Do you have to refrigerate cheese?

In this brief guide, we will answer the following query, “do you have to refrigerate cheese?” We will discuss the proper ways to refrigerate cheese. We will also get to know the benefits of refrigerating the cheese along with the health benefits of cheese.

Do you have to refrigerate cheese?

Yes, cheese needs refrigeration. Cheese is a perishable dairy product that goes bad when you do not store it in the refrigerator. 

The shelf life of the cheese varies according to its type. The shelf life of hard cheese is more as compared to the shelf life of soft cheese.

The average shelf-life of hard cheese is upto 1 week on the kitchen counter. Refrigeration increases the shelf life of hard cheese for upto 6 months. Usually, the shelf life of the product is mentioned on the packaging and the product is suitable to use until that date.

What are the types of cheese that need refrigeration?

Some types of cheese do not spoil early and they do not always need refrigeration in optimal temperatures like hard cheeses do not need refrigeration, they will go well outside on the kitchen counter. The soft cheeses that need refrigeration are mentioned below. 

  • Cream cheese
  • Feta cheese
  • Cottage cheese
  • Brie cheese
  • Goat cheese 

The shelf life of soft cheese is upto 1 week in the refrigerator, if you are planning to store it for a longer duration then you should freeze your cheese.

What are the proper ways to refrigerate cheese?

To refrigerate cheese properly, follow the steps given below:

  • Always look for the expiration date while buying the cheese. Do not buy the cheese that is near the expiration date.
  • Always store your cheese in the refrigerator once you bring it home. It will melt on the hot temperature of your kitchen counter.
  • If your cheese is packed then you can directly put it in the fridge in the same pack.
  • If you have opened your cheese, you need to transfer the cheese to another ziplock bag, and then it will be good to store in the refrigerator.
  • Do not store the cheese in the refrigerator door. Always store the cheese in the corner of the fridge where the temperature does not change.

What are the signs of spoilage of cheese?

Cheese is a highly perishable food item and it goes bad easily. 

  • If you see any kind of change in texture and appearance of the cheese. You need to throw it away because it is not suitable for you to eat.
  • If there is a different or off smell coming from the cheese then you need to discard it. There might be microbial growth in the cheese.
  • Mold growth is very common in cheese. If you see any mold growth in a part of the cheese try to remove that part of the cheese. If the mold is all over the cheese then you need to throw it away.

What are the benefits of refrigerating cheese?

By refrigerating cheese, you can benefit from the following: 

  • Refrigeration increases the shelf life of the cheese. It saves the cheese from microbial growth i.e the microbial growth is minimum at 4 degrees Celsius.
  • Refrigeration does not alter the taste and texture of the cheese.
  • Refrigeration does not allow the mold to grow on the cheese. This way the cheese is safe from mold contamination.

What are the health benefits of cheese?

Cheese has the following health benefits: 

  • Low-fat cheese is a good alternative to high-fat dairy products. You can enjoy the cheese without worrying about its fat content. It helps with weight loss.
  • Cheese can prevent the risk of osteoporosis as it is a good source of calcium and vitamin D. The diet high in calcium and vitamin D helps maintain the health of bones and teeth. This reduces bone and tooth loss.
  • Cheese contains calcium, potassium, and protein which help in the maintenance of heart health. According to the research, it is proven that dairy fat is linked to lower cases of heart disease.
  • You can healthily increase your weight by eating cheese daily. People who want to gain weight and are looking for a healthy meal should add cheese to their diet.
  • Cheese is an excellent source of protein. 100 g of cheddar cheese contains 25 g of protein, which is a very good quantity.

    Cheese is an excellent source of protein for vegetarians and other people too. Protein helps in the body’s metabolism. It also helps in muscle building.

Conclusion 

In this brief guide, we answered the following query, “do you have to refrigerate cheese?” We discussed the proper ways to refrigerate cheese. We also got to know the benefits of refrigerating the cheese along with the health benefits of cheese.

References 

https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/Does-all-cheese-need-to-be-refrigerated#:~:text=Soft%20cheeses%20such%20as%20cream,last%20longer%20if%20kept%20refrigerated.
https://www.fsis.usda.gov/sites/default/files/media_file/2021-02/Molds_on_Food.pdf
https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/?query=cheese

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.