What kind of cheese is on pizza? It varies from the home or pizzeria where it is made. There are many types or blends of cheeses that can appear on a pizza. However, mozzarella is the king and overwhelmingly favorite pizza cheese topping. If you were to randomly order 10 pizza throughout the United States, approximately 9 would contain mozzarella or a blend of cheeses containing mozzarella. Below are some additional cheeses that are often blended with mozzarella, blended with other cheeses, or used on their own.
Provolone is the second most common pizza cheese, but it is often blended with mozzarella. Depending on how Provolone is made and aged, its taste and texture will vary. Flavors can range from mild to smoky and it even can sometimes taste very similar to mozzarella.
Cheddar is next in line as a favorite pizza cheese. Cheddar may sound weird to some, but it is regionally popular in some areas of the United States. It is often used in a blend because it does not melt as well as provolone and mozzarella.
Parmesan cheese is also popular either fresh from the block or in dehydrated shake style. Where I live, it is not uncommon for someone to order a pizza and use their own dehydrated Parmesan cheese (like Kraft) as an additional topping or flavoring. It can also be melted in just like a mozzarella cheese. Similar to this is Romano cheese, which is used just the same.
Feta is often used to add another dimension of cheese flavoring. It is often used with any topping combination of spinach, black olives, hot peppers, chicken, or tomato.
Monterey Jack is from California and as you would expect it is used as a pizza cheese in this area.
Ricotta is common when a pizza is made without traditional pizza sauce. Instead of pizza sauce, sometimes a white pizza is made using ricotta as the base sauce with additional cheeses on top like Mozzarella, Parmesan, and Romano.
Fontina has a subtle nutty, sweet, and buttery flavor. Fontina cheese also has great melting abilities.
Ultimately, what kind of cheese goes on pizza is what you choose it to be. Stick with mozzarella if you are looking to please a crowd. Personally, fresh mozzarella is hands down the best and typically easy to find. However, feel free to experiment at home with different cheese combinations for yourself or your non-picky family. Additionally, it is becoming increasingly easier to find specialty pizzerias that go beyond your standard mozzarella and pizza sauce. You can find some pretty unique and tasty stuff out there if you look around. Please comment below on which cheese is best for pizza in your mind.
John Correll. “Chapter 9 – Pizza Cheese“. Archived source.