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Homemade Low Fat Ricotta Cheese

Fresh Cheese and Ricotta 14.jpg

Comforting foods like lasagna, blintzes and cheesecake always draw admiration from friends gathered around our table.

It’s one thing to make homemade blintzes and lasagna, but who actually makes the ricotta in the lasagna?

“You did what?” people ask me.

I instantly go from excitement to embarrassingly apologetic because it takes a lot less time to make ricotta than it takes to go to the store.

Homemade Ricotta Cheese can be made from start to finish in less than half an hour. Then mix it with some pasta, roasted tomatoes, and shallots for dinner tonight!

If you want to get even further into the DIY spirit, make this easy homemade yogurt cream cheese. 

  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 2 quartsServings


  • 1 gallon whole milk
  • ⅓ cup distilled white vinegar
  • Large pinch of salt


1. Line a strainer with two layers of paper towels. Set aside. Pour the milk into a large pot. Heat the milk so the temperature reaches anywhere between 165˚F and 185˚F. If you don’t have a thermometer, heat the milk until it begins to simmer.
2. Remove the pot from the heat and add the salt and vinegar. Slowly stir once or twice to distribute the vinegar.
3. Stop mixing once you see the milk begin to separate into solid white curds. Allow the pot to sit still for 5 minutes while curds continue to form.
4. Using a slotted spoon, transfer curds to the prepared strainer and allow to drain for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until desired consistency is reached. To ensure that the ricotta emerges fluffy and wet, don’t use any kind of pressure to squeeze the whey from the curds. (Depending on the size of your bowl, you may need to move the strainer over a second bowl as the whey accumulates.)
5.When the whey is done dripping, transfer the ricotta to a glass container and refrigerate for up to 5 days.

NOTES: Use whole milk that is not ultra-pasteurized. Low-fat or skim milk, or milk that is pasteurized at ultra-high temperatures, yields a smaller amount of ricotta with curds that do not cling together properly.

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