Homemade Ricotta Cheese
  1. Line a colander (or ricotta basket if you have one) with a large piece of lightly dampened cheesecloth that has been folded over itself at least 3–4 times.
  2. Place the colander over a bowl. Make sure to use non-reactive materials.
  3. In a large heavy-based saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat.
  4. Add the salt and stir occasionally with a wooden spoon. Make sure the milk does not scorch. If you have a thermometer, heat to 185 degrees. If you do not have a thermometer, you need to reach a stage where there is a lot of steam, little bubbles close to the edge of the pot, and the formation of a slight film. It should take about 20 minutes to get to this stage.
  5. Lower the heat to low. Add the lemon juice (or vinegar in equal amount).
  6. Slowly agitate the mixture for 2 minutes. You will notice the curds (the ricotta) separating from the whey (yellowish liquid). Remove from heat.
  7. Cover pot and let stand for about 20 minutes.
  8. Carefully “ladle” your ricotta into the cheesecloth-lined colander or your basket. The consistency of the final product will depend on the amount of time you leave the ricotta to drain.
  9. For a creamy ricotta, let it sit for 3–5 minutes; for a dryer ricotta, it can sit up to 20 minutes.
  10. Use immediately.
  11. Cover and refrigerate any leftovers for up to 3 days. It can also be frozen.
Recipe Notes


• Homemade ricotta cannot be made with ultra-pasteurized milk…so, read your labels.
• In theory, you can use organic milk, as long as it is not ultra-pasteurized. However, PLEASE NOTE that when testing this recipe, it did not work.
• The leftover whey is great to use when making bread, pizza, pasta, or even in soups.

Recipe courtesy of Maria Vannelli from her food blog: She Loves Biscotti / www.shelovesbiscotti.com