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Edam Cheese vs. Gouda Cheese: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Harlon Moss || Published on January 4, 2024
Edam cheese is a semi-hard Dutch cheese with a mild, slightly salty flavor, while Gouda cheese is also a Dutch cheese, known for its rich, creamy taste and smooth texture.

Key Differences

Edam cheese originated in the town of Edam in the Netherlands and has been produced since the Middle Ages. Gouda cheese, similarly, is named after the city of Gouda in the Netherlands and also boasts a long history dating back to the 12th century.
Edam cheese is known for its semi-hard texture and becomes firmer as it ages. Gouda cheese can range from semi-hard to very hard, depending on the aging process, with older Gouda developing a caramel sweetness and crunchy texture.
Edam cheese has a mild, nutty, and slightly salty flavor, which intensifies with aging. Gouda cheese is typically creamier and can range from mild to sharp in taste, often with a hint of sweetness in aged varieties.
Both Edam and Gouda cheeses are made from cow's milk, but the specific techniques and cultures used in their production result in different textures and flavors. Edam often has lower fat content compared to Gouda.
Edam cheese is often used in sandwiches, salads, and as a snacking cheese. Gouda cheese, especially aged varieties, is popular on cheese boards, in cooking, and pairs well with wine and beer.

Comparison Chart


Dutch, from Edam
Dutch, from Gouda


Semi-hard to hard
Semi-hard to very hard


Mild, nutty, slightly salty
Creamy, can be mild to sharp


Firmer with aging
Develops sweetness and crunchiness

Culinary Uses

Sandwiches, salads, snacking
Cheese boards, cooking, pairing with drinks

Edam Cheese and Gouda Cheese Definitions

Edam Cheese

Mild and nutty flavor.
The Edam cheese added a subtle nuttiness to the salad.

Gouda Cheese

Rich, creamy Dutch cheese.
Gouda cheese melted beautifully in the grilled cheese sandwich.

Edam Cheese

Semi-hard Dutch cheese.
Edam cheese is perfect for grating over pasta dishes.

Gouda Cheese

Named after the city of Gouda.
Gouda cheese is a highlight of the city's culinary offerings.

Edam Cheese

Originates from Edam, Netherlands.
Edam cheese is a staple in traditional Dutch cuisine.

Gouda Cheese

Ages from mild to sharp.
The aged Gouda cheese had a distinctly sharp flavor.

Edam Cheese

Lower in fat.
I chose Edam cheese for my diet due to its lower fat content.

Gouda Cheese

Varies in texture with aging.
The old Gouda cheese had a delightful crunchy texture.

Edam Cheese

Wax-coated for preservation.
The red wax on Edam cheese keeps it fresh longer.

Gouda Cheese

Popular for cheese boards.
I included Gouda cheese in my cheese board for its creaminess.


Is Gouda cheese good for melting?

Yes, especially younger Gouda is excellent for melting.

What is the main flavor difference between Edam and Gouda cheese?

Edam is milder and slightly salty, while Gouda is creamier and ranges from mild to sharp.

What dishes are Edam cheese commonly used in?

It's used in sandwiches, salads, and as a snack.

Are Edam and Gouda cheeses suitable for lactose-intolerant individuals?

They contain lactose, but aged varieties have less, making them sometimes suitable for those with mild intolerance.

What is the typical fat content in Edam cheese?

It's generally lower in fat than many other cheeses.

Are there any health benefits associated with Edam cheese?

It's a good source of calcium and protein but should be consumed in moderation due to fat content.

What is the best way to store Gouda cheese?

In a cool, humid environment, preferably in the cheese drawer of a refrigerator.

Can both Edam and Gouda cheese be aged?

Yes, both can be aged, which alters their texture and flavor.

How does aging affect Gouda cheese's flavor?

Aging makes Gouda creamier, sweeter, and sometimes sharp.

Can Gouda cheese be used in cooking?

Absolutely, especially in recipes requiring a creamy, meltable cheese.

Is Edam cheese popular outside of the Netherlands?

Yes, it's enjoyed worldwide.

How does the texture of Gouda cheese change with age?

It becomes firmer and can develop crunchy crystals.

What makes Edam cheese's texture unique?

Its semi-hard texture that becomes firmer with aging.

What makes Gouda cheese different from other Dutch cheeses?

Its creamy texture and the ability to range from mild to very sharp in flavor.

What are the best pairings for Edam cheese?

Fruits, nuts, and light wines complement its mild flavor.

Is Edam cheese wax-coated for preservation?

Yes, it's often coated in wax, typically red or yellow.

Can Gouda cheese be paired with wine?

Definitely, aged Gouda pairs wonderfully with bold red wines.

What is the origin of Edam cheese?

It originates from the town of Edam in the Netherlands.

Does Gouda cheese have any cultural significance in the Netherlands?

Yes, it's an integral part of Dutch culinary culture.

Is there a best time of year to enjoy Edam cheese?

It's versatile and can be enjoyed year-round.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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