ricotta cheese in serving dish

How to Make Ricotta Cheese

Ever wonder how to make ricotta cheese? This homemade ricotta cheese recipe only calls for 4 ingredients and takes less than 1 hour to prepare. 

Prep: 5 minutesCook: 40 minutesTotal: 45 minutes
Fat 12 Carbs 8 Protein 12
Yield 2.5 cups 1x


  • 1/2 gallon whole milk, 3.25% fat (make sure it’s fresh and not ultra-pasteurized, UHT)*
  • ½ cup whipping cream, 35% fat
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt


  1. First, prepare your colander by lining it with cheesecloth. Fold the cheesecloth over itself 3 or 4 times, using a piece of cloth large enough to completely cover the colander with some overhang. Wet the cheesecloth and wring it out, and then place it over the colander in the bowl. Set aside.
  2. Add all of the milk, cream, and salt to the saucepan and slowly heat the mixture over medium heat to 192 degrees F (88 degrees C) – this should take 15-20 minutes. Stir occasionally to make sure the milk does not scorch. Remove the saucepan from the heat, and stir in all of the vinegar.
  3. Cover the pot and allow it to rest for 15 minutes.
  4. Gently ladle the ricotta into the cheesecloth-lined colander. Once all of the curd and whey has been ladled into the colander, allow to drain. The final consistency of the ricotta will depend on how long it drains. For a creamy ricotta, drain for 5-7 minutes. For a drier ricotta, drain for up to 20 minutes.
  5. Use the ricotta immediately, or transfer to a container and refrigerate for up to a week.

Tips & Notes

  • whole milk – make sure you use fresh whole milk. If your milk says ultra-pasteurized (UHT) on the carton, do not use it.
  • storage – will last in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  • freezer instructions – transfer into an airtight container and freeze for up to 1 month. To use, let thaw overnight in the fridge.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1/2 cup Calories: 180 Sugar: 4 Fat: 12 Carbohydrates: 8 Fiber: 0 Protein: 12
Author: Erin HarrisCategory: CheeseMethod: Stove-TopCuisine: AmericanDiet: Gluten Free

Keywords: ricotta cheese, ricotta, homemade ricotta