Gruyere cheese is a semi-hard Swiss cheese that's rich, creamy, nutty and slightly salty. So when finding a substitute for gruyere cheese, we want to try to match the texture and flavor profile.
Below you will find six great alternatives to gruyere cheese that meet both of those requirements as well as a few cheesy recipes you will want to make!
6 Alternatives to Gruyere Cheese
A common alternative to gruyere cheese, Jarlsberg is a pale yellow, semi-firm cow’s milk cheese that originated from Norway. Jarlsberg has the characteristics of Swiss Emmental cheese and dutch gouda and is often on charcuterie boards and in sandwiches.
Jarlsberg is a staple at most delis and sells as a wedge, shredded, as well as in slices. Because it melts well, Jarlsberg is best in baked dishes such as casseroles, quiches and frittatas to give an extra boost to the texture and flavor. It is also great in pasta dishes, soups, sauces and dips.
Unlike most cheeses, Jarlsberg freezes for up to six months. Just make sure to thaw it in the refrigerator before using it! Since freezing can cause it to become brittle and crumbly, it is best to melt it into dishes after thawing versus eating it raw.
Here are a few delicious recipes you can try using Jarlsberg cheese as a substitute for Gruyere cheese:
- Funeral Sandwiches (Hot Ham N’ Cheese Sliders)
- Olive Garden's Clam Stuffed Mushrooms
- Mini Cubano Sandwich Skewers
Emmental cheese (also known as Emmenthal, Emmentaler, and Emmenthaler), is a semi-hard, pale yellow cow’s milk cheese from Switzerland. It is most distinguishable by its large and irregular holes, larger than those of typical swiss cheese.
Depending on its maturity, the taste can range from mild and buttery and full-flavored and fruity. The texture of the body is firm and dense, but unlike some other cheeses, the rind is hard and inedible.
Depending on its age and where it's made, the taste can vary slightly. Emmental that is aged for at least eight months tends to be nuttier and stronger in flavor, while Emmental that is aged for at least 12 months is more complex and tangy. It freezes for up to three months without much of an effect on its flavor or texture.
Emmental melts well and is often an ingredient in cheese fondue. It also does well in dishes such as gratins, casseroles, pastas or in my egg bites. In addition to a substitute for gruyere cheese, it is often a substitute for recipes that require Swiss cheese such as sandwiches or on a cheese platter.
If you’re searching for Emmental for your next recipe, you can find it in specialty stores or supermarkets. The price tag can range from moderate to expensive.
Here are a few recipes you can use with Emmental:
- Grilled Cheese Sandwich W/ Cream Cheese, Roasted Peppers & Basil
- Starbucks Copycat Egg Bites Recipe
- Individual Charcuterie Cups (Jar-Cuterie)
Raclette, also known as swiss raclette, is native to the Swiss Alps but also produced in the U.S. The name comes from the French word racler, which means “to scrape.” Raclette is another cow’s milk cheese with a semi-hard, smooth and creamy texture and an ivory to light yellow color.
Raclette has small irregular holes, a floral aroma, and generally a nutty, spicy, and fruity flavor (although this varies based on where it's produced). However, while the flavor properties are similar to Gruyere, the texture of an aged Gruyere is more earthy and grainy.
Similar to Emmental, Raclette melts exceptionally and is traditionally served in fondues or melted and scraped over boiled potatoes. It is also delicious in grilled cheese sandwiches, pastas, and casseroles. Raclette also freezes for up to three months without having much of an effect on the flavor or texture.
If you’re looking for Raclette, you can usually find it in specialty stores and markets that carry European cheeses. However, it can be pretty expensive.
Here are a few recipes to try using Raclette as a substitute for gruyere:
- Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese Casserole With Cheddar and Gruyère Recipe
- Puff Pastry Egg Tarts With Honey Dijon Sauce
- Hasselback Potato Gratin Recipe
Originating in the Netherlands, Gouda is a cow’s milk cheese that starts out semi-firm, but becomes very hard as it ages. With a flavor that can range from mildly sweet and buttery to nutty and caramelized, Gouda makes an excellent substitute for gruyere cheese.
Gouda has a pale yellow to deep orange color and is often found in sandwiches and on charcuterie boards. An aged gouda also pairs quite well with wine!
Depending on its age, the flavor of Gouda can vary quite significantly. The longer it ages, the more intense the flavors become. Therefore, it is important to keep age in mind when using it as a substitute.
Young Gouda is ideal in sandwiches or when making baked dishes such as macaroni and cheese, quiches, and casseroles. On the other hand, aged gouda is best in dishes that do not require melting such as on a cheeseboard or grating over pasta.
Aged gouda should not be frozen, but young gouda can be frozen for up to two months when stored properly. However, freezing gouda may change the texture and flavor. Therefore once frozen it is best to only use it in dishes where it will be melted.
Here are a few recipes where Gouda would be a great substitute for Gruyere cheese:
- Cheesy Garlic Italian "Dunkers" (Using Pizza Dough)
- Ham and Gruyere Quiche
- Gluten-Free Gruyere Cheese Puffs
- Cheesy Potato Croquettes
Made exclusively from unpasteurized cow’s milk in the French alps, Beaufort is a hard cheese with a very unique aroma and buttery, caramel flavor. It is very similar to gruyere cheese (with the exception of the holes) and makes an excellent substitute.
The color of its interior ranges from pale white to pale yellow depending on the time of year it is produced as well as where it is produced. You can find it online with dealers that specialize in French cheese such as Fromages.com or even on Amazon.com.
Because it melts easily, Beaufort is a great substitute for gruyere in dishes such as fondue, toasted cheese dishes, tarts, or sliced on warm sandwiches. It also pairs well with white wine as well as fish, especially salmon. Beaufort freezes for up to eight months. However, freezing it will cause it to dry out and lose some of its flavor.
Here are a few recipes you can try using Beaufort cheese:
- Olive Garden’s Clam Stuffed Mushrooms
- Baked Caramelized Onion Dip With Gruyere Cheese
- Homemade Cheez-Its
Similar to Beaufort, it originates in the mountains of France and is one of the region’s most popular cheeses.
Comté generally has a semi-hard texture and a pale yellow color. However, depending on its age, the texture and taste can range. Younger Comté cheese has a texture that can range from supple and grainy and milky, fresh flavor. On the other hand, aged Comté has a dense and firm texture and a flavor that is nutty, smoky, fruity, and sweet. Comté’s flavor also varies depending on what time of year it is produced: Winter Comté is mild and milky, while Summer Comté is more earthy.
Young Comté is a great melting cheese and is great when blended with Emmental to make fondue. It is also great in mac and cheese, grilled cheese sandwiches and omelets. Since aged Comté is harder and doesn’t melt as well, it does better grated over casseroles and vegetables. It is also a great addition to a cheese platter!
Here are a few recipes where you can use Comté as a substitute for Gruyere cheese:
- Caramelized Onion, Mustard, and Gruyere Grilled Cheese
- Herby French Omelette
- Caramelized Shallot And Gruyere Cheese Fondue
Here are some other cheesy recipes you'll love!
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