10 Things You Should Know about American Cheese
Did you know? The process we currently use to make American cheese was actually invented by a German chemist. The term “American cheese” was originally used as a general descriptor for any cheese made in America (as the literal meaning would imply). However, today it refers to a specific style of cheese, and that style is distinctly German in origin!
- American cheese is typically white, but it is often dyed to look yellow.
- It was originally made from a mix of blended cheeses, but today it is manufactured from a set of ingredients.
- It is illegal to sell American cheese as “cheese”. It must be sold as “processed cheese” or “cheese product”.
- In Canada, the exact same product is often sold as “Canadian cheese”.
- In Britain, this product is labelled simply “singles”, but it is commonly referred to as “cheese slices”.
- The first American cheese was simple cheddar manufactured in the colonies and exported to Britain.
- The British citizens were the first to coin the term “American cheese”, though they also called it “Yankee cheese”.
- American cheese was originally thought to be of inferior quality. Its low price is what led to its popularity.
- In 1942, American cheese was the only type of cheese American citizens were allowed to purchase or consume.
- American cheese in block form (rather than being individually wrapped), is typically less processed.