9 Best Substitutes for Mozzarella In Pizza

Were you about to make pizza for dinner only to find out you ran out of mozzarella? No need to worry – mozzarella is not the only cheese that will make your pizza mouth-watering. In this article, we will show you the 9 best mozzarella cheese alternatives for pizza, describe their taste, aroma, and melting properties so that your pizza tastes absolutely delicious! Let’s dive right in.

What can I use instead of mozzarella cheese in pizza? Here are the 9 best mozzarella cheese substitutes in pizza:

  1. Gouda
  2. Provolone
  3. Parmesano Regiano
  4. Ricotta
  5. Havarti
  6. Edam
  7. Cheddar
  8. Emmental
  9. Asiago

Even though mozzarella is the most common cheese to add to pizza, it is not the only option. When choosing cheese for pizza, ensure it has good melting properties and a delicate nutty and milky flavor that will not hide the flavor of other pizza ingredients. In addition, cheese should not be too fatty or dry and have a balanced moisture level to create a pleasant golden crust that makes you want to eat the whole pizza in one go.

Cheese is one of the most important ingredients in pizza – you do not want to buy all the most expensive meats only to spoil their taste with some oily or lumpy cheese! We have tested over 18 cheese varieties in pizza and are now ready to share the 9 best mozzarella alternatives in pizza that have just the right taste, aroma, and consistency. Let’s get started!


Gouda is one of the most popular mozzarella substitutes in pizza as it has a perfect fat and moisture content, which makes pizza juicy and crusty. Gouda changes its taste as it matures – young Gouda has a very mild, delicate creamy flavor and a subtle buttery aroma reminiscent of mozzarella. At the same time, aged Gouda becomes more pungent and spicy and acquires a more pronounced cheesy aroma.

We recommend using young Gouda on your pizza as it has better melting properties and noble pale ivory color. Aged Gouda gives the pizza a more pronounced spicy flavor and a nice orange hue.

Gouda has 48-50% fat content, making pizza soft, juicy, and delicate but not too oily. Gouda contains 356 calories per 100 g and A, B1, B6, B12, C, PP, and K vitamins. Gouda also has many health benefits, including hormone level stabilization, sleep improvement, and cholesterol removal.

See also: What Does Gnocchi Taste Like? In-Depth Gnocchi Taste Guide

Gouda is also fairly affordable – according to Walmart, 1 pound of high-quality Gouda costs $11.70. However, if you want to go wild and try adding smoked Gouda to your pizza for a more pronounced flavor, be ready to pay $19-25 per pound. Overall, Gouda goes well with other pizza ingredients, whether you like adding exotic meats or just vegetables – semi-soft Gouda does not overpower other ingredients. Instead, it gives the pizza a pleasant creamy flavor and a stringy finish.


Provolone is an Italian cheese with excellent melting properties that dates back to the 19th century. Even though Provolone has only 40.5% fat content, it is not dry and has all the necessary stringy and stretchy properties to make your pizza look good on Instagram. Provolone has a slightly stronger flavor than mozzarella. Young Provolone (Provolone Dolce) (2-3 months) has a buttery flavor and the softest consistency, while aged Provolone (Provolone Piccante) (up to 12 months) acquires a spicy taste with a strong, pungent aftertaste. We recommend using young Provolone in pizza to keep it delicate and juicy because aged Provolone becomes dryer and spicier.

Provolone goes well with the dough, making it a perfect alternative for pizza. It also goes well with olives and tomatoes, so do not forget to add them to your pizza to enjoy the best taste. Provolone contains 352 calories per 100 g and has a lot of protein, A and B12 vitamins, as well as phosphorus and calcium that maintain your bone health and improve your eyesight. Provolone also contains riboflavin (B2 vitamin) that strengthens immunity.

Provolone costs $9-12 per pound and is an affordable mozzarella alternative in pizza. 

Parmesano Reggiano

Parmesan is a hard Italian cheese made from cow milk. It has a pronounced cheesy flavor with nutty notes and a strong creamy aroma that acquires spicier notes as the cheese ages. Parmesan is often sprinkled on pizza as it has great melting properties and a mild nutty flavor that enhances the taste of other pizza ingredients but does not overpower them. Usually, young Parmesano Fresco (12-18 months) is used in pizza, but if you want a stronger taste and a spicier aroma, you can use Parmesano Vecchio (18-24 months).

Parmesan’s complex flavor with hints of nuts and herbs gives the pizza a strong cheesy flavor and a nice golden crust. It pairs well with other pizza ingredients, including meat, sausage, tomatoes, olives, and other cheese varieties. Parmesan has a firm texture, so it cannot be cut with a knife as it will break. Instead, Parmesan is usually grated and sprinkled on pizza, pasta, or risotto.

Interestingly enough, Parmesan cheese taste usually depends on the season when it was produced. For example, summer Parmesan cheese has a more delicate and creamy flavor since during summer, cows eat fresh grass, while in the autumn, 75% of their diet consists of hay.

One pound of Parmesan costs $21.50, so it is a bit pricier than mozzarella, but its complex flavor with nutty hints and excellent melting properties are worth it! Parmesan contains 431 calories per 100 grams and 36 g of protein, so Parmesan is good for maintaining your bone and tooth health. Parmesan also contains vitamins A, B, D, E, K, PP, as well as zinc, selenium, copper, iron, calcium, and magnesium. Regular Parmesan consumption improves eyesight, stabilizes hormones, and reduces cholesterol levels.


