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Creamy 4-Ingredient Homemade Ricotta

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4.8 from 4 reviews


Source: The Barefoot Contessa via Goop

Salt: If you are using Morton Kosher salt or sea salt, use 3/4 teaspoon.

Milk and Cream: If you can find milk and cream that is not “ultra-pasteurized”, buy them. I never can find non “ultra-pasteurized” heavy cream but it doesn’t seem to matter. 


  • 4 cups whole milk, see notes above
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1.5 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt, see notes above
  • 3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar or other white vinegar you like 


  1. Set a large fine-mesh sieve over a deep bowl. Line the sieve with two layers of folded cheesecloth (so roughly 4 single layers).
  2. Pour the milk and cream into a stainless steel or enameled pot. Stir in the salt. Bring to a full boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally — do not walk away. Turn off the heat and stir in the vinegar. Allow the mixture to stand for 1 minute or until it curdles. It will separate into thick parts (the curds) and milky parts (the whey).
  3. Pour the mixture into a cheesecloth-lined sieve and allow it to drain into the bowl at room temperature for 20 to 25 minutes, occasionally transferring the liquid that collects in the bowl to another storage vessel. In the end you will have 2 cups of ricotta and 4 cups of whey. Transfer the ricotta to a bowl, discarding the cheesecloth. Save the whey — you can make bread with it.
  4. Taste the ricotta. Season with more salt if you wish. Use the ricotta immediately or transfer it to a storage vessel, and refrigerate. The ricotta will keep refrigerated for 4 to 5 days. It will thicken considerably once chilled for 24 hours.
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Cheese
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American/Italian