Learn About Swiss Cheese

Author: Chef Toby

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What is Swiss Cheese?

Swiss cheese is a firm, pale-yellow cow’s milk cheese that is made in the United States. The cheese is modeled after Emmental cheese from Switzerland. It often has holes, or eyes, that are produced when the bacteria in the cheese release carbon dioxide during the aging process. There are also other varieties of swiss cheese, like Baby Swiss, that are popular. 

What does Swiss Cheese taste like?

America Swiss cheese has a mild, nutty, and buttery flavor, similar to authentic Swiss cheeses like Emmental and Gruyere. 

Learn About Swiss Cheese

How can you eat Swiss Cheese?

Swiss cheese melts well, making it a great choice for cheese sauces, sandwiches, and pasta. It is often found paired with ham in omelets, savory pastries, and stuffed in Chicken Cordon Bleu.  Swiss that has been slightly aged also makes a great addition to a cheese plate along with fruit, nuts, and bread.

Where can you buy Swiss cheese?

American Swiss can be found at all major grocery stores, year-round. It can be be found either grated, in slices, or in blocks in the dairy aisle, or in wedges and cheese wheels at the deli. Cheeses imported from Switzerland like Emmental can be found at grocery stores as well, but near other specialty and imported cheese. 

How do you store Swiss cheese?

Swiss cheese should be stored in the refrigerator, wrapped in parchment paper, or wax paper, and then in plastic. In the deli drawer, it will last up to a month. Swiss cheese can also be wrapped in parchment and aluminum foil and kept in the freezer for up to six months. 

Fun Fact about Swiss Cheese

Emmental and Gruyere both have rinds, but American Swiss cheese does not. 

Did you know?

The larger holes, the better the cheese! The bacteria that turn the milk into cheese are responsible for the holes in Swiss and are responsible for its flavor. The larger holes indicate that the cheese has a better flavor.

Recipes Using Swiss Cheese:

Almond Swiss Cheese Roll

Make this cheese log to eat as a snack or serve at a family gathering. In a mixing bowl, combine softened cream cheese, shredded Swiss, and shredded cheddar. Mix until the cheeses are thoroughly combined, and season with Worcestershire sauce and onion powder. Form the cheese into a log and roll it in sliced almonds. If you don’t have almonds, feel free to use walnuts or cashews instead.

Breakfast Casserole with Spinach and Swiss Cheese

Make this breakfast casserole by layering toasted bread, sautéed spinach, onions, and Swiss cheese. Pour scrambled eggs and cheese over the casserole and bake in the oven until the eggs are set.

Chicken Cordon Bleu

This classic chicken dish is stuffed with Swiss cheese and ham and is crispy and golden brown. To make, beat raw chicken with a meat tenderizer so that it is evenly thinned throughout. Add slices of Swiss and ham, and roll tightly. Dip the rolls in flour, egg, and then breadcrumbs. In a frying pan, sear the chicken on both sides. Transfer to a baking dish and finish in the oven.

Mushroom Swiss Omelette

Incorporate Swiss into your breakfast by making a mushroom and Swiss cheese omelet. In a frying pan, combine butter, mushrooms, and thyme, and sauté until browned. Set aside and add scrambled eggs seasoned with salt and pepper to the pan. Cook until the egg is set and fill with shredded Swiss and the mushroom mixture before folding in half.

Classic French Onion Soup

This classic French onion soup is made with sliced onions, beef broth, garlic, and thyme. If you don’t have beef broth, use beef bullion and water to give the soup its beef flavor. To serve the soup, ladle it into individual ramekins on a baking sheet. Top the soup with a slice of french bread and swiss cheese, and bake in the oven until the bread is toasted and the cheese is melted.

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