What Is the Different Between White and Yellow American Cheese?

If you’ve ever wondered whether to order white or yellow American cheese at the deli counter, and if it makes a difference, you’re not alone. We’ve recently encountered the similar problem, but what’s the difference?

We determined that these two types of cheese differ in taste, texture, nutritional content, and a variety of other qualities other than color after doing thorough study.

Let’s see if we can assist you decide between white and yellow American cheese the next time you grill some burgers.

Difference Between White American Cheese vs. Yellow American Cheese

The fundamental difference between white and yellow American cheese is not their color, but rather their fat level. Yellow American cheese has a softer texture and a deeper taste than white American cheese because it is fattier. They are both pasteurized and members of the American cheese family.

They are often sold in a number of forms, including shredded, wrapped in slices, blocks, and spreads.

We enjoy them for their creamy cheesiness in whatever form they take, and they will always be our go-to ingredient for sandwiches, burgers, spaghetti, and hotdogs. Let us now examine these contrasts in further depth.


The colors of these two cheeses are diametrically opposed: one is white and the other is yellow. This is owing to the various procedures used to make each cheese.

While manufacturing white American cheese, the milk is quickly treated with citric acid before being drained and curdled, resulting in a whiter cheese. It also includes calcium chloride, a coagulant that contributes to the yellowish tint of white American cheese.

Yellow American cheese, as opposed to white cheese, is yellow because the whey has been removed. During processing, the beta-carotene in the whey leaches out, giving the meal its yellow color. The beta-carotene content is derived from the vegetables and grass that the cow consumes.


Many individuals assume that both white and yellow American cheese taste the same. In actuality, despite their similarities, they have unique tastes.

White cheese has a mild and salty flavor due to its decreased fat content. Yellow American cheese, on the other hand, is fattier and has a much stronger and tangier taste.

Moreover, white American cheese includes just salt, which adds to its mild taste. It also lacks any additional spices. Yellow American cheese, on the other hand, contains more spices, giving it a richer taste.


If you’ve ever eaten American cheese, you’ve probably noticed that the white and yellow kinds have somewhat distinct textures.

Yellow American cheese is soft and silky. This trait is caused by the longer drying period and increased fat content. The stickier texture, on the other hand, may make spreading yellow American cheese more difficult.

Since it dries faster and has less fat, white American cheese is less smooth and silky than yellow American cheese. Since it’s dry and crumbly, it’s much simpler to spread without the need of butter or oil.


Yellow American cheese melts and keeps its shape better than white American cheese. It may also turn runny extremely quickly after melting.

As a consequence, white cheese is commonly used in dishes such as lasagna, grilled cheese sandwiches, and even burgers and hot dogs. This might be due to the milder taste produced by the combination of white cheese and carbs. Also, because of the fat content, it holds its shape better than yellow cheese.

Yellow cheese complements meats wonderfully; try it with hot dogs, steaks, meatloaf, burgers, and other savory American favorites.

White American Cheese vs. Yellow American Cheese Comparison Table

Category White American Cheese Yellow American Cheese
Origin USA USA
How is it made? Eliminate and drain any extra whey liquid Remove any excess liquid from the curds
Drying time Shorter drying time Longer drying time
Fat Content Less fatty More fatty
Color White/pale yellow Yellowish-orange
What makes their color? Citric acid Beta-carotene
Flavor Mild & salty Stronger & tangy
Extra seasoning? Only salt A variety of spices
Texture Crumbly & dry Velvety & soft
Spreadable? Yes No
Use Pasta, grilled cheese, sandwiches Hotdogs, burgers, sandwiches
Price More expensive Less expensive

Nutritional Content Breakdown: Which One Is Healthier?

White American cheese is the healthier pick of the two varieties of cheese since it has less salt and fat. Its decreased fat content is attributed to the faster draining of the curds.

Yellow American cheese, on the other hand, takes the award for having greater amounts of fat and salt. It is not intrinsically dangerous to you, but it may dramatically change your nutritional demands if taken regularly.

