Parmesan nutrition facts

Parmesan nutrition facts DEFAULT

Parmesan Cheese: Nutrition, Benefits, and Uses

Parmesan, also known as Parmigiano Reggiano, is a hard Italian cheese with unique nutritional qualities.

Some even consider it a functional food, believing that its components may improve health or reduce disease risk (). Its most notable nutritional characteristics include lots of protein and calcium as well as easy digestibility ().

Traditionally, this well-known Italian cheese is made through a thousand-year-old manufacturing process, resulting in its characteristic flavor and texture.

However, in the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that any cheese with the same physical and chemical properties may be labeled as Parmesan, regardless of the manufacturing location (3).

This article explores the nutritional benefits, common uses, and potential downsides of Italian Parmigiano Reggiano.

What is Parmesan cheese?

Parmesan cheese is an Italian cheese with a characteristically strong and nutty flavor that may be sweet, salty, and bitter at the same time. It has a crumbly, grainy texture and may vary in color from light to dark yellow.

Unlike most other types of cheese, it has a protected designation of origin (PDO) set by the European Union (EU) ().

This means that within the EU, only cheese made in the traditional production locations of the Northern Italian provinces of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Bologna, and Mantua may be called and sold as Parmesan or Parmigiano Reggiano ().

How is it made?

In addition to being produced in specific Italian regions, Parmesan cheese is made exclusively with the milk of cows bred in the same area — a mix of Italian Frisona, Bianca Modenese, brown, and red cows.

The manufacturing process dates back to the Middle Ages, when monks developed a dry-paste cheese assembled into large wheels of up to 39 pounds (18 kg) each. These were suited for long-term preservation (4).

Parmesan is made through a process called rennet coagulation. Rennet refers to the group of animal enzymes used to start the coagulation (solidifying) process. Calf rennet is the most popularly used animal rennet ().

Rennet-coagulated cheeses are traditionally made through these eight steps (, 6):

  1. Setting. Cow’s milk starts to coagulate from the addition of rennet. Liquid whey starts to separate from a firm curd of casein micelles — milk’s main type of protein.
  2. Cutting. Once the curd has formed, it’s cut into rice-sized pieces to further promote the expulsion of whey and reduce the cheese’s moisture content. This is done using a traditional tool called a spino.
  3. Cooking. Afterward, the mixture of curd and whey is cooked at 131°F (55°C) to promote curd contraction and further whey expulsion.
  4. Draining. Once cooked, a mass of cheese is formed, and the whey is drained to separate it from what will become the cheese.
  5. Knitting. During the knitting step, the curd continues to fuse to form a larger cheese mass.
  6. Pressing. Like knitting, pressing helps with whey expulsion and promotes a complete fusion of the curd. It’s done by applying external pressure to the curd. A mold is then used to form the recognizable Parmesan wheels.
  7. Salting. Salting is the last step, done to reduce the moisture of the cheese. The wheels are submerged in saltwater or brine, which allows for salt absorption.

After salting, the maturation starts. This is also known as ripening.

The minimum ripening time is 12 months, and it may last for more than 40 months. The total maturation time is what determines the final texture and flavor of the cheese.


Parmesan is a hard cheese traditionally produced in specific regions in Northern Italy. It has a strong, nutty flavor and grainy texture that can vary depending on the maturation period.


Parmesan cheese is highly nutritious, even when consumed in small amounts.

A 1-ounce (28-gram) serving of hard Parmesan packs ():

  • Calories: 111
  • Protein: 10 grams
  • Fat: 7 grams
  • Carbs: 0.9 grams
  • Calcium: 26% of the daily value (DV)
  • Phosphorus: 16% of the DV
  • Sodium: 14% of the DV

Due to its protein and fat content, this cheese is an energy-dense food, meaning that it provides a high number of calories per serving.

Yet, its high protein content makes it an excellent choice for people who follow lacto-vegetarian diets. These are vegetarian diets that allow dairy products.

