Food & Nutrition

7 of the best lactose free cheeses we’ve bought & tried

Published by Finn Hayden

Considering how many people are lactose intolerant in the UK, it's actually quite hard to find proper cheese which is lactose free. We say "proper cheese" because often when you look for lactose free cheese online, all that you get recommended is vegan cheese.

We've already shown that there is plenty of excellent lactose free milk out there which isn't vegan, and we wanted to show that the same is true for lactose free cheese. We've been to all of the major supermarkets in the UK and tried a lot of cheese (no complaints there), and the result is this guide of what we believe to be the best lactose free cheese that you can buy in the UK currently. Let's get into it:

Cathedral City Lactose Free Mature Cheddar

We have to take our hats off to the team at Cathedral City because they're one of the only big cheese brands in the UK that has taken the effort to produce a lactose free cheese product. It's mature cheddar and honestly, we didn't think it tasted too different from the standard mature cheddar from Cathedral City. This grates and melts very well, making it perfect for adding to pasta or for making cheese on toast. You can find this cheese stocked in supermarkets like Tesco. Learn more and buy it here -

Cathedral City lactose free

Leerdammer Original

Yes! You might not have realised it but Leerdammer is actually lactose free. As the cheese is being made, lactic ferments are added. After the whey has been drained away it actually takes most of the lactose with it. Any remaining lactose is transformed by the lactic ferments, and by the time the cheese has finished maturing it is totally free from lactose. It's amazing to us that Leerdammer doesn't make more of a deal about this on their packaging, as it almost feels like a bit of a secret. But it's true. We love the nutty flavour of Leerdammer and think it is ideal for everything from sandwiches to burgers. Learn more and buy it here -

Leerdammer Original

Waitrose free from Greek feta

Of all the UK supermarkets we visited, Waitrose was the only supermarket we could find which offered an own-brand lactose free cheese, albeit not something common like a cheddar. This Greek Feta was crumbly and delicious, and we really couldn't tell that any lactose had been removed. If you want a cheese to pair with a salad or to use in a Mediterranean style sandwich, then this lactose free Greek Feta from Waitrose is ideal. Learn more and buy it here -

Waitrose lactose free greek feta

Lactose Free Philadelphia

It's actually quite hard to find this lactose free Philadelphia, but if you can get your hands on it then we highly recommend giving it a try. It tastes virtually exactly the same as the standard Philadephia, the only slight difference would be the texture, but even then the difference is minimal. Definitely give this a shot if you're a fan of Philadelphia, learn more and buy it here -
Lactose Free Philadelphia

Arla lacto free mature cheddar (grated)

Arla is probably the brand with the most popular range of lactose free cheese, and you'll generally find this cheese stocked in most of the major UK supermarkets. Of all the lactose free cheese we tried from Arla, we think that this grated mature cheddar was our favourite. The taste was full-bodied and really flavourful, plus it had a creaminess. We used this cheese in a sandwich and on pasta, and it worked perfectly for both. Learn more and buy it here -

Arla lacto free

Arla lacto free soft cheese

Another great lactose free soft cheese is this product from Arla, which doesn't taste quite as good as the Philadelphia we included in this guide, but is still really nice. It's made from all natural ingredients and spreads beautifully on bagels. Learn more and buy it here -

Lacto free soft cheese

Waitrose Free From Cypriot Halloumi

We've already included the Greek feta from Waitrose, but we're really impressed that you can also buy another lactose free cheese from the supermarket. If you're a fan of halloumi then the lactose free Cypriot halloumi from Waitrose is an absolute must buy. This cheese has all the taste (and squeak) of normal halloumi and works perfectly on burgers and salads. We're so impressed that you can buy 2 types of lactose free cheese from Waitrose, but this is our favourite of the 2. Learn more and buy it here -

Free From Waitrose halloumi

Tesco lactose free Mozzarella 

If you're looking for a lactose free mozzarella cheese to slice up into a salad or to melt into a pizza, then the lactose free mozzarella from Tesco is a great option. Made using cow's milk which has had the lactose removed, this medium fat soft cheese is an excellent lactose free alternative to standard mozzarella, and we really didn't taste much of a difference compared to this and the standard mozzarella sold by Tesco. Learn more and buy it here -

lactose free mozzarella Tesco

Hopefully, this guide proves that you can find great-tasting lactose free cheese which isn't vegan. Let us know if you've tried any of these or if you have any other suggestions for us to try!

Finn is the editor of You Well and has been writing about travel, health, and more for over 10 years.

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