The 10 Best Cheeses for Eggplant Parmesan (+7 Alternatives)

If you’re a fan of Italian cuisine, you’ve likely enjoyed a delicious serving of eggplant parmesan at some point.

This classic dish is beloved for its savory layers of breaded eggplant, tomato sauce, and of course, melted cheese.

But with so many cheese options available, it can be difficult to choose the best one for your eggplant parmesan.

In this article, we’ll explore the top ten cheeses that make for the perfect eggplant parmesan, as well as seven alternatives that are sure to please any cheese lover.

So, whether you’re a seasoned pro in the kitchen or just starting out, let’s discover the best cheese for eggplant parmesan and how to make this dish a crowd-pleaser every time.

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cheesy Eggplant Parmesan

How to Pick the Right Cheese for Eggplant Parmesan

When it comes to making a mouthwatering eggplant parmesan, choosing the right cheese is crucial. Here are some factors to consider when selecting the perfect cheese for your dish:

Flavor

  • Eggplant parmesan is a flavorful dish, so it’s important to choose a cheese that complements the other ingredients.
  • Mild cheeses like mozzarella, provolone, and fontina are good options as they don’t overpower the dish’s other flavors.
  • For a more intense flavor, consider using aged cheeses like Parmesan or Romano.

Texture

  • The texture of the cheese will affect the overall mouthfeel of your eggplant parmesan.
  • Cheeses that melt well, like mozzarella, are a good choice as they create a smooth, creamy texture.
  • Harder cheeses like Parmesan or Romano can be grated and added to the dish in small amounts for added flavor and texture.
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Melting Properties

  • Some cheeses melt better than others, and this can affect the overall consistency of your eggplant parmesan.
  • Cheeses that melt easily, like mozzarella, are ideal for creating a gooey, stringy texture.
  • Cheeses that don’t melt as easily, like Parmesan or Romano, can be added to the dish in small amounts and baked until crispy.

Common Types of Cheese Used in Eggplant Parmesan

  • Mozzarella cheese is the most commonly used cheese in eggplant parmesan as it melts well and has a mild flavor.
  • Parmesan and Romano cheese are also frequently used for their distinct flavor and texture.
  • Ricotta cheese can be used to add creaminess to the dish, while feta cheese can add a salty tang.

By considering these factors, you can choose the best cheese for your eggplant parmesan based on your personal preferences and desired outcome.

The 10 Best Cheeses for Eggplant Parmesan

Fresh Mozzarella
Source: seriouseats.com

Now that we’ve covered the key factors to consider when selecting cheese for eggplant parmesan, let’s dive into the ten best cheeses to use in this classic dish:

Mozzarella cheese

  • The most popular cheese for eggplant parmesan due to its mild flavor and excellent melting properties.
  • Can be used in both shredded and sliced forms.
  • Creates a creamy and gooey texture when melted.

Parmesan cheese

  • A hard, aged cheese that adds a sharp, nutty flavor to the dish.
  • Best when grated and used in combination with other cheeses like mozzarella.
  • Can be sprinkled on top of the dish for added texture.

Romano cheese

  • A cheese that is similar to Parmesan but with a more pungent flavor.
  • Adds a slightly tangy and salty taste to the dish.
  • Best when grated and used in combination with other cheeses like mozzarella.

Asiago cheese

  • A semi-hard cheese with a nutty, buttery flavor.
  • Adds depth to the dish and a slight sharpness.
  • Best when grated and used in combination with other cheeses like mozzarella.
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Provolone cheese

  • A semi-hard cheese with a mild, buttery flavor.
  • Has a smooth texture and melts well.
  • Adds a slight tang to the dish.

Fontina cheese

  • A semi-soft cheese with a mild, nutty flavor.
  • Melts well and creates a creamy texture.
  • Adds a subtle sweetness to the dish.

Gruyere cheese

  • A hard cheese with a distinct nutty, earthy flavor.
  • Adds complexity to the dish.
  • Melts well and creates a creamy texture.

Ricotta cheese

  • A creamy, fresh cheese that adds richness to the dish.
  • Can be used as a layer between the eggplant slices.
  • Best when combined with other cheeses like mozzarella.

