I have a recipe that specifically calls for Neufchatel cheese. What's the difference between this cheese and regular cream cheese? Can one be substituted for the other? —A.K., Torrance, California
Neufchatel cheese is a soft unripened cheese that originates in France. The American version, which is similar to cream cheese, is made from pasteurized milk and cream. American Neufchatel is slightly lower in calories than cream cheese and has slightly more moisture. Regular cream cheese can be substituted for Neufchatel cheese, especially in recipes for dips and spreads, with good results. You may notice a slightly different texture in cooked products.