Step by Step pictorial for Ricotta Cheese from scratch | Fresh Cheese Recipe
For me, making things from scratch has been immensely satisfying, be it a phyllo/filo dough, overnight pizza dough, milk khoya or something simple like making my own pumpkin puree instead of buying canned ones. But I found it tough to continue the same pace after my little one was born. With a job and a kid, things definitely took a back seat in the kitchen for a while. But then, personally, health and well being took the front seat. The responsibility of a little one, who is dependent on me for his health, is too big for my shoulders to be taken lightly. The situation on hand and my belief being very contradictory, I started working out other ways which was beneficial - to me, on my energy and my sanity. I relied on recipes that did not make me reach out, too much for processed or factory made food where the "ingredients" section required a chemist to decipher it. Simple meals were what I relied on during that tough phase.
Step by Step pictorial for Ricotta Cheese from scratch | Fresh Cheese Recipe
Now, things are more regulated. No, I still don't have the time to make something as complex as an Austrian Apple Strudel or the energy to try something continuously for 8 times before hitting success. But I definitely have the time to make waffles, pancakes, an occasional bread and at times something from scratch that's so simple that it doesn't even seem labor intensive. Like Ricotta Cheese. Its very simple to make, doesn't need my attention most of the time and is such a dream to make. I say dream cos the cheese that you taste at the end of it, just doesn't deserve this kind of ease and simplicity. But then - Simplicity is quite hard to achieve, as my parents often tell me. :)

Note: Traditional Ricotta Cheese is made using leftover whey from making other cheeses, that use a coagulant like microbial, vegetable or animal rennet (example: Cottage Cheese, Mozzarella etc). Given that for being a vegetarian, making traditional ricotta is out of bounds since 99% of other traditional cheeses are made with animal rennet, I opt for making Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese; In which case it becomes virtually similar to the Indian Cheese - Paneer. You can make Paneer the same way as this (in which case,the salt is not required, but can be added along with spices for interesting variations). Also note that the leftover whey that you get from making Paneer cannot be used to make Ricotta, since it also uses Vinegar/lime juice.
  • Cook time:
  • Prep time:
  • Serves: 3 people
  • Yields: Makes 3-1/2 cups
  • 2 quarts (1.89 liters) organic Whole Milk,
  • 1 cup organic Heavy Cream,
  • 3 tbsp white Vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
1. In a heavy saucepan, combine milk and cream.
2. Warm in moderately high heat
3. until the surface becomes foamy and steamy and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the milk registers 185F°. Don't let the milk boil.

Update: I was under the assumption that the specific heat was due to the addition of Heavy cream. But turns out that you don't even need this much temperature (leave alone boiling the milk). Here is a good explanation from Serious Eats about the temperatures.
Most ricotta recipes call for heating the milk to 180°F, the temperature at which it starts to simmer. But is it really necessary to heat it that high? I tried heating pots of milk to various temperatures (every five degrees between 150°F and 190°F) before adding vinegar as a coagulant and observing the results. Guess what? Between 165°F and 185°F or so, there was no real noticeable differences in the amount of curd produced, nor the texture of the curd. So where does this particular piece of culinary you-wishdom come from? My first instinct is that it's a carry-over and misapplication from the days when custards were made with un-pasteurized milk. Back then, milk had to be heated to 180°F in order to deactivate certain enzymes that can prevent a custard from setting. These days, milk is pretty much always pasteurized (heated before packaging) so this step is unnecessary. But wait a minute! Pasteurized milk is only raised to 161°F and works perfectly well in custards. So that whole 180°F for custards rule must also be a myth. My best guess as to why many recipes arbitrarily pick 180°F? It's the point at which milk starts simmering: an easy temperature to gauge even without a thermometer. But seeing as we've all got one (you do all have an instant read thermometer, right?) We'll stick with the 165 to 185°F range, instead of aiming for that perfect 180°F.
4. Remove the pot from the heat. Add the vinegar
5. and stir gently for 30 seconds;
6. the mixture will curdle almost immediately.
7. Add the salt
8. and stir for 30 seconds longer.
9. Cover the pot with a clean towel and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.
10. Line a large colander with several layers of cheesecloth, allowing several inches of overhang.
11. Set the colander in a large bowl.
12. Using a slotted spoon,
13. transfer the curds to the colander.
14. I am not sure why the site insisted on transferring using a slotted spoon cos after 5-6 times, I kinda felt stupid doing that and toppled the whole pan on to the cheese cloth. Saved me time and effort! (If there is a specific reason drop me a line.)  Will you just look at that glorious cheese (In India, this stage is referred to as "Chenna" and used to make many heavenly sweets)
15. After you had a fill of gazing at that beautiful cheese " like a lovelorn lover" (I overheard the father and son snickering after calling me so) gather the corners of the cheesecloth
16. and close with a rubber band. Or force the snickering husband to hold it that way for the next 30 minutes.
17. Let the ricotta stand for 30 minutes, gently pressing
18. and squeezing the cheesecloth occasionally to drain off the whey. That, right there, is what Greeks (or probably someone else!) termed as "Healing Water". PLEASE DO  NOT EVEN THINK OF DISCARDING IT! If you so totally must, send it over to me. :-D.

