Recipes » Appetizer Recipes » Classic Cheese Fondue with Swiss and Gruyere

Classic Cheese Fondue with Swiss and Gruyere

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5 from 3 votes
This Classic Cheese Fondue using both Swiss and Gruyere cheese with bread and fruit dippers is a wonderful treat on a cold winter evening.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
A classic cheese fondue using both Swiss and Gruyere cheese with bread and fruit dippers. One of our favorites for a relaxed Sunday afternoon. https://www.lanascooking.com/cheese-fondue/

This Classic Cheese Fondue using both Swiss and Gruyere cheese with bread and fruit dippers is a wonderful treat on a cold winter evening. It’s a fun way to break the ice at a dinner party or to liven up a family get together.

This cool, vintage recipe is one that I’m glad to see is being revived by younger cooks. I quite honestly had not thought about fondue since sometime in the early ’80s until recently when we had dinner at a beautiful fondue restaurant in Quebec City.

Cheese fondue in pot with bread and vegetable dippers.

A fondue pot was a must-have item on the wedding gift registry back in the day. Probably every newly married couple from the mid-’70s until the early 80’s owned a one.

It was a really fun thing to bring out for parties. Everyone had their own little fork and served themselves from the pot.

These days, however, I’ve been seeing mostly dessert fondues on blogs. Primarily chocolate. With wonderful dippers like marshmallows, fruits, and little bite-sized pieces of pound cake.

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How delicious! And so much fun for kids. They really love the chocolate.

But I really want to revisit the classic cheese fondue that we all love so much. I almost always think of this as a winter recipe. One to be enjoyed on a lazy Sunday afternoon in front of a nice fire. Maybe with a glass or two of wine.

That’s just the way I serve it now. And it’s still just as good as I remember it from way back when.


  • BECAUSE CHEESE – It’s delicious! I mean, really – melty cheese and something to dip into it? Yum!
  • KID FRIENDLY – Kids really love it. Especially having their own little fork and choosing their dippers.
  • VERSATILE It’s as good for family as it is for a nice dinner party.

Equipment You’ll Need

Of course, you’ll need a fondue pot. There are multiple choices available on the market. Everything from the classic fondue pot with a burner underneath to electric models with temperature regulators. If you’re planning for a big party, you might also want to purchase some extra fondue forks.

The only other equipment you’ll need are a mixing bowl, a cheese grater, a saucepan, and a wooden spoon or spatula.

About the Ingredients

  • Swiss and Gruyere Cheese (I use a mixture of both in my fondue even though Gruyere is technically a “Swiss” cheese, there are differences in texture and flavor. You can also substitute Emmental cheese, Jarlsberg, or a French Comte cheese.)
  • Garlic Clove (Rubbing the inside of the fondue pot with a clove of garlic may not seem like much, but it transfers a beautiful, subtle flavor to the fondue.)
  • Dry White Wine (Choose a “crisp” wine that you’d enjoy drinking like Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Gris, or Pinot Blanc.)

You’ll find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the recipe at the bottom of this post.

How to Make Classic Cheese Fondue

Let’s Go Step-by-Step

I always like to show you the photos and step-by-step instructions for my recipes to help you picture how to make them in your own kitchen. If you just want to print out a copy, you can skip to the bottom of the post where you’ll find the recipe card.

Grate the Cheese

Grated cheese in a mixing bowl.

Begin by grating the cheeses. In a medium bowl, toss the grated cheese with the cornstarch. Set aside.

Prep the Fondue Pot

Rubbing the fondue pot with a garlic clove.

Rub the ceramic inside of the fondue pot with the garlic clove. Set that aside as well.

Prepare the Fondue

Photo collage showing the making of the cheese fondue.

In a medium to large saucepan over medium heat, bring the wine and lemon juice just to a simmer. Gradually add the cheese adding a small amount at a time and stirring until it’s melted before adding more. When all the cheese has melted, stir in the mustard, salt, and nutmeg.

Serve

Fondue pot filled with cheese fondue and bread, fruit, and veggie dippers alongside.

Pour the mixture into the prepared fondue pot and set it over a low flame. Serve with bite-size pieces of your preferred dippers.

Serving Suggestions & Variations

  • Cubed, study breads make great dippers for your fondue. French, sourdough, and pumpernickel are especially good, or try a loaf with fruit such as an orange-cranberry bread.
  • Cubed apples, and lightly blanched* vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, asparagus, sweet peppers, Brussels sprouts, zucchini) are all great dipped in melty cheese.
  • Other classic dippers include cubed cured meats such as sausage or salami, steamed baby potatoes, and cherry tomatoes.
  • For a slightly different fondue flavor try substituting cherry brandy (Kirsch) for the wine.
  • Serve a few contrasting items alongside the fondue. Cornichons, olives, roasted nuts, and fruit preserves are great compliments to the richness of fondue.

Frequently Asked Questions

I’m not sure I want to invest in a fondue pot. Can I use something else?

A fondue pot is lots of fun and once you own one you’ll find excuses to use it. However, if you’re not ready to buy one just yet, you can use a heavy bottomed saucepan set on a trivet with a low flame (i.e., a can of sterno) underneath. Be sure to place the whole setup on a flameproof plate or tray and keep a really close check on things. Make absolutely sure to keep children away from the flame and all napkins, cloths, and other table linens away as well. Never leave an open flame unattended.

Is fondue the same thing as raclette?

The difference between fondue and raclette is primarily in the way the cheese is melted. Fondue is served from a communal pot or dish. Raclette (also the name of the cheese used in the dish) is melted on individual grills and poured over the accompaniments.

Is fondue an appetizer or a main dish?

