Do you give much thought to the cheese you buy?  Or better yet, do you have any idea how it’s made?  We always have a huge variety of cheese in our refrigerator, cheese has a presence at most of our meals in one form or another.   I buy what sounds good, but know nothing about cheese, not by far!!  So when Sargento Cheese challenged a few bloggers to a casual cheese tasting party I was game!

Nothing fancy, but I set up a little cheese tasting party for me and my girls.  A platter of Natural Sargento Sharp Cheddar slices, along with processed cheese slices, crackers, dried fruit and some grapes.

Sargento Suggest How to Taste Cheese:

  • Look at the cheeses first. It should be understated and non-glossy appearance. Processed cheeses have a luster or shine to them, even after the plastic is removed.
  • Touch the cheese to feel its texture. Natural cheese will break in an authentic fashion, processes cheese will often bend and fold with out breaking, and feel “rubbery”.

  • Smell the cheese. Natural cheeses can smell earthy, nutty or fruity.  While processed cheese can be odorless or ‘cooked milk’ notes.
  • Taste the cheese. Natural cheese have an incredible array of flavors, from savory to fruity to spicy to sharp. Processed cheeses usually have a predominantly salty taste.

After just a few bites we could all instantly tell the difference in the natural cheese versus the processed cheese.  The natural cheese was preferred hands down.  The girls even thought the natural cheese looked more appetizing than the processed cheese.  I noticed they both instinctively reached for a slice of the natural cheese first!

Sargento Natural Cheese vs Processed Cheese

Sargento Natural Cheese:

  • Never made with processed ingredients and naturally aged to perfection
  • Cut directly from real block cheese and packaged immediately. Tested to ensure the highest quality cheese
  • Never melted while being made
  • Needs to be refrigerated
  • 130 mg sodium for a 21 g. slice
  • is REAL cheese

Processed cheese:

  • Made with added emulsifiers such as calcium phosphate, sodium citrate and sodium phosphate and often has preservatives such as sorbic acid.
  • Typically heated to about 180 degrees and cooked with steam, which strips out flavors
  • Some processed cheese sit on a store shelf for months without refrigeration before being sold
  • Is cooked into a liquid before being formed into a slice, and is often is pumped into plastic packaging and run over a series of rollers to form a slice
  • 250 mg. of sodium for 19 g. slice
  • Is MADE FROM cheese (and other ingredients)


It’s funny that in the past I would use natural cheese slices for all our sandwiches (we personally love Sargento Chipotle Cheddar and Provolone) , but I don’t give a second thought to throwing a pre-wrapped slice of processed cheese on our burgers.  I’ll be sure to reach for a piece of natural cheddar cheese next time we  fire up the grill for burger, that’s for sure!

How about you?  What kind of cheese do you put on your burgers and sandwiches?

Disclosure:  This post was written as part of a campaign with The Motherhood and Sargento.  All opinions, and my family’s love for Sargento cheese, are my own.