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Good Ole Cottage Cheese
cottage cheese with flax seeds
Cottage cheese is a staple in many healthy eating plans. The dairy food provides benefits especially for people who are trying to lose weight or improve their health. But cottage cheese calorie count and nutrition can vary depending on the type that you buy.
Cottage Cheese Calories and Nutrition Facts
Many healthy eaters who include cottage cheese in their meals buy the 2 percent low-fat variety. This version provides enough fat for flavor but not as much as the regular variety. So how do the fat and calorie count compare across the different varieties of cottage cheese?
Skim/nonfat cottage cheese: 80 calories per half cup serving, 0 grams fat, 0 grams saturated fat
1% cottage cheese: 90 calories, 1.5 grams fat, 1 gram saturated fat
2% cottage cheese: 90 calories per half cup serving, 2.5 grams fat, 1.5 grams saturated fat
4% (regular) cottage cheese: 110 calories per half cup serving, 5 grams fat, 3 grams saturated fat
Keep in mind that a single serving of this dairy product is just four ounces or a half cup. At mealtime, it is very easy to scoop much more than that onto your plate. So be sure to account for your full portion size if you are counting calories.
Cottage cheese is low in sugar and an excellent source of phosphorus, calcium, riboflavin, and vitamin B12.
However, the dairy food is high in sodium. So if you are trying to cut back on salt, this might not be the best choice for you. Some brands, however, make low sodium or no salt added versions of cottage cheese that contain less sodium.
Nutrition and Health Benefits of Cottage Cheese
Many healthy eaters consume cottage cheese because of the relatively low-calorie count.
Bodybuilders often choose cottage cheese as a snack or as part of a meal because it is a quick and convenient source of protein. A single serving provides over 15 grams of the muscle-building nutrient.
Cottage cheese is also a low carb food. The carbohydrate count for a single serving is just over 4 grams or 16 calories from carbohydrates. If you don’t eat any toppings on your cottage cheese this food makes it easy to keep your carb count low.
Lastly, cottage cheese is easy to incorporate into a meal and needs no special preparation to enjoy. For that reason, many dieters include it in their meal plans. The food is easy to carry, simple to eat if you are on-the-go, and pairs well with other healthy, diet-friendly foods like fruits and vegetables.
What’s the Difference Between Large and Small Curd?
When you buy cottage cheese, you can choose between different fat contents, but you can also choose from different curd sizes. Curds are the thick lumps in the food. There is no real nutritional difference between small curd or large curd (sometimes called “chunk style’) cottage cheese. The difference is simply a result of the way the cheese is made.
Choosing and Storing Cottage Cheese
After you buy cottage cheese, make sure to keep it refrigerated and tightly sealed.
It is a perishable food so it is best to consume cottage cheese before the expiration date on the package. Shelf life can depend on how the food was manufactured. Except for dry cottage cheese (that has no liquid part), this food does not freeze well.
Healthy Ways to Include Cottage Cheese in Your Diet
Cottage cheese is great plain, but you can also pair it with other foods to make a complete meal. Try any of these ideas.
Add a side of savory vegetables like broccoli or radishes for a healthy lunch or snack
Top with fruit such as blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or melon to satisfy your sweet tooth
Sprinkle with nuts such as almonds or walnuts, or with seeds such as flax seeds for crunch and flavor
Make a cottage cheese dessert by mixing in dark chocolate chips or cocoa nibs.
Cottage cheese calories are a good source of energy and the dairy product can be a good addition to your diet, especially when you pair it with other healthy foods. Get creative and try new flavors to keep this food on your meal plan.
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