What Can Parmesan Cheese Be Used For?

Parmesan cheese is renowned for its nutty, savoury flavour and crumbly texture. This delicious cheese is a staple in many Italian dishes such as pizza, pasta, and risotto, and has become a popular ingredient in various cuisines around the world. But what else can you use Parmesan cheese for besides sprinkling it on top of your favourite dishes?

In this article, we explore the various ways in which you can utilise this versatile cheese in your cooking. From appetisers to main courses, snacks and even desserts, we will demonstrate how Parmesan cheese can be a delicious and versatile addition to any dish. Whether you’re a cheese lover or simply looking for ways to enhance your cooking, read on to discover the many uses of Parmesan cheese.

Quick Answer
Parmesan cheese is a popular cheese used in many dishes such as pasta, pizza, salads, and soups. It can also be grated over roasted vegetables or used as an ingredient in bread crumbs for breading fish or chicken. Parmesan cheese can add a delicious, nutty flavor to any dish and is especially good when paired with garlic, lemon, or even honey. Some people also enjoy eating small pieces of Parmesan cheese on its own as a snack.

A Brief History of Parmesan Cheese and its Cultural Significance

Parmesan cheese, also known as Parmigiano-Reggiano, is a hard, granular cheese that originated in the Parma and Reggio Emilia regions of Italy. The cheese’s production dates back to the Middle Ages when monks began crafting it for their own consumption, and by the 17th century, it had become a staple among the noble families of northern Italy.

In addition to being a beloved ingredient in traditional Italian cuisine, Parmesan cheese holds cultural significance in many parts of the world. Its distinctive taste and texture have made it a popular choice for grating over pasta dishes, salads, and soups. Additionally, Parmesan cheese is often used as a finishing touch on pizzas and risottos, adding a rich and nutty flavor to these classic dishes. Due to its versatility and universal appeal, Parmesan cheese has become a sought-after ingredient in cuisines well beyond Italy’s borders.

Cooking with Parmesan Cheese: A Versatile Ingredient for Savory Dishes

Parmesan cheese is a popular ingredient for savory dishes and is used in a variety of recipes. It is a versatile ingredient that can be used in soups, salads, pasta dishes, and more. Cooking with Parmesan cheese adds depth and flavor to any dish, making it an essential ingredient in many recipes.

One of the most popular ways to use Parmesan cheese in cooking is to add it to pasta dishes. It can be grated or shaved over the top of the pasta or melted into the sauce for added flavor and richness. Parmesan cheese can also be used in soups and stews to add a savory depth of flavor. It works well in casseroles and as a topping for baked dishes, such as lasagna. Overall, Parmesan cheese is a versatile and essential ingredient for any home cook looking to add depth and flavor to their savory dishes.

Parmesan Cheese Pairings: Perfecting Your Cheese Board

Pairing Parmesan cheese with other food items can enhance its taste and make your cheese board look more visually appealing. One great pairing for Parmesan cheese is grapes, as they provide a sweet and tart contrast to its salty flavor. Other fruits like figs, apples, and pears also work well with Parmesan cheese, making for a delectable combination on a cheese board.

Crackers and bread are also a great pairing for Parmesan cheese, as they provide a subtle, crunchy texture that complements its creamy consistency. For an added layer of flavor, try pairing your Parmesan cheese with cured meats like prosciutto or salami. These meats not only enhance the taste of the cheese but offer a visual contrast that makes your cheese board look more appetizing. Overall, Parmesan cheese pairs well with a variety of food items and should be a staple on any cheese board.

Parmesan Cheese in Baking: Sweet and Savory Creations

Parmesan cheese is not only used in savory dishes, but it can also be added to sweet preparations like cakes, scones, biscuits, and pastries. It is used to provide a slightly salty flavor and also adds a satisfying crunch to bake goods. For instance, parmesan cheese can be used in place of cheddar cheese in a savory biscuit recipe or added to a sweet scone recipe with dried fruits and nuts.

In savory bakes, parmesan is used to enhance the flavor of quiches, cheesy bread, and pizzas. It is sprinkled on top of breadsticks, crackers, and flatbreads, giving them a unique taste and texture. Also, it can be used as a binding agent in meatloaf recipes. Parmesan cheese in baking also gives a rich depth of flavor to savory muffins, bread rolls, and croissants. Its versatility and rich flavor make it a key ingredient in baking.

Parmesan Cheese as a Garnish: Sprinkle This on your Favorite Dishes

Parmesan cheese is known as a versatile ingredient that can be used in different recipes. However, it also makes for a great garnish to many dishes. It adds an irresistible aroma and flavor to any dish it’s added to. When used as a garnish, it can transform a simple dish into a gourmet meal.

Sprinkling grated parmesan cheese over pasta dishes like spaghetti, fettuccine, or lasagna can add a depth of flavor and a touch of additional texture. It can also be added as a topping to pizzas, salads, soups, and risottos. Parmesan cheese is perfect for enhancing the flavor of vegetables too. Just roast or grill some vegetables and top them with grated parmesan cheese to create an appetizing and nutritious dish. The possibilities are endless with parmesan cheese as a garnish. Whether you’re cooking for a special occasion or a simple dinner at home, adding parmesan cheese as a garnish is sure to impress.

Vegan Alternatives to Parmesan Cheese: The Best Plant-Based Substitutes

While parmesan cheese is a popular addition to many dishes, it is not always suitable for those who follow a vegan diet. Thankfully, there are many plant-based alternatives that can provide a similar flavor and texture to parmesan cheese.

One great option is nutritional yeast, which has a savory, cheesy taste and can be used as a topping or in recipes like mac and cheese. Another alternative is cashew parmesan, made by blending cashews, nutritional yeast, and spices. This can be used for pasta, soup, and salad toppings. Other substitutes include tofu parmesan, made with crumbled tofu and seasoned breadcrumbs, and almond parmesan, made with roasted almonds and nutritional yeast. Whatever your preference, there are plenty of options available for vegan parmesan cheese alternatives that can add a rich cheesy flavor to your favorite dishes.

Health Benefits of Parmesan Cheese: Calcium, Protein, and More

Parmesan cheese is not only flavorful but also adds a boost of nutrients to any dish. One of the most prominent benefits of Parmesan cheese is its high calcium content. Calcium is an essential mineral that aids in the development of bones and teeth. An ounce of Parmesan cheese contains around 330mg of calcium, which is almost one-third of the daily recommended intake for adults. Therefore, incorporating Parmesan cheese into your daily diet can help strengthen your bones and prevent the risk of osteoporosis.

In addition to calcium, Parmesan cheese is also high in protein, providing around 10g of protein per ounce. Protein is an important macronutrient that helps build and repair tissues in the body, and also aids in the production of enzymes and hormones. Parmesan cheese also contains beneficial vitamins such as riboflavin, niacin, and vitamin A, which support healthy skin, vision, and brain function. However, it should be consumed in moderation as it is high in fat and sodium.


Parmesan cheese, one of the most versatile cheeses out there, can be used in a variety of dishes, from pasta to salads to soups. From its nutty flavor to its versatility, Parmesan cheese can transform any meal into a gourmet experience. Its complexity and strong flavor pair well with other ingredients and can elevate even the simplest recipes.

Whether you are a cheese lover or not, Parmesan cheese is worth giving a try. It is easy to find and has a long shelf life, making it convenient for use in just about any dish. So next time you are cooking at home or eating out, don’t forget the Parmesan cheese – it may just be the key ingredient you need to take your dish to the next level.

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