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Learn How to Make Ricotta Cheese – The Easy Way! And once you learn how to make this homemade ricotta, you’ll discover that it’s perfect for using in both pasta dishes and desserts, as well as lots of other recipes. Or you can eat it right from the spoon!
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No Need to Start with Mozzarella
This recipe for Ricotta Cheese is the quick version. Traditional Ricotta Cheese is made from whey, which is a by-product of making mozzarella cheese. But this version is made from milk, cream, and a bit of an acid, such as vinegar or lemon juice. That’s it. And best of all, it will taste very similar to traditional ricotta!
It’s Easy to Make Ricotta Cheese
Not only is this recipe the quick method for making Ricotta Cheese, it’s also the easy way. All you have to do is pour your milk and cream—plus your salt, if using—into a heavy bottom pot or saucepan, warm it, and then pour in your vinegar. The curds will start to separate from the whey, and it’s those curds that are your homemade Ricotta! You’ll strain those curds from the whey for about 30 minutes, which will create the perfect creamy ricotta cheese.
More Homemade Dairy Videos
Now that you’ve made ricotta cheese, try your hand at other Homemade Dairy recipes, including cottage cheese, kefir, evaporated milk, condensed milk, and an easy yogurt made without a yogurt maker.
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How to Make Ricotta Cheese
- Large Heavy Bottomed Pot or Saucepan
- 1 gallon Whole milk
- 2 cups Heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon Fine ground sea salt, optional
- 1/4 cup White vinegar or lemon juice
- Add milk, cream, and salt (if using) to a pot.
- Warm milk to between 195°F and 200°F on medium heat. If you do not have a food-grade thermometer, warming will take between 30-40 minutes, depending on your burner. When you see foam and bubbles form around the edges of your pot, and foam form on the top of the milk/cream mixture, the liquid has most likely reached the proper temperature. (See video.)
- Once the milk/cream mixture reaches the proper temperature, turn off the heat but leave the pot on the burner. Pour in the vinegar and stir gently. Allow the milk/cream mixture to sit for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, you should see curds forming. If you do not see many curds, add a bit more vinegar. No more than 2 tablespoons of additional vinegar should be necessary to obtain curds.
- Once the curds have sufficiently formed, strain the curds and the liquid (whey) into a cheesecloth or flour sack towel lined colander or mesh strainer that has been placed over a bowl. The whey will drain into the bowl, and you will be left with the curds in the lined colander or strainer. Allow the curds to drain for 30 minutes for a cream ricotta or 1 hour for a firmer ricotta.
- Once the ricotta is done straining, transfer to a container with a lid and store in the refrigerator. The ricotta will stay fresh refrigerated for about 2 weeks. The "acidic" whey will last approximately 6 months, refrigerated. See video for ideas on how to use the acidic whey.
Shop for items used in this blog post or video
Favorite Cheese Making Supplies
- 4-Quart Enameled Cast Iron Pot
- Stainless Steel Colander
- Stainless Steel Mesh Strainer
- Flour Sack Towels
- Glass Bowl Set
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