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The History and Origin of Mozzarella Shredded Cheese

Exploring the Roots: A Journey Through the History and Origin of Mozzarella Shredded Cheese

By Cheryl CrossPublished 6 months ago 2 min read

Mozzarella shredded cheese is a popular ingredient in many dishes, from pizza to pasta to sandwiches. But where did this delicious cheese come from, and what is its history? In this blog post, we will explore the origin of mozzarella shredded cheese and its journey to become one of the most beloved cheeses in the world.

Origins of Mozzarella Cheese

Mozzarella cheese originated in Italy, specifically in the region of Campania. It is believed to have been first made by the ancient Romans, who used buffalo milk to make a cheese that was similar to what we now know as mozzarella. In the 12th century, mozzarella cheese was mentioned in a document that described the cheese as "mozza," which means "cut" or "chopped" in Italian. This is likely where the name "mozzarella" came from.

The traditional method of making mozzarella cheese involves heating and stretching curdled milk until it forms a smooth, elastic texture. This process, known as pasta filata, gives the cheese its characteristic stretchy texture and mild, creamy flavor. Mozzarella cheese is traditionally made from the milk of water buffalo, although cow's milk is also used.

Mozzarella Shredded Cheese

Mozzarella shredded cheese is a more recent development. While the traditional method of making mozzarella cheese involves stretching and molding the cheese by hand, shredded mozzarella cheese is made using machines that shred the cheese into small, uniform pieces.

The invention of the machine for shredding mozzarella cheese is credited to an Italian immigrant named Pasquale DiFilippo, who moved to the United States in the early 1900s. DiFilippo worked as a cheesemaker in New York and noticed that many of his customers were struggling to shred the mozzarella cheese by hand. He saw an opportunity to create a machine that could shred the cheese quickly and easily, and in 1945, he patented his invention.

Over time, shredded mozzarella cheese became a popular ingredient in many dishes, particularly pizza. Its convenience and uniformity made it an attractive option for commercial kitchens and home cooks alike. Today, mozzarella shredded cheese is widely available in supermarkets and used in a wide variety of dishes.

Varieties of Mozzarella Shredded Cheese

While traditional mozzarella cheese is made from water buffalo milk, most mozzarella shredded cheese available today is made from cow's milk. There are also low-fat and part-skim varieties of mozzarella shredded cheese available, which are lower in calories and fat than full-fat mozzarella cheese.

In addition to the classic mozzarella shredded cheese, there are also flavored varieties available, such as garlic and herb or spicy pepper jack. These cheeses are a great way to add flavor to dishes without having to use additional seasonings.


Mozzarella shredded cheese has come a long way since its origins in ancient Rome. From the traditional method of making mozzarella cheese by hand to the invention of the machine for shredding cheese, mozzarella shredded cheese has become a popular ingredient in many dishes around the world. Whether you prefer classic mozzarella shredded cheese or one of the many flavored varieties available today, there's no denying that this cheese has a rich and fascinating history.


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