What Is the Difference Between Longhorn Cheese & Cheddar Cheese?

By Mike Riccetti

Longhorn cheese is a supermarket staple. Orange in color, it looks much like mass-produced cheddar, because it is in most cases. In fact, longhorn means the shape, not the style.

Cheddar cheese straight from the supermarket.

Cheddar cheese

Cheddar is the most popular cheese consumed in the United States. It takes its name from the village of Cheddar in England, whose people have made it for centuries. It is a firm cheese, traditionally made from cow's milk. It ranges in flavor from bland to sharp, and in color from white to yellow to a bright orange. The orange, common in mass-produced versions, is due to annatto, a natural dye. Aged cheddars can develop a strong, nutty taste and real sharpness.

Longhorn cheese

Although longhorn cheese usually means a mild-flavored form of processed, orange-colored cheddar in America, the name actually denotes a shape. Cut from a long, oblong cylinder of cheese, longhorn typically sells in half-moon sections. In addition to cheddar, longhorn cheeses are in Monterey Jack, Colby and Colby Jack versions.

The difference between Longhorn and Cheddar

Longhorn is a shape of cheese. Cheddar is a range of cheese styles. Commonly, longhorn refers to mild, processed American cheddar cheese.