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Top 13 Cheeses to Experiment With on Your Next Pizza

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Top Cheeses to Experiment With on Your Next Pizza
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As a pizza chef with a lifetime of dough under my nails and cheese on my mind, I’ve discovered that the secret to an unforgettable pizza often lies in the choice of cheese.

Sure, we all love our classic mozzarella, but the world of cheese is vast and exciting. Here are thirteen cheeses that you need to try on your next pizza.

I’ve experimented with each of these types, and I guarantee you will not be disappointed if you try them.

1. Fontina

Fontina Cheese

Hailing from the Aosta Valley in the Italian Alps, Fontina is made from unpasteurized cow’s milk and aged for 90-150 days.

  • Texture: Creamy and melts beautifully.
  • Flavor: Nutty and mild.
  • Best Used: On gourmet pizzas with mushrooms and caramelized onions.

Its creamy texture and nutty flavor make it an excellent choice for a gooey cheese base. Pair it with mushrooms or caramelized onions, and you have a sophisticated pizza that feels like a gourmet treat.

2. Ricotta

Ricotta Cheese

Ricotta is a type of whey cheese that can be produced from the milk of sheep, cows, goats, or even buffalos. This soft, creamy cheese is a staple in Italian cuisine and can be found across the Italian peninsula.

  • Texture: Soft and creamy.
  • Flavor: Slightly sweet.
  • Best Used: As a topping or stuffed crust ingredient.

Adding ricotta to your pizza creates a delightful, airy texture. This ingredient is frequently paired with spinach, resulting in a classic combination that is both lenient and refreshing.

3. Asiago

Asiago Cheese

Asiago, a cheese hailing from the northern Italian regions of Veneto and Trentino, is a pressed cow’s milk variety.

  • Texture: Creamy when young, crumbly, and more flavorful with age.
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, and nutty.
  • Best Used: Grated over pizzas for a nutty, slightly sweet contrast.

Young Asiago is mild and creamy, while aged Asiago is more flavorful with a crumbly texture. It adds a nutty, slightly sweet contrast to rich, savory toppings like smoked bacon.

4. Pecorino Romano

Pecorino Romano Cheese

Pecorino Romano, made from sheep’s milk, comes from Lazio, Sardinia, and Grosseto.

  • Texture: Hard and easily grated.
  • Flavor: Salty and sharp.
  • Best Used: Grated over pizzas for an intense flavor hit.

This cheese packs a salty punch and is especially effective when used sparingly. It’s ideal for pairing with spicy or sweet toppings for a bold flavor contrast.

5. Buffalo Mozzarella

Buffalo Mozzarella Cheese

Buffalo mozzarella is no ordinary mozzarella. Hailing from the sun-kissed region of Naples down in Southern Italy, this cheese is made from the milk of water buffaloes.  As a result, it flaunts a soft, supple texture and a delicate, slightly tangy, and wonderfully creamy flavor profile.

  • Meltability: Excellent for achieving that classic cheese pull.
  • Flavor: Mild, slightly tangy, and very milky.
  • Best Used: On Margherita and Quattro Formaggi pizzas.

It’s prized for its melting properties and that beautiful stretch when you pull a slice away. It’s a must for anyone serious about their pizza. Add it generously, and watch your pizza transform into a gooey masterpiece.

6. Provolone Dolce

Provolone Dolce

Provolone Dolce, from Po Valley, Northern Italy, is a semi-hard pasta filata cheese made from cow’s milk and aged for 2-3 months.

  • Texture: Smooth and creamy.
  • Flavor: Mild and sweet.
  • Best Used: On American-style pizzas for excellent melting properties.

Its smooth texture and mild, sweet taste make it popular on American-style pizzas. It melts like a dream and offers a gentle flavor that complements various toppings.

7. Parmigiano Reggiano

Parmigiano Reggiano

Parmigiano Reggiano, the king of cheeses, comes from Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy, Northern Italy. Made from raw cow’s milk and aged for a minimum of 12 months, often much longer.

  • Texture: Crumbly and slightly crunchy.
  • Flavor: Rich, sharp, and nutty.
  • Best Used: Sprinkled on top before or after baking.

This cheese adds a burst of umami and a delightful crunch. It’s a flavor bomb that can take any pizza from good to great with just a sprinkle.

8. Robiola


Robiola from Piedmont, Northern Italy, can be made from cow, goat, or a mixture of milks.

  • Texture: Creamy.
  • Flavor: Mild and slightly sour when fresh; tangy and complex when aged.
  • Best Used: Spread on pizza crust as a rich base.

This cheese is versatile, adding a creamy, rich base when spread on the crust before adding other toppings. It’s a game-changer for texture and flavor.

9. Gorgonzola Piccante

Gorgonzola Piccante

Blue cheese on pizza? Yes, please. Gorgonzola Piccante, from Milan, Italy, is made from cow’s milk and aged for at least 60 days.

  • Texture: Firmer than its milder counterpart, Gorgonzola Dolce.
  • Flavor: Sharp, spicy, and robust.
  • Best Used: To add savory depth, especially on pizzas with multiple cheeses.

Its sharp, spicy taste adds a robust flavor that balances beautifully with milder cheeses. It’s perfect for those who like a punch of flavor in their slice.

10. Caciocavallo


From Southern Italy, Caciocavallo is a pasta filata cheese made from cow’s milk.

  • Texture: Smooth when young, firmer and more flavorful with age.
  • Flavor: Robust and tangy.
  • Best Used: For robust, tangy flavor and good cheese pulls.

It’s similar to aged mozzarella but with a deeper flavor. It’s fantastic for those who love a good cheese pull and a robust, tangy flavor profile.

11. Crescenza

Crescenza Cheese

From Northern Italy (Lombardia, Veneto, Liguria), Crescenza is a very soft, creamy, and spreadable cheese made from cow’s milk.

  • Texture: Extremely creamy and spreadable.
  • Flavor: Mild and slightly tangy.
  • Best Used: With prosciutto and arugula.

Adding Crescenza to your pizza brings a creamy texture that pairs beautifully with prosciutto and arugula. It creates a delightful, luxurious mouthfeel.

12. Fior di Latte

Fior di Latte

Similar to mozzarella but made from cow’s milk, Fior di Latte is a staple from Campania, Southern Italy.

  • Texture: Soft and moist with higher moisture content.
  • Flavor: Light and subtle.
  • Best Used: As a milder alternative to mozzarella.

Its lighter, subtler flavor offers a different twist on traditional pizzas. It’s perfect for those who prefer a more delicate cheese experience.

13. Taleggio


From Lombardy, Italy, Taleggio is a semi-soft, washed rind cheese made from cow’s milk and aged for at least six weeks.

  • Texture: Moist and sticky.
  • Flavor: Mild with fruity and nutty notes despite its pungent aroma.
  • Best Used: For a creamy, flavorful topping.

Its melting properties are superb, making it a suitable candidate for a creamy and flavorful pizza topping. Don’t let the aroma scare you off; the taste is milder than you’d expect.


Exploring various cheese options can really take your pizza-making skills to the next level and grant your pies new and creative flavors.

Next time you’re whipping up a homemade pie, why not venture beyond the traditional toppings and give one (or more!) of these fantastic cheese varieties a shot?

It could make for a truly delightful dining experience, in fact, I’m sure it will.

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