There’s much more to goat cheese than that 6-ounce log.

By Carole Braden
Updated July 09, 2020
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Goat’s milk is used to make all sorts of cheeses―Gouda, Cheddar, even Brie—broadly known as goat cheese. Goat cheese is the wide term for all cheese made from goat’s milk; compared to standard cheese, generally made with cow’s milk, goat cheese is softer and tangier. It also tends to be slightly higher in fat and minerals than cow cheese, with less lactose (though it’s not exactly a lactose-free cheese), vitamin D, and riboflavin. Like cow cheese, goat cheese has many different types and varieties, depending on how the goat’s milk is prepared.

Look for some of these popular types of goat cheese in gourmet markets and cheese stores or shop online for the perfect goat cheese additions to your cheese platter. If you have questions about a particular type of goat cheese, ask at your local cheese or gourmet foods store or counter.

Aged

Aged goat cheeses are usually French, and they come in various shapes and sizes. Often an aged goat cheese will be covered in an edible ash to prevent it from drying out and to keep its surface clean. It may have a fluffy middle and a gooey exterior. Readily available aged goat cheeses include Chevrot, Valencay, and Selles sur Cher.

To buy: Murray’s Cheese Shop; murrayscheese.com.

Tomme style

Tomme style refers to a wheel of cheese with a rind. Humboldt Fog, produced by Cypress Grove in northern California, proves that high-quality French-style goat cheese is available domestically. The cheese is covered in edible ash, which keeps a crust from developing.

To buy: Cypress Grove; cypressgrovecheese.com.

Blue

Blue mold is mixed into the curds. As the cheese ages, the flavor changes, making blue goat cheese sharper, earthier, and more pungent than the fresh variety. Cayuga Blue is one of the best brands available, but it’s not easy to find. Bleuet de Chèvre is a good alternative.

To buy: Artisanal Cheese Center; artisanalcheese.com.

Brie

Goat’s milk Brie is more subtle and refreshing than a traditional cow’s milk Brie. For a treat, try Peilloute.

To buy: Citarella; citarella.com.

Cheddar

Goat’s milk cheddar has everything you want from this beloved cheese: It’s sharp and fruity, but with a distinctive goaty tang. One of the best is Quebec’s Le Chèvre Noir.

To buy: Artisanal Cheese Center; artisanalcheese.com.

Gouda

Holland produces some lovely fresh and aged goat’s milk Goudas. Fresh Gouda is soft and creamy, making it a good table cheese. Aged Gouda is sweet and delicious, with caramel overtones. Balarina is a widely available variety.

To buy: Artisanal Cheese Center; artisanalcheese.com.