Brie vs Camembert: Difference and Comparison

Charles de Gaulle, the French President in 1962 asked that “How can a country with two hundred and forty-six varieties of cheese you govern?”.

So, it can be seen that there is an immense cheese variety. These cheese varieties have wide ranges in terms of forms, flavors, and textures.

Mainly into eight broad categories, the French cheese can be grouped.

Some of the cheese instances are Abondance, Beaufort, Banon, Abbaye de Belloc, Abbaye de Timadeuc cheese, and many more.

In this article, the main focus is on differentiating brie and camembert.

Key Takeaways

  1. Brie and Camembert are soft French cheeses made from cow’s milk.
  2. Brie is milder and creamier than Camembert, with a stronger and earthier flavor.
  3. Camembert is smaller and rounder than Brie.

Brie vs Camembert 

Brie is a soft cheese made from cow milk with a grayish color under a white mold, named after the French region that it came from. Camembert is a soft, moist, creamy cheese from cow milk with a ripe surface, and originates from Camembert in northwest France. It is mostly eaten with bread or fruit.

Brie vs Camembert

Near Paris, the origin of brie was taken place, and where unpasteurized production from farms Brie de Melun and Brie de Meaux are the versions which are highly esteemed.

Today most brie is made from pasteurized milk, mainly in factories.   

The gooey, thick camembert cheese is popular on bread as well as paired with fruit and packed as food for picnics.

The origin of camembert can be traced to when the farmer’s wife allegedly offered some to Napoleon in the Camembert village. 

Comparison Table  

Parameters of ComparisonBrieCamembert
InterpretationIt is a creamy, mild, soft, cheese milk of the cow.It is a rich cheese with a rind of white color.
FlavorButtery and creamy flavorDeep, intense, and earthy notes
SizeAround 9-14 inches in diameterAround 5 inches in diameter
FatSaturated fat: 17.41g
Monosaturated fat: 8.013g
Saturated fat: 15.259g
Monosaturated fat: 7.023g
Cholesterol100mg72mg

What is Brie? 

Brie is a soft cheese made from cow milk and named after Brie which is a region of France. Under the white mold rind, there is a slight grayish tinge.

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The rind is eaten, and its flavor largely depends upon the environment of its manufacture and the ingredients used.  

From that, semi or whole-skimmed milk, it is produced. By adding rennet to raw milk as well as warming to 37 degrees C temperature, the curd is obtained.

Then it is cast into molds, sometimes with a ladle of additional perforated. The mold of 20cm is filled with many thin cheese layers and drained.  

Later, the molded cheese is taken out, salted, and inoculated with cheese culture and in a controlled environment aged. Brie consists of a good amount of both vitamin B2 and vitamin B12.

When it comes to protein, brie is also a good source.  

Nowadays, there are several varieties available for brie, including herbed varieties, triple and double brie, plain brie, and brie versions made with other milk kinds.

Although it is a cheese from France, obtaining Wisconsin and Somerset brie is possible. 

brie

What is Camembert? 

From the unpasteurized milk, the first camembert was made. “Camembert de Normandie” is the AOC variety which is by law to only be made with unpasteurized milk.

Most modern cheesemakers use pasteurized milk for reasons of safety and compliance with convenience or regulations.  

It is made by cow milk of inoculating warmed with bacteria, namely mesophilic, then rennet is added and allowed to coagulate this mixture.

Further, the curd is cut into cubes, and salt as well as transferred to molds of low cylindrical camembert.  

Every six to twelve hours, the molds are turned to allow evenly drain the whey from the cut curds. Each mold consists of cylindrical, flat, solid cheese after 48 hours.

At this point, the cheese is bland, hard, and crumbly. This cheese gets its odor from many compounds, like diacetyl, isovaleric acid, butyric acid, phenanthryl acetate, methional, and many more.

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A similar cheese under the same name is manufactured in Hungary. Slovakia under the name Plesnivec and in the Czech Republic as herein.

During World War I, this cheese was issued to French troops. In French literature, culture, and history, camembert has many other roles. 

camembert

Main Differences Between Brie and Camembert 

  1. Only at the beginning, lactic starters are added to the brie production to yield mild flavor. Meanwhile, during the production of camembert, lactic starters were added five-time.  
  2. When it comes to origin, as per the name Brie it originated from the Brie region of France. In contrast, as per the camembert, it originated from the camembert region in Normandy in France.  
  3. The inner appearance of brie is whitish, and most versions are stabilized in America, which means a firm texture in the center that never turns runny. On the contrary, camembert tends to have a deeper yellowish color and is very ripe have runny inside.  
  4. In terms of smell, brie has a buttery and light scent. On the other hand, camembert smells Barran yard-y, like hay or mushrooms, and earthy.  
  5. Affinage is the ripening cheese art. The consumption of brie is made to be immediate. On the flip side, before cutting camembert into a wheel, they have to wait for six or eight weeks for consumption. 
Difference Between Brie and Camembert

References 

  1. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/(SICI)1097-0010(199910)79:13%3C1788::AID-JSFA436%3E3.0.CO;2-T
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S002203029277934X

Last Updated : 26 June, 2023

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6 thoughts on “Brie vs Camembert: Difference and Comparison”

  1. I’m sorry, is there really a necessity to specify the differences between brie and camembert? Many people might find this redundant.

    Reply
  2. The differences compared in this article seem very detailed and accurate. I’d love to taste both cheeses and confirm the differences.

    Reply
  3. I’m sorry, but I couldn’t care less about the differences between Brie and Camembert. I don’t think this is relevant enough to be discussed

    Reply

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