Cheese is one of those universal pleasures that pretty much everyone seems to enjoy in some way or another.
Whether it’s a block of finely aged cheddar, or a silky-smooth mozzarella, cooked in a recipe, or eaten straight as it is, there is a ton to love about this world-popular dairy product.
However, when it comes to relatively obscure types of cheese, robiola cheese is probably one of the most distinct, with its unique texture and flavor. It’s often the ingredient that can make or break a lot of Italian recipes.
So, what do you do if you have a recipe that calls for it, but can’t get a hold of it? Or worse still, what if you are preparing a recipe that needs robiola cheese, but you suddenly realize that you’ve got none left in the pantry?
Robiola cheese isn’t exactly the easiest cheese to get a hold of, after all, so it’s not like you can make a quick shopping trip to your local store to grab some.
Fortunately, it isn’t the end of the world or your planned dish. There are alternative ingredients that you can use out there if you know what you are looking for.
What A Substitute Should Do
So, if you are looking for a replacement ingredient for robiola cheese, what exactly does it need to do? What qualities does it need to work, without completely ruining a recipe it is being used in?
- So, the first thing that you’ll need to look for in a good robiola recipe replacement is its texture. Robiola cheese has a very creamy texture to it that makes it not only light in your mouth but also very easy to spread.
- This makes it a cheese that is perfect for adding to salads, and baked foods as a filling or topping, or as a tip. It’s even tasty when just spread over a good slice of bread!
- Robiola has a subtle, creamy flavor with a somewhat tangy taste to it as well.
- The subtle flavor makes it ideal for putting on pizzas, pasta dishes, and many other classic Italian recipes.
- Robiola also stores very well and can stay fresh and edible for a decent amount of time, around 2 weeks (longer if stored in cool temperatures).
- In terms of its source, robiola cheese can come from pretty much any kind of dairy-giving animal, so substitutes that are made from cows, goats, sheep milk, or some equivalent, should be totally fine.
So, with that out of the way, let’s take a look at some of the foods that can substitute it!
1. Ricotta Cheese
Starting with arguably the best substitute for robiola cheese that you’ll be able to find out there, we have cheese that is also renowned for its creamy texture and mild flavors.
As we mentioned, ricotta is known and loved around the world for its incredibly smooth, creamy texture, which makes it incredibly easy to spread over just about everything.
Plus, when it comes to flavors, ricotta has a very similar flavor profile too. The cheese is mild, whilst still having a slightly sweet aftertaste to it. That makes it almost identical to robiola cheese, albeit with a slightly less tart element to it.
Not only that, but ricotta is a cheese that is very easy to find and source, certainly easier than robiola can often be. Most supermarkets and stores with a dairy and cheese section are likely to stock ricotta.
This means that you’ll have a reliable substitute for pretty much any meal that you would otherwise use robiola for.
Aside from perhaps a slightly sensitive and short shelf life, it’s hard to find a better substitute for robiola than a pack of good ricotta cheese!
2. Camembert Cheese
A very popular cheese from the north of France, in Normandy. Since it was first made, Camembert has since gone on to become one of the most popular kinds of cheese in the world.
So, how exactly does this staple French cheese stack up as a substitute for robiola?
Well, the overall texture of this cheese is both surprisingly similar, but not without its differences.
Camembert is soft, with a slightly thicker and sticky outside rind, and a firm, but still soft inside, that is not hard or crumbly in any way. It’s a sublimely smooth cheese, with an earthy, almost nutty flavor to it.
This puts it in a strange position. On the one hand, its noticeably different flavor from robiola, which is more subtle unless extra mature, means that you’re probably not going to be using this cheese in a recipe as a substitute.
In terms of texture, fresh Camembert is undeniably smooth and is normally used in cheese platters and servings. However, unless it has been freshly baked, Camembert firms up incredibly quickly, meaning that spreading it can be an issue.
Overall, while probably not the first cheese to come to mind, there is a lot to love about Camembert as a robiola substitute.
3. Cream Cheese
Well, we did say that robiola is a very spreadable cheese. So it only makes sense that we would include the creamiest cheese out there.
As the name gives away, cream cheese has an incredibly smooth consistency to it, and is almost exclusively used as a spreadable or in recipes that call for a creamy, slightly cheesy taste. So it’s a pretty good substitute in terms of texture and consistency.
Cream cheese also has a very light flavor to it, perhaps slightly milder than robiola. So it’s also perfect for spreading across a cracker or sandwich when you’re looking for a good added cheesy flavor.
Overall, this is an excellent option for people that are looking for a similar texture and spreadability with their substitute above all else.
4. Chèvre Cheese
While not as famous as robiola or the other substitutes that we’ve covered, Chèvre cheese is also considered a smooth cheese, making it a pretty good alternative to robiola right from the start.
Primarily made from goat’s milk, Chèvre cheese has a tartness to its flavor, making it pretty distinct in terms of its overall taste. However, compared to other goat cheese products, this has a surprisingly mild flavor to it, so it’s not as different as you might expect.
However, this flavor does make it popular for both savory and sweet recipes, giving it versatility for cooking that robiola also has.
In terms of when it is spread or eaten straight? Well, it’s pretty good there too! Its easy-to-melt and spread texture, coupled with its mild taste, makes it a perfect comparison cheese for robiola.
It’s a little milder in terms of flavor, sure. But aside from that, chèvre cheese will work pretty well as a robiola substitute, if you can find it in a store near you!
5. Brie Cheese
Brie cheese has several similar qualities to Camembert, including both kinds of cheese that are usually baked before they are served as part of a cheese platter. However, in terms of flavor, you’ll find that brie has a buttery, almost fruity sweetness to it.
Compare to robiola, brie cheese has a powerful flavor to it that could drastically change the flavor of a recipe it is being made with.
Overall, this is a cheese that is best for replacing robiola on a cheese board than in a cooking recipe.
So, with all these options available to you for eating and cooking, you’re more than covered for a robiola substitute!
So, which will you use first?
5 Robiola Cheese SubstitutesCourse: Substitutes
Robiola cheese is a delicious, but sometime hard-to-get kind of cheese. If you need something to replace it, try out these 5 substitutes you can find.
- Decide on what substitute you need
- Pick a substitute from the list above
- Read what you need to substitute with
- Create the recipe and enjoy
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