Shredded cheese is a versatile ingredient to have on hand for a wide variety of dishes. It can be the main ingredient or simply an added touch to the top of a dish. You can even use shredded cheese for a quick melt on a classic grilled cheese. The options for shredded cheese are endless, but the truth is that many store-bought shredded cheese packages can be quite expensive.
Table of contents
- Why Shred Your Own Cheese?
- What cheeses are perfect for shredding?
- How do you shred cheese without it crumbling?
- What is the best way to store shredded cheese?
- Shredded Cheese Container Features
- How do I know if shredded cheese is bad?
- How to keep shredded cheese from getting moldy in the fridge?
- Tips for extending the storage life of shredded cheese
You can save a bit of money by shredding your own cheese. But what do you do with your shredded cheese? This guide to shredded cheese containers will take you through everything you need to know about shredded cheese and its proper storage.
Why Shred Your Own Cheese?
Pre-shredded cheese from the grocer’s dairy section is quite convenient. It comes in a variety of shred sizes and most packages offer the exact measurements for easy use in recipes. However, we recommend that if you have time, shred your own.
Beyond being more economical, shredding your own cheese results in a shredded cheese that tastes better and melts easier. Pre-shredded cheese is coated in cellulose, a preservative that keeps the cheese fresh and keeps it from sticking together.
Have you ever eaten a handful of pre-shredded cheese and noticed how the individual shreds just break apart? This is partly because of the cellulose and partly due to the cheese being processed. Although the cellulose does protect the cheese, the shredded pieces are still dried out. The lack of moisture in combination with the cellulose prevents the cheese from coming together. When you try to melt it, it simply won’t melt as smoothly as cheese without a cellulose coating.
And not only is texture affected, but so is taste. When cheese is allowed to melt in your mouth the way it is intended to, it provides a taste experience that simply cannot be recreated with a processed shredded cheese.
What cheeses are perfect for shredding?
Another reason to shred your own cheese is that it opens the door to a wide variety of cheeses. Most pre-shredded cheese options are limited. However, there are thousands of kinds of cheese. When you shred your own, you don’t have any limitations.
When choosing a cheese for shredding, you want to look at what holds up well to shredding and what is a good melter. Some cheeses simply don’t melt well. Older, aged cheeses are usually drier in texture and simply don’t melt as well as younger fresh cheese.
Some of the top cheeses for shredding include cheddar, swiss, gruyere, fontina, provolone and colby. You’ll also find that grated cheeses, such as parmesan, could be considered as shredded if processed with a large shred.
How do you shred cheese without it crumbling?
The simplest way to shred cheese without much fuss is to grab a traditional grater. A flat cheese grater can be leveraged in a bowl for grating, while a box grater can be placed on a cutting board. Both are inexpensive tools that take up little kitchen storage space.
For the best shredding experience, stick your cheese in the freezer for 20 minutes before shredding. The colder the cheese, the easier it will be to grate without become melted or crumbing.
Give your shredded a quick spray with a nonstick cooking spray or olive oil. This keeps the grated cheese from sticking to the grater and makes for an easy clean up.
What is the best way to store shredded cheese?
The enemies of shredded cheese are light, air, and humidity. The best storage for shredded cheese offers protection from all three of these factors.
Always store your cheese in the refrigerator. It is a nice cool, dark place for cheese storage.. If you are looking for long term cheese storage, consider freezing your shredded cheese for up to six months. Simply thaw it in the fridge overnight or for 30 minutes on the counter before using it.
Cheese left out will quickly dry out due to the air around it. To keep any cheese in its best shape, you should always keep it protected from the air in an airtight container. Dried, stale cheese won’t melt and it won’t taste very good either.
On the other side of the coin, too much moisture is what causes cheese to go bad. You want to prevent an excessive amount of humidity from gathering in your container. One solution to this problem is to choose a properly sized container that allows for little air space.
Shredded Cheese Container Features
The best shredded cheese containers are resealable and air tight. It is a good idea to have a few containers of different sizes on hand so that you can choose a container that won’t have too much air space for your shredded cheese.
A good seal is essential. While you may be able to use a cheap plastic container for a day or two without any loss of quality, longer storage of shredded cheese requires a container with a good rubber or silicone seal.
How do I know if shredded cheese is bad?
Shredded cheese is at its best when stored in an airtight shredded cheese container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. For this reason, we recommend only shredding a small amount at a time for storage in the fridge. Larger portions can be stored in the freezer.
To determine if shredded cheese is still good to eat, first look at it. If you see mold, throw it away.
If you don’t see any mold, you’ll have to be adventurous and give it a smell and a taste. If it has an off flavor or taste, it is best to start fresh and grate some new cheese.
How to keep shredded cheese from getting moldy in the fridge?
Keeping cheese you’ve shredded from getting moldy simply requires a well-sealed shredded cheese storage container. But you may be asking how to keep shredded cheese from molding when you’ve purchased it already shredded.
The simple solution is to provide your packaged shredded cheese with better storage. Remove it from the manufacturer’s packaging and store it in an airtight cheese storage container with as little air space as possible.
Tips for extending the storage life of shredded cheese
Cheese will stay the freshest when unshredded and stored in plastic wrap inside of an airtight container in the refrigerator. The reason behind this is that there is less surface area for the cheese to be exposed to light, air, and humidity. If pre-shredding your cheese is a time-saving option for you, try to only shred what you know you will use in the next week.