Homemade Ricotta


Homemade ricotta sounds pretty fancy, right? But it’s not complicated. All you need is milk, cream, sea salt, and lemon juice. That’s it! Just four simple ingredients and the result is a fresh and creamy ricotta cheese. (I use lemon juice because I like the flavor profile it creates, but white vinegar will do as a substitute.) Spread it on bread and drizzle with honey, or add it to pancakes, a spring salad, or your favorite Italian pasta dish. The possibilities are endless. Once you make this version, you won’t buy store-bought ricotta again.

Please prepare

  • 3 1⁄2 cups whole milk, preferably organic
  • 1⁄2 cup heavy cream, preferably organic
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1. Place the milk, cream, and salt in a small saucepan set over medium heat, and heat the milk to 165°f. this will take 5 to 10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent scorching on the bottom of the pan.

2. Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice. Stir once or twice, gently and slowly.

3. Let the pan sit undisturbed for 5 minutes.

4. Line a colander with a few layers of cheesecloth and place in a large bowl.

5. Pour the curds and whey into the colander and let the curds drain for at least 1 hour, after which you’ll have a tender, spreadable ricotta. At 2 hours, it will be spreadable but a bit firmer, almost like cream cheese.

6. Eat the ricotta immediately or transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

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