If there’s one thing trending in 2022, it’s got to be charcuterie boards.
These boards that famously feature a variety of crackers and chilled meats and cheeses have become a staple for parties, holiday gatherings, and even cozy nights spent in with a good book or film and a tall glass of red wine.
However, one type of cheese you might be missing from your charcuterie board is Gruyere cheese. This sweet cheese pairs perfectly with an assortment of food, such as nuts, fruits, and crackers.
Best of all, they taste great with a cold glass of wine, beer, and even whiskey, making it the optimal party cheese that should be featured on your party platter.
Believe it or not, Gruyere cheese has an interesting history. It originated in Switzerland, near the Alps. As such, it developed the nickname “Alpine Cheese.”
Both sweet and unique, Gruyere cheese is the perfect addition for your party platter, charcuterie board, sandwich, and soup topping. When it comes to Gruyere cheese, one bite is never enough.
Here’s everything you need to know about Gruyere cheese and some of our favorite recipes you can try this year:
What Is Gruyère Cheese?
Gruyere cheese is a type of Swiss cheese. This isn’t surprising, considering where this cheese first originated.
In addition to its geographical location, Gruyere cheese is similar to Swiss cheese since it also has tiny holes.
Like other cheeses, Gruyere cheese is made from whole cow’s milk and aged for at least six months before being eaten. Because of this aging process, Gruyere cheese has a hardened texture.
What Does It Taste Like?
Since Gruyere cheese is made from whole cow’s milk, this type of cheese is incredibly creamy.
However, when it comes to the exact flavor of Gruyere cheese, it will depend on how old it is.
Young Gruyere cheese (cheese that has been aging for less than six months) has a nutty flavor, whereas older cheeses are still nutty but have a pronounced earthy flavor to them, as well.
Substitutes For Gruyere
If you were planning on making a meal that requires Gruyere cheese, but you’re out, don’t worry. There are plenty of delicious substitutes for Gruyere cheese you can use instead. Here they are:
- Kerrygold Irish Dubliner
As you could surmise from the name, Kerrygold Irish Dubliner is a brand of cheese that originated in Ireland. This type of cheese has a similar flavor profile to Swiss cheese. Naturally sweet and nutty-aged cheese pairs perfectly with wine and as a flavorful substitute for Gruyere cheese.
- Fontina Val D’Aosta D.O.P
This mild-flavored, semi-soft cheese is aged for a minimum of 90 days and shares the same creamy texture as Gruyere cheese.
- Swiss Emmental AOP
Emmentaler AOP is the original Swiss cheese that originated in the valley of the Emme River in Switzerland. Like Gruyere cheese, Swiss cheese is aged and has holes in it. It also has a mild, nutty flavor with notes of sweetness.
- Jarlsberg Cheese
This type of cheese originated in Norway and is made from whole cow’s milk. Like Gruyere, it has a sweet and nutty flavor to it. However, the taste is much milder than Grueye cheese.
- Comte Cheese
This French-based cheese is made from raw cow’s milk. This cheese can age for up to two years. Comte cheese is a semi-hard cheese with a fruity, sweet flavor. It’s often called “Mountain cheese” since it grows in the mountains near the Switzerland border.
- Appenzeller Cheese
This type of cheese also hails from Switzerland. The flavor of this cheese varies depending on how long it’s aged. Appenzeller cheese aged three to four months will be mildly spicy, whereas Appenzeller cheese aged four to six months or longer will range from strongly spicy to extra spicy.
What Cheese is Similar to Gruyere?
Any cheeses listed above make excellent substitutes for Gruyere cheese, but if you’re looking for the most similar cheese, look no further than Jarlsberg, Comte, and Fontina Val D’Aosta.
These cheeses have a similar nutty, sweet flavor and consistency to Gruyere cheese.
Can I Use Cheddar Instead of Gruyere?
The short answer to this question is no. Cheddar is not a good substitute for Gruyere cheese.
