When it comes to wine pairings, no food elicits more attention than cheese. And independent of its role as the quintessential complement to wine, cheese is a staple of American cuisine that has only continued to grow in popularity over the past 50 years, according to data gathered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture between 1970 and 2020.
Ironically, the most popular cheese in the United States today is mozzarella, an Italian variety that eclipsed cheddar in 2010, breaking the style’s 40-year streak. Aside from the two front-runners, other cow cheese varieties have seen minimal growth in popularity over the past couple decades. While per capita consumption of cheddar and mozzarella saw a net growth of 5.4 and 11.1 pounds, respectively, over the 50-year period, most other varieties including Swiss, blue, and muenster saw net growth of less than a pound each.
VinePair visualized the popularity of cheese varieties in America below; read on to see if your favorite style is trending.
- This chart does not include data for American cheeses other than cheddar and Italian cheeses other than mozzarella
- Data for blue cheese is absent between 1998 and 2009, hence the gap in its trend line
- USDA defines Hispanic cheese as those developed in Mexico, Latin America, and the Caribbean