Now use this Ricotta for your recipes. The site mentions that the cheese keeps well for 4 days refrigerated.

I usually use the whole thing to make a dish or eat it mixed it with little sweetener and vanilla extract. Or spread it on my toast with honey or ..or..I can go on and on and on. Step by Step pictorial for Ricotta Cheese from scratch | Fresh Cheese Recipe The site suggests that it keeps well for 4 days packed in an airtight container. But another friend told me that hers lasted for 12 days when she made using this recipe. I think simply use your judgement and good sense of smell to decide how long your cheese keeps well for.  For something so ridiculously easy to make, this tastes like a million bucks! Step by Step pictorial for Ricotta Cheese from scratch | Fresh Cheese Recipe

Recipe Reference

recipe courtesy food and wine

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5 Member Reviews

By Caroline on Oct 28, 2013

So glad I found your recipe--Thank you!

The only alteration I used was Stuart's suggestion:  lemon juice.  It does give a brighter taste than vinegar.  As for the question re the use of a slotted spoon, this was perhaps suggested because some recipes call for the mixture to sit, unstirred, once the vinegar/lemon juice is stirred in, which results in larger curds.  These large curds can splash!  (and clog the cheesecloth as well)  if not removed before pouring the milk into the cloth-lined strainer.  \"heart\"

By Stuart on Jan 26, 2013

I used goat's milk, 2 quarts, heated to 160-degrees then allowed it to drop to 115 added 7 drops of vegetable rennet and 1/4 cup of yogurt.  It curdled well.  I strained it and made plain cheese and added chives to some.  Rolled it in cheese cloth and had my own home made cheve.  One reason I did it was because I'm lactose intolerent and I buy the lactase drops and add them to the goats milk and wait a few days for all the milk sugar to be acted upon.  Then I make my cheese.

Read All 5 Reviews →


By Brahm on Jun 8, 2015

I am using 99% fat free milk. The milk hardened softly into cheese without me boiling it, etc. What do I do next? Thank you.

By Prashant on Jun 1, 2015

Well, this is the way I make Paneer at home since I discovered that the Paneer I was buying from local market was adulterated. So, people who are reading this blog should start making their Paneer at home at protect yourself eating adulterated Paneer

By meera on Feb 14, 2015

You made the entire process of making paneer exotic but more than that I loved the periodic slapstick, taking potshots at the 'site' [and I agree, why use a slotted spoon?! It's too slow and delicate a movement for me] and husband and son... and these are exactly the kind of interruptions I have when I am cooking. I think getting the spouse to stand holding the cheese cloth (with the cheese) is a grand punishment! I like this with the cream, am going to try today! But say, why vinegar and not lemon which is far healthier? Vinegar is finally chemicals right?

By How To Use Ricotta Cheese Recipes | We Get Healthy on Dec 6, 2014

[...] How to make Homemade Ricotta Cheese (from scratch) | … – Jan 30, 2012 · Making food from scratch has it benefits.Homemade Ricotta Cheese is immensely easy to make & tastes much better than store bought ones…. [...]

By Pavani on Oct 19, 2014

The whole process definitely resembles paneer except adding salt. We don't need salt for paneer since we will season it while cooking. Even 1% milk produces tasty paneer.

Yes, Whole Milk Ricotta is very similar to paneer. Traditional Ricotta is not. --DK

By Stu Borken on Sep 9, 2014

To Liz; You will be making Paneer.

By SAKINA on Sep 9, 2014

What does one do with the water (whey)?

By liz on Sep 9, 2014

Thanks Stu! I am such an amateur.. started a few months back with making yogurt and am now ready for the next progression of simple cheese making. and i love paneer especially grilled and paneer palak.

By Stu Borken on Sep 8, 2014

Yes, you can leave out the heavy cream, the final cheese will just not be as creamy, it still will be a nice home made cheese. You can play with the recipe like adding herbs at the end mixing the cheese with chives, or thyme or roasted garlic salt and pepper. Have fun, make it your own. SB

By liz on Sep 8, 2014

Hi .. could the heavy cream be omitted from the recipe? thank you !

