Cottage Cheese Is Making a Big Comeback
Cottage cheese is making a comeback! Who would have thought?! 😂
This retro food is gaining some real popularity on TikTok and Instagram with people creating all sorts of recipes using cottage cheese. From cottage cheese ice cream to cottage cheese pasta, the internet is hoping to turn curdled milk skeptics into cottage cheese fans. In fact, #cottagecheese has more than 223M views on TikTok! Of course, this isn't the first time TikTok recipes have garnered our attention—there's been ice cream and fruit roll-up treats, lazy enchiladas, and, of course, the now-famous butter board. But when we saw cottage cheese start to take over social media, we began to wonder: What's this trend really all about?
In the past, people have notoriously either loved cottage cheese (including yours truly!) or hated it. Perhaps because of the lumpy, chunky, and, yet, soupy-like texture. It also gets a bad rap as being used in fad diets in the '80s, although the health benefits are just another reason to love cottage cheese (more on that later).
Nowadays, cottage cheese is taking a cue from Greek yogurt which has become a staple in many households and recipes. Once thought of as bland, now an internet sensation—here's why we think cottage cheese is worth a try!
Why is cottage cheese so popular?
Cottage cheese is essentially a curdled milk product with a mild flavor. According to California Dairy, "Cottage cheese is thought to be the first cheese made in America." The process was brought over from Europe and "by the mid-1800s the term cottage cheese entered the American vocabulary." But it wasn't until WWI when cottage cheese got its first real publicity push. Cottage cheese was promoted during the war effort in place of meat and consumption grew from there. However, after the '80s, cottage cheese took a bit of a downfall. That is, until now!
One reason why cottage cheese is so popular is thanks to its health benefits. It's low in sugar and high in protein. (Just ask Ree Drummond about her health journey to eat foods with higher protein!) But that's not all, it's also extremely versatile in recipes that can be both sweet and savory. Think of it as a blank canvas for healthy breakfast ideas, dinner recipes, and lightened-up desserts!
Still not sold? Our Digital Food Director Erin Merhar says, "Cottage cheese is filling, while being a healthy choice for "cheese." My favorite way to eat is straight from the container, on wheat crackers. It fills me up until lunch time!"
How to use cottage cheese in recipes?
Here's the fun part: cottage cheese can be used in so many ways! Simply dress it up with a drizzle of good olive oil, some freshly chopped cucumbers and tomatoes, and sprinkle of salt for a savory snack (one of my personal favorites!). Or look for a whole milk cottage cheese that's extra-thick and spread it on toast with a drizzle of honey. It can also be used in smoothies or baked pasta recipes.
"For those who don't love the grainy texture of ricotta," Erin says, "use large-curd cottage cheese in lasagna or baked ziti. It's the perfect creamy, salty substitute." That's a hack that The Pioneer Woman uses, too. Check out her recipes for lasagna and sour cream noodle bake—both made with cottage cheese for extra creaminess.
Most people take issue with the texture of cottage cheese, but these days, people are blending and whipping cottage cheese into a creamy sensation. That's where the viral cottage cheese ice cream comes into play. But there's also cottage cheese pancakes, whipped cottage cheese dip, cottage cheese vodka sauce, and so much more.
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