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Elevate Your Dishes: 5 Substitutes for White American Cheese

When it comes to melting into a rich, savory ooze or lending that creamy, salty kick to a classic reuben, there’s little the staple ‘white American cheese’ can’t do.

Yet, for home cooks and foodies looking to broaden their culinary horizons, this ubiquitous cheese might be due for a switch-out. In this detailed exploration, we’re going to uncover five exquisite substitutes that could transform your dishes from mundane to magnificent.

So, why depart from the familiar, soft texture of white American cheese? It’s about enhancement.

Whether you’re seeking bolder flavors, healthier alternatives, or simply a change of pace, these substitutes offer a fresh canvas to innovate in the kitchen.

substitutes for white american cheese

🙋‍♀️ 5 Substitutes for White American Cheese

Here are some commonly used substitutes for White American Cheese:

1- Parmesan Cheese


Parmesan, the culinary doyen, isn’t just for sprinkling atop a steaming bowl of pasta; it’s a white American cheese understudy in waiting. Its umami-rich flavor, nutty notes, and granular texture make it a formidable candidate.

Parmesan doesn’t melt quite like American cheese — it browns, crisps, and unctuously clings to pastas. It elevates omelettes, adds depth to risottos, and gives a sophisticated edge to fondue.

Sprinkle sparingly for a hint of flavor or layer it lavishly for a taste of Italy. Add at the end of cooking for the most pronounced taste, as prolonged heat can dull its character.

Top a burger with melted parmesan and sautéed mushrooms for an earthy umami bomb. Combine with mozzarella for a balanced, gooey texture in grilled cheese sandwiches.

2 – Mozzarella Cheese


This ‘pizza cheese’ brings a gentle, milky flavor with the ability to melt into stringy, dramatic tendrils in the heat.

Mozzarella isn’t just for pizza. Think creamy, indulgent pasta bakes, or comforting quesadillas. Just be wary of its high moisture content — use a low-moisture variety for sandwich melts or you’ll end up with a soggy bottom.

Use in abundance to make the most of its distinctive texture, but don’t brown it too much; you want that iconic stretch. Add it earlier in dishes that require longer cooking times.

Pair it with sharp cheddars for a balanced mac and cheese, or alongside provolone in a turkey and avocado panini for a sumptuously gooey interior.

3 – Provolone Cheese


With a flavor profile that tiptoes between mild and sharp, Provolone’s innate creaminess and versatility are often overshadowed by more popular choices.

Provolone’s gentle character means it’s good company for a vast array of dishes. From your Philadelphia cheesesteaks to upping the ante in casseroles, its meltability knows no bounds.

Layer it in generous amounts and watch it ooze into a puddle of deliciousness. It benefits from being along for the entire cooking process, as it requires time to soften and integrate fully.

Combine with Swiss in a French onion soup for a more robust melange, or add a slice to your next turkey burger to keep things juicy and flavorful.

4 – Feta Cheese


Feta’s tangy bite and crumbly texture might seem out of place in a world accustomed to creamier, melty cheeses. But give it a try, and you might be surprised.

Feta brings a delightful contrast to warm, savory dishes like stuffed peppers and lends a creamy zing to soups and salads. Just be mindful — it doesn’t melt, it just softens with heat.

A little goes a long way with feta, especially considering its potent flavor. Add it at the last minute to warm dishes, just enough to soften slightly.

Mix feta into meatballs for a Mediterranean twist, or crumble it over a warmed pita bread before drizzling with honey for a sweet and savory delight.

5 – Ricotta Cheese

Ricotta, the unsung hero of the cheese world, plays a quiet supporting role. Its creamy, slightly sweet profile can add an ethereal lightness to your dishes.

Ricotta excels in the layered, decadent domain of lasagnas and cannolis, but its grace extends to more unexpected allies like pancakes and even smoothies.

Ricotta’s gentle flavor makes it an ideal partner in crime for lasagnas, raviolis, and stuffed shells. It also adds a subtle richness to cakes, pancakes, and crepes.

Use as much ricotta as you please; its mildness won’t overpower other flavors. Add at the beginning of cooking for dishes that require a longer cook time, or at the end for lighter fare.

Parmesan Cheese Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Parmesan Cheese Grilled Cheese Sandwich

A crispy and savory grilled cheese sandwich made with shredded Parmesan cheese, buttery bread, and optional fillings like tomato, bacon, or ham.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 2 sandwiches


  • Sliced bread white or whole wheat (4 slices)
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese 1/2 cup
  • Butter 4 tablespoons
  • Optional: sliced tomato cooked bacon, thinly sliced ham


  • Heat a skillet or griddle over medium heat.
  • Butter one side of each slice of bread.
  • Place one slice of bread butter-side down on the skillet.
  • Sprinkle shredded Parmesan cheese generously over the bread.
  • Add any optional fillings on top of the cheese.
  • Place the second slice of bread on top, butter-side up.
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until the bread is golden brown and the cheese is melted.
  • Remove from the skillet, slice if desired, and serve hot.
Keyword Parmesan Cheese Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Did you make this recipe?Mention @CooksCrafter or tag #CooksCrafter!
5 from 4 votes (3 ratings without comment)
Recipe Rating


Sunday 17th of March 2024

I appreciate how simple and straightforward the ingredients list is. It makes this recipe accessible and perfect for a quick lunch or dinner option.


Sunday 17th of March 2024

Love the versatility of using Parmesan as a substitute. It adds a delicious tanginess to my sandwiches that I can't get enough of.