By Donna on Aug 20, 2014

Wonderful! I love this. Expensive, yes, but worth it. I spread it on Jacob's Water Crackers and top with a bit of pepper relish. No one else in the house likes creamy cheese :lol: so, alas, I must finish it off myself.

By Stu Borken on Jun 26, 2014

This is Paneer. There is no difference.

By suku on Jun 26, 2014

This procedure is exactly like Paneer, I appreciate if you can/could pls let us know the difference . Thank You Suku

By Miggy on Jun 26, 2014

Hi there! I just want to ask if I can use UHT milk and UHT cream to make ricotta. Thanks!

By Stu Borken on May 26, 2014

To Heena; As regards the use of salt. Have you ever tasted a salt free potato chip or unsalted peanuts? They are so bland as to be undesirable. Salt adds an element of flavor to a food which enhances it's desirability.

By Heena on May 25, 2014

Is it really necessary to add salt in it? What does salt do in it? Many thanks for response .

By Mary Kilby on May 7, 2014

Emmanuel, I should have also mentioned that I use 6 junket tablets for 2 litres of milk

By Mary Kilby on May 7, 2014

Emmanuel, The tablet is a simple Junket tablet of which a packet can bought from Coles. Hope this helps.

By Stu Borken on Apr 28, 2014

The tablet is called rennet and it comes as a tablet or as a liquid it can be vegetarian or animal sourced.

By emmanuel libreri on Apr 28, 2014

could you please let me know how to make maltese cheese called gbejnit ,i was told that i can use a tablet instead of vinigar,is that right and if so please let me know the tablet name.thank you,emmanuel

By Stu Borken on Apr 16, 2014

Goat's milk works very well. If you are lactose intolerant just buy the drops on line and use them in the milk. If you are lactose intol. just buy Lactaid milk, but, use the whole milk.

By Shari on Apr 16, 2014

When making this cheese do I have to use cows milk or can I use goat milk or soy milk. I don't digest cow products or red meats.

By Jackie on Mar 20, 2014

Hi I'm planning on having a go ...can I just ask what 1 cup (cream) means ( as in the amount) ....thanks

By Stu Borken on Mar 8, 2014

To Lynette; I add my snipped chives and other herbs just when the cheese is still draining whey but soft enough to mix the herbs into the mass. Some people just make a log of the cheese and roll the log of cheese in the herb mixture and wrap it up and let it cure with the herbs for hours or days.

By Lynette on Mar 8, 2014

Hi there, I am going to make your recipe tomorrow because it looks delicious. Just one question can I add spices and/or herbs. If so when? Thank you

By Restemat: melk | Erkjennelser on Feb 22, 2014

[...] selvfølgelig varm sjokolade. Men kanskje enda bedre er det å lage nye melkeprodukter som yoghurt, ricotta, skjørost/hytteost eller [...]

By Deborah Darling on Feb 1, 2014

:-D thanks so much for sharing this recipe. After struggling with a recipe that called for buttermilk instead of either lemon juice or vinegar, I had thrown out about 4 quarts of milk & cream. The result was always watery, uber soft or Zero curds. Yours turned out absolutely perfect on my first try. In the recipe book: "Homemade With Love" by Jennifer Perillo, she claims that ladling the curds via spoon results in larger curds. Supposedly pouring the cheese into the cheese cloth breaks up the more fragile curds. But I'm with you. This is a quick, easy recipe and I rarely have the patience to "gently ladle"!

By Terri on Nov 20, 2013

I'm so glad I found this recipe. I've made it three times and absolutely love it! I have noticed that, for me at least, the higher the temp when I add the vinegar the drier the end product. The first time I made it, I added the vinegar at about 164 degrees, it was very soft and creamy. The second time I added at about 187, and the cheese was closer to a queso fresco. Don't get me wrong, still totally YUM! Tonight, I kept it just below 185, still plenty of curd, but definitely more moist than last time. Love it for breakfast!!

By Stu Borken on Nov 19, 2013

This is exactly Paneer. Same thing.

By Zinal on Nov 19, 2013

Hi, This is how I make paneer (minus the salt). Then how is this recipe different from that of paneer.

By Gary on Oct 1, 2013

@Carol: you need a rennet to convert your whey into cheese. All is not lost, use the whey as the liquid in baking bread. :-?

