Cookbook

14 Most Delicious Mexican Cheeses

Written by ibxis

This is a post dedicated to all cheese lovers out there. If that’s what you consider yourself, then this research will have you longing to taste all the cheeses of Mexico.

Autochthonous cheese production has developed in many regions of the country, the most important being Oaxaca, Chiapas, Chihuahua, and Querétaro. The best cheeses are handmade and can be found in local markets, while commercial, industrially produced cheeses and European imitations can be found packaged in supermarkets.

Get ready for a cheesy Mexican tour!

1. Quesillo (Oaxaca Cheese)

Quesillo

A soft delicacy! Delicious and famous around the world, Oaxaca cheese is simply one of the best cheeses in Mexico. Its official name is Quesillo.

It takes a little time to produce and the strips that are wrapped up into balls are made by the kneading process.

2. Ahumado (Smoked)

Ahumado

Deliciously firm and strong in flavor, this one originated in Spain and was adopted by the state of Chiapas after the conquest. It is wood smoked for seven hours… (sigh!).

3. Panela

Panela

Moist, light, fresh, and soft! What else can you ask for? It’s also known as basket cheese and you can use it to fill enchiladas, a stuffed chili, or a tamale… divine!

Aromatic herbs, chilies, or quelites can be added when it is being produced. Mexican quelite, or epazote, gives it a fresher and more herbal aroma.

4. Botanero

Botanero
Photo credit: Quesos Chila

This delicacy is prepared with different chilies (jalapeño, different green peppers, or chipotles). Peanuts and sesame seeds can also be added. Enjoy it in small bites and with a glass of red wine.

5. Asadero

Asadero

Smooth with a taste like sour cream!

Also known as Menonita cheese, it is usually sold in the form of a thin tortilla, especially for quesadillas, stuffed zucchinis, or montados.

It is a personal favorite because its thin tortilla shape makes it very versatile for cooking. It can be used in many dishes; you just have to let your imagination run free.

6. Ranchero

Ranchero

Fresh and similar to panela, Ranchero crumbles easily, which is perfect for garnishing chilaquiles, flautas, or refried beans.

This cheese can be made with cow’s or goat’s milk and is ideal for delicious tacos or for topping a crispy chicken toast.

7. Chihuahua

Chihuahua
Photo credit: LA-MERA CARNICERÍA

Oh my… a real favorite! It’s soft and melts in the mouth. Mennonite communities were the first to make this cheese, also known as rueda cheese.

It has a delicate flavor and aroma, yellow color, and a consistency that allows it to melt easily.

8. Cotija

Cotija

Delicious and aged, this cheese is also known as the “Mexican parmesan”.

It crumbles easily and does not need refrigeration, which means it continues to mature and age. It is ideal for pasta and salads.

9. Poroso

Poroso

This is salty and delicious! Although it has a firm texture, when heated it melts easily. It’s great for putting in quesadillas or enchiladas.

10. Adobera

Adobera

This is a cheese with a salty flavor and a crumbly texture and it simply melts in the mouth. You can eat it fresh on top of some refried beans or melted in quesadillas. Yummy!

11. Tenate

Tenate
Photo credit: https://losquesosdelaabuela.com/

Excessively creamy! And simply beautiful to look at because it is made in a mold of woven palms. Proudly, 100% handmade.

12. Ocosingo or Bola (Ball)

Ocosingo

Creamy and fresh! This one comes in a round shape and has a hard coating. It has an acidic flavor and a very characteristic aroma. This tasty cheese is definitely ideal for discerning palates.

It is made with raw cow’s milk and is kneaded, shaped into a ball, and immersed in brine. You can also find it with green chilies added.

It is a must-try, 100%!

13. Cinch

Cinch

Delicious and fresh, this cheese is white and has a soft texture. It is also made with raw milk. Cincho means belt or hoop, which is used to hold the cheese paste.

14. Sierra de Durango

Queso Durango

Imagine a beautiful melting quesabirria with this one…

Smelly, greasy, creamy… gosh! It is usually covered with a chili, garlic, and salt paste which serves to protect it from bacteria and fungi allows and the cheese to ripen and age.

It is a seasonal cheese since it is only available from June to August. It is prepared in wooden molds and covered with a layer of guajillo pepper. This is what gives it its beautiful red color.


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Griselda Muñoz Perez

Born in the state of Chihuahua, Mexico in 1989, Griselda is a Chef and writer. She has a degree in gastronomy from the ECI University of Gastronomy, Guadalajara, and she is a passionate cook.

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