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Difference Between White and Orange American Cheese

White vs Orange American Cheese

American cheese came about when British colonists came to America with their knowledge in making cheddar cheese. Although most cheese consumers in other countries consider American cheese of inferior quality, it was cheaper than other types so it became very popular.

American cheese is made not through the traditional cheese-making process of separating curds from whey and packing the curds into a block but through processing it with emulsifiers, salt, or other chemical compounds, and coloring. This is the reason why American cheese is labeled as ‘processed cheese.’

It was originally made by blending different kinds of cheese together like Colby cheese and Cheddar cheese. Today it is made by mixing together milk, milkfat, milk protein concentrate, whey, whey protein concentrate, and salt.

It does not rely on the use of enzymes or bacteria to give it a distinct flavor but on additives that gives it its texture. It holds well together and melts easily especially when heated which is perfect for macaroni and cheese, burgers, and sandwiches.

American cheese has many varieties depending on the percentage of the amount of cheese used in combination with the additives that are being used for emulsification. It can be processed or unprocessed, deluxe or traditional.

American cheese and American processed cheese are similar to non-processed cheese while American Cheese Food and American Cheese Product can be less compact and are used as a sandwich spread like Cheez Whiz.

The color of American cheese can be white, yellow, or orange. White and orange American cheese is made in the same process except for the coloring that is added to the orange variety.

There might be a little difference in the taste and texture between the two because of the spice annatto which is used to color American cheese. It contains turmeric that lends it its orange color.

English cheese uses carrot juice to color their cheese orange. The color of the cheese may also be affected by the kind of grass that is consumed by the cows from which milk has been taken and used.

White American cheese is more expensive than orange American cheese although they are made and taste the same. Perhaps people think that white American cheese is of better quality than orange American cheese. Or perhaps the difference is just in the marketing strategy of American cheese producers.

Whatever the reason for the difference in the price, whether white, yellow, or orange; American cheese is one of the best-selling cheese products in the world. It is unimaginable having a burger or a grilled cheese sandwich with cheese other than white or orange American cheese.


1. The most distinct difference between white American cheese and orange American cheese is the color that has been added to the orange variety.
2. They might also have a little difference in their texture.
3. Their taste also differs slightly due to the annatto that has been added to the orange variety for coloring.
4. White American cheese is more expensive than orange American cheese.

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  1. Unimaginable? I much prefer cheddar or goat cheese on my burger than american cheese. Just about any cheese is better.

    • I guess that just depends on what country your from. I’ll bet the writer of this article was from America. As am I and I’d prefer American on my burger or grilled cheese, but with any other thing that requires cheese (ham and cheese sandwhiches, crackers and cheese, mac and cheese- string cheese, salads with cheese; anything that requires cheese I’d prefer anything but American. I only like it melted on a burger or in a grilled cheese.

  2. The article says annato is a spice that contains turmeric, but they are two completely different species of plants. So which is it? A little of both? One or the other, or up to the producer? I just wanted to point out that error.

  3. Annato and turmeric are completely unrelated. As a point of fact most everything in this article is BS.

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