The Perfect Cheeseburger

Given the choice between a burger with cheese and one without, we go for the cheeseburger every time. Mild-tasting and quick-melting American cheese remains the most popular choice, but many other cheeses—bold blue, buttery brie, sharp cheddar, and more—introduce interesting flavors and textures. Here are nine of the best burger companions. See our Guide to the Ultimate Burger »

American

american cheese
Presliced, individually wrapped, sunny yellow, and quick melting: it's the classic hamburger cheese for a reason.Michael Kraus

Blue

blue cheese
Its bold, salty tartness is balanced by a creamy texture. Our choice is Rogue Creamery's Crater Lake Blue, from Oregon.Michael Kraus

Brie

brie cheese
Ripe French brie, with the bloomy rind left intact, takes on a silky texture and a rich aroma when melted atop a burger.Michael Kraus

Cheddar

cheddar cheese
When melted over a burger, sharp aged cheeses like Cabot's Clothbound cheddar, from Vermont, can add a pleasant hint of caramel.Michael Kraus

Emmentaler

Emmentaler cheese
Swiss cheese--a k a emmentaler--stays firm around the edges after it melts over a burger. We're fans of Edelweiss emmentaler from Wisconsin.Michael Kraus

Fresh Goat Cheese

Fresh Goat Cheese
Goat cheese adds tangy notes to burgers. One of our favorites is a ricotta-like goats' milk and cows' milk blend from California called Delice de la Vallee.Michael Kraus

Parmigiano-Reggiano

Parmigiano-Reggiano
This salty, nutty-tasting cheese can be grated and baked on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet at 350 degrees for about ten minutes to produce crisp frico wafers, which can be a fabulous burger topping.Michael Kraus

Pepper Jack

Pepper Jack
Monterey jack cheese flecked with jalape¿o peppers gives burgers a spicy edge. Maple Leaf in Monroe, Wisconsin, makes an excellent version with red and green jalapenos.Michael Kraus

Limburger

Limburger cheese
This strong washed-rind cheese tastes great on a beefy, juicy burger. Only one company makes limburger in this country today: the Chalet Cheese Cooperative of Monroe, Wisconsin.Michael Kraus