Guide to Mexican Cheeses: Cacique® Queso Cotija

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Guide to Mexican Cheeses: Cacique® Queso Cotija

Whether you’re a Mexican food connoisseur or a novice home cook seeking a little excitement and magic in the kitchen, Cacique’s cheeses, creams, chorizos, and more are sure to meet your everyday needs. Through our full line of authentic Mexican food products, we hope to inspire you to add a little chispa [chee – spah] (spark, that is) of flavor to all of your meals. To help you along your culinary journey, we’ve put together an informative series that will guide you on how to enjoy all of our delicious products.

Before you get cooking, check out a few fun facts and innovative ways to use each of our products. Here, we introduce you to our Queso Cotija [keh – soh · koh – tee – hah], a crumbly, piquant cheese that’s sure to delight your palate.

What is Queso Cotija?

Queso Cotija is a crumbly, aged cheese known for providing a distinctive, salty kick to any dish. One of Mexico’s most popular cheeses, Cotija originated in a town by the same name, in the state of Michoacán.

Sometimes referred to as the “Parmesan of Mexico” (especially in regards to more heavily aged cotijas), our dry, flavorful version certainly lives up to its nickname and works well in place of any parm.

Fun Queso Cotija Fact:

Traditionally, queso Cotija is a raw, seasonally-produced cheese. From about July through October, Cotija’s artisan cheesemakers rely on the rain to enrich the mountain grass for their cows to yield the right flavors for their cheese. Luckily, Cacique’s own queso Cotija is available pasteurized year round for whenever the mood strikes.

How can I use Queso Cotija?

Queso Cotija is ideal for enhancing antojitos (snacky “little cravings”), such as tostadas, tacos, taquitos, totopos [toh – toh – pohs] (traditional tortilla chips), enchiladas [ehn – chee – lah – dahs], and of course, elotes [eh – loh – teh] (corn on the cob dressed with chile powder, lime juice, cotija, and other goodies). It’s also fantastic sprinkled over fresh or refried beans, in soups and stews, on scrambled eggs or other egg dishes like chilaquiles [chee – lah – key – less], or any other dish that needs a little extra something.

Here are a few other delightful and creative ways you can enjoy Cacique’s Queso Cotija:

  • Mix into a refreshing summer salad with grilled peaches or pineapples
  • Crumble over roasted veggies like zucchini, squash, or brussels sprouts to accentuate your dinner sides
  • Sprinkle over warm, sweet plantains for a sweet-and-salty snack
  • Liven up breakfast time by adding to frittatas, egg bakes, grits, or even avocado toast
  • Throw into bean dip, corn dip, guacamole, queso dip, or even a beer cheese dip at your next potluck
  • Toss some into a bowl of vegetarian or meat-based chili to add complexity
  • Grate some onto a crisp Caesar salad for some Mexican flair
  • Spoon some over a fresh slice of watermelon and add a few squirts of lime
  • Combine with rice, beef crumbles, chorizo, or even tofu and stuff into peppers for a fab and filling meal

What Next?

  • Start Shopping – Our Cacique® Queso Cotija is available at retailers across the U.S. Visit our store locator to see which products are available at your local grocery store.
  • Get Cooking – For more delicious and authentic recipe inspiration, check out the recipes section of our website.
  • Share the Cacique Love – Be sure to share your creations with us and tag @caciqueinc on Instagram so we can see what you’re cooking up!