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Homemade Ricotta Cheese from Whey

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“When you make farmers cheese, fresh mozzarella, cottage cheese, etc. you are left with a large pot of whey. Most people throw this away or save just a bit for breads or fermenting. However, ricotta in Italian means "recook" or "cook again." Ricotta cheese is made simply by cooking the leftover whey from your cheesemaking session again! How simple and easy is that!”

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 gallon whey, actually the whey left from a 1-2 gallon cheesemaking session
  • 1 pinch salt, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chives (optional)


  1. This recipe is so simple that it was difficult to get it published here as there is a requirement of a minimum of 3 ingredients.
  2. There is no requirement for the chives or even the salt, but I was required to have 3 ingredients. All you really need is how ever much whey you have left over from your cheesemaking session.
  3. In a stainless steel pot, heat the whey until it reaches 200 degrees. Do not stir. You'll notice a film that will start forming on the top of the whey. This is your ricotta starting to form.
  4. When your whey reaches 200 degrees, take it off the heat. You'll know when you have reached this temperature as bubbles will have formed around the edges. Using a slotted spoon or ladle, scoop the layer of thickened ricotta that formed on top of the whey into a cheesecloth-lined colander over a bowl. Continue scooping the ricotta until all that's left is the clear whey.
  5. Grab all 4 corners of the cheesecloth and tie into a ball. Place a string around the top of the cheesecloth/ricotta bundle and hang to drain over a bowl.
  6. For moist ricotta, hang for 2 hours.
  7. For more dry ricotta, hang for 8 hours.
  8. Remove ricotta from cheesecloth and store in a mason jar or plastic tub. It's now ready to be used in recipes or add salt & herbs and it becomes a wonderful cheese spread.
  9. Enjoy!

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