Although the texture may be slightly different depending on what the recipe is, cream cheese works as an ideal substitute for Neufchatel cheese. Spreads and dips may appear to be thinner or slightly watery when using cream cheese as a substitute, as Neufchatel cheese has a lower moisture count.
Neufchatel cheese is aged cheese made in a mold that comes from Normandy, France. It is much more grainy than cream cheese and ages for up 10 weeks before distribution. A similar cheese, known as farmer's cheese, is made in the United States. It is a soft cheese that also substitutes for both Neufchatel cheese and cream cheese, and is lower in fat than both cheeses.