How To Smoke Cheese

by Bill Atkinson

Hey Paul,

I'm looking into smoking some cheeses (cold smoking) and was wondering if you had any helpful hints or suggestions. I have both a cheddar and Monterrey Jack (young cheddar) that I'd like to try and would love any advise on making the first attempt more successful.

Thanks in advance.



Hey Bill,

You've got the first bit absolutely right and that's to start with a processed cheese. Smoked cheese in an acquired taste and if you have a good quality tasty cheese then it's best left as nature (or the manufacturer) intended.

Natural cheese contains a lot of butterfat and this readily absorbs a lot of the "nasties" in smoke. Processed cheese however is made by finely grinding natural cheese with emulsifiers, conditioners, (sometimes colorings and preservatives) and flavorings. The cheese is then melted and formed into blocks. All these additives bind with the butterfat leaving the bad smoke odor molecules nowhere to attach and so smoked processed cheese doesn't taste bad.

So point number one is start with processed cheese and preferably one that is light in color because the smoking process adds a golden color and you want this to be visible at the end of the job.

Incidentally, don't expect your smoked cheese to taste exactly like one that you buy in the shops because most mass produced smoked cheese hasn't been anywhere near a smoker. Most likely it will have just been dipped in liquid smoke.

Get some loosely woven cotton cloths to wrap the cheese up in, wash them first to remove any to remove any starches or conditioners. I use those towels that Mom's use with new born babies.

The ideas here is four fold:-
  1. The cloth prevents the cheese from being stained by your smoker food rack.
  2. The cloth will absorb moisture from the cheese.
  3. Smoke can still pass through.
  4. The cloth will also act as a filter for soot specs.

Let your cheese come up to room temperature (this will take 6-8 hours) and then cut your cheese into sticks about 1" x 1" x 6".

Place the cotton material on the food rack of your smoker and then place the cheese sticks on this. Now leave the cheese unventilated to dry for about 12 hours - this will aid the coloration process.

Next (as you say) you need to set your smoker up for cold smoking ie. less than 80°F (27°C). This will probably require a remote smoke generator or using an electrical hotplate as I do in my homemade smoker design.

Smoke your cheese for three hours at a temperature less than 80°F (27°C) and at the end of the three hours take the rack out and blot any "sweat" off the cheese with some kitchen towel.

Return the cheese to the smoker for a further three hours and that's the job done. If there are any soot specks on the cheese, remove these with a knife and then you can refrigerate in plastic bags. Smoked cheese will keep this way in the refrigerator for at least a month because the smoke deposits act as a natural fungicide.

So that's how to smoke cheese......I hope you try it and I hope that you like it!

See Also:-

How To Make Smoked Eggs
Vegetarian Barbecue Suggestions
Chili Queso Tortillas

Return HOME from how to smoke cheese

Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to FAQ's.

Solo Build It!

Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.

Charcoal Grills

Build A Brick BBQ Grill

Stainless Steel Inserts For a Brick BBQ Grill

Stainless Steel Charcoal Grills

Adjustable Height Charcoal Grills

Charcoal Barbecue Grills

Cook 'N' Serve Range

Custom Made Charcoal Grills

Custom Built To Your Specification

Replacement Stainless Steel Cooking Grates

Replacement Stainless Steel Cooking Grates


Offset American Smoker Manufacturing

Reverse Flow Smokers

Custom Built Trailer Smokers

Commercial Smokers

Please Help
Keep This Site Free!

Many Amazon merchants pay us a small referral fee when you click this link and purchase from them...

It makes no difference to the price you pay but it really helps me continue improving this website. If you like what I'm doing then save this link and use it every time you go to Amazon. For whatever you purchase through this link (it doesn't have to be barbecue) I heartily thank you in advance.