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fresh made ricotta cheese in a cheese cloth in a colander.
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5 from 5 votes

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

Are you interested in making your own cheese? Homemade Ricotta Cheese is one of the easiest cheeses to make at home and so much better than store bought!
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 14 oz
Author Tracy

Ingredients

  • 1/2 gallon whole milk
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon citric acid OR 1/8 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Take milk out of the fridge and let come to room temperature.
  • In a large pot over medium heat, add milk to pot and heat to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Remove from heat and then add lemon juice, citric acid, and salt and give a gentle stir and set aside for 10 minutes.
  • Line a sieve or colander with a cheese cloth and place over a tall pot. You want something that will allow all of the whey to under the bottom of the sieve / colander. Make sure the whole sieve / colander is covered so that you can easily gather it ALL up - I try to tuck the cloth between the sieve / colander and pot to secure it.
  • After 10 minutes use a spoon to check to see if curds have formed by gently pulling at curds to see if they separate from the whey.
  • With a slotted spoon, ladle curds onto cheese cloth. Go slowly. Let the whey drain. Add more. Let the whey drain. Until most of the larger curds are ladled out.
  • When you have most of the large curds out, slowly poor the rest into the cheese cloth. Just a little bit at a time, don't fill it all too much. Be careful to not let the cloth slip. To speed up the process you could gently turn it all so that whey can drain out the upper edges of the sieve / colander.
  • Once it all has been poured and drained, gently gather all of the edges of the cheese cloth and give it a gentle squeeze to get a little more out of the whey out. Not all - you want to keep some to keep a nice moist ricotta cheese!
  • Transfer cheese from cloth into bowl and either use immediately or cover and store in fridge for up to a week.