AUSTIN, Texas (Feb. 22, 2010) — Whole Foods Market, the world’s leading natural and organic foods supermarket, today announced the winners of its online recipe contest highlighting Parmigiano Reggiano.

“This is a well-loved cheese! We were blown away by the creativity and variety of the recipes we received,” said Cathy Strange, global cheese buyer for Whole Foods Market. “With our mouths watering, deciding upon winners was not an easy task, but I think the diverse winners will help our shoppers add even more options to their repertoire of recipes using this cheese rock star.”

More than 1,000 entries came in —from savory entrees and sweet desserts to crispy appetizers and creamy soups – sharing plenty of new and innovative ways to use the “king of cheese.”

Winners of the contest are:

  • Grand Prize Winner: Parmigiano Reggiano Crisps with Chocolate and Sea Salt (B. Estabrook of Rhinelander, WI)
  • First Place: Savory Parmigiano Reggiano Loaf with Pancetta, Sun-dried Tomatoes and Basil (J. Baron of Livonia, NY)
  • Second Place: Parmigiano Reggiano Ramekin Cheese Puffs (C. Kumpe of El Dorado, CA)
  • Third Place: Savory Cannoli con Parmigiano Reggiano (M. Anderson of Eagle, ID)
  • Fourth Place: Parmigiano Reggiano Blondies (T. Traynor of Winston-Salem, NC)
  • Fifth Place: Parmigiano Reggiano Grits with Corn and Vidalia Onion (K. Keegan of Memphis, TN)

Winning recipes are available at

Prizes include a $500 Whole Foods Market shopping spree, authentic cheese knives from Italy's Consorzio del Formaggio Parmigiano Reggiano and Forever Cheese, a gift basket filled with Parmigiano Reggiano and products that pair well with the cheese, and gift cards.

Whole Foods Market will cap its month-long celebration of Parmigiano Reggiano on Saturday, Feb. 27, with an in-store grand finale to honor the tradition behind the cheese while highlighting its versatility. In all of its cheese departments at precisely 3 p.m. EST, the Company will attempt to break its own world record for simultaneously cracking open hundreds of hand-selected wheels of 24-month-aged Parmigiano Reggiano. Breaking into the 80-pound wheels in the traditional manner will reveal its salty, crunchy, crumbly and crystalline internal structure. Stores will offer samples, pairing ideas and recipes as well. More information can be found at High resolution photos of contest winners can be found at