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Ask Dr. Gourmet

What can be substituted for goat cheese?

I can't seem to find the semi-soft goat cheese used in your recipes. What can I use as a substitute for goat cheese?

Dr. Gourmet Says...

Slices of goat cheese on a wooden board

There are a number of good options. The key is for you to look for a soft, creamy cheese that is made with a reduced fat milk. Because goat and sheep's milk is naturally low in fat, they work well in many recipes.

Ricotta, for example, is traditionally made with sheep's milk and is lower in fat as a result. The creamy Ricotta di Pecora is an example. These are not like the ricotta that is sold in the U.S. that is made with cow's milk., however. They are generally a firmer cheese, similar to the types of goat cheese widely sold here.

The lower fat ricotta sold in the United States does make a good substitute as well, as it will melt well and offer a creaminess to sauces like Fettuccine Alfredo.

A reduced-fat cream cheese - those sold in blocks, not in the tubs for spreading - would also work well.

Here are more recipes that use goat cheese:


Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP
Dr Gourmet