In terms of its taste and melting properties, Ricotta is very similar to mozzarella, so it is often used as a mozzarella substitute in pizza. It is made from the leftover milk used to produce other types of cheese. Ricotta can be made from cow, goat, sheep, or buffalo milk. Ricotta has a mild, sweet, creamy flavor with hints of butter and milk. It has a low fat content (8% if made from cow milk or 24% if made from sheep milk), and a lot of protein, potassium, and calcium.

Ricotta can be eaten by itself, added to salads, but is often used as a mozzarella substitute in pizza. It melts well and gives the pizza a delicate milky flavor without forming lumps or becoming too oily. Ricotta’s price per pound starts from as low as $6 and goes up to $18 per pound. 


Havarti is another good mozzarella cheese alternative in pizza as it has a pleasant buttery and tangy flavor and just perfect moisture balance that makes pizza juicy but not too oily. Havarti, like most cheeses, changes its flavor as it matures. If you prefer nutty and creamy cheese on pizza, go with young Havarti. But if you want to make your pizza spicy, aromatic, and even slightly acidic, go with matured cheese.

Since Havarti goes well with all meats (beef, pork, lamb), poultry, and even sausages, it will be just perfect on pizza. Havarti is versatile as it goes well with almost anything, be it fondue or cranberry jam! Since it has good melting properties, it can easily be used in pizza, pasta, and risotto.

Havarti is affordable and comes for $8 per pound, but the price can go up to $30 if you prefer aged Havarti. Havarti cheese contains 371 calories per 100 g and moderate levels of sodium and cholesterol, which prevent cardiovascular diseases.


This traditional Dutch firm cheese is a fairly common mozzarella cheese alternative in pizza as it has a delicate texture and a slightly salty flavor that will make any pizza mouth-watering. Edam’s fat content does not exceed 45%, so this cheese will be an ideal choice for those who want to limit their calorie consumption (100 g of Edam cheese contains only 330 calories). Unlike other cheeses, Edam has almost no smell. If you want to make your pizza juicy, pleasant salty with nutty notes, Edam is a wonderful choice.

Edam cheese contains vitamin A, indispensable for good eyesight and vitamin B is necessary for building and restoring muscle tissue. Edam also improves the condition of nails, hair, and teeth.

The premium Edam cheese price starts at $20 per pound and is a bit more expensive than mozzarella, but an amazing nutty flavor and tons of health benefits justify the price.


Cheddar is the most famous English cheese, thanks to its melting properties and a wonderful creamy, slightly acidic flavor with a nutty aftertaste. Cheddar can be eaten by itself, but it is most often sprinkled on pizza, pasta, risotto, and added to salads. Since Cheddar melts well and has a perfect fat and moisture balance, it is a perfect mozzarella substitute in pizza. Cheddar goes well with other cheeses and tomatoes, olives, pickled cucumbers, onions, and various types of meat.

Cheddar contains 402 calories per 100 g and lots of calcium that maintains bone, joint, and teeth health. Cheddar also contains good amounts of iron, magnesium, B6, and vitamin D. K vitamin in Cheddar prevents cardiovascular diseases and removes calcium build-up in arteries and veins.

Cheddar is one of the most affordable mozzarella substitutes in pizza as it only costs $5.50 per pound. 


Emmental is a medium-hard cheese originating from Bern, Switzerland. It has a moderate fat content (28%-40%) and goes well with beef, chicken, turkey, sausage as well as with other cheese varieties. Emmental has a rather spicy flavor and is a bit different from mild mozzarella. However, Emmental is good in pizza as it gives it a noble golden hue and a perfect crust. Emmental does not get lumpy or oily when baked, so pizza becomes just perfect.

Emmental matures from 2 to 18 months – the younger the cheese, the milder its taste, and the more delicate its texture are. However, both young and aged Emmental are good in pizza. This cheese contains 383 calories per 100 g. Since Emmental has 29 g of protein, it is good for building and restoring muscle tissue. Calcium in Emmental maintains bone and tooth health. Recent researches say that Emmental reduces inflammation and strengthens the immune system thanks to the bacteria used in the fermentation of this cheese.

Emmental comes at a price of $19 per pound and can be easily found in any grocery shop.


This Italian cow’s milk cheese has an interesting spicy flavor similar to Parmesan’s. It can be eaten by itself as well as combined with other cheeses like Parmesan or Havarti. Asiago is good in pizza as it melts well (especially younger varieties) and has a perfect moisture level. Asiago is not very easy to find in small grocery shops, but it can still be used as a mozzarella cheese substitute in pizza and pasta, cheese-based soups and sauces, and risotto.

Asiago contains 392 calories per 100 g and a lot of vitamin C that strengthens your immunity system and repairs muscle tissues.

One pound of Asiago costs $11.28, but this cheese is not easy to find in a local food shop. So if you want to try this Italian delicacy, you should check out some cheese shops or order online.


Now that you know the best mozzarella cheese alternatives in pizza, it is time to make the most delicious pizza! Whatever cheese you choose from our list, it will make your pizza delicate, creamy, and crusty. Remember to bake your pizza at high temperatures to ensure the cheese melts properly, and the dough does not become dry. Bon appetite!

Best Substitutes for Mozzarella In Pizza FAQ

Can I use normal cheese instead of mozzarella for pizza? You can use many other cheeses instead of mozzarella for pizza as long as they have a mild, milky flavor and excellent melting properties. Gouda, Provolone, Parmesan, Ricotta, Havarti, Edam, Cheddar or Emmental are great mozzarella substitutes for pizza.

Which cheese is best for pizza? Mozzarella is the #1 cheese for pizza as it has ideal moisture and fat content, a mild creamy flavor that does not overpower other ingredients, and excellent melting properties. Parmesan, Cheddar, and Provolone are also great on pizza due to their delicate texture (no lumps) and slightly spicy flavor.

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