By Carol on Oct 1, 2013

Made mozzarella and had lots of whey left. So, looked up recipe for ways to use it. Followed your recipe but did not produce any curds. Heated to about168 degrees then added lemon juice instead of vinegar. Stirred for 30 sec as directed but no curds. Did not add salt as it was added with the mozzarella. I had close to 3/4 gallon of whey left from mozzarella making. I used raw milk with its cream. Any suggestions why it did not curdle? Sure hate to waste the whey.....

As mentioned in the post, this is Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese and is not the one made using left over Whey. This is why it did not work for you. Just in case, for using up whey pls refer this link How to use Whey?. I esp. tend to opt for Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese since regular ricotta makes use of Rennet and I am a vegetarian so avoid using it.--DK

By Stu Borken on Sep 30, 2013

Yes, but, why not use lemon juice. It brightens up the cheese. In fact I add lemon zest as well.

By susan toporowski on Sep 30, 2013

I've made ricotta cheese with lemon juice. Do you think that lemon juice can be substituted for vinegar in your recipe? (measure for measure)

By Daunz on Sep 16, 2013

Thank you for a tasty and super easy recipe...I've made it a few times already this month. I baked it with mozzarella on a pizza crust, then topped it with cherry tomatoes and basil from the garden...yum! I used whey in place of water for the pizza dough, came out nice and crispy. Much better than store bought....thanks!

By Margie on Aug 10, 2013

My mom taught me this recipe many years ago, then served it to us warm on a plate sprinkled with sugar. She would also puree it (I use my food processor) to make it smooth, even adding a little olive oil, for making stuffed shells, or eggplant rolla :-D tini. YUM

By Mimmogram on Aug 9, 2013

I use the whey from making cheeses & butter as a replacement for buttermilk :) hope that helps..

By Food-eater on Aug 3, 2013

I never tasted ricotta cheese,how is it supposed to be?and i know to make curd using milk and any acid,eg lemon juice etc,is that fine?

By Maria Bane on Jul 22, 2013

Can you substitute Skin milk For whole milk and do you have to use heavy cream just from the calorie intake I'm watching my calorie intake I made your recipe It's very delicious

By lose fat and gain muscle on Jul 16, 2013

Do you mind if I quote a couple of your articles as long as I provide credit and sources back to your site? My blog is in the exact same area of interest as yours and my visitors would certainly benefit from some of the information you provide here. Please let me know if this ok with you. Appreciate it!

Sure.Thank you :) --DK

By Nancy on Jul 15, 2013

Hi there, LOVE this recipe. Thank u. Made it a bunch of times. But the last time I tried it with almost all heavy cream and it didn't work. No curdling. I tried to fix it. Only made it sourer. Fortunately I do a lot of cooking and baking so I was able to use the large amount of milk as buttermilk or substitute for milk. Oh well. But thanks for recipe. .

By Nancy on Jul 15, 2013

Hi there. Have made is several times and LOVE it. But the last time I made it with almost all heavy cream. Thought it would be just richer. Wrong. It didn't make cheese or anything. I just ended up with sour tasting milk. Fortunately I cook and bake a lot. So I was able to use this as a milk sub or

By Shoba Shrinivasan on Jul 15, 2013

Hi Dhivya, I have also tried making my own ricotta and yes it does taste like a million bucks. In fact I make a version of Dumrote halwa with this home made ricotta and its tastes divine. Shobha

By Geeta on Jul 14, 2013

for making chenna( used for sweets)-salt is not added to milk, is kashta (Arabic)made in same way

By Gary on Jul 10, 2013

So, can I use soured milk to make the cheese as one person mentions this became his grandmothers "farmers" cheese? Will the cheese be palatable or have the bad milk flavor?

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By Donny01 on Jul 5, 2013

Right there with ya, Mike! I know your pain too well. I'm also an expat living in China and I used this recipe to make ricotta from my lasagna! Hahaha

By Stuart on Jun 22, 2013

Heavy cream is whipping cream. If you do not add it to the recipe the cheese will be larger curds and drier. Both cheeses are good only different textures. The one made with whipping cream is softer and smoother.

By bhuvaneshwari on Jun 22, 2013

what is heavy cream?? is it diff from amul full cream (liquid form) that is available here.. can we make full cream at home??? I use only 3% fat milk here. Thanks :)

By Simi on Jun 22, 2013

I made the ricotta yesterday, it tastes really good but i only got out 1/2 a cup of it. That can't be right? :roll:

I mention the yield as 3-1/2 cups in the recipe--DK

By Jake on Jun 10, 2013

Use the whey for baked goods instead of water.

