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Until recently, eating a wedge of low-fat cheese was like chewing an eraser. And cooking some? Forget about it. Fortunately, new varieties are fit for both slicing and melting. "Reduced-fat cheeses are a great calcium and protein source with a lower-fat bonus," says Janet Helm, M.S., R.D., a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association and a dairy-industry nutritional consultant. "Top a whole-wheat cracker with these cheeses and you'll sneak some fiber into your snack." Although low-fat varieties can contain no more than 3 grams of total fat per ounce, a serving is typically the size of an ice cube.

Fleur de Lit Premium Light Spreading Cheese
1 ounce (28 g)
Calories: 60
Cholesterol (mg): 20
Protein (g): 2
Total fat (g): 4.5
Rating: Excellent
Comments: Hello, France! A strong garlic-herb flavor; creamier than its slippery, full-fat counterpart.

Light Alquette Garlic et Herbes
2 tablespoons (23 g)
Calories: 50
Cholesterol (mg): 20
Protein (g): 2
Total fat (g): 4
Rating: Very good
Comments: Whipped, spreadable, slightly sweeter than full-fat; fine garlic flavor.

Fancy Brand Low Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella
1 ounce (28 g)
Calories: 80
Cholesterol (mg): 15
Protein (g): 8
Total fat (g): 5
Rating: Excellent
Comments: Fabulous buttery flavor, creamy texture; doesn't taste like reduced-fat.

Cabot Creamery 50% light Vermont Cheddar
1 ounce (28 g)
Calories: 70
Cholesterol (mg): 15
Protein (g): 8
Total fat (g): 4.5
Rating: Excellent
Comments: Good, sharp Cheddar taste; slightly drier texture than full-fat; melts nicely.

Horizon Organic Dairy Reduced Fat Cheddar
1 ounce (28 g)
Calories: 80
Cholesterol (mg): 20
Protein (g): 7
Total fat (g): 6
Rating: Very good
Comments: Pleasing creaminess combined with good Cheddar edge; melts nicely.

Kraft Natural Reduced Fat Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1 ounce (28 g)
Calories: 90
Cholesterol (mg): 20
Protein (g): 7
Total fat (g): 6
Rating: Very good
Comments: Softer, more rubbery than full-fat; strong Cheddar tang; pleasant creaminess; melts well

Rondele Reduced Fat Garlic & Herbs
2 tablespoons (27 g)
Calories: 80
Cholesterol (mg): 20
Protein (g): 3
Total fat (g): 7
Rating: Very good
Comments: Velvety herb spread with mild garlic flavor; less buttery and salty than full-fat version.

Jarlsberg Lit Reduced Fat Swiss
1 ounce (28 g)
Calories: 70
Cholesterol (mg): 10
Protein (g): 9
Total fat (g): 3.5
Rating: Excellent
Comments: Slightly less nutty and creamy than full-fat version; rich Swiss flavor; excellent melting quality.

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