Its fat content mainly provides medium- and short-chain fatty acids. These are more easily absorbed and may be used as rapid energy sources, resulting in less body fat accumulation (, , ).

Lastly, this cheese also provides many nutrients that are essential for bone health, including calcium, phosphorus, and zinc (, ).


Parmesan cheese is highly nutritious. It’s rich in protein, ready-to-use fat, and nutrients that support bone health.

Health benefits

Here are some of the benefits of eating Parmesan cheese.

Naturally lactose-free

While lactose is an essential part of cheese making, Parmesan is virtually lactose-free.

Lactose is the main type of carb found in milk, but around 75% of the world’s population can’t digest it. This is due to a deficiency of lactase — an enzyme that helps you digest lactose by breaking it down into sugars, called glucose and galactose ().

As a result, people with lactose intolerance may experience diarrhea, abdominal pain, flatulence, and bloating after ingesting it.

While milk contains about 5% lactose, it’s found in the whey — the water fraction. Thus, when whey is removed from the curd during cheese manufacturing, the lactose is removed with it (, ).

As a result, Parmesan has a maximum lactose content of 0.10 mg per 100 kcal of product. So, it’s considered safe to eat for those with lactose intolerance (, , ).

May support bone health

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in your body, and it plays an essential role in bone health. In fact, about 99% of your body’s calcium supply is stored in your bones for function and structure support ().

Poor absorption or low intakes of this mineral can lead to bone breakdown. This is when your body relies on its bone reserves to maintain important bodily functions. In turn, it can lead to osteoporosis — a bone condition characterized by fragile bones ().

As mentioned, Parmesan cheese is a good source of calcium, with each serving providing 26% of the DV ().

Thanks to its casein content, the calcium in Parmesan also has a high bioavailability. This means that it’s easily absorbed by your body. When casein is digested, it leaves mineral residues that enhance the absorption of other minerals like calcium, iron, and zinc (, ).

Rich in easily digestible protein

Parmesan cheese provides large amounts of high quality proteins — proteins of high biological value — because it contains high concentrations of all essential amino acids (, ). And since it contains all essential amino acids, it’s considered a complete protein.

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Essential amino acids are the ones that you need to obtain from the foods you eat because your body can’t produce them.

In addition to being high quality, Parmesan’s protein is also easy to digest.

During the maturation months, the proteins in the cheese undergo a process similar to a pre-digestion. In other words, they’re broken down into smaller compounds, like free amino acids, that your body absorbs more easily (, ).


Parmesan cheese is a lactose-free cheese that’s rich in calcium and easily digestible high quality protein.


Parmesan cheese is as versatile as it is nutritious and may be enjoyed in meals ranging from appetizers to desserts.

It’s typically sold shredded, grated, or in wedge-shaped blocks and is widely available in stores and online.

Because its flavor can vary depending on the ripening time, it may pair better with certain drinks or dishes depending on its maturity.

Some typical maturation periods and their recommended pairings are (14):

  • 12–19 months. These have a mild, delicate flavor with hints of fruit and yogurt. They’re mainly added to salads and cold dishes and enjoyed with sparkling white wines.
  • 20–26 months. These are balanced cheeses and are enjoyed in sauces, desserts, and traditional Italian dishes like soup and pasta.
  • 27–34 months. These types are aromatic with a pronounced flavor. They pair well with baked pasta or fruits and honey for dessert.
  • 35–45 months. These are characterized by their intense flavor and pair well with red wine.

Adding Parmesan to your dishes may enhance their flavor and nutritional profile. You may enjoy it in sweet and savory dishes alike.


Since it’s a milk product high in the protein casein, Parmesan cheese may be unsuitable for people with casein allergy or cow’s milk allergy.

Casein allergy occurs when the immune system attacks the casein ingested from milk or milk products, resulting in strong immediate or delayed allergic reactions (, ).

