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15 Best Cheeses at Trader Joe’s, Ranked

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When you enter the cheese section of your local Trader Joe’s store, you’re immediately hit with dozens of delicious options, from aged parmesans to young cheddars and everything in between.

Whether you’re looking for the perfect cheese to top your salad with, a dip for your veggies, or an exciting cheese to spice up your charcuterie board, Trader Joe’s is the place where you’ll find all of the above.

So, which Trader Joe’s cheeses are a cut above the rest? I’ve compiled a list of my favorite cheeses from Trader Joe’s and ranked them. Some of these options are just as good as what you would find in a specialty cheese shop.

15. Sliced Sharp Cheddar Cheese

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The best type of cheese to top a sandwich is up for debate, but my all-time favorite is sharp cheddar. It goes with all deli meats and adds the perfect sharp bite and creaminess to any sandwich.

While it’s not the most exciting option in Trader Joe’s cheese aisle, the Sharp Cheddar Cheese is perfect for finishing off a sandwich. This cheddar is aged from four to six months, allowing it time to develop a rich, nutty, complex flavor profile.

It isn’t just great on a classic cold-cut sandwich but also great melted on a hot sandwich or even used on a homemade pizza. When warmed, it gets delightfully gooey and melty.

14. Chevre With Honey

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Goat cheese famously pairs well with sweet ingredients like pears and berries. It only made sense for Trader Joe’s to pair their chevre goat cheese with the ultimate sweet ingredient –honey.

This goat cheese is ideal for spreading on top of a piece of baguette or toast. Crumble it on a salad or a pizza for a hint of sweetness. It’s incredibly creamy and smooth, with a super bold flavor that’s equally sweet from the honey and tangy from the goat milk all at once.

13. Crumbled Feta

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No cheese section at a grocery store is complete without a feta of some sort. Trader Joe’s Crumbled Feta is everything you’d want from a classic feta cheese and more. The milk used to make this cheese comes from Wisconsin milk cows, which are free of any synthetic growth hormones.

The cheese has a firm yet crumbly texture and comes in various-sized crumbles rather than a block. The flavor is salty and has that classic sour tang that comes with a good feta cheese.

12. Fresh Mozzarella Cheese Log

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I think it’s safe to say that Trader Joe’s has mastered the art of fresh mozzarella. While all forms of mozzarella cheese are delicious, there’s undoubtedly something special about fresh mozzarella.

This Trader Joe’s cheese comes in the form of a log. Each log is about 16 ounces and is pre-sliced, so all you have to do is open the package and grab a pre-portioned slice.

Fresh mozzarella should taste milky and mild with a moist, almost melt-in-your-mouth texture. This cheese delivers in all departments, and its pre-sliced pieces mean there’s one less thing you have to chop when making a margherita pizza or caprese salad.

11. Tirokafteri Spicy Greek Cheese Spread

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Tirokafteri is a classic Greek appetizer that’s essentially a spicy feta cheese dip. Trader Joe’s version has three different cheeses inside – white cow’s milk cheese, Anthotyros cheese, and feta cheese.

Inside the dip, you’ll also find Florina peppers that have been brined in a red wine vinegar mixture. These peppers bring some sweet heat to dip, giving each bite a nice kick.

Texture-wise, this cheese reminds me of a mix between a dip and a spread. I find it a bit looser than your average spread (when comparing it to cream cheese) but still more solid than your typical dip. I love spreading it on top of crackers or a toasted baguette.

10. Gran Capitan Hard Cheese With Black Olive Paste

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Most popular cheeses are made with either cow, goat, or sheep milk. This Trader Joe’s cheese is unique in that it contains all of the above types of milk.

The combination of goat, cow, and sheep milk makes for a complex flavor profile for the Gran Capitan Hard Cheese. The base of the cheese is classically creamy but has some tartness and nutty notes.

Within the cheese base are veins of black olive paste, which lend a briny, salty kick that I can’t get enough of. Trader Joe’s recommends using this cheese on a charcuterie board with items like almonds or sliced stone fruit.

I especially enjoy putting it on a board with some of their Fig & Olive Crisps, which bring some sweetness to the cheese while incorporating more of that briny olive flavor.

9. Cranberry Chèvre Goat Cheese

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This cheese from Trader Joe’s is only available during the holiday season. It’s deceivingly simple with just a log of goat cheese rolled in dried cranberries.

It doesn’t sound groundbreaking, but there’s something about the combination of sweet-tart cranberries and creamy, rich goat cheese that makes me think I could easily eat a whole log of this by myself. It almost has a dessert-like quality to it.

The texture of the cheese is smooth yet a bit crumbly, and the cranberries have a satisfying chew that you don’t find in most other cheeses.

8. Figgy Cheddar

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Here’s another Trader Joe’s cheese that’s tragically only available during the holiday season. Their Figgy Cheddar manages to wrap all the classic flavors of the holidays into one delicious cheese wedge.

The base of this cheese is a creamy, mild cheddar, and the star of the show (and what gives the cheese its name) is the figs. Before being mixed into the cheddar, fig pieces are marinated in white wine, rum, and spices like nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger.

Since the spices are found in the fig instead of the cheese itself, this wedge has the perfect amount of sweetness. While the cheddar is mostly mild, it has a little bit of sharpness to it, making this cheese the perfect mix of sweet and salty.