By froggirloz on Jun 6, 2013

What do you do with the whey?

By Mike on May 20, 2013

Thank you sooooo much for this recipe! I'm an expat living in China, and ricotta cheese is non-existent here!!! With this recipe, I can now make my lasagna, ricotta, and all my other favorite dishes!! Thanks a million!!!

By Alok on May 1, 2013

Thanks a lot for the recipe, I was looking for a substitute as was not able to get ricotta in my area, thanks a lot for your help, I tried the recipe and it worked. Actually was trying to make milk cake(I watched it on youtube channel- showmethecurry) and for that I needed ricotta cheese, the cheese worked and the cake too. Thanks a lot !! thanks so much :)

By Mildred on Apr 27, 2013

Thanks for the recipe I seen this done on a tv. I want to try this thanks again

By Sharon lew on Apr 26, 2013

:) I see people posting too sour because ratio of milk/cream vinegar wrong hmmmm last time I checked 2qts of milk is 8cups plus 1cup cream equals 9cups total so it should not be sour the posts saying sour used wrong amounts just saying. :)

By Jade on Apr 25, 2013

Will whipping cream be ok? What if I don't add any cream in it?

By Stu Borken on Apr 21, 2013

Yes, this is also called Paneer, it is also called Quark. I was told that my grandmother would sour milk and hang it in a cheese cloth in a cool back hallway and let it drip into a metal pail and when it stopped dripping she would have "Farmer's Cheese", which I assume was ricotta or paneer, the simplest of all the cheeses.

By Meenakshi Dossa on Apr 21, 2013

I was desperately looking for this recipe.Thanks a million.Just one small question is the same procedure that is followed to make Indian style paneer?

By Stuart B. on Apr 17, 2013

the recipe used 9 cups of milks and 3 tbsp vinegar, you used 6 cups milk/cream but still 3 tbsp vinegar. Therefore too sour.

By frank on Apr 17, 2013

i tried making the ricotta as per the recipe.4 cups milk,2 cups heavy cream,3 tablespoons white vinegar,and salt, it came out looking good but tasted sour. what did i do wrong. thanks

By Nelly on Apr 13, 2013

Ricotta became absolutely Devine. I could not wait two hours to try my ricotta :-D

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By Stu Borken on Mar 30, 2013

Dennis; is your wife milk allergic or lactose intol?

By Denis on Mar 29, 2013

My splendid wife is almost perfect.... One perceived flaw is that she can't drink milk or anything that is made with it. It there a milk substitute (soy milk) that can be used to make ricotta cheese so she can enjoy cheese as well ?

By Cinnarose on Mar 13, 2013

I have used this a couple of times, LOVE IT! I add a small bundle of thyme, rosemary, and sage wrapped in cheese cloth to the simmering milk for extra YUM.

By Marina Strydom on Mar 10, 2013

I just made the ricotta cheese-The recipe is so easy to follow. Served the cheese on a water cracker with a slither of anchovies. Delicious!!

By Mr.CBB’s Cheesy Ricotta Ball Soup | Canadian Budget Binder on Feb 24, 2013

[...] to get the freshest of the fresh ricotta which comes in big white pails. Alternatively you can make homemade ricotta yourself if you know how to. In the past few weeks I’ve managed to include ricotta in an [...]

By Rosebud on Feb 13, 2013

Can I use Homogenized milk for whole milk?

By Annie on Feb 2, 2013

Well, I made the cheese and it taste great. I just dont know what to do with all the juice that was left! Do any of you have an idea for me? I plan on making more to use at dinners and salads.. thanks for this site it was very helpful to to learn how to make blue cheese!!!

You mean "whey"? If yes, then do check out this link - How to use Whey? --DK

By Stuart on Feb 2, 2013

I used 1/2 gal of goats milk and treated it as I did whole cows milk. I heated it to 160 degrees, let it come to 117 degrees, added 7 drops of vegetable rennet and 1/4 cup of yogurt with live cultures and stirred in some sour salt 1/2 tsp and let it sit for a few hours and the curds separated, I strained them out and I let the curds drip dry and I had chevre. I mixed some with snipped chives and garlic and salt and some with basil and salt.

By Betsy Arnold on Feb 2, 2013

My email said I have a reply, but I don't see it. the question was ...did anyone try it with goat milk? Mine did work in the end but i had put too much vinegar in it, so i will have to try again. Betsy

By Annie on Feb 1, 2013

Iam very adicted to food net worth cooking shows, I have seen them do home made cheese and I so wanted to make my own to see if I could. When I have done it I will surely let you in on how I did.. thanks for this site its been very helpful...