Feta cheese

  • A crumbly, salty cheese that adds a tangy taste to the dish.
  • Best when sprinkled on top of the dish as a finishing touch.

Pecorino cheese

  • A hard, aged cheese with a sharp, salty flavor.
  • Adds complexity to the dish.
  • Best when grated and used in combination with other cheeses like mozzarella.

By using any of these ten cheeses in your eggplant parmesan recipe, you can elevate the dish and create a unique and delicious flavor profile.

7 Alternative Cheeses for Eggplant Parmesan

Monterey Jack

While the ten cheeses we’ve covered so far are the most commonly used in eggplant parmesan, there are several alternatives that can also be used to add a unique twist to the dish. Here are seven alternative cheeses to consider:

Monterey Jack cheese

  • A mild, creamy cheese that melts well.
  • Can be used in combination with other cheeses like mozzarella.

Cheddar cheese

  • A sharp, tangy cheese that adds a bold flavor to the dish.
  • Can be used in small amounts to add complexity to the dish.

Blue cheese

  • A pungent, strong cheese that adds a distinct flavor to the dish.
  • Best when crumbled and sprinkled on top of the dish.

Gorgonzola cheese

  • A creamy, tangy cheese that adds a sharp taste to the dish.
  • Best when crumbled and used in small amounts.

Havarti cheese

  • A mild, buttery cheese that melts well.
  • Adds a subtle flavor to the dish.

Brie cheese

  • A soft, creamy cheese that adds richness to the dish.
  • Best when used in small amounts.

Camembert cheese

  • A soft, creamy cheese with a distinct, earthy flavor.
  • Best when used in small amounts.
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5 Tips for Making the Best Eggplant Parmesan

Now that you know the best and alternative cheeses to use in your eggplant parmesan, here are some tips to ensure that your dish turns out perfectly:

Choose the right eggplant

  • Look for firm, shiny eggplants that are heavy for their size.
  • Avoid eggplants that are wrinkled or have soft spots.

Use fresh ingredients

  • Use fresh tomatoes and herbs for the tomato sauce.
  • Use freshly grated cheese for maximum flavor.

Properly season each layer

  • Season each layer of eggplant, tomato sauce, and cheese with salt and pepper to enhance the flavors.

Don’t skimp on the cheese

  • Use plenty of cheese to create a creamy and flavorful dish.
  • Layer the cheese between the eggplant slices and on top of the dish.

Bake the dish to perfection

  • Bake the eggplant parmesan at a high temperature (around 375°F) until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • Allow the dish to cool for a few minutes before serving.

Conclusion

In conclusion, eggplant parmesan is a delicious and satisfying dish that can be enjoyed in many ways. Choosing the right cheese is crucial for creating the perfect flavor and texture.

Whether you prefer a mild and creamy cheese like mozzarella, or a sharper and nuttier cheese like Parmesan, there are plenty of options to choose from. Additionally, experimenting with alternative cheeses can add new and exciting twists to this classic dish.

By following the tips we’ve provided for making the best eggplant parmesan, you can ensure that your dish turns out perfectly every time. So, grab your favorite cheese and get started on creating a mouthwatering eggplant parmesan that is sure to please even the pickiest eaters.

cheesy Eggplant Parmesan

The 10 Best Cheeses for Eggplant Parmesan

Looking for the best cheese for eggplant parmesan? Look no further! In this article, we've compiled a list of the top ten cheeses to use in this classic dish, including mozzarella, Parmesan, and Romano. We've also included seven alternative cheeses to add a unique twist to your recipe. Plus, we've provided five tips for making the best eggplant parmesan, from choosing the right eggplant to properly seasoning each layer. Whether you're a seasoned chef or just starting out in the kitchen, this article has everything you need to create a delicious and satisfying eggplant parmesan.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Cheese
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 4 people
Calories 365 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Romano cheese
  • Asiago cheese
  • Provolone cheese
  • Fontina cheese
  • Gruyere cheese
  • Ricotta cheese
  • Feta cheese
  • Pecorino cheese

Instructions
 

  • Select your favorite cheese from this article.
  • Organize all the required ingredients.
  • Prep a delicious cheesy Eggplant Parmesan in 30 minutes or less!