8 Best Pecorino Cheese Substitute


If you are looking for a Pecorino cheese substitute, you have come to the right place. Pecorino cheese’s strong flavor and unusual texture make it suitable for various recipes.

However, you can still effectively substitute different varieties of cheese and still achieve a great result.

Pecorino cheese is created with sheep milk. It is saltier than other forms of cheese, so you can immediately identify it by its distinct odor and straw-white color.

The most amazing Pecorino cheese substitute are various forms of Parmesan cheese. However, you may use different varieties of cheese and still have a tasty dish to share with your loved ones.

What is Pecorino Cheese?

Parmesan is a firm Italian cheese made with sheep’s milk. It has an intensely savory cheese flavor with a harsh acidic tang.

Pecorino Cheese Substitute

Here are the most common and delectable Pecorino cheese substitutes that you can use in recipes.

You will enjoy the flavor of your cuisine if you replace Pecorino cheese with any of the following replacements:

1. Parmesan Cheese

Tasty parmesan cheese. The grated cheese.

As previously said, Parmesan is one of the first substitutes for Pecorino cheese that you can use in your recipes.

It is salty and has a similar texture to Pecorino cheese. However, certain types of Parmesan cheese are saltier than others, so you may need to use less in your recipe.

If you must use Parmesan cheese instead of Pecorino cheese, make sure to taste it first. If it is saltier than you expected, you may need to lower the amount of added salt or eliminate it.

2. Grana padano

Grana Padana is also an excellent substitute for Pecorino cheese and it can add a unique flavor to your dishes.

Grana Padano has a richer flavor than Pecorino cheese but it works well in most dishes.

You can get both sweet and salty variants of this cheese. The texture is less crumbly than parmesan, yet it is close to that of Pecorino cheese.

When using Grana Padano for Pecorino cheese, follow a 1:1 ratio. However, if using Grana Padano, you may need to add more salt if the Grana Padano is not salty enough.

3. Asiago cheese

Piece of hard cheese, cherry tomatoes and olives on wooden board over black

Asiago cheese can be substituted for Pecorino cheese if it is available in your local supermarkets. This cheese is extremely excellent but difficult to acquire internationally.

But if you can find it, you will undoubtedly appreciate it. Asiago cheese has a milder flavor than other replacements for Pecorino cheese and a slightly softer texture.

So, if you place it on top of hot meals or in cooked recipes, it will melt faster. Asiago cheese is best enjoyed as a side dish or on its own; it is a gourmet delight.

The longer this cheese ages, the tougher its texture grows, bringing it closer to Pecorino and Parmesan.

4. Piave Cheese

Piave cheese is highly similar to Parmesan cheese and is sometimes regarded as a Pecorino cheese substitute for it.

You may also use it to substitute Pecorino cheese in a variety of recipes. There are five main aging stages for Piave cheese.

The older it is, the tougher its texture becomes. Young Piave may not be an ideal substitute for Pecorino cheese, but mature Piave is much closer in taste and flavor.

When you replace Pecorino cheese with Piave, the ratio remains 1:1. However, you may need to increase the amount of salt in your recipe.

Taste your dish and apply your particular preference to achieve the flavor you wish to add.

5. Manchego

Slices of traditional Spanish Manchego cheese and olives on the background

Manchego Spanish cheese can successfully replace Pecorino cheese in your recipe and you can continue to follow the instructions as usual.

This cheese is similarly created from salty sheep’s milk; therefore, the flavors will be very similar.

This type, like Piave cheese, comes in a variety of ages. When replacing Pecorino cheese with Manchego, use a Manchego that is at least a year old. Manchego cheese is also sweeter than pecorino. As a result, you will need to add more salt.

6. Romano Cheese

Romano cheese has a similar crumbly feel to Pecorino cheese. It is similar to Parmesan cheese in that it is manufactured from both cow and sheep milk. It tastes similar to Pecorino cheese; therefore, your dish will also have a similar flavor.

Keep in mind that Romano cheese, particularly in its original form, can be difficult to obtain in some areas. However, if you do find it, it makes an excellent alternative for any meal that calls for Pecorino cheese.

7. Iberico Cheese

Still Life of Wedge of Cured Cheese and Walnuts with Blue Background

Iberico cheese is an alternative to Pecorino cheese. It is prepared from three types of milk; cow milk, sheep milk and goat milk.