Another important difference is that if you have a dairy allergy, you can still eat white cheese, but you should avoid yellow cheese since it contains more milk.

White American Cheese vs. Yellow: Nutritional Profile

Category (1 slice) White American Cheese Yellow American Cheese
Calories 50 70
Carbs 2g 1g
Cholesterol 15 mg 15 mg
Fat 3.50g 6g
Sodium 230 mg 270 mg
Protein 3g 4g
Fiber 0g 0g
Sugar 0g 0g
Calcium 290 mg 150 mg
Vitamin D 1 mcg 0 mcg
Vitamin A 60 mcg 60 mcg

Can I Substitute White American Cheese for Yellow & Vice Versa?

White American cheese may be a good alternative for yellow cheese, while yellow American cheese may not have the same taste and texture as white American cheese.

Having said that, the recipe is everything. In sandwiches, hamburgers, and hot dogs, white American cheese may be replaced with yellow American cheese. If you’re making lasagna or a nice pesto pasta dish and want a cheese that’s simpler to spread, yellow American cheese may not be the ideal pick.

Nevertheless, there are several American cheese substitutes[1] available, such as Gouda or Monterey Jack, since yellow American cheese is not only less spreadable than white, but the stronger taste may overpower your meal.


Which is healthier, white or yellow American cheese? Consider all of the characteristics of each cheese kind given above to assist you.

White American cheese is lower in fat and hence healthier. The texture is spreadable, and the taste is mild and salty, making it ideal for lasagna! White American cheese, on the other hand, is somewhat more expensive.

Although yellow American cheese is not the greatest option for those who have severe dairy allergies since it is fattier, it is perfect for those who like a deeper and tangier taste in their burgers!

Still unable to make a decision? Experiment now! Buy both and experience the differences for yourself! Best wishes!

link to American cheese alternatives


Which is better white or yellow American cheese?

As compared to yellow American cheese, white American cheese contains fewer fat and calories. Nonetheless, all cheese should be used in moderation.

Does yellow and white American cheese taste different?

Many individuals assume that both white and yellow American cheese taste the same. In actuality, despite their similarities, they have unique tastes. White cheese has a mild and salty flavor due to its decreased fat content. Yellow American cheese, on the other hand, is fattier and has a much stronger and tangier taste.

What is the difference between white and orange American cheese?

What’s the difference between orange cheddar and regular cheddar? The sole difference between white and orange cheddar is the natural vegetable colour used in the production of orange cheddar. Nowadays, most orange cheddar cheese is prepared using annatto, a seed from the Central and South American achiote tree.

Why does American cheese come in different colors?

Alternatively, paprika. Orange became connected with cheese throughout time, which explains why American cheese, as well as cheese treats like Cheetos, are orange. Currently, the hue is most often derived from annatto, a culinary coloring and condiment derived from the seeds of the achiote tree.

Why is white American cheese so good?

American cheese does have some nutritional benefits: it includes high-quality protein with a low carbohydrate content, and since it is made from genuine dairy, it is naturally rich in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin D, vitamin A, calcium, phosphorus, and zinc.

Is American white cheese healthy?

It is a rich source of calcium and high quality protein as a dairy product. It also has a longer shelf life than other cheeses. Nevertheless, because of its high saturated fat and salt content, which may raise the risk of heart disease, it should be taken in moderation.

What flavor is white American cheese?

The taste is mild, creamy, and salty, with a medium-firm consistency.

Why did they make American cheese yellow?

Thus, as you would have anticipated, cheesemakers began coloring their cheese to conceal the absence of cream in the cheese. Before the advent of chemical dyes, it was simple to color cheese using natural materials. Saffron, marigold, carrot juice, and annatto were all possible components.

What real cheese tastes most like American cheese?

Provolone has a texture, flavor, and look comparable to white American cheese. It has a moderate taste that works well in sandwiches, casseroles, and pizza. Provolone may be substituted 1:1.

What is another name for white American cheese?

Instead of the term cheese, it is also referred to as “American slices” or “American singles.”

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