Both its flavor and melting properties are different. Even going with an extra mature cheddar only comes somewhat close to a similar taste while not being as hard.
Even so, it still melts differently. We recommend going with one of the previously mentioned cheeses instead if you need to substitute Gruyere for another cheese.
Can I Use Mozzarella Instead of Gruyere?
When using mozzarella instead of Gruyere, there are two things you need to consider.
First, the mozzarella flavor is vastly different from Gruyere to the point that using it would completely change the overall taste of your dish if you used it instead.
While mozzarella is a soft, white cheese and Gruyere is a hard yellow cheese, they both have similar melting properties.
If you want something closer to Gruyere, we suggest going with Jarlsberg instead for its affordability and similar flavor profile.
Gruyere Cheese Recipes
Now that we’ve gone through what Gruyere cheese is and what you can use as a substitute for it let’s get to the fun part: Gruyere cheese recipes!
We’ve found six tasty, easy-to-make recipes that will be perfect for your next party or get-together.
Potatoes Au Gratin with Gruyere Cheese
It’s a Gruyere twist on this delicious French dish that makes for an excellent side for your next family dinner.
The secret ingredient here, believe it or not, is another cheese in this same dish: cheddar cheese.
While the Gruyere is an excellent tasting cheese, the cheddar adds another dimension to the cheesiness of this meal without going overboard.
If you’re looking for a substitution, you can use garlic powder instead of minced garlic to get the same amount of garlic flavor into this dish.
Creamy Gruyere Spaghetti for Two
If you’re looking for a creamy pasta dish that’s different from the typical alfredo dish, then this creamy Gruyere spaghetti dish is for you. The secret ingredient for this dish is the breadcrumbs.
They add a flavor and texture to this dish that wouldn’t be there otherwise, and they help bring all the flavors together.
If you need to swap anything out, try playing around with different kinds of herbs and spices. Doing this can change up the flavor in subtle but noticeable ways without compromising the dish’s overall taste.
Brussels Sprouts Gratin with Gruyere Cheese
You’ve probably heard of potatoes au gratin, but have you heard of brussels sprouts gratin?
While they’re similar in concept, there’s a big difference in the main ingredient of each and the kind of flavor they bring to the overall dish, even when paired with Gruyere cheese.
The secret ingredient for this one is cauliflower. While it’s not the dominant veggie in this recipe, it helps offset some of the more bitter qualities that brussels sprouts can have.
We recommend swapping out 2% milk with skim milk for a healthier take on this recipe if you need a substitute.
Ultimate Three-Cheese Gruyere Mac & Cheese
Who doesn’t love mac & cheese? This is the ultimate Gruyere twist on a classic that everyone loves.
The secret ingredient here is the cayenne pepper. While it’s not a large amount, it’s just enough to add a little heat to this dish without setting your mouth on fire.
If you need to swap anything out, you can swap out the dry Jack cheese for Monterey Jack cheese instead. They have similar enough flavors to not alter the recipe too much.
Scalloped Potatoes with Gruyere Cheese
Are you looking for the perfect side dish? This recipe for scalloped potatoes is a great side dish for any meal.
The secret ingredient for this dish is heavy cream. This allows the cheese to thicken and create that great creamy texture you know and love from scalloped potatoes.
If you’re in a pinch and don’t have any thyme, try using oregano or basil instead.
Try this recipe the next time you’re looking for a side dish (with melty Gruyere cheese) that your family will love.
Gruyere Mashed Potatoes
There’s nothing quite like a nice, warm helping of mashed potatoes to go with your dinner.
This recipe adds a cheesy twist by utilizing Gruyere cheese. The secret ingredient for this dish is green onions.
While they only add to the flavor ever so slightly, they also add a texture to the dish that you don’t get from any other ingredients.
When it comes to finding a substitute for this dish, believe it or not, you can change out the Gruyere cheese for swiss to get something that isn’t too different in flavor.