There are many different dishes that call for melted cheese. You might want it on certain sandwiches, and many people enjoy having it on their nachos.
Whether you’re trying to enjoy cheese fondue or if you’re making a more complex dish, it’s going to be crucial to keep the cheese melted. Sometimes you might have issues with the cheese or cheese sauce hardening.
This can be a bit annoying, but it isn’t a problem that you can’t solve. Read on to learn about how to keep cheese melted.
When you know how to approach this topic properly, it’ll be easier to get consistent results. You’ll be able to enjoy melted cheese no matter what it is you’re trying to eat.
Some Cheeses Melt Better Than Others
One thing that you should know right away is that some cheeses melt better than others. Not all cheeses are great at melting.
Essentially, there are different factors that determine whether a type of cheese is going to melt easily or not. Moisture content has a significant impact on how well the cheese will melt.
Hard types of cheese contain too little water, and this means that they won’t liquefy completely. You should also know that the age of the cheese will make a difference.
Fat content and acidity play a role when determining how cheeses melt, too. All of this combines and it’ll give you a good idea of whether a specific cheese type is a good candidate for melting or not.
Hard cheeses won’t melt very well, but cheeses with high moisture content should melt nicely. Even among cheeses with high moisture content, there are going to be some that are better at reaching a smooth liquid state than others.
For example, mozzarella is good at melting, but it doesn’t form a smooth liquid. Mozzarella is great for pizzas, but it wouldn’t be used to make liquid cheese sauces.
Tips for Melting Cheese
The following tips for melting cheese should allow you to have a consistently positive experience. If you want to enjoy melted cheese to the fullest, it’ll be good to read this information.
Bring the Cheese to Room Temperature First
Bringing the cheese to room temperature first is a good idea. This gives the cheese a good start when you’re trying to bring it to its melting point.
Sudden temperature changes can make protein coagulate quicker than you want it to. This can lead to issues with clumpy cheese, and it might even make it have a greasy texture.
Allowing the cheese to reach room temperature first helps to prevent issues such as this. Once the it’s at room temperature, you’ll be ready to start the melting process.
Grating the Cheese Is Wise
If you’re going to melt a block of cheese, you’ll want to grate it first. It’s a lot harder to get good results when you’re melting large chunks of it.
Take a cheese grater (or an alternative) and grate it down so that it will have a greater surface area. The heat will be able to melt the cheese quicker if you take the time to do this.
Use Low Heat
Using low heat is going to be better than turning the heat on to a very high setting to start. Gradual temperature changes are better than fast ones.
When you melt the cheese using low heat, it’ll prevent the fat from separating from the melted cheese. You want the cheese to just reach its melting point without exceeding it.
Adding acid to the cheese is going to prevent it from solidifying. When you’re making cheese sauces or cheese fondue, this is going to be a critical part of the process.
Keeping the cheese melted and smooth will be easier if you add something acidic to the mix. Many choose to add a bit of lemon juice or white wine to cheese sauces for this purpose.
The acid that is present in white wine and lemon juice will prevent clumping issues. The acid content bonds with calcium in the melted cheese and keeps it from linking with the proteins in the cheese.
Water content is also going to help to keep the proteins diluted. They’ll keep flowing instead of clumping up and solidifying.
If you want to keep your cheese melted and in a liquid form, you should be adding acid to the cheese. It really does help you to keep your cheese dip or cheese sauce in the proper state.
Starch Helps Too
Starch can also help when you’re trying to keep the cheese melted. When you’re making a cheese sauce, you can add a bit of flour or cornstarch to the mix.
This helps to eliminate issues such as clumps and stringiness in cheese sauces. The starch will coat the proteins and fats with the melted cheese.
Proteins simply won’t have the chance to clump when you use starch in this fashion. The fat content won’t be able to separate from the cheese sauce, and you’re going to have a much better experience.
Serve the Cheese Before it Cools
Serving the cheese before it cools is an important part of keeping it melted. As the cheese starts to cool, it’s going to solidify.
The cheese will become firm again if it is allowed to cool. This could lead to clumping issues as well.
When you’re trying to keep cheese sauce or fondue melted, it’s ideal to keep it warm. You want to keep the cheese warm without scorching it or bring it past its melting point.
There are warmers that you can use to get this done, but you could also use a simple slow cooker that is set to a low-temperature setting. You just need to keep the cheese hot enough so that it will maintain its melted form without going overboard.
Stringy Cheeses Aren’t Ideal
Remember that stringy cheeses aren’t ideal when you’re trying to make cheese dips, cheese sauces, and fondue. As mentioned earlier, mozzarella is great when it comes to melting, but it doesn’t work when you want to create a smooth and creamy sauce.
Stringy cheeses won’t work properly when you’re trying to make liquid cheese. Simply avoid using cheeses such as mozzarella when your goal is to create a creamy cheese sauce of some sort.
It’d be better to use something such as cheddar cheese or a cream cheese that has high moisture content. Choosing the appropriate cheese type is a big part of finding success.
You should have a much better idea of what you need to do to keep cheese melted now. To get the best results, you need to consider many different things.
The type of cheese that you’re melting will play a role in how things will turn out. It’s best to use types that are known to melt properly.
If your goal is to make fondue or some type of cheese sauce, ensure that you don’t use stringy cheeses. Bring the cheese to room temperature before you start melting it.
Remember that it’s better to use low heat because you don’t want to bring the cheese past its melting point. Serve the melted cheese before it cools to get the best results.
If you want to keep the cheese melted, you should add acid to the mix using lemon juice or white wine. It’s also good to keep the cheese warm if you want it to stay melted during a party.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.