By Brad J. on Feb 1, 2013

I'm going to try your ricotta recipe this weekend to use in lasagna for the Super Bowl. Thanks. On another note, what can the "Healing Water" leftover liquid be used for?

You can use the whey in many ways. Do chk this link: How to use Whey? --DK

By Frank G. Petrello on Jan 31, 2013

Easy and fun--It's been years since I made ricotta from scratch. Very good recipe, I will save. Thanks Chef Frank :wink:

By marlen on Jan 29, 2013

:wink: thank you dk for your reply i will try to do my own ricotta and for sure i will let you know how it comes out

By Betsy Arnold on Jan 26, 2013

Hi, has anyone tried this with Goats Milk? I am trying right now, but started before I looked up the instructions, because I heard about it one the Faith Middleton show. So I put the vinegar and salt in before i started heating it. It doesn't seem to be curdling.. oh well may try again at another time. Betsy

By marlen on Jan 24, 2013

thank you for sharing this nice simple and very clear explanation recipe of how to make ricota cheese.but i am concerned about using cream,do you think otherwise the amount of rocota will be very little?and in this case maybe there is no way of using skim milk ,which i prefer.i always use this milk to make my yougurt.i would be happy if you answer my by have a nice day

You can just replace the heavy cream with more whole milk. No harm done except for a teeny tiny reduction in richness. In India, we make Paneer Cheese using the same method except that we don't add heavy cream. Its just milk. We also make skinny cheese by using skim milk and curdling with some yogurt. That works great too. --DK

By Suku on Jan 15, 2013

Thank You for your reply. I got it. suku

By shriya on Jan 15, 2013

hi i did not even know this could me made at home... great. I am new to blogging and u definitely are an inspiration

By Lisa on Jan 14, 2013

Hi DK and thanks so much for such a simple ricotta recipe. I'm just starting my own blog on Greek Vegetarian food and am thinking of putting up a cheese pie recipe which calls for fresh ricotta. Being vegetarian, I want to ensure that no rennet is used in my recipe so making it myself is a must. I will let you know how I go! Lisa

By tewodros alemu on Jan 13, 2013

8-O i wan to thank it is clear and nice discription

By Stu Borken on Jan 11, 2013

Suku: What do you mean by "work"?

By Suku on Jan 11, 2013

Hi, I really love this site and have made several dishes , they all turned out yummy. Really , very easy to follow recipes. My Kudos to you guys. Have one question , is it the same ricotta cheese what we get from the stores, if so why the store brought ricotta cheese does not work the same as Paneer. cheers suku

There is a difference between regular ricotta and whole milk ricotta cheese. A classic Ricotta would a cheese that's made from leftover whey (from making another cheese and mostly uses rennet). In this type of whole milk, we use regular milk to make the cheese and not leftover whey which makes it same as Indian Cheese Paneer. I opt to use this for the sole reason for avoiding animal rennet in regular ricotta cheese. --DK

By Billy S. on Jan 10, 2013

:wink: Great variety of ideas and concepts. Made my first one last night and making my second today. Don't really care if it is actually ricotta or whatever as it is just plain wonderful to consume. Will make a couple changes based on info here. Going to use it to make a pudding with Kahlua, agave, powdered cocoa vanilla and berries.

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By Ayesha on Nov 18, 2012

Hi,can I use this ricotta cheese for cheese cake

Yes. Please refer my Ricotta Cheesecake Recipe--DK

By Sandy on Nov 14, 2012

Whey,,, DOGS LOVE IT! also can be put into tomato plants , speeds their maturity along quite handsomely!

By SunshinePeaches on Oct 26, 2012

To K on October 17, 2012 - did you use only milk or milk and cream?

By K on Oct 17, 2012

I used lemon juice - about two small lemons for 1 gallon of milk. I bring milk to boil, turn the stove off, wait until boil subsides, add lemon juice, stir and curds form immediately. Drain using colander lined with clean cotton handkerchief, wait 30 minutes and all done. Do not need to squeeze anything and I use to make Barfi.

By Katelyn on Sep 14, 2012

Hi DK! I made this tonight and it was great!! I was wondering though what are several uses for the whey leftover? I know you can make other cheeses with it, but was wondering if there are any other uses for it. Also, is there any way that all of the curds didn't form and the whey still contains milk? If so, can you bring it back to the temperature and add some more vinegar and salt and possible get more curds out of it?

By Emily on Aug 6, 2012

Hi there! Thanks for taking the time to post with great directions and pictures. Quick question, the healing water that is left over... is that whey?

