Every Kind of Cheese, Ranked from Ew to OMG

The hardest thing we've ever done

It’s no secret that cheese is the best food in the history of the universe, but not all cheeses are created equal. Some are life-changing (oh hey, fresh mozzarella) while others are lame (ahem, cottage cheese). So we decided to make a definitive ranking of 34 kinds.

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34. American

Makes a passable grilled cheese if you’re at a diner and it’s 4 a.m. That’s about it.


33. Cottage Cheese

Huh? We were so bored we fell asleep.

Ron's Wisconsin Cheese

32. Limburger

Call us crazy, but we don’t want our charcuterie board smelling like feet.

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31. Camembert

…Or ammonia.

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30. Stilton

…Or an old gym bag.

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29. Gorgonzola

Fine, we’ll eat it on a salad if there’s no feta.

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28. Swiss

We can eat twice as much because of the holes, right?

27. Humboldt Fog

Don’t worry: It smells worse than it tastes.

26. Roquefort

Amazing in small doses.


25. Cream Cheese

If it’s slathered on a bagel, we’re in.


24. Parmesan

On every bowl of pasta forever, please.

ricotta stuffed pasta shells
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23. Ricotta

On its own, yawn. In pasta? YEP.

cannoli stuffed with mascarpone
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22. Mascarpone

Ditto, but with cannoli.

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21. Gouda

Ehh. We’ll eat it on a cheese plate, but we’re not staying up all night thinking about it.

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20. Feta

With watermelon? Yes, please.

19. Monterey Jack

Making all of our quesadilla dreams come true.

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18. Muenster

We’re suckers for those little red edges.

chevre french goat cheese
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17. Chèvre

Goat cheese instantly makes everything fancy.

16. Havarti

Dill is optional (but highly recommended).

15. Taleggio

Fontina’s smoother (but slightly smellier) sister.

shredded jack cheese
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14. Colby

When you can’t decide between Swiss and cheddar. #Cheeseproblems.

13. Provolone

On every sandwich for the rest of our lives, please.

12. Gruyère

The tasty star of our fondue parties.

11. Pecorino Romano

You haven’t lived until you’ve eaten cacio e pepe smothered with Pecorino Romano. You just haven’t.

10. Fontina

Mmm, the meltiest.

9. Grana Padano

It’s Parmesan’s super-classy cousin.

8. Jarlsberg

Like Swiss, but a million times more flavorful.

baked brie
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7. Brie

Baked: the greatest holiday recipe that we secretly eat all year.


6. Cotija

Más tacos, por favor.

5. Asiago

Melt it, eat it cold, shred it on bread and bake it…this cheese is basically perfect.

4. Manchego

Slice it thin and pair it with fruit--it’s pretty much the best summer snack ever.


3. Cheddar

The sharper the better. Especially on BECs.

margharita pizza with mozarella
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2. Mozzarella

Somewhere between slice two and slice three is our happy place.

1. Burrata

Hands down, the best food in the universe. Now if you’ll excuse us, we have some night cheese to work on.

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Freelance Editor

From 2015-2020 Lindsay Champion held the role of Food and Wellness Director. She continues to write for PureWow as a Freelance Editor.