In honor of Vegetarian Awareness Week, we’re here to help you pick out some of our vegetarian cheeses to fill your sandwiches, veggie burgers, pastas, and soups. What better way to celebrate than by munching on as much veggie-friendly cheese as possible?
So what makes some cheese vegetarian and some not? The distinction in Tillamook Cheeses depends on the rennet we use. Rennet is an enzyme, which is vital to our cheese-making process because it kick-starts the formation of cheese curds. We add a tiny amount of rennet to make the milk coagulate, which then begins to develop into curds.
For centuries, the only known milk coagulant for cheesemaking was an enzyme from a cow’s stomach. Now we’re able to make most of our cheeses using a fermentation-produced rennet product that has Kosher and Halal certification, and is vegetarian-friendly.
This veggie-friendly rennet is used to make all of our cheese except Tillamook Vintage White Medium Cheddar, Vintage White Sharp Cheddar, Vintage White Extra Sharp Cheddar, Vintage White Smoked Extra Sharp Cheddar, and the 3 Year Vintage White Extra Sharp Cheddar, which use traditional, bovine rennet. Other than these five cheeses, all other Tillamook Cheese is vegetarian!
What’s your favorite cheesy vegetarian meal to cook up!?