Yes :) --DK

By Simran on Aug 5, 2012

Very interesting recipe as well as comments. Widens the understanding and imagination as to different ways to use paneer- never knw ricotta cheese is so similar n the base of it :-) Great job !

By marlen on Jul 8, 2012

:lol: i just made ricota as my recipe calls for.but i used little buttermilk as well as recipe also says to boil the milk and buttermilk,but after reading all the sharings above i decided to use my thermometer and measure the temperature.the result seams ok. i want to know how do i make ricota with the leftover of whey because i make maltese cheese very often.i would appreciate very much someone's help,thanks. :-D

By Ross on Jul 8, 2012

What do you do with the whey?

By surendra patel/south africa on Jun 19, 2012

8) I add dry dairy milk powder to fresh milk to thicken it then continue with the proces of making paneer as above

Does that give a rich taste to the paneer? I mean if yes, then I can try a low fat version but add the powder to make it taste like the real thing..... --DK

By Stu Borken on May 30, 2012

:wink: Well, I guess I have made Paneer or Quark and not Ricotta cheese. That is fine with me. It tastes really good and I drain it and squeeze the cheese cloth well and have a nice cheese. I used it for blintza filling with eggs and sugar and a little flour and salt. It was spectacular as a filling wrapped in a crepe and fried in butter Served it with pan sauted fresh caught walleye pike as a breakfast in the North Woods of Northern Minnesota. Served it with my home made blueberry syrup.

By Brad on May 30, 2012

Hello just a little correction on your so called Ricotta making this is far from ricotta!!! as far from Ricotta as what a fresh grape is to wine, it is closer to a cream cheese or mascarpone than Ricotta, Ricotta means "re-cooked" and is made from the acidified whey that is left over from making cheese, you cannot use whole milk and vinegar to make ricotta, maybe a paneer but most definitively not Ricotta. If you show so much interest in who came up with the temperature that your milk should, show that much interest in making things the Real way

I wish you took half the time out of typing your huge (and rude) comment to actually read the post properly. Please refer the "Note" before the Ingredient section and it might throw light on the amount of "Interest" I show at what I do..--DK

By TONYK on Apr 20, 2012


By Stuart Borken on Apr 17, 2012

I have become significantly lactose intolerant and therefore, today, bought one gallon of Lactaid 100% lactose free whole milk and a bottle of vegetable rennet. Your recipe called for lactose free cream available. You also rec. the use of vinegar. Could I use my rennet? Can I make decent ricotta cheese from whole milk without the cream? I want to make lasagna and panna cotta. Should I add salt?

By barbara on Mar 16, 2012

:cry: I was in the middle of making the cheese and was called away from the stove. When I returned I had very little curds. What should I do?

By Smriti on Feb 16, 2012

Dear DK...thanks for this lovely recipe. I had been wanting some ricotta cheese desperately. While i tried this recipe, the milk didnt curdle enough, like only the inch of the upper layer of milk curdled while the lower ones just unaffected. While adding vinegar I did stir it slowly. Dont know what to do next with those enormous quantity of milk? :(... Thanks in advance for your help

Add in a little more of the vinegar

By Anna on Feb 14, 2012

I happened to make ricotta last weekend. I used a traditional Italian recipe that uses fig sap to curdle the milk. I think I used a bit much and drained it for a long time which resulted in a very firm cheese. It tastes great. Regarding your question on temperature of the milk, it seems to be to do with steel using or pasturising the milk. I noticed on my thermometer that the temperate required in most recipes for ricotta coincided with the temperature for steralisation. Given that traditionally ricotta would be made from raw milk or leftover whey from making other cheeses it makes sense that the milk needed to be sterilized.

By mahalakshmi on Feb 9, 2012

Hi I had made this with soymilk(home made) the result was I never had to buy tofu again! It smell ed better and had a good texture also!

Mahalakshmi - That's fantastic! Never tried making it myself - now cant wait to thanks to your input. --DK

By Iris on Feb 7, 2012

Hi i wanteed to know is ricotta cheese is the same as cream cheese.. can i use this to make cheese cakes??? thanks

Ricotta Cheese is not same as Cream Cheese. But there is an Italian version of Cheesecake that uses Ricotta as the base instead of cream cheese. --DK

