The high nutritional value of sheep milk can be advantageous in the manufacture of cheese, and fat plays an important role in sheep cheese properties. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of feeding common hay or silage diets used in commercial farms on the nutritional value of sheep cheese fat. We also monitored the effect of cheese ripening period on the fatty acid profile. Cheeses were produced from milk of sheep fed hay and silage diets from 8 farms, on 4 separate occasions (February, May, August, and November) over a 1-yr period. Eighty-four individual fatty acids were determined and identified by gas chromatography. Ripening time (100 and 180 d) significantly reduced moisture, acidity, and water activity of cheeses but did not affect the fatty acid content. However, hay feeding, compared with silage feeding, led to cheeses with 1.5- and 1.3-fold higher contents of vaccenic acid and conjugated linoleic acid, without detrimental changes in saturated and n-3 (omega-3) fatty acid composition. Hay forages could be a low-cost alternative for producing cheese with a fatty acid profile suitable for human health, which is an aspect of great interest to the food industry. Copyright © 2020 American Dairy Science Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.