Thanks to this combination, it has a distinct flavor that will set your meals apart from others. It can be used in cooked and cold dishes.

It is a firm cheese that works well as a topping for salads or spaghetti. However, you will appreciate it plain.

8. Ossau Iraty

Ossau Iraty cheese is manufactured from sheep’s milk and tastes quite similar to Pecorino cheese, yet it is not one of the first replacements you might encounter in stores. It is a firm, crumbly French cheese that goes well with a variety of cuisines.

This cheese is mildly salted, so you may need to alter the salt you add to your cuisine to achieve the desired flavor.

Keep the 1:1 ratio when replacing Pecorino with Ossau Iraty and your cuisine will taste excellent.

The Best Dairy-Free Pecorino Substitutes

1. Brazil Nuts

Can be grated with a miroplane to produce a cloud of dust similar to pecorino. I also make a sprinkle called Brazil Nut ‘Parmesan’, which is excellent sprinkled anywhere you’d ordinarily grate pecorino.

2. Nutritional yeast flakes

They are not as salty as pecorino but they provide a similar level of intensely savory umami flavors.

3. Olives

If you want a salty burst of flavor, a handful of olives is a great dairy-free and vegan substitute for parmesan.

4. Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Sun-dried tomatoes, like olives, are full of flavor and will lend a touch of sweetness to your dish instead of salt.

5. Salted Roast Almonds

Roasted almonds will provide texture and salt to your dish, but they will not detract from its flavor or crunch.

6. Sea salt flakes

Another method for replacing the salty flavor of pecorino is to sprinkle sea salt flakes over your dish. It won’t have the same looks or substance as grated or shaved cheese but you’ll enjoy the salty flavor explosion.

7. Capes

Work similarly to olives. Salted capers are the finest option, while capers with vinegar are better than nothing.

8. Toasted breadcrumbs

In Italy, toasted breadcrumbs known as ‘pan gratato’ are also known as poor man’s pecorino. Sprinkle them over pasta to provide crunch and visual appeal.


What can Go Pecorino Cheese Go With?

  • Basil & Pecorino
  • Lemon & Pecorino
  • Broad Beans (Fava Beans) & Pecorino
  • Prosuitto & Pecorino
  • Tomato & Pecorino
  • Olives & Pecorino

Are pecorino and Parmesan the same?

Parmesan that has been kept for a longer period is firmer, drier, and has a nutty, sweeter flavor profile; some long-aged Parmesans even have mellow caramel undertones.

Younger pecorino is softer and creamier in texture, with a brighter, grassier, and tangier flavor.

What does pecorino cheese taste like?

Pecorino, like its most renowned family member, Pecorino Romano, is a firm, salty cheese. At first appearance, Pecorino may appear to be similar to Parmesan, but it is not.

Pecorino Romano is manufactured from sheep cheese, which gives it a grassy and earthy flavor. Pecorino is often younger than Parmesan.

Is Pecorino the same as Romano cheese?

Pecorino cheese is comparable to Romano cheese. However, they are not identical. The distinction between these two forms of cheese is that Pecorino cheese is only created from sheep’s milk, while Romano cheese can be made from both cow’s and sheep’s milk.

Because of this fundamental difference, Romano cheese has a milder flavor than Pecorino cheese. The texture is not as crumbly. Also, Pecorino cheese is saltier than Romano cheese.

What is an alternative to pecorino carbonara?

Parmigiano Reggiano DOP is a suitable replacement. The meal remains excellent, albeit no longer a true carbonara, but it is accepted in Italian culture and families, and it is enjoyed by youngsters who find pecorino too strong.

Is there another name for pecorino cheese?

Pecorino is a type of cheese whose name means sheep; hence, Pecorino cheese is also known as sheep cheese. To identify different types of Pecorino cheese, look for the name as well as the region.

For example, there is Pecorino Sardo (produced in Sardinia), Pecorino Toscano, and Pecorino Siciliano. However, the term Pecorino is used to describe all sheep’s milk cheeses in this category.


As delicious as Pecorino cheese is, not being able to find it does not have to be a disaster, nor should you forego preparing your favorite meal.

You won’t be disappointed if you swap any of the cheeses listed above for this one. Adjust the seasonings to your unique taste to create a great dinner.



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