12 Best Substitutes for Cream Cheese

substitutes for cream cheese
Image by depositphotos.com

Soft cheese with a mild flavor, like cream cheese, is used in savory and sweet dishes.

However, consumers might want substitutes for cream cheese if they run out or don’t eat dairy. 

If you choose to give up dairy, several substitutes for cream cheese have the same creamy texture, including some delectable plant-based options.

Just prepare ahead of time and stock up on cheesecloth and lemons. Let’s get on our list of substitutes for cream cheese.

1. Sour Cream

Sour Cream
Image by depositphotos.com

Since sour cream is first on our list of substitutes for cream cheese, it has a similar flavor to cream cheese but fewer calories; it makes for a good lower-calorie alternative. 

It provides an extra layer of creaminess to cheesecake and gives baked items an airy, moist feel.

In recipes, sour cream can be used instead of cream cheese in an equivalent amount.

2. Greek Yogurt

Greek Yogurt - Best Substitutes for Oil in Baking
Photo by: healthbenefitstimes.com

Greek yogurt is also one of the substitutes for cream cheese.

It shares the same tangy flavors as cream cheese and is a great protein, calcium, and vitamin B12 source. 

You may change how rich your dish is based on the type of Greek yogurt you choose.

For instance, yogurt with full-fat or even 10% perfect fat will have a creamier texture than yogurt with nonfat.

When used as a substitute for cream cheese in Greek yogurt, use a 1:1 ratio.

3. Neufchatel

Image by depositphotos.com

Neufchatel is The closest you’ll come to cream cheese in terms of flavor.

Although it originated in France’s Normandy region, the soft, somewhat crumbly cheese is also made in the United States.

American Neufchatel is manufactured using milk instead of cream, which results in a fat content that is one-third lower than that of cream cheese.

Traditional Neufchatel is created with cream. Substitute the Neufchatel at a 1:1 ratio.

4. Mascarpone

Image by depositphotos.com

Mascarpone is an Italian cheese that resembles cream cheese in flavor and texture. It is prepared with heavy cream and citric or tartaric acid.

Except for a little difference in sweetness and roughly double the quantity of fat, the two spreadable cheeses are very similar.

Mascarpone should be used as a substitute for cream cheese in the same quantity. 

5. Silken Tofu

Silken Tofu
by powerplantop is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Silken tofu works well as a substitute for cream cheese and doesn’t change the flavor of your food.

Vegan dishes already frequently include silken tofu, particularly in dairy-free cheesecakes and pies.

6. Cottage Cheese

Cottage Cheese
Image by depositphotos.com

This is the next on our list of substitutes for cream cheese. Cottage cheese is healthier because it has less fat than cream cheese.

To continue with your recipe, you might wish to purée it first because it has a chunkier texture.

Add heavy cream or half-and-half to the cottage cheese if you are baking or boiling it to make it thick.

7. Hummus

Hummus - examples of savory foods
by paul goyette is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Although they don’t have the same flavor, hummus and cream cheese, have a similar texture, making hummus an excellent substitute for cream cheese in a pinch, especially if you’re searching for a dairy-free or vegan option.

Hummus is a fantastic protein, manganese, and folate source and works best as a cream cheese substitute in savory dips.

8. Quark

by SKopp is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Creamier and tangier than cream cheese, quark is a German cheese prepared from buttermilk and heavy whipping cream.

Imagine it as a hybrid of yogurt and cream cheese. The recipe may need to be modified to account for the more sour flavor, even if you can use the same amount of quark.

9. Cashew Cheese

Cashew Cheese
Image by depositphotos.com

Cashew cheese, a spreadable cheese made with cashews, water, nutritional yeast, and seasonings, is another vegan option.

It’s available at specialist shops and some conventional supermarkets with a bigger vegan section.

When switching cashews as substitutes for cream cheese, use a 1:1 ratio.

10. Labneh

by simpleprovisions is licensed under CC BY 2.0

A bowl of pita chips and a container of labneh from the grocery store is seen in the background of a plate of labneh with zaatar.

This delicious, creamy cheese from the Middle East is created from thickened yogurt and makes a great substitute for cream cheese. (Try our delicious recipe for labneh dip.)

11. Ricotta Cheese

Ricotta Cheese

A close-up of a ricotta cheese mound on a blue ceramic plate. Like cottage cheese, this substitution needs a little work to be as creamy as cream cheese. 

To make it more resemble cream cheese, blend, drain, then add a squeeze of lemon and a few pinches of salt.

Bonus: You can make your own ricotta cheese at home using milk and materials you most likely already have.


In most recipes, these substitutes for cream cheese perform identically to the original.

As its name suggests, cream cheese is a creamy, spreadable cheese that can turn ordinary dishes into delectable culinary art. 

Some of these substitutes lack the negative aspect of cream cheese, which has a lot of calories and fat.

Whether you’re making traditional buffalo chicken dip or frosting for a cake, these straightforward substitutes for cream cheese work.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like