Panela cheese

Panela cheese is one of the most popular types of cheese in Mexico and is widely produced and distributed throughout the country. The origin of panela cheese in Mexico is unknown but it is thought to have been an adaptation of Greek “basket cheese”  and is also commonly referred to as “queso canasta” or “queso de la canasta”.

How is Panela Cheese Made?

Panela cheese is made by heating skim (not whole) cow’s milk and adding rennet to form curds. The curds are then allowed to cool down, broken up with either a knife or with your fingers, then salted and drained in baskets. The fresh cheese then takes on the shape and texture of the basket it was made in. 

How Does Panela Cheese Taste?

Panela cheese is smooth, white and slightly salty. In its fresh, springy form, the cheese is generally sliced for sandwiches or cubed and used as a topping for salads and other cold dishes. Because this cheese can take high heat without melting or becoming runny, panela cheese is very commonly grilled or fried. After being aged for a bit, the cheese becomes drier and more crumbly and can be used in place of ricotta cheese or crumbled as a garnish for tacos, chili or guacamole.

What is Panela Cheese Similar To?

When it is freshly made, panela cheese is similar in taste and texture to paneer cheese,  haloumi and fresh mozzarella. As the cheese ages a bit it can be a good substitute for feta and ricotta cheese.

Glossary of Cheese Terms

Glossary of Cheese TermsContents1 Glossary of Cheese Terms2 Cheese Terms – Listed Alphabetically 2.1 Acid Set2.2 Acidification2.3 Acidity2.4 Affinage2.5 Affineur2.6 Aging2.7 Annatto2.8 Artisanal2.9 Asadero Cheese2.10 Bloomy Rind2.11 Brine2.12 Brushed Rind2.13 Buttery2.14 Calcium Phosphate2.15 Casein2.16 Caseophile2.17 Cheddar2.18 Cheddaring2.19 Cheesemonger2.20 Chihuahua Cheese2.21 Closed Curd2.22 Coagulation2.23 Cotija2.24 Creamy2.25 Crumbly2.26 Cultures2.27 Curdling2.28 Curds2.29 Curing2.30 DO Denominacio de Origen2.31 DOC Denominacao … Read more

Feria del Queso Tonantzintla 2022

21st Annual Feria del Queso Tonantzintla 2022 Held in Puebla On August 5, 6 and 7, Puebla celebrated the twenty-first edition of the traditional Tonantzintla Cheese Fair in the municipality of San Andrés Cholula, Puebla. This long-running cheese festival was canceled in 2020, and due to pandemic restrictions, significantly modified in 2021. Dairy producers, cheesemakers … Read more

8th Annual Festival del Queso Artesanal

8th Annual Festival del Queso Artesanal held in Tenosique, Tabasco Last weekend, after being postponed for two years, this highly anticipated, gastronomic festival was held in the state of Tabasco in the Tenosique Convention Center. The three-day event featured over 250 exhibitors and was attended by over 58,000 visitors. Respected as one of the largest … Read more

The Best Substitute for Panela Cheese – 12 Great Options

The Best Substitute for Panela CheeseContents1 The Best Substitute for Panela Cheese2 What is Panela Cheese?3 What is Panela Cheese used for?4 What Makes a Good Substitute for Panela Cheese?5 12 Great Substitutes for Panela Cheese in your Recipes6 Mexican Substitutes for Panela Cheese6.1 Queso Fresco6.2 Queso Blanco6.3 Cotija Cheese6.4 Requesón7 Substitutes for Panela Internationally7.1 … Read more

Panela and Spinach soup

Panela and Spinach soup In 40 minutes you can have this fantastic vegetarian tomato based panela and spinach soup. I was amazed how quick and easy this was to make. The flavors were fantastic and it made a great lunch for us with very little fuss. I used a Corvadonga panela cheese, which was excellent … Read more

Panela vs Paneer 

Panela vs Paneer Contents1 Panela vs Paneer 2 Mexico’s Queso Panela and India’s Paneer Cheese – Similarities and Differences3 Panela Cheese vs Paneer3.1 What is Panela Cheese?3.2 What is Paneer?4 Panela Cheese vs Paneer – Are they the same?4.1 How is Panela cheese similar to Paneer?4.2 How are Panela and Paneer different? Mexico’s Queso Panela and India’s … Read more
Mexican Cheese, the ultimate guide

Panela vs Queso Fresco

Panela vs Queso FrescoContents1 Panela vs Queso Fresco2 How to Use Panela Cheese and Queso Fresco in Your Cuisine3 Panela Cheese vs Queso Fresco3.1 What is Panela Cheese?3.2 What is Queso Fresco?4 Queso Panela vs Queso Fresco – Differences and Similarities4.1 How are Panela and Queso fresco the same or similar?4.2 How are Panela and … Read more

How to Use Panela Cheese

How to Use Panela CheeseContents1 How to Use Panela Cheese2 What is Panela Cheese?3 How to make Panela Cheese 4 Is Panela Cheese pasteurized? 5 Does Panela Cheese melt? 6 Where to buy Panela Cheese7 How to use Panela Cheese8 Recipes with Panela Cheese 8.1 1. Baked Panela 8.2 2. Grilled Panela  8.3 3. Panela Caprese Salad8.4 4. Panela Fajitas8.5 5. … Read more

Can Dogs Eat Panela Cheese?

Can Dogs Eat Panela Cheese?Contents1 Can Dogs Eat Panela Cheese?2 What kind of cheese is panela cheese ?3 What is Panela cheese similar to?4 Are there different kinds?5 Is unpasteurised cheese safe for dogs?6 Can dogs eat fresh cheese?7 Can panela cheese upset a dog’s stomach?8 All things in moderation9 The benefits of cheese for … Read more
Mexican Cheese, the ultimate guide

The Ultimate Guide to Mexican Cheese

It is nearly impossible to imagine the Mexican cuisine we know and love without Mexican cheese as a vital component. Enchiladas, chiles rellenos, chilaquiles, quesadillas and esquites….what would they be without cheese? Would these ubiquitous dishes even exist on the modern Mexican menus of today without the introduction of cheesemaking to Mexico? While cheese seems … Read more