A Guide to Cheese of Greece

A Guide to Cheese of Greece

Who doesn’t love cheese? Most people would probably agree that cheese is a staple food, whether they’re putting it on a sandwich, melting it on top of a casserole, or even just eating it on its own. In Greece, this couldn’t be more true, as cheese is a huge part of any Greek diet, which makes it a large component of Greek cuisine. In fact, cheese is a rich part of Greece’s history, and as such, there are a lot of different cheeses utilized in Greek cuisine, which is why, in today’s post, we will talk more about a few prominent Greek cheeses!

At Café Santorini, we strive to offer our customers authentic, traditional Greek cuisine, and that includes Greek cheese. Whether we’re sprinkling feta on our gyros or including some other cheese in one of our dishes, you can rest assured that we aren’t forgetting this important ingredient. Explore our website to view photos of our dishes and more, and if you find yourself getting a craving for traditional Greek cuisine, visit our Greek restaurant in Toronto today!

An image of crumbled feta next to a bowl of olives.


Feta is undoubtedly the most popular Greek cheese, and it’s also one of the oldest, dating back to at least the year 1700. Feta is a brined cheese, which means that it’s stored in a salty water solution (usually for several months), and this gives it its distinct, salty flavor. Feta is traditionally made with sheep’s milk (although today you can find feta made with goat’s milk, too), and it has a crumbly texture.

Feta is used in a variety of Greek dishes, including the ever-popular Greek salad. It’s also common to see feta baked into phyllo pastry or included in spanakopita (spinach pie), but Feta cheese can be used on anything from eggs to a topping on soup.

An image of sliced Kasseri cheese.


If you’re looking for a cheese that’s similar to cheddar, then kasseri is the cheese for you. Like feta, kasseri is made with sheep's milk. Kasseri has a milder flavor than feta (which can be quite strong), and it’s also less salty.

Kasseri is often used as a table cheese, meaning that it’s eaten on its own or as part of a Greek meze (appetizer). It can also be melted and added to Greek dishes like moussaka (eggplant casserole) or stifado (beef stew).

An image of fried Graviera cheese.


Graviera is another type of Greek cheese that is very popular. Graviera is a hard cheese, similar to Parmesan, and it’s made with cow’s milk. Graviera has a mild, slightly sweet flavor, and it’s often used as a table cheese or in Greek salads.

Graviera is also a common ingredient in Greek dishes like kalitsounia (cheese pies), pastitsio (Greek lasagna), and saganaki (fried cheese).

An image of Manouri cheese with balsamic vinegar on top.


Manouri is a Greek cheese that is similar to cream cheese, and as is typical of Greek cheeses, is usually made with either goat or sheep milk. Manouri is a popular cheese from Athens, and many people will use it in sweet phyllo pies or other cuisines that could use a bit of creamy sweetness.

An image of a bowl of creamy Galotyri cheese.


Galotyri is a cheese that is more milky than some of the other Greek cheeses, and it combines the textures of feta and yogurt. If you're looking for a replacement cheese to Feta, Galotyri is a great option as far as taste is concerned. However, this cheese is more wet and milky, whereas feta is more dry. That being said, if you're looking for a delicious cheese that you can easily dip some pita bread into, Galotyri is the perfect cheese for you!

An image of sliced Kefalotyri cheese.


Kefalotyri is a Greek cheese that is very similar to Parmesan, and it's made with both sheep milk and cow milk. Kefalotyri has a sharp flavor with a hint of salt. The sharp flavor comes from being aged for three months, and it's quite possibly one of the most popular Greek cheeses. This is a great cheese to use for making saganaki.

An image of crumbly Anthotyros cheese.


This cheese closely resembles Mizithra, which is another Greek cheese. As with most Greek cheeses, Anthotyros can be made with either sheep milk, goat milk, or both. The great thing about this cheese is that you can get it both soft and a little hard. If you choose to eat this cheese soft, it pairs well with fruit, as well as in Greek cheese pies. If you prefer to cook with this cheese, we recommend you get it hard.

An image of a wheel of Metsovone cheese.


Metsovone is a unique cheese, as it is one of the few Greek cheeses that is actually smoked. The smoking process gives this cheese a nice, smoky flavor that combines well with the natural flavor of the cow's milk it's made with. Metsovone is a hard cheese, and it's often used as a table cheese or in Greek salads.

Discover the Delicious Flavors of Greece!

These are just a few of the many different types of cheese available in Greece. While there are some types of cheese that are well known all over Greece, if you ever travel to one of the islands, you may notice that each city has its own cheeses that are used in their cooking.

That being said, if you're interested in trying traditional Greek food, with or without cheese, Café Santorini has you covered! Visit our Greek restaurant in Toronto today to try some of our authentic Greek cuisine!