Brie vs. Camembert

What's the Difference?

Brie and Camembert are both soft, creamy, and indulgent French cheeses that share many similarities. They are both made from cow's milk and have a bloomy rind, which gives them a velvety texture. However, there are some subtle differences between the two. Brie is typically larger in size and has a milder flavor, with hints of butter and mushroom. On the other hand, Camembert is smaller and has a slightly stronger and more pungent taste, often described as earthy and nutty. Both cheeses are delicious on a cheese board or served with crusty bread, but the choice between Brie and Camembert ultimately comes down to personal preference.


Photo by Charlie Solorzano on Unsplash
TypeSoft cheeseSoft cheese
Milk SourceCow's milkCow's milk
TextureCreamy and smoothCreamy and smooth
FlavorMild and butteryRich and earthy
RindWhite, bloomy rindWhite, bloomy rind
AgeingShort ageing periodShort ageing period
Popular PairingsCrackers, fruitsBaguette, apples
Photo by Food Photographer on Unsplash

Further Detail


When it comes to French cheeses, Brie and Camembert are two of the most iconic and beloved varieties. Both hailing from the Normandy region of France, these soft-ripened cheeses share many similarities but also have distinct characteristics that set them apart. In this article, we will delve into the attributes of Brie and Camembert, exploring their flavors, textures, production methods, and culinary uses.


Brie and Camembert both offer a rich and creamy flavor profile, but there are subtle differences in taste. Brie tends to have a milder and buttery flavor, with hints of earthiness and mushroom. Its taste is often described as nutty and slightly sweet. On the other hand, Camembert has a slightly stronger and more pungent flavor. It can be more robust and earthy, with a distinct tanginess that adds complexity to its taste. The flavor of both cheeses intensifies as they age, developing deeper and more pronounced notes.


When it comes to texture, Brie and Camembert share many similarities. Both cheeses have a soft and creamy interior, often referred to as the "paste," surrounded by a thin bloomy rind. The paste of Brie is typically slightly firmer and denser compared to Camembert, which tends to be creamier and runnier. As Brie ages, it becomes even creamier and more spreadable, while Camembert becomes even softer and gooey. The rind of both cheeses is edible and adds a delicate, mushroom-like flavor and a contrasting texture to the creamy interior.


The production methods for Brie and Camembert are quite similar, as they both belong to the same family of soft-ripened cheeses. Both cheeses are made from cow's milk, traditionally sourced from the Normandy region. The milk is heated and curdled using rennet, forming a curd that is cut and drained. The curds are then carefully ladled into molds, where they are left to drain further. Afterward, the cheeses are salted and left to ripen in a controlled environment. During the ripening process, specific strains of mold are introduced to the surface of the cheeses, which create the characteristic bloomy rind and contribute to the development of flavors and textures.

Culinary Uses

Brie and Camembert are incredibly versatile cheeses that can be enjoyed in various culinary applications. Both cheeses are excellent choices for cheese boards and charcuterie platters, where they can be paired with fruits, nuts, and crusty bread. Brie and Camembert also shine when baked or melted, as their creamy texture becomes even more luscious and indulgent. They can be used as a filling for savory pastries, such as quiches or tarts, or as a topping for burgers and sandwiches. Additionally, these cheeses can be incorporated into salads, pasta dishes, and even desserts, adding a touch of elegance and richness to the final creations.


While Brie and Camembert share many similarities, such as their origin, soft-ripened nature, and creamy flavors, they also have distinct attributes that make them unique. Brie offers a milder and buttery taste, with a slightly firmer texture, while Camembert boasts a stronger and more pungent flavor, with a creamier and runnier texture. Both cheeses have their place in the culinary world, and their versatility allows them to be enjoyed in a wide range of dishes. Whether you prefer the delicate elegance of Brie or the bold tanginess of Camembert, these French cheeses are sure to delight any cheese lover's palate.

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