Symptoms may include ():

  • rashes
  • skin irritation
  • breathing issues
  • asthma attacks
  • gastrointestinal problems
  • asthma attacks
  • anaphylactic shock

If you’re allergic to casein or cow’s milk, avoid milk and milk products — including Parmesan cheese.


Parmesan cheese may cause allergic reactions in people with casein allergy or cow’s milk allergy and should be avoided by these populations.

The bottom line

Parmesan is an aged cheese with a strong flavor and crumbly texture produced in certain regions of Northern Italy.

It’s highly nutritious and can be a great choice for people with lactose intolerance, lacto-vegetarians, and those who are after easy-to-digest proteins. It may also support bone health.

However, it’s not suitable for people with a casein or cow’s milk allergy.

Parmesan cheese makes a delicious addition to sweet and savory dishes. Find it in stores or online in blocks, shredded, or grated forms.


Cheese, hard, parmesan

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Nutrition Facts
Portion Size28.35 g
Amount Per Portion111
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7.1g9 %
   Saturated Fat 4.2g21 %
Cholesterol 19mg6 %
Sodium 333mg14 %
Total Carbohydrate 0.9g0 %
   Dietary Fiber 0g0 %
   Sugar 0g
Protein 10g20 %
Vitamin D 0.14mcg1 %
Calcium 335.66mg26 %
Iron 0.23mg1 %
Potassium 26mg1 %
* The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contribute to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
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Cheese, hard, parmesan nutrition facts and analysis per serving

Vitamin A, RAE58.68 mcg7 %
  Carotene, alpha0.00 mcg
  Carotene, beta18.71 mcg
  Cryptoxanthin, beta0.00 mcg
  Lutein + zeaxanthin0.00 mcg
  Lycopene0.00 mcg
  Retinol56.98 mcg
Thiamin[Vitamin B1]0.011 mg1 %
Riboflavin[Vitamin B2]0.094 mg7 %
Niacin[Vitamin B3]0.077 mg0 %
Pantothenic acid[Vitamin B5]0.128 mg3 %
Vitamin B60.026 mg2 %
Vitamin B12[Cobalamin]0.34 mcg14 %
  Vitamin B12, added 0.00 mcg
Folate, DFE[Vitamin B9]1.98 mcg0 %
  Folate, food 1.98 mcg
  Folic acid 0.00 mcg
Vitamin C[Ascorbic acid]0.0 mg0 %
Vitamin D0.14 mcg1 %
  Vitamin D3 0.14 mcg
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)0.06 mg0 %
  Vitamin E, added 0.00 mg
  Tocopherol, alpha 0.06 mg
Vitamin K0.5 mcg0 %
Choline4.4 mg

Calcium, Ca335.66 mg26 %
Copper, Cu0.009 mg1 %
Iron, Fe0.23 mg1 %
Magnesium, Mg12.47 mg3 %
Manganese, Mn0.006 mg0 %
Phosphorus, P196.75 mg28 %
Potassium, K26.08 mg1 %
Selenium, Se6.4 mcg12 %
Sodium, Na333.11 mg14 %
Zinc, Zn0.78 mg7 %

Carbohydrate0.91 g0 %
  Fiber0.0 g0 %
  Sugars0.03 g
  Net carbs0.91 g

Cholesterol19.28 mg6 %

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Cheese, hard, parmesan contains 111 calories per 28.35 g serving. One serving contains 7.1 g of fat, 10 g of protein and 0.9 g of carbohydrate. The latter is 0 g sugar and 0 g of dietary fiber, the rest is complex carbohydrate. Cheese, hard, parmesan contains 4.2 g of saturated fat and 19 mg of cholesterol per serving. 28.35 g of Cheese, hard, parmesan contains IU vitamin A, 0.0 mg of vitamin C and 0.14 mcg of vitamin D as well as 0.23 mg of iron, 335.66 mg of calcium and 26 mg of potassium. Cheese, hard, parmesan belong to 'Dairy and Egg Products' food category.
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"It's the MSG of Italian cooking," says Marco Canora, chef at Hearth and Insieme in New York City. "It makes everything from roasted asparagus and scrambled eggs to pasta and soup taste better." Look for Parmesan that has been aged at least 16 months, and be leery of cheese that is too pale.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 ounce
Calories: 121
Protein: 11 g
Fat: 8 g
Saturated: 5 g
Monounsaturated: 2 g
Polyunsaturated: 0 g
Carbohydrate: 1 g
Sugar: 0 g
Fiber: 0 g

