Cheese… just thinking about it makes my mouth water! It has the unique power to transform a simple meal into a decadent delight. I love snacking on it, adding it to my lunch, or making it the star ingredient in my dinner creations. Not to mention, I love trying out new pairing ideas.

With over 1,750 types of cheeses around the world (you read that correctly), there are almost an unlimited number of ways to enjoy this versatile food.

The good news doesn’t stop there, there are a ton of cheesy options that are lower in calories for those who are continuing.

1. Parmesan

Calories per serving: 20*
Serving size: 1 tablespoon

With only 20 calories per tablespoon, Parmesan is the perfect addition to enhance your pasta dish or hearty soups! Not only is parmesan low in calories, but it’s high in protein which helps to keep you satisfied longer. 2 tablespoons has 4g of protein in it!

Make a healthy side dish with cheese for your family dinner.

Parmesan Cauliflower

2. Part-Skim Mozzarella

Calories per serving: 70-80
Serving size: 1 slice/stick

Part skim mozzarella cheese packs 70 calories and whole milk is just 85 calories per slice. Mozzarella sticks make for a good, low calorie, grab & go or pre-workout snack! One low-fat mozzarella stick has only 80 calories and provides 7 grams of protein and 222 mg of calcium.

Make it a flatbread night with part-skim mozzarella.

pizza with mozzarella cheese

3. Camembert

Calories per serving: 85 
Serving size: 1 oz. (about the size of your thumb)

I like to think of Camembert as Brie’s sassy cousin. At just 85 calories per ounce, choose this cheese for that soft brie texture with a little extra bite. A spread with Camembert cheese paired with apples is the perfect (and easy) appetizer if you’re hosting guests.

Dessert panini? Yes please.

dessert panini with camembert cheese and fruit

4. Swiss cheese

Calories per serving: 100
Serving size: 1 slice

One slice of Swiss cheese has approximately 100 calories – holy cow (er, cheese)! Increase your intake of calcium and protein by adding a slice of Swiss cheese to a sandwich or burger. Swiss cheese is also the perfect option if you are watching your sodium intake as it has a lower amount of sodium than other lunch slice options.

Host your upcoming party with this Swiss and Sun-dried tomato fondue.

Swiss cheese fondue

5. Cottage Cheese

Calories per serving: 164
Serving size: 1 cup

Dieters eat your heart out! At just 164 calories for a full cup, cottage cheese is high in protein (which again keeps you full longer), low in fat (when you buy the low-fat variety) and low in carbs. Enjoy it by itself or add vegetables or fruit for a healthy lunch or snack with cheese.

A fun spin on pancakes with Cottage Cheese.

cottage cheese pancakes and fruit platter for breakfast

Want to learn more about cheese? Check out our Ultimate Cheese Guide.

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*Serving size and nutritional  information are based on