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7 Tasty Hoop Cheese Substitutes: Tasty Twist Time

What’s the deal with hoop cheese? It’s not your everyday cheese. We gave a bunch of substitutes a try because, well, we were curious.

Our taste tests revealed some surprising winners. Some tasted just right, while others were a bit off the mark.

We all have had that moment. Standing in the grocery aisle, wondering what to grab.

This list is what we came up with after a lot of tasting. It’s our way of making that choice easier for you.


7 Easy Substitutes for Hoop Cheese

In case you’re unfamiliar with hoop cheese, it’s a common term for cheddar cheese that has been pressed into round or “hoop” shapes and then aged. It’s a staple in Southern cuisine and often served on its own as a snack.

But if you can’t get your hands on some good ol’ hoop cheese, here are 7 tasty substitutes to try:

SubstituteTasteTextureSuitable Dishes
Cheddar CheeseSharp, TangyFirmSandwiches, Mac and Cheese
Monterey JackMild, MellowSemi-SoftQuesadillas, Cheeseburgers
Colby CheeseMild, SweetSemi-HardGrilled Cheese, Casseroles
Gouda CheeseNutty, CreamySemi-SoftCheese Platters, Fondue
Havarti CheeseButtery, MildSemi-SoftMelted on Potatoes, Sandwiches
Swiss CheeseNutty, MellowFirmReubens, Quiches
Pepper Jack CheeseSpicy, TangySemi-SoftTacos, Nachos, Stuffed Peppers

1 – Cheddar Cheese

Cheddar cheese steps in as a solid hoop cheese stand-in. Its sharp taste mirrors hoop cheese’s rich flavor. We discovered its versatility across recipes. Melts well, making it perfect for grilled sandwiches. Crumbles for salads and toppings come easy with cheddar. It has a medium to hard texture, varying with age.

Use it in a 1:1 ratio for most hoop cheese recipes. We’ve tested it in mac ‘n cheese and found it stellar. If you’re itching for more info on swapping cheese types, peep this guide on Cheddar cheese alternatives. Cheddar proves itself in simplicity and availability. Find it at any grocery store nearby.

2 – Monterey Jack Cheese

For a milder flavor, try Monterey Jack cheese. This semi-soft cheese is a close alternative to hoop cheese. It’s less sharp than cheddar but still provides that creamy texture and tang.

We found this works best in recipes where hoop cheese is mixed with other ingredients or used as a topping. Throw it on your next pizza for an extra kick of flavor! You can also use it in a 1:1 ratio for recipes like cheese dips and casseroles.

If you’re intrigued by Monterey Jack cheese and seeking alternatives, this article dives into substitutes that are as captivating as a Netflix series.

3 – Colby Jack Cheese

Colby Jack cheese is a duo of Colby and Monterey Jack cheeses. It brings a unique twist with its marbled appearance. Perfect for those who enjoy a smooth texture with a mild flavor. We discovered it melts easily, ideal for quesadillas and cheeseburgers.

Use Colby Jack in a one-to-one swap in any hoop cheese recipe. It’s a hit in our homemade macaroni cheese. Love its gentle touch in every bite. Curious about more cheese options? Check out these substitutes for Colby Jack cheese.

4 – Gouda Cheese

Gouda cheese is a semi-hard cheese that provides a nutty, buttery flavor. It’s creamy and melts well, great for sandwiches or cheesy dips. We found it to be less tangy than cheddar but still flavorful.

Use Gouda in a 1:1 ratio for hoop cheese recipes that call for melting the cheese. It also makes a tasty addition to a cheese platter or as a topping for burgers. For more tasty Gouda options, check out these alternatives to Gouda cheese.

5 – Havarti Cheese

Let’s talk about Havarti cheese. It’s a Danish cow’s milk cheese that pairs well with mild flavors. We found its texture smooth and semi-soft, making it easy to spread on crackers or sandwiches.

Use it in recipes that call for sliced hoop cheese as a topping or filling. It adds both creamy and tangy notes. For more information on this versatile cheese, check out these alternatives to Havarti cheese.

6 – Swiss Cheese

We know what you’re thinking, “But doesn’t Swiss cheese have holes?”. Yes, but don’t let that deter you. Its mild yet nutty flavor makes a great substitute for hoop cheese in many dishes. It melts easily and pairs well with meats like ham or turkey.

Use it in recipes that call for melting the cheese or as a topping on sandwiches or burgers. For more reasons to love Swiss cheese, check out these alternatives.

7 – Pepper Jack Cheese

Last but certainly not least, we have Pepper Jack cheese. This spicy twist on Monterey Jack adds a kick to any dish that calls for hoop cheese. Its sharp flavor pairs well with meats and in dips.

Use it as a substitute in recipes that call for shredded hoop cheese like nachos or casseroles. It also makes a great addition to grilled sandwiches or burgers for a bit of heat. For more spicy cheese options, check out these alternatives to Pepper Jack cheese.