co·​ti·​ja | \ kō-ˈtē-hä How to pronounce cotija (audio) \
variants: or cotija cheese

Definition of cotija

: a hard, white, crumbly Mexican cheese made from cow's milk Another Mexican-style cheese that's great for summer meals is cotija. Firm, white, and salty, it crumbles readily and is a grand alternative to parmesan in salads or sprinkled over vegetables.— Jerry Anne Di Vecchio … filled with a tangle of beans, Mexican sausage, crumbly cotija cheese and lettuce …— Miriam Morgan

First Known Use of cotija

1975, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cotija

borrowed from Spanish (queso) Cotija, after Cotija, municipality in Michoacán, Mexico

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The first known use of cotija was in 1975

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something desired as essential

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