Skip to Content

Cheesy Delights: 5 Best Substitutes for Cheese Curds

Finding the perfect cheese curd substitute can feel like a mission impossible.

Good news: it’s totally doable. And we’re here to guide you through it.

Craving that gooey goodness in poutine or fresh salad?

We’ve been there. Cheese curds are great, but they’re not always around.

No need to hit the panic button. We’ve got you covered with some top-notch alternatives.

Stick with us, and you’ll never miss out on that cheesy experience again.

What are Cheese Curds?

what are cheese curds

If you are a fan of cheese, you probably sometimes wonder how cheese is made.

Cheese curds are typically a by-product of cheese production.

The curd is the white, rubbery mass forms when milk proteins separate from the liquid whey while making cheese.

This solid part can be eaten fresh or cooked to add extra flavor to other dishes.

Some types of cheese do not produce curd, so cheese producers will often use enzymes or acids to produce the same effect.

Some cultures enjoy eating fresh, soft curds regularly – in fact, some people who move from these areas to places where curds are less common find themselves craving the product.

People who enjoy crunchy snacks may also appreciate the unique texture of cheese curds.

Cheese curds are available in many grocery stores across Canada and can be sold without additional ingredients or preservatives.

A good idea for anyone interested is to visit a farm that produces cheese – this way; they can watch how fresh curd is made and purchase some afterward.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Cheese Curds

Although cheese curds are typically a by-product, many people enjoy eating them.

However, never fear if you can’t find cheese curds at your local store or in your area.

Some great substitutes may provide a similar taste and texture.

SubstituteKey CharacteristicsSubstitute Ratio
Cottage CheeseSoft and creamy texture, mild flavorUse as a 1:1 substitution for cheese curds
Ricotta CheeseCreamy and slightly grainy texture, mild flavorUse as a 1:1 substitution for cheese curds
Cream CheeseSmooth and spreadable texture, tangy flavorUse as a 1:1 substitution for cheese curds
Feta CheeseCrumbly texture, salty and tangy flavorUse as a 1:1 substitution for cheese curds
Paneer CheeseFirm and crumbly texture, mild and milky flavorUse as a 1:1 substitution for cheese curds

When looking for substitutes for cheese curds, consider the following options:

1 – Cottage Cheese

cottage cheese

Cottage cheese is a delicious, soft dairy product made from pasteurized cow’s milk.

Cottage cheese is a great source of protein and provides a good amount of calcium.

Cottage cheese is made by adding an acid to heated milk – this causes the curd, or substantial part of the milk, to separate from the whey.

If you have never tried cottage cheese before, you should consider trying it as a substitute for cheese curds.

It is a great, healthy snack option – and you may even prefer it to cheese curds.

When using cottage cheese as a substitute for cheese curds in a recipe, you will need to drain it overnight.

However, this is typically done with smaller curd products anyway.

2 – Ricotta Cheese

ricotta cheese

Ricotta cheese is traditionally made with sheep’s milk.

Ricotta cheese is an Italian soft, grainy cheese with a sweet, mild flavor and creamy texture.

In addition to being used in lasagna or other popular Italian dishes, ricotta can be added to salads for extra protein.

This cheese should not be confused with dry ricotta.

Dry ricotta cheese is a fine, grainy type of cheese often used to fill in ravioli or other pasta-based dishes.

Ricotta cheese may be a great alternative to cheese curds for those who prefer milder flavors.

In addition, it pairs well with many different spices and ingredients.

3 – Cream Cheese

cream cheese

Cream cheese is a soft, spreadable dairy product that may be used to replace cheese curds.

Although it does not contain the same texture or flavor as cheese curds, cream cheese is still popular.

Cream cheese may be combined with other ingredients to form spreads and dips, similar to those using cheese curds.

This is a staple item in many homes and is not difficult to come by at your local grocery store.

Cream cheese can be found both with and without other ingredients such as herbs or spices.

This means that you can use cream cheese to make everything from dips and spreads to baked goods.

4 – Feta Cheese

feta cheese

Another great substitute for cheese curds is feta cheese.

Feta is usually made with goat’s or sheep’s milk – although it may also be made with cow’s milk.

Feta is predominantly produced in Greece but can also be found in Bulgaria, France, Italy, Romania, and the United States.

Feta cheese contains a lot of character. It is crumbly in texture but also quite salty.

This makes it a great addition to different types of salads and appetizers.

It also melts very easily, which is a great substitute for cheese curds in baked goods such as quiches and pasta dishes.

5 – Paneer Cheese

paneer cheese

Paneer cheese is another type of Indian cheese that can be used to replace cheese curds.

It has a mild, slightly sweet flavor and semi-firm yet crumbly texture like feta cheese.

It is similar in taste and texture to ricotta, but it may be beneficial to use paneer cheese when you are unsure how your recipe will turn out.

Paneer is the cheese that many Indians grew up eating, and its flavor will not overwhelm most dishes.


Cheese curds are delicious – but there are plenty of alternatives out there for those who are new to the world of cheese.

Cottage cheese, ricotta, cream cheese, and paneer can all be used in place of curds when you need a healthy alternative.

Although they do not have the same texture or flavor, these cheeses can make great substitutes when you are unsure how your dish will turn out.

Remember that the best cheese substitutes are those you enjoy eating most.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Cheese Curds

Searching for the perfect alternatives to cheese curds? Your quest ends here! Explore our curated list of the 5 best substitutes that seamlessly replicate the deliciousness of cheese curds in various dishes.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 4 Servings


  • Cottage Cheese
  • Ricotta Cheese
  • Cream Cheese
  • Feta Cheese
  • Paneer Cheese


  • Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  • Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Keyword substitutes for cheese curds
Did you make this recipe?Mention @AmericasRestaurant or tag #americasrestaurant!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating