Cream Cheese vs. Cottage Cheese – What’s The Difference?

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Every person who likes soft cheese must be familiar with cream cheese and cottage cheese. Both of the cheeses are versatile and delicious. The actual concern is the different properties both kinds of cheese contain and which one is more healthy to be used.

Cottage cheese and cream cheese are both made from curdling milk with the addition of acid. Both kinds of cheese are types of soft cheese but with different textures and tastes. Cream cheese is sweet in taste with a soft texture, while cottage cheese is sour in taste with a rough texture.

Cream cheese retains the moisture content, while cottage cheese retains a bumpy texture. Cottage cheese has fewer calories as compared to cream cheese.  People on a diet often prefer cottage cheese over cream cheese.

Well, let us dig deep into the differences, properties, health benefits and ingredients of cottage cheese and cream cheese.

Cream Cheese

Cream cheese is white, fresh and spreadable cheese that has a smooth texture and is made from sweet milk and cream, giving a sweet taste overall. According to the research of FDA, cream cheese contains 33% fat content and 55% moisture content. Also, cream cheese is similar to mascarpone cheese.

Cream cheese is consumed along with many food items such as bread spread, on bagels and crackers, salads and sauce etc. The formation of cream cheese is simple, and one can easily prepare it at home. Some of the stabilizers like agar gum and carrageenan are added to it.


The formation of cream cheese includes mixing milk and cream. Later lactic acid is mixed in with the milk and cream, and thickening starts. Lactic acid is added, which decreases the Ph of milk and helps in separating solids (curd) and whey parts of the milk.

To further thicken the cheese, heat is applied to the mixture, which further leads to one step closer to preparing cream cheese. The whey part of milk is discarded, and cream cheese is made from curd only. Some of the artificial stabilizers, such as guar gum and agar, are added to the mixture to maintain the proper texture of the cheese.

Nutritional Facts

Cream cheese is said to be called a healthy alternative to butter. According to USDA, one tablespoon, which is fourteen grams of cream cheese, contains:

  • 50 Kcal Total Calories
  • 5 g fat
  • 8 g carbohydrates
  • 5 g sugar
  • 9 g protein and
  • 46 mg sodium.

Health Benefits

  1. Cream cheese is considered a complete food as it contains all the nutrients.
  2. The presence of lactose in cream cheese, which acts as a dietary source of calcium in people with lactose intolerance.
  3. It is also gluten-free, so patients with celiac disease can also consume it and fulfill their vitamin and mineral requirements.
  4. Cream cheese is also a good source of calcium, vitamin D and phosphorus, and all these nutrients altogether play a vital role in growth and development.
  5. Cream cheese is a good source of protein and contains all basic amino acids, which helps in providing basic energy and staying healthy.
  6. Lastly, cream cheese is a good source of vitamin A and zinc, which help in improving vision.

Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is also a kind of soft cheese, just like cream cheese, but it has lumps in it and tastes sou. It is a fresh cheese and doesn’t undergo an aging process. Cottage cheese is manufactured using pasteurized milk, especially cow, nonfat milk and low-fat milk.

The addition of pasteurized milk separates whey and curd simultaneously. Cottage cheese is found in the form of whipped, creamed and lactose-free types. Cottage cheese contains fewer calories and is used in foods like fruit salads, yogurts, dipping, sauce etc.


The processing of cottage cheese includes as curdling as initiating, with the addition of an acid like lactic acid and vinegar. Later the liquid content is removed, and solidified parts are kept to be further processed. Natural stabilizers such as starch are added in to keep curd uptight.

Curd is later drained and later rinsed. The heat is applied to the milk mixture so that it thickens up. The blending of cottage cheese doesn’t occur as only leftover solids are utilized to make cottage cheese. For the processing of cottage cheese, the whey is separated from the curd.

Nutritional Facts

Cottage cheese has low calories and is milder in taste. According to USDA, the nutritional properties of 100 grams of cottage cheese includes as:

  • 163 Kcal Total Calories
  • 28 g proteins
  • 6 g Carbs
  • 3 g Fats
  • 4 g Sugar
  • 321 mg Sodium

Health Benefits

  1. The association of cottage cheese with health is quite happening.
  2. It helps in the prevention of insulin resistance that further leads to heart diseases. This is due to the presence of calcium in cottage cheese which lowers insulin resistance.
  3. Due to the presence of calcium and phosphorus, bone health is improved.
  4. The high amount of selenium in cottage cheese acts as an antioxidant in the body and fights free radicals.
  5. As cottage cheese is protein enriched, it helps muscle recovery and builds fat-free mass.
  6. It is also shown in researches that cottage cheese helps overcome thyroid problems.

So What’s the Difference between Cream Cheese and Cottage Cheese?

So, to summarize the topic of discussion, below we have mentioned some key differences between cream cheese and cottage cheese.

  • Cream cheese has a smooth texture with no lumps, while cottage cheese has a rough surface with lumps formation.
  • Cream cheese is spreadable, while cream cheese has wetness in it.
  • Cream cheese has a higher fat content than cottage cheese.
  • Cream cheese contains more calories than cottage cheese.
  • In cream cheese, industrial stabilizers are added, while in cottage cheese, natural stabilizers are added.
  • The taste of cottage cheese is sour, while the taste of cream cheese is sweet.
  • The main ingredient of cottage cheese is milk, while the main ingredient of cream cheese is mixing cream and milk.