Clinton Kelly weighs in on the best way to eat Sargento String Cheese


How do you eat Sargento String Cheese? Clinton Kelly shares his thoughts on the best, or right, way to eat string cheese debate.

Are you a peeler or a biter? While that question might seem unusual, Sargento String Cheese fans have a definite opinion on the best way to enjoy string cheese. Recently, Clinton Kelly partnered with Sargento. The cheese company researched ways that fans enjoy the classic cheese snack. During my recent conversation with Kelly, we discussed the peeler versus biter debate, smart snacking ideas and fun ways to elevate the classic Sargento String Cheese.

For many years, my daily routine included watching Clinton Kelly on ABC’s The Chew. Kelly always had innovative, yet easy, entertaining ideas. Those ideas blended both nostalgic, classic foods with food trends. When Sargento gave me the opportunity to chat with Kelly, I was so excited to hear his thoughts on the iconic string cheese.

Recently, Sargento commissioned a study to see how people enjoy string cheese. The idea that one way of eating string cheese is preferred over another was somewhat curious. Is there a correct way to enjoy strong cheese?

Sargento string cheese, photo provided by Sargento

According to the Sargento study, people feel quite strongly on the “correct” way to enjoy string cheese. The study states that “64% of people would peel string cheese versus 36% of people who would bite it.” So yes, there appears to be a clear opinion on how to eat string cheese.

Personally, I always thought that string cheese was best enjoyed by peeling it. Part of the fun of strong cheese is the opportunity to play with your food. Growing up, that package in my lunch meant that there was a little fun waiting for me. Whether I peeled a big piece or small individual strands, I was in control of my eating enjoyment.

With such clear opinions, I had to ask Clinton Kelly, which way he prefers to eat string cheese. He was a little more practical in his explanation. Kelly said that his string eating preference depends on when he’s eating the Sargento String Cheese. Actually, this explanation makes a lot of sense.

Kelly said that if he is sitting at home, enjoying a leisurely snack, peeling is his choice. But, for on the go snacking, it is definitely a bite scenario. Specifically, Kelly mentioned that an on the go snack scenario is best for biting because the wrapper keeps messes away.

Even though the peeler versus biter debate is an entertaining topic, the concept of smart snacking choices is a hot topic. Whether it is a busy schedule or afternoon appetizers, snacking is part of everyone’s lives. More importantly, balanced snacking choices can increased enjoyment.

Live Feed

Exclusive interview with Fire Masters Judge and former Hell's Kitchen Chef, Andy Husbands
Exclusive interview with Fire Masters Judge and former Hell's Kitchen Chef, Andy Husbands /

Guilty Eats

  • How much will Gordon Ramsay's English Breakfast cost you?Guilty Eats
  • Did Gordon Ramsay really steal another chef's recipe?Guilty Eats
  • Food Network is hosting a new Tournament of Champions, we take a stab at the bracketGuilty Eats
  • 5 celebrity female chefs we would love to dine withCulturess
  • The Chef Show Season 1 Episode 8: Chef Film Recipes ReviewGuilty Eats
  • After spending many seasons on The Chew, Kelly mentioned that he found a balanced snack with protein and carbs helped to keep him energized. For example, he liked to combine string cheese with some apples or nuts. The string cheese, with 8 grams of protein, helps to curb hunger. Plus, the different textures makes the snack even more satisfying.

    Even though on the go snacking is quite popular, it isn’t the only way to enjoy Sargento String Cheese. Kelly suggested using the string cheese in various appetizers. For example, the string cheese could be wrapped in pepperoni (or other cured meat).

    Two ideas that Clinton Kelly suggested which I tried this weekend are absolutely on point. First, he recommended shredding the string cheese to make a little haystack on top of a canape. While I had never thought of this idea, it is genius. The simple idea adds a delightful textural component to the canape.

    Sargento string cheese, photo provided by Sargento

    Second, Kelly suggested adding a touch of cracked pepper on top of the string cheese. The burst of spice from the pepper really elevates the string cheese. While I often think of finishing salt, I hadn’t thought of a finishing cracked pepper.

    Since I like to experiment with flavor, I tried various types of peppercorns with this idea. Playing with the bold and subtle various peppercorns (pink, Szechuan, etc.), I started to think of string cheese in a whole different way. Sure, it was that lunch box snack from my childhood, but it can be so much more.

    Of course, I couldn’t leave my conversation with Kelly without asking about The Chew. Like many fans, I wish that the food TV show was still on the air. Kelly said that he is still in touch with his co-hosts Michael Symon and Clara Hall. Fans, like myself, would love to see the three of them back at the table or back together in some other project/event. That chemistry between the co-hosts was quite entertaining. Although he couldn’t comment on future projects, fans hope for a new Clinton Kelly project on horizon.

    Related Story. Chef Duff Goldman transforms Kellogg's cereal beyond the bowl. light

    Thank you Clinton Kelly for participating in this interview. Also, thank you to Sargento for facilitating the opportunity.

    Where do you stand on the string cheese eating debate? Are you a peeler or a biter? Why not grab a package of Sargento string cheese and test both ways.