Key Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamin B12
Amount: .6 mcg
Daily Value: 11%

Amount: 311 mg
Daily Value: 31%

Amount: 204 mg
Daily Value: 20%

Amount: 428 mg
Daily Value: 18%

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Cheese, grated, parmesan

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According to user reports there may be an issue with USDA data for this item.
We recommend against using this item in your recipes or when tracking food.
Please look for alternavite similar items instead.

Nutrition Facts
Portion Size100 g
Amount Per Portion420
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 28g36 %
   Saturated Fat 15g75 %
Cholesterol 86mg29 %
Sodium 1804mg78 %
Total Carbohydrate 14g5 %
   Dietary Fiber 0g0 %
   Sugar 0.1g
Protein 28g56 %
Vitamin D 0.50mcg2 %
Calcium 853.00mg66 %
Iron 0.49mg3 %
Potassium 180mg4 %
* The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contribute to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
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Cheese, grated, parmesan nutrition facts and analysis per serving

Vitamin A, RAE262.00 mcg29 %
  Carotene, alpha0.00 mcg
  Carotene, beta73.00 mcg
  Cryptoxanthin, beta0.00 mcg
  Lutein + zeaxanthin0.00 mcg
  Lycopene0.00 mcg
  Retinol255.00 mcg
Thiamin[Vitamin B1]0.026 mg2 %
Riboflavin[Vitamin B2]0.358 mg28 %
Niacin[Vitamin B3]0.080 mg0 %
Pantothenic acid[Vitamin B5]0.450 mg9 %
Vitamin B60.081 mg6 %
Vitamin B12[Cobalamin]1.40 mcg58 %
  Vitamin B12, added 0.00 mcg
Folate, DFE[Vitamin B9]6.00 mcg2 %
  Folate, food 6.00 mcg
  Folic acid 0.00 mcg
Vitamin C[Ascorbic acid]0.0 mg0 %
Vitamin D0.50 mcg2 %
  Vitamin D3 0.50 mcg
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)0.53 mg2 %
  Vitamin E, added 0.00 mg
  Tocopherol, alpha 0.53 mg
  Tocopherol, beta 0.00 mg
  Tocopherol, delta 0.00 mg
  Tocopherol, gamma 0.01 mg
  Tocotrienol, alpha 0.00 mg
  Tocotrienol, beta 0.00 mg
  Tocotrienol, delta 0.00 mg
  Tocotrienol, gamma 0.00 mg
Vitamin K1.7 mcg1 %
  Vitamin K (Dihydrophylloquinone) 0.00 mcg
  Vitamin K (Menaquinone-4) 7.10 mcg
Betaine0.2 mg
Choline14.1 mg

Calcium, Ca853.00 mg66 %
Copper, Cu0.040 mg4 %
Iron, Fe0.49 mg3 %
Magnesium, Mg34.00 mg8 %
Manganese, Mn0.071 mg3 %
Phosphorus, P627.00 mg90 %
Potassium, K180.00 mg4 %
Selenium, Se34.4 mcg63 %
Sodium, Na1804.00 mg78 %
Zinc, Zn4.20 mg38 %

Carbohydrate13.91 g5 %
  Fiber0.0 g0 %
  Sugars0.07 g
    Fructose0.00 g
    Galactose0.07 g
    Glucose0.00 g
    Lactose0.00 g
    Maltose0.00 g
    Sucrose0.00 g
  Net carbs13.91 g