If you’re planning on making a holiday or winter-themed cheese board, the Figgy Cheddar is a must-buy!

7. 1000 Day Gouda Cheese

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Gouda is good no matter how old, but the older it is, the more caramelly, nutty, and tangy it gets. As gouda ages, it also forms cheese crystals that provide some crunch.

So, as you can imagine, Trader Joe’s 1000 Day Gouda Cheese is one of the richest, most complex goudas readily available at your local grocery store. This cheese has an intensely nutty flavor and some serious caramel notes, too. It would make a great dessert cheese.

Personally, I like to eat this gouda on its own, sans crackers or bread, to fully enjoy those tiny cheese crystals and the complex flavors going on here.

6. Toscano Cheese With Black Pepper

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If you’re looking for a Trader Joe’s cheese that’s got a little kick to it, the Toscano Cheese with Black Pepper is the way to go. It has a texture similar to parmesan and can be easily grated but is still soft enough to be cut and put on top of crackers.

The spice factor comes from the rind, which is rubbed with a generous amount of cracked black pepper. The closer you eat to the outside of your wedge of cheese, the spicier the becomes. This means it’s easy to find the spicier slices if you love the taste of black pepper, but you can also easily avoid that and go for the less peppery pieces.

5. Unexpected Cheddar Cheese

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Trader Joe’s cult classic Unexpected Cheddar Cheese is essentially a hybrid between cheddar and parmesan cheeses. It has the flavor and texture of an aged cheddar, with nutty, creamy notes.

As you eat, you’ll notice hints of parmesan flavor and texture creep in. There are bits of crystallized salt, as you’d find in an aged parmesan and some tangy flavor that you wouldn’t expect to find in a regular cheddar.

The Unexpected Cheddar Cheese has a flavor that goes well with pretty much anything you can think of – fruits, nuts, chocolate, and so on. That makes it ideal for a cheese board, and I don’t remember the last time I made a charcuterie board without this cheese. It’s always the first to go from the board, too!

4. Truffle Burrata

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Truffle is one of those flavors that takes any good dish to a whole new level. Pretty much any food will benefit from a dash of truffle oil, and that includes a creamy burrata cheese.

Burrata is a semi-soft cheese made with mozzarella and cream. Trader Joe’s Truffle Burrata has a chewy, thick mozzarella exterior and an interior that’s incredibly rich and creamy. There’s a serious black truffle flavor infused throughout, which only amps up that rich, indulgent taste and texture.

This cheese is so flavorful that it can easily be sliced and eaten on its own, but it will also provide a creamy black truffle flavor to any pizza, pasta, salad, or other meal you choose to add it to.

3. Italian Truffle Cheese

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While plenty of Trader Joe’s cheeses are beloved for being aged and full of interesting flavors and textures, their Italian Truffle Cheese is praised for the opposite reason. This young cheese (only aged for about two weeks) has a mild flavor that perfectly showcases the sophisticated truffle flavors within.

The truffle in this cheese comes in two forms – a concentrated truffle oil and pieces of black truffle blended throughout the cheese wedge. This double hit of flavor ensures that it’s packed with the woody, earthy flavor that black truffles are known and prized for.

This is a semi-soft cheese, which means it’s perfect for slicing and putting on top of crackers but can also easily be melted and put on a grilled cheese, pizza, or omelet. Truffle is one of my favorite flavors of all time, and this cheese from Trader Joe’s is the perfect vessel to get all that delicious truffle flavor.

2. Saint André Triple Crème Brie

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Brie cheese is delicious, but triple crème brie is on an entirely different level. In particular, Saint André Triple Crème Brie, which can be found in Trader Joe’s cheese section, is one of the creamiest, most unforgettable cheeses I’ve tried.

For starters, it has a texture that’s hard to beat. It’s made with 75% butterfat, ensuring every bite will be velvety, creamy, and phenomenally rich.

Flavor-wise, it’s fairly neutral. I’ve tried plenty of bries that were too strong for my taste, but this triple crème version has a milky, slightly sweet flavor that pairs well with almost anything you could think of. The rind is edible and has a mushroom-like flavor to it.

Just like Unexpected Cheddar, this is another Trader Joe’s cheese I never craft a charcuterie board without!

1. English Cheddar With Caramelized Onions

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The English Cheddar With Caramelized Onions is the Trader Joe’s cheese I’ll recommend to anyone who will listen. The base of this cheese is a white cheddar, which has a full-bodied, sharp cheddar flavor. It has a great balance of creaminess and salt and tastes delicious on its own.

But the element that takes it from delicious to my all-time favorite cheese at Trader Joe’s is the bits of caramelized onion marmalade. To make this mix-in, onions are chopped up and cooked with sugar, cider vinegar, clove, currant juice, and more. This results in a perfectly sweet yet salty marmalade evenly dispersed throughout the creamy cheddar base.

This Trader Joe’s cheese is so good that I recommend eating it by itself or with some basic salted crackers so you can enjoy all the complex notes it has to offer. It’s also delicious in a grilled cheese, on a charcuterie board, or sliced onto a sandwich.

About the Author

Samantha Jenkins is a food writer and digital marketing manager with a passion for storytelling, perusing grocery store aisles, reading menus, and eating really good food.

In her free time, she enjoys baking, performing in musicals, and cohosting the East Coast Haunts podcast.

November 29, 2023