Ask the Diva: What Is Quark Cheese?

What is quark and how does it compare nutritionally with yogurt? Nutrition Diva explains.

Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS,
February 13, 2014

What is Quark cheese?Q. Recently I´ve come across quark cheese. It seems similar to fat free Greek yogurt, both in terms of protein and fat, as well as the consistency. Is it a good idea to incorporate it into my diet?

A. I haven't had quark since I lived in Germany many years ago! There, it's often sweetened and served with stewed fruit as a light dessert or snack. As you've discovered, it has a thick, creamy texture similar to Greek yogurt and is also comparable in terms of the fat and protein content.  Like Greek yogurt, quark is available in full fat, reduced-fat, and fat free varieties.

The big difference between quark and yogurt is that quark is not a probiotic food. Unlike yogurt, which is made by fermenting milk with friendly bacteria, Quark is made by adding lemon juice or another acid to milk, heating it gently until it thickens, and then straining some of the whey off.  

If you want the benefits of probiotic bacteria, you're better off with Greek yogurt. But if you're just looking for a way to change up your routine every once in a while, then lass es dir schmecken!

See also: Fermented and Cultured Foods

Quark image courtesy of Shutterstock.

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