It can be either! Fondue is a fun party dish or appetizer but you can also easily serve it as a main dish. As a main dish, I’d probably include at least one kind of cooked meat for dipping. Filet mignon is really great – just sayin’

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Recipe

A classic cheese fondue using both Swiss and Gruyere cheese with bread and fruit dippers. One of our favorites for a relaxed Sunday afternoon. https://www.lanascooking.com/cheese-fondue/

Classic Cheese Fondue with Swiss and Gruyere

This Classic Cheese Fondue using both Swiss and Gruyere cheese with bread and fruit dippers is a wonderful treat on a cold winter evening.
5 from 3 votes
Print It Rate It Text It
Course: Appetizers
Cuisine: French
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 345kcal
Author: Lana Stuart

Ingredients

  • ½ pound Swiss cheese
  • ½ pound Gruyere cheese
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 garlic clove peeled
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon dry mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Assortment of bread cubes vegetables, and fruit for dipping

Instructions

  • Grate the cheeses. In a medium bowl, toss the cheese with the cornstarch. Set aside.
  • Rub the inside of the fondue pot with the garlic clove. Set that aside as well.
  • In a medium to large saucepan over medium heat, bring the wine and lemon juice just to a simmer. Gradually stir in the cheese adding a small amount at a time and stirring until melted before adding more. Stir in the mustard, salt, and nutmeg.
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared fondue pot and set over a low flame. Serve with bite-size pieces of your preferred dippers.

Notes

Ingredients:
  • I use a mixture of both Swiss and Gruyere in my fondue. You can also substitute Emmental cheese, Jarlsberg, or a French Comte cheese.
  • Rubbing the inside of the fondue pot with a clove of garlic may not seem like much, but it transfers a beautiful, subtle flavor to the fondue.
  • Choose a “crisp” dry white wine that you’d enjoy drinking like Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Gris, or Pinot Blanc.
Serving Suggestions and Variations:
  • Cubed, study breads make great dippers for your fondue. French, sourdough, and pumpernickel are especially good, or try a loaf with fruit such as an orange-cranberry bread.
  • Cubed apples, and lightly blanched vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, asparagus, sweet peppers, Brussels sprouts, zucchini) are all great dipped in melty cheese. When blanching vegetables take care not to cook them beyond the crunchy stage.
  • Other classic dippers include cubed cured meats such as sausage or salami, steamed baby potatoes, and cherry tomatoes.
  • For a slightly different fondue flavor try substituting cherry brandy (Kirschwasser) for the wine.
  • Serve a few contrasting items alongside the fondue. Cornichons, olives, roasted nuts, and fruit preserves are great compliments to the richness of fondue.
Tips:
A fondue pot is lots of fun and once you own one you’ll find excuses to use it. However, if you’re not ready to buy one just yet, you can use a heavy bottomed saucepan set on a trivet with a low flame (i.e., a can of sterno) underneath. Be sure to place the whole setup on a flameproof plate or tray and keep a really close check on things. Make absolutely sure to keep children away from the flame and all napkins, cloths, and other table linens away as well. Never leave an open flame unattended.
Fondue is a fun party dish or appetizer but you can also easily serve it as a main dish. As a main dish, I’d probably include at least one kind of cooked meat for dipping. Filet mignon is really great.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1 | Calories: 345kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 76mg | Sodium: 396mg | Potassium: 94mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 672IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 686mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.

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— This post was originally published on February 8, 2013.

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17 Comments

  1. My husband has been on a cheese fondue-making binge lately and I’m happy to say that your recipe is very very close to his traditional French recipe! Yay! Now I’m back in the mood for it again!

  2. I’ve never made fondu and I really need to change that!!! Actually I don’t think I’ve ever even had it, which is totally weird. Your setup looks fabulous!!

    1. You should try it at least once! A fondue pot isn’t very expensive and can be used for years. Give it a go and let me know how you like it!

  3. This is definitely a fun party dish!! I remember creating a version of fondue for a 6 course vegetarian dinner I catered – the fondue was the appetizer. Made the fondue set it out – gone in 15 minutes… hostess requested more.. thank goodness I had more ingredients …. LOL!!! I used cream cheese as a base – that way the fondue held for a bit without becoming gummy!! Need to make the original version though… so ooo good!

    1. Very interesting, Nancy…using cream cheese for the base. I can see how that would stabilize the mixture quite a bit. Also, more economical – Gruyere is expensive!

  4. I for sure need to make a savory fondue sometime soon! My friend gave me a chocolate fondue for Christmas one year, we love it! I love that you rubbed garlic around the bowl, what a great idea:-) Hugs, Terra

    1. Do try it sometime, Terra. Not only is it tasty, it’s so much fun. Especially for kids. They love choosing what to dip. It’s like playing with their food :-)

  5. I must have been asleep during the original fondue craze. I don’t recall ever preparing fondue. I don’t have the appropriate pot and serving utensils. Will you please come to my house and make this for me, and bring all that it needed? Because it looks yummy.

    However, in tribute to your nostalgic walk down memory lane, I prepared meatloaf today. It was great. Some of the oldies are really goodies.

    Miss P

    1. Oh yes, it was a big deal back then. Don’t know how you missed out on that craze.

      You’re so right – the classics win every time.

  6. If I checked I do believe my recipe for this ‘way back’ classic is almost identical. Funny…thought of fondue the other day as I was working in a storage closet and packing things for either storage or Goodwill. I gave Goodwill the pot that uses fuel but I kept the one that is electric and was inspired to try something soon…maybe this huh?

    Great stuff Lana; we should do a ‘way back’ series. :)

    1. A ‘way back’ series sounds like great fun, Barb! Some of the old recipes are so good and they only need a little push to the front to get attention from a whole new crop of cooks.