Fats and Fatty Acids
Cheese, grated, parmesan, fatty acids by type

Omega-3Omega-6 Omega-6 / Omega-3 ratio
0.11 g0.90 g8.05

Fat27.84 g36 %
  Saturated fatty acids15.371 g77 %
    Butanoic acid0.493 g
    Decanoic acid0.632 g
    Docosanoic acid 0.012 g
    Dodecanoic acid0.726 g
    Eicosanoic acid 0.046 g
    Heptadecanoic acid 0.148 g
    Hexadecanoic acid7.481 g
    Hexanoic acid0.422 g
    Octadecanoic acid2.565 g
    Octanoic acid0.265 g
    Pentadecanoic acid 0.240 g
    Tetracosanoic acid 0.009 g
    Tetradecanoic acid2.333 g
  Monounsaturated fatty acids7.130 g
    Cis-hexadecenoic acid 0.287 g
    Cis-octadecenoic acid 5.815 g
    Docosenoic acid0.001 g
    Docosenoic cis acid 0.001 g
    Docosenoic trans acid 0.000 g
    Eicosenoic acid0.049 g
    Heptadecenoic acid 0.045 g
    Hexadecenoic acid0.365 g
    Octadecenoic acid6.441 g
    Pentadecenoic acid 0.000 g
    Tetracosenoic cis acid 0.000 g
    Tetradecenoic acid 0.229 g
    Trans-hexadecenoic acid 0.078 g
    Trans-octadecenoic acid 0.626 g
  Polyunsaturated fatty acids1.386 g
    α-linolenic acid n-3 (ALA) 0.10 g
    γ-linolenic acid n-6 (GLA) 0.00 g
    Cis,cis-eicosadienoic n-6 acid 0.006 g
    Linoleic acid n-6 (LA) 0.87 g
    Docosahexaenoic n-3 acid (DHA)0.00 g
    Docosapentaenoic n-3 acid (DPA)0.01 g
    Docosatetraenoic acid 0.007 g
    Eicosadienoic acid 0.027 g
    Eicosadienoic n-3 acid 0.002 g
    Eicosadienoic n-6 acid 0.026 g
    Eicosapentaenoic n-3 acid (EPA)0.00 g
    Eicosatetraenoic acid0.040 g
    Octadecadienoic CLAs acid 0.136 g
    Octadecadienoic acid1.175 g
    Octadecatetraenoic acid0.000 g
    Octadecatrienoic acid0.106 g
    Trans-octadecadienoic acid 0.169 g
    Trans-octadecatrienoic acid 0.003 g
  Fatty acids, total trans0.876 g
    Fatty acids, total trans-monoenoic 0.704 g
    Fatty acids, total trans-polyenoic 0.172 g

Cholesterol86.00 mg29 %

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Cheese, grated, parmesan contains 420 calories per 100 g serving. One serving contains 28 g of fat, 28 g of protein and 14 g of carbohydrate. The latter is 0.1 g sugar and 0 g of dietary fiber, the rest is complex carbohydrate. Cheese, grated, parmesan contains 15 g of saturated fat and 86 mg of cholesterol per serving. 100 g of Cheese, grated, parmesan contains IU vitamin A, 0.0 mg of vitamin C and 0.50 mcg of vitamin D as well as 0.49 mg of iron, 853.00 mg of calcium and 180 mg of potassium. Cheese, grated, parmesan belong to 'Dairy and Egg Products' food category.

Facts parmesan nutrition

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Nutrition information for Parmesan Cheese - Benefits And Risks

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Pretending that nothing had happened, Lera, in dismay, swallowed several times from the can, and also stared at the screen. Sanyok followed her example. With peripheral vision, Roman saw not only what was happening on the screen, but also here on the couch. Slightly jealous of his wife, he decided to pin up his comrade.

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