Squeaky Cheese Curds | Why Do They Squeak?

Fresh Squeaky Cheese Curds

Are you here because you recently ate a cheese curd, and as you bit into it, it let out a little squeal? Did you instantly wonder what this little squeaky cheese curd is made of? Or maybe the squeak sent chills down your spine and made you never want to eat another cheese curd again. 

Some people are bothered by squeaky cheese curds and by squeaky cheese in general. I get that. There is something about that little squeak that puts me on edge. Usually, my love for cheese helps me overlook this discomfort. For some people, the squeak of cheese curds makes them happy. This happiness comes from knowing that the cheese curds that are being eaten are fresh and authentic. 

Cheese curds are supposed to squeak. In fact, the best cheese curds are squeaky cheese curds. Cheese fanatics will know they have a good batch of cheese curds when shivers are sent down their spines from the taste– and the sound– of the curds.

The Science of Squeaky Cheese Curds

The Science Behind Squeaky Cheese Curds

Squeaky cheese curds come from the protein and calcium that are found in cheese. The protein is bound together with calcium, and together, these rub against the enamel of your teeth. This friction is what makes that little squeak that you hear when you bite into a cheese curd. 

All cheese is primarily made up of protein, fat, and water. The protein is the main component in the structure of cheese. It’s held together by calcium that works like glue to keep it together. The water and fat are stored in little pockets that are formed in the bonding of the protein and calcium. 

Cheese curds are characterized by their slightly rubbery texture. When they are gently squeezed between your fingers, they should bulge without creasing. This doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the squeakiness, but it shows the more dense texture that makes cheese curds squeaky.

Cheese curds aren’t the only type of cheese that squeaks. Some other squeaky cheeses include Finnish bread cheese, young mozzarella, and fresh Halloumi cheese. What makes these cheeses different from other cheeses that don’t squeak? It’s primarily the fact that these cheeses are young cheeses that are enjoyed fresh. The calcium and protein bonds are still intact, creating that delightful squeak.

Do you want to take a more in-depth dive into how cheese curds are made? We’ve covered the whole process in a blog post. Soon, you’ll be an expert on all things cheese!

What Happened to my Squeaky Cheese Curds?

Squeaky Cheese Curds

A few days have passed, and you pull your cheese curds out of the fridge. You pull a curd out of its container and take a bite. But something is missing. Where is the squeak? If your squeaky cheese curds don’t squeak anymore, does that mean that they’re not good anymore?

Squeaky cheese curds only keep their squeak for a few days after they are made. This doesn’t mean that they go bad after a few days. They are still perfectly fine to eat and still completely delicious. The curds just won’t have that iconic squeak.

Why do cheese curds squeak for only a few days? When cheese is fresh and young, it has an intact protein structure. This structure comes from the bonding with calcium that we covered earlier. That bond between protein and calcium is what gives the cheese its squeak. 

However, as time goes by, a breakdown happens in the structure of the cheese. The starter that is added in the cheese-making process keeps consuming lactose and changing it into lactic acid. The acidity in the cheese curds dissolves the calcium that is bonding the protein together. Eventually, as more time passes, enough calcium is eaten away that the cheese structure is weakened and the squeak vanishes. 

If you are really desperate to get that squeak back, you can microwave your cheese curds for a few seconds. If you heat them for too long, the curds will just melt, and you’ll be left with puddles of cheese rather than curds that are squeaky again, so be very careful when heating them.

Where Did Squeaky Cheese Curds Come From?

Making Squeaky Cheese Curds

Squeaky cheese curds have been around for a long time. In recent years, they’ve gained a lot of popularity, and now, even non-Wisconsin-ers are obsessed with these little bits of cheese. Cheese curds started off as little pieces of excess cheese that cheese-makers took home as treats for their families. Many years later, cheese vats are now dedicated entirely to curds.

Both cheese lovers and cheese-makers alike love curds because they are best when eaten as fresh as possible. This means that cheese-makers don’t have to be bothered with storing cheese while it ages. Cheese curds are packaged as soon as they are cut up in a curd mill. 

Squeaky cheese curds are essentially young cheddar cheese pieces that haven’t been aged. The aging process of cheese is usually what sets each type of cheese apart and gives it a unique flavor. Cheese curds are different in that their freshness and lack of aging are what makes them unique.

How Can I Eat Squeaky Cheese Curds?

How To Eat Squeak Cheese Curds

Are you wondering how you can eat these squeaky cheese curds? As cheese curds have gained traction in the world of cheese, the number of different recipes and ideas for them has skyrocketed. Whether you want to eat cheese curds as an afternoon snack or you want to incorporate them into main dishes, there are plenty of ideas out there. 

Squeaky cheese curds are an excellent option for a quick snack fix. Whether it’s a quick after-school snack for your kids or a charcuterie board for a girls’ night, cheese curds will come in clutch for you.

For a quick snack fix, try pairing your squeaky cheese curds with the following foods:

Appetizers and main courses are excellent vehicles for these squeaky cheese curds. Everything is better with some more cheese, and cheese curds are the perfect way to add that extra cheesy element that your dish needs. 

How about branching out beyond the classic poutine or deep-fried cheese curds and trying something new like:

  • Adding cheese curds to a salad
  • Using cheese curds in grilled cheese sandwiches
  • Stuffing your burgers with cheese curds
  • Cheese curd potato skins
  • Jalapeno poppers with cheese curds
  • Adding to pasta for extra cheesiness

Where Can I Buy Squeaky Cheese Curds?

Where To Buy Squeaky Cheese Curds

Buying squeaky cheese curds can be tricky. Because of the way that freshness affects the squeak of your cheese curds, if you don’t have a cheese-maker close by, getting your hands on a good fresh, squeaky cheese curd can be difficult. 

Squeaky cheese curds are definitely preferred, but just because they don’t squeak perfectly doesn’t mean that the curds aren’t delicious. A cheese curd without a squeak isn’t made incorrectly. It’s probably just lived a little longer than the magic 3-5 days that the squeak lasts.

If you have a local cheesemaker like September Farm, then you’re good to go. Just stop by your local cheesemaker and buy fresh curds if you want to enjoy that fresh squeak. If you don’t have a cheese factory nearby, don’t worry! There is hope for a packet of delicious and squeaky cheese curds for you!

You can buy your cheese curds online from September Farm Cheese. We make our cheese curds fresh and ship them right to your door! Most of our orders arrive between 3-6 business days which gives you the perfect window to enjoy that little squeak. 

September Farm also gives you options of different flavors so you can branch out from the basic, plain flavor. We have flavors like Old Bay Cheese Curds, Tomato Basil Cheese Curds, Bacon Smoked Cheese Curds, and many more! Whether you want to eat them straight from the container or if you want to add them to your favorite cheesy recipe, these curds are the perfect choice for you!

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