheese is a good substitute for goat’s cheese because it has the same creamy texture despite the fact that other kinds of cream cheese have a stiffer consistency. However, it may not be a great substitute for people on a diet since it has a higher fat content. In terms of its taste, goat’s cheese has a more tangy taste compared to cream cheese. Adding a little Greek yogurt can help with this and also smoothen the texture. 

Replacing goat’s cheese with cream cheese is perfect for pasta recipes, as stuffing, or as a spread. It is also best with desserts like cheesecakes, breads, drinks, and other dishes.

14. Mascarpone

Mascarpone cheese has this creamy and smooth texture, making it a good substitute for goat’s cheese, especially in dessert recipes. Having known that mascarpone has this sweet flavor compared to the standard goat’s cheese, it may not be a great substitute for unsweetened dishes. It also has this creamy, fatty, silky smooth, soft texture, but compared to goat’s cheese, it is not as sticky. 

Mascarpone cheese is commonly used in pasta sauces, cheesecakes, tiramisu, bread, cookies, and as a topping for fruit. Similar to other substitutes, mascarpone may be DIY-ed at home.

15. Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is a great replacement for goat’s cheese because it has the same creamy and slightly salty flavor, and its nutritional values are remarkable as well. 

However, you might need extra blending to achieve a similar texture. To do this, mix cottage cheese in a blender or food processor until completely creamy. Let it sit in the refrigerator for hours, or overnight, if possible. This will allow the cheese to solidify. 

Cottage cheese as fresh cheese is usually added to foods like salads, fruits, toast, granola, or as a flavoring. Some people also use it as a substitute for mayonnaise.

16. Camembert

This cheese offers a smooth, unctuous, and creamy texture similar to goat’s cheese. Camembert is considered to be goat’s cheese’s twin and is an ideal substitute because of its mild and tangy flavor.

Importantly, if the recipe you’re following calls for melting and bubbling the cheese, then it is a great replacement.

Additionally, it has the same nutrition as goat’s cheese. It has fat, protein, fiber, monounsaturated fat, and polyunsaturated fat. This makes it a good alternative, aside from the indistinguishable taste and texture.

17. Boursin

Boursin cheese is a perfect option for individuals who do not like the taste of goat’s cheese since it does not have the pungent flavor and aroma.

Similar to fresh goat’s cheese, Boursin has a creamy and soft texture, which makes it easily spreadable on toast and crackers. To make sure that you are purchasing authentic Boursin cheese, look for the label “All natural Gournay cheese.” Lastly, this type of cheese comes in various flavors.

18. Queso Fresco

Queso fresco, also called queso blanco or white cheese is a fresh cow’s milk cheese from Mexico. It has a salty, milky, tangy flavor and a crumbly texture that resembles aged goat’s cheese’s consistency. Despite the crumbly aspect, it still remains creamy and moist. People like to describe it as a firm and fresh cheese. 

Queso fresco is topped over soups, refried beans, salads, tacos, enchiladas, and other dishes. Sometimes, people like to crumble it on veggie dishes like soups, salads, or eggs.

19. Paneer

Paneer, an Indian cottage cheese, is made from cow’s milk or buffalo’s milk. It is considered a non-aged, non-melting soft cheese made by clumping milk with a fruit-or vegetable-derived acid like lemon juice. Although it is non-aged, it is similar to aged goat’s cheese in terms of its consistency.

With regards to texture, it has a chewy texture and is quite dense compared to goat cheese. Because of the same texture that they have, it is the best alternative to goat’s cheese in immediate situations.

It is often eaten for breakfast or as a main course in India. Taste-wise, it resembles goat’s cheese but with a more milky and fresh flavor.

20. Greek Yogurt

Because of its smooth consistency and tangy flavor, Greek yogurt is an excellent substitute for goat cheese. It works great for baking recipes and dishes that do not require strong-tasting cheese.

This is also perfect for people who watch their calorie count as this replacement has fewer calories. Not only that, but it is also might work for lactose-intolerant people. Though it still has lactose, Greek yogurt may still be enjoyed by them because of its unique makeup. It has less lactose compared to other dairy products because of the straining process it goes through and the fermentation process.

How to Pick the Best Goat Cheese Substitute

When choosing the best goat cheese substitute, select an ingredient depending on the recipe you’re following. This is because an excellent substitute for one recipe may not work for the other. 

To make life easier for you, we grouped the list of substitutes above based on what you need.

Best Goat Cheese Substitutes for Flavor and Taste

Try these great fresh goat cheese substitutes if you want to recreate the flavor but are not concerned about the texture:

  • Feta Cheese
  • Labneh
  • Ricotta cheese
  • Blue Cheese
  • Fromage Blanc
  • Manchego
  • Queso Añejo
  • Halloumi
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Gruyere
  • Emmental
  • Tofu

Goat Cheese Substitutes for Texture & Consistency

Below is a list of fresh goat cheese replacements you can use that have the identical texture of goat cheese but have a milder and sweeter taste:

  • Cream Cheese
  • Mascarpone
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Camembert
  • Boursin
  • Queso Fresco
  • Paneer
  • Greek Yogurt

A Final Word about Goat Cheese Substitutes

To substitute goat cheese with other ingredients can be tricky. So when choosing a goat’s cheese substitute, always pick one that your recipe calls for.

The taste and flavor of the goat’s cheese substitute may be comparable when cooked, but the texture and consistency may be different. Remember that hot recipes make the cheese creamier, while cold recipes help the cheese keep its form and properties.

More Ingredient Substitutes

Natalia | Flavorful home
Natalia is a recipe developer, food photographer, and home cook. She started Flavorful Home to document her recipes and share home cooking tips. She loves creating flavorful and nutritious meals while keeping the cooking process simple and joyful!
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