Burrata vs. Mozzarella: What’s the Difference Between These Italian Cheeses?

Updated: Jul. 03, 2024

Burrata vs mozzarella? It's a matter of what's on the inside, but both are outstanding fresh cheeses for showcasing stunning vegetables or your favorite olive oil.

Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.
Learn more.

In the battle of burrata vs. mozzarella, there are no losers, only delicious winners. Both are semi-soft cheeses, born in southern Italy, and best enjoyed as fresh as possible.

The difference is that burrata has a mozzarella shell, with a luxurious filling made from mozzarella bits and cream. Both can be showpiece cheeses, starring in appetizers like this marinated mozzarella with tomatoes or grilled nectarines with burrata and honey.

The Difference Between Burrata and Mozzarella

What Is Mozzarella?

Fresh mozzarella is a semi-soft cheese, traditionally made in Italy with water buffalo milk. It is readily available in the United States and crafted with cow milk and has a delicate, milky flavor and a soft, cushiony texture.

Mozzarella is a pulled curd- or pasta filata-type cheese. Because the cheese is stretched while it’s being made, the protein chains are elongated, and this is what gives mozzarella its characteristic stringy texture.

You will find mozzarella in many forms: logs that can be easily sliced for pizza or a panini, or in large or small balls that are perfect for salads and hors d’oeuvres.

What Is Burrata?

While burrata cheese is made from mozzarella, it is considered a different type of cheese. Burrata is made by taking a fresh mozzarella shell, filling it with bits of mozzarella and cream, and then twisting the top closed to form a ball.

Burrata is sold in tubs with brine to keep the cheese fresh, and it is best enjoyed as soon as possible.

The magical part about burrata is that when it is sliced open, the rich, buttery filling spills out. It is a stunning cheeseboard centerpiece when drizzled with balsamic vinegar or great olive oil, and can be the star of any summer salad. Learn to make burrata pasta with it.

What Is Healthier, Burrata or Mozzarella?

Since burrata is made from mozzarella, the nutritional content of both cheeses is very similar.

However, if you want to dig into specifics, there are a few differences. When comparing a single-ounce serving of BelGioioso burrata to the same amount of BelGioioso mozzarella, the biggest difference is in sodium content and protein content. For this particular brand, mozzarella has more sodium (85 milligrams compared to burrata’s 60 milligrams). A single ounce of mozzarella has five grams of protein while burrata has three.

Can You Substitute Burrata for Mozzarella?

When deciding between burrata vs. mozzarella, think about how you’ll be using the cheese. Also consider what you’d like to spend. Burrata is more expensive, so you may want to save that purchase for special recipes.

For recipes where you want ooey-gooey, stretchy cheese pulls, go for mozzarella. It’s the right choice for recipes like homemade pizzas, grilled cheese sandwiches and chicken parmesan.

If you want to spread that luscious filling over toasted bread with olive oil, then stick with burrata and its creamy filling. Burrata is also an outstanding accompaniment to grilled vegetables or fruit and is the star of many recipes.

Can’t find burrata in your grocery store? These are some more fantastic substitutes for burrata cheese.