By bhuvaneshwari on Jan 31, 2012

DK, regarding the draining of the whey and your easy way of pouring it all together... here is what the have to say about it... think u got the answer :D Drainage When transferring the curds to the strainer, I discovered that despite the strong temptation to simply dump everything in, it's much more efficient to spoon the curds into the drainage device, trying to minimize the amount of liquid whey you add—the fine curds can gunk up the works, making it a very slow process for all the whey to completely drain. As for how long it should drain? Well that all depends on what you're going to do with it: Drainage Length: Under five minutes. Texture: Extremely moist and creamy (a cream-cheese-like consistency) with small, tender curds. Best Uses: Immediate consumption, while still warm. For savory applications, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper, and serve. For dessert, drizzle warm ricotta with honey, and serve with fruit. Drainage Length: 15 to 20 minutes. Texture: Small, tender curds with a cottage cheese-like consistency. Moist and spreadable, but not runny. Best Uses: Moist savory applications like lasagna or ravioli fillings and dips, or certain un-cooked pastry applications, like cannoli filling. Drainage Length: At least two hours, or up to overnight (refrigerated). Texture: Firm, dry, crumbly curds that can easily be molded into firm shapes. Best Uses: Pastry, such as ricotta pancakes, ricotta gnocchi, or ricotta tortas.

AWESOME! Thanks Bhuvs! Hugs for the details --DK

By bhuvaneshwari on Jan 31, 2012

hi DK, can i use lime juice instead of vinegar ??? if so what amoount... thanks

I guess you can. Use the same amount

By Sony on Jan 31, 2012

Hi DK, This is a great recipe and very well done. Can you tell me what did you use the drained whey for? My husband makes excellent paneer at home but we discard the whey, it will be really nice if we can use the whey too! Thanks for all ur recipes and ur tips. Best Wishes!

Hi Sony - I use to make my flatbreads (roti), Breads, cook rice with it, use instead of vinegar in salads (since its basically acid but with protein), use it in the soaking liquid for wholegrains/beans -DK

By Archana Haresh Sanghvi on Jan 31, 2012

Hi DK thanx a lot for this...i have couple of u need to boil d milk if it is not pasturized ? and is the diffce betn paneer and ricota is adding cream? @ ruby whey is full of protein, can be used to make dough as water,add in dal veg, or store in bottle, keep out for 3 -4 days then keep it in fridge,can be used instead of vineger..

Yes you would have to. Pasteurizing is such a controversial topic. Many ppl believe that we are killing necc. enzymes by this practice and that our older generations were healthier when consuming it unpasteurized. But then another school of thought says that we are protecting ourselves from harm's way by doing this! :) But I think you would be better of boiling it to the given temperatures when unpasteurized. Paneer can be made with addition of cream too. When Ricotta is made this way (by using whole milk)it is exactly the same as Paneer. But traditional Ricotta is made using leftover whey from making other cheeses (that use coagulation in the form of enzymes instead of just acid). So that way traditional ricotta and paneer are not the same.

By ruby on Jan 31, 2012

Great DK and thank you for sharing. I have a question though. What do you do with the whey as you mentioned not to discard?

I use to make my flatbreads (roti), Breads, cook rice with it, use instead of vinegar in salads (since its basically acid but with protein), use it in the soaking liquid for wholegrains/beans -DK

By Kalyani on Jan 31, 2012

nice one DK..

By Puja on Jan 31, 2012

Hi DK, As you mentioned paneer is made the same way. Then paneer and ricotta cheese are almost same. Does the addition of heavy cream makes the difference?

Heavy cream can be added even while making paneer Puja. It is just to add in some fat to the milk, esp. in the US which I think has lower fat % compared to the ones we get in India. So both are ditto same except for the salt. But as you might already know you can add salt (along with spices) to give more flavor to your paneer too. This was of making Ricotta Cheese (from milk instead of traditional whey) is same as paneer - DK

By Sharon Nesbit on Jan 30, 2012

Hi, can this be made with soy milk and soy cream?

I am not sure of that having never researched into it. Will update if I get to know something in this regard -DK

By Anjali on Jan 30, 2012

Hi, I wanna know why to keep the curd site for 2hrs after the paneer has been formed. Usually i drain the whey once whole thing is ready, like with in 10 to 15 mins into cheese cloth. Am i doing any thing wrong or can we get more cheese your way?

I think it is just to make sure it has curdled enough to make sure you get it all. I personally dont think it is strictly necessary. --DK

By Anu on Jan 30, 2012

VEry nicely explained and well done.

By Sudha on Jan 30, 2012

hi dk, why do you not boil the milk, is there a reason? I usually make paneer this way, but boil the milk.

Thanks for the interesting question. I was under the assumption that this was because of heavy cream added to this, but well Serious Eats gives a logical explanation (turns out you don't even need 185F). Check out the link while I update the post. :)