There are many full flavored, low fat cheese options out there if you are looking to shave some fat off your diet by cutting your full fat dairy intake. Depending on your location in the United States, you will have some different options for finding low fat cheeses that taste great. Check your local supermarket for these brands and beginning lightening up your diet today.
Using Low Fat Cheeses
Generally, reduced fat cheeses have about half the calories and fat as regular cheese. There are many good brands across all kinds of cheeses, including mozzarella, cheddar, Swiss, goat cheese and feta cheese. Low fat cheeses will melt the same way as a regular cheese, but will toughen under direct heat. Always use low heat and if adding low fat cheese to a sauce, be sure to stir it only in one direction and add a touch of flour or cornstarch to the shredded cheese before adding it to the sauce.
Non-fat cheeses do not behave the same when melted. They should really only be served cold or added to already cooked dishes, as otherwise there will be a change in texture and loss of flavor. Another option is to mix low fat and fat free cheeses when using them for cooking to reduce even more calories, but still retain some of the melting capability and taste.
Low Fat Hard Cheeses
Sargento Preferred Light, Polly-O Lite and Sorrento Lite are the most flavorful low fat mozzarella cheeses on the market. Mozzarella doesn’t have a strong flavor even in its full fat form. It starts with only 6 grams of fat per ounce, the leanest regular cheese available. The light versions of the mozzarella all have 3 grams of fat per ounce.
Kraft Healthy Favorites and Healthy Choice both make low-fat cheddar, but both lack flavor. Cabot 75% Less Fat Light is the best flavored low-fat cheddar and also packs 3 grams of fat per ounce. Another option is Cracker Barrel 1/3 Less Fat with 5 grams of fat per ounce.
If you love the taste of real Swiss cheese, Jarlsberg Lite and Sargento Preferred Light make great low fat Swiss cheeses.
There are several fat free processed cheeses on the market, but many of them do not melt properly or have strange off tastes. A few notable processed cheeses are Weight Watchers Fat Free Reduced Sodium, Smart Beat Fat Free Slices, and Alpine Lace Fat Frees in American, cheddar and mozzarella.
Low Fat Cream Cheese
One of the most popular brands of cream cheese throughout America is Kraft’s Philadelphia Light Cream Cheese. With a similar taste and texture to regular cream cheese, but with half the fat, this is an excellent option for cooking and baking.
Pick up some low fat cheese today and experiment with your favorite recipes to see how cutting the fat tastes. In many recipes, you won’t even notice any difference, and you will lower your fat intake by up to 50%.