Monterey Jack vs Mozzarella: What Is the Difference?

If you’re an experienced and well-educated cheese lover, it may surprise and disgust you how many people who also love cheese know nothing about it.

When you think about it, though, it actually makes a lot of sense; why should a regular bloke who wants to enjoy some nice cheese bother with all of the knowledge there is about it?

There’s indeed no actual reason to that, and there’s no reason to feel ashamed if you’re confused by the enormous amount of different kinds of cheese you can buy. For example, it’s not rare to get confused for Monterey Jack and Mozzarella.

So what is the diference between Monterey Jack and Mozzarella? The biggest difference between Monterey Jack and Mozzarella is that while the former is semi-hard cheese, the latter is semi-soft.

This is just an extremely brief answer, though, and in order to understand more about what makes those kinds of cheese different, we will need to get deeper. So without further ado, let’s get started!

Monterey Jack vs MozzarellaPin

What is the difference between Monterey Jack and Mozzarella cheese?

Monterey Jack is a semi-hard cheese with a non-stringy texture that originates from California, more specifically the city of Montere. It can most often be seen sold in blocks or cubes.

Mozzarella, on the other hand, comes from Italy and has a springy texture. It’s also traditionally shaped into small balls, which makes it easily recognizable by its appearance.

What is the difference in taste between Monterey Jack and Mozzarella cheese?

Even though both of those kinds of cheese have a mild flavor, the one of Monterey Jack is a little bit more flavorful. Many people also describe it to be buttery, while Mozzarella is usually considered to taste milky.

But to be fair, the difference in taste between Monterey Jack and Cheddar Cheese isn’t that crucial. 

Monterey Jack vs. Mozzarella fat

The difference is crucial, though, in fat content – Monterey Jack contains something around 30 % of fat, while Mozzarella only 17 %.

Is Monterey Jack similar to Mozzarella?

All though all the differences mentioned above, Monterey Jack and Mozzarella are still somehow similar. In what way, do you wonder?

Well, as we’ve explained, their taste, even though not the same, isn’t as different. Both of them are also one of the most nicely melting kinds of cheese you can get your hands on. 

Therefore, they share a lot of culinary uses. For example, both of them are common choices while making pizza.

Both Monterey Jack and Mozzarella get also often mentioned when talking about quesadillas. But we’re going to look at that soon!

Can you mix Monterey Jack and Mozzarella cheese?

Even though it isn’t done often, you surely can mix Monterey Jack and Mozzarella. Because both of these cheese is easy to melt, the easiest way to do so would be to put both of them, for instance, on the top of the same pizza. 

Can I use Mozzarella instead of Monterey Jack and vice versa?

Well, you can use Mozzarella instead of Monterey Jack, and the same goes vice versa. These two cheese act very similarly while heated, which makes it easy to substitute one for another.

However, because they do not taste that similarly as well, it will work nicely only with some recipes.

Monterey Jack or Mozzarella for quesadillas?

One of those recipes are the beloved quesadillas! Indeed, this popular Mexican meal is most often made using one of these two kinds of cheese.

Whether you will use Monterey Jack or Mozzarella for your quesadillas hence depends only on your taste buds. 

But if you would still like a piece of advice from us, we recommend you to use the Monterey Jack, just because we think it suits the recipe best.


Monterey Jack and Mozzarella are both really popular kinds of cheese, and they often get confused. That’s mainly because they look and taste somehow similar when they are melted. 

That makes them interchangeable for many recipes, but their flavor still differs slightly; Monterey Jack’s taste is more rich and buttery, while Mozzarella tastes mildly and milky.

They also come from different countries and time periods and look nothing alike when they’re being sold.



Image credits – Canva

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