More >

Homemade Ricotta

Making Ricotta cheese is simple and the end product is so much better than any store bought variety. This versatile cheese can be used for savory and sweet dishes from filling for ravioli, lasagne and vegetables to ricotta cheesecake. Rennet can also be used to make the cheese instead of lemon juice, buttermilk or white vinegar.

Makes about 3 cups


2 quarts whole milk

1 cup heavy cream (organic if possible)

1/4 to 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (Meyer lemons if possible) (need 2-3)

1/2 teaspoon salt


Pour the milk into a large stainless steel soup pot. Add the cream, lemon juice and salt. Use a whisk and cook over medium heat until a candy thermometer registers 200-220°F and curds begin to form.   Have ready a fine mesh colander lined with several layers of damp cheesecloth. Place this over a large bowl.

Pour the milk mixture into the cheesecloth and allow the cheese to drain for at least an hour. Transfer the cheese to a container and refrigerate for up to three days.

Variation: After cheese has drained, pack it into damp cheesecloth-lined small molds. Unmold and serve with warm honey and toasted almond slices for a great dessert or with dried and poached fruit such as white peaches or nectarines.

Note:  If the mixture does not seem to be thickening by the time it has reached 220°F, pour the mixture into the cheese-lined colander and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.  The whey that is left over can be used as the liquid in bread dough for extra flavor.

This recipe is featured on show 2305 - Homemade Ricotta/Ricotta Fatta in Casa.


  1. Paula's avatar

Leave a Comment

Want more Recipes? See My Latest Book

Ciao Italia Family Classics

Mary Ann returns to her family's humble beginnings to bring us a treasure trove of more than 200 time-honored recipes.

Buy it now from Amazon