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Queso: A Quick Guide to Mexican Cheeses

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Cheese is an amazing food product and ingredient to use as it gives great texture and flavour. However, if you’re an amateur cheese aficionado, selecting the correct cheese might be difficult.  However, several wonderful Mexican cheese selections do more than fill a tortilla.

While each of these cheeses has characteristics that make it better for some meals than others, they also have a lot in common. The majority of Mexican cheese is manufactured with cow’s milk, however certain kinds use goat’s milk. They’re all fresh, unpasteurized cheeses with a creamy flavour.

To begin, there’s a soft cheese, which encompasses several of the creamier queso:

Queso Panela

This queso is a soft, white cheese that is drained in baskets (a Greek-inspired technique). It is best eaten fresh since it absorbs flavours rapidly. It works well as a shredded topping or as part of an appetiser.

Queso Blanco-

When cooked, this wet, crumbly cheese becomes creamy, resembling a blend between cottage cheese and mozzarella. The cheese may be used in a variety of ways, including filling and frying.

Queso Fresco

This “fresh cheese” is a crumbly blend of cow’s milk and goat’s milk, as the name implies. Queso Fresco, somewhat sour queso, is arguably the most frequent queso crumbled over tacos or botanas.


It’s been dubbed “Hispanic Ricotta.” This queso has a reduced fat content and goes nicely with salads and desserts.

Soft and Semi-Soft Cheese: This is the most popular of the three cheese categories, as these cheeses are widely used in Mexican cuisine. These quesos may be melted, crumbled, or eaten separately.


Anejo cheese is gratable, old queso that is dry and crumbly. Its spicy taste makes it an excellent condiment for tacos and salads, as well as a garnish for entrées.


Asadero is a mellow, chewy cheese that adjusts well and melts smoothly, similar to Fontina or Monterrey Jack cheese. Asadero is the primary queso in chile con queso and traditionally fills chiles Rellenos.


Queso Chihuahua was brought to Mexico by Mennonites and is pale yellow queso that resembles mild cheddar but tastes strong when matured. Queso Fundido, a Mexican fondue made with Chihuahua cheese, is delicious.


The most common cheese for quesadillas is Oaxaca, which has a similar flavour to Mozzarella. It’s a curd cheese that’s wrapped up into a ball after being stretched into long ribbons. The cheese balls can be chopped for toppings or melted on cooked dishes.

Semi-Hard And Hard Cheeses: These cheeses are finest grated or melted into a thick fondue-like sauce.


Cotija is a crumbly, dry cheese that resembles Parmesan. Fresh and aged variants of the cheese are crumbled or grated over beans and salads.


Queso Enchilado is Cotija Anejo that has been covered with chile and is used in meals for its fiery flavour and colour.


This queso is made from sheep’s milk and has a salty, nutty taste. It’s great shaved on top of side dishes.

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