Cheese is something that most of us cannot resist. Either as a topping, in salads, side dishes, as spreads, cheese has many ways in our cooking.
Since there are many types of cheese, each is unique in its own way by the way it is made and when you can use it. One of the many types, we’ll be discussing the ricotta cheese. Typically added as a topping or addition to pasta or pizza and lasagna.
This creamy cheese will fit perfectly with some sweet dishes like cheesecake. It has a rich, sweet, and mild taste which makes it good for many savory and sweet dishes.
However, you might bump into a problem if you don’t have ricotta cheese and you are in the midst of your cooking. So, is there an alternative?
The best substitutes for ricotta cheese are cottage cheese, goat cheese, sour cream, cream cheese, parmesan cheese, mascarpone, Fromage blanc, buttermilk cheese, pot cheese, or some of the next substitutes.
And for those who are lactose intolerant, vegan, or can’t consume dairy products we have a few alternatives like tofu, coconut cream, and soy yogurt.
Check out the list below and find what will be good for your recipe.
Substitutes for Ricotta Cheese
It may be a bit challenging to replace the sweet and creamy texture of the ricotta cheese, but no need to worry. There are many ways that ricotta is used in both sweet and savory dishes that are all unique on their own.
It may be a challenge, but we are here to help you find the best substitute for this cheese. We have made an overview of different cheeses and dairy-free substitutes.
Go through each substitute and find what you already have in your fridge or what you could use next time you run out of ricotta cheese.
1. Cottage cheese
The first substitute that comes to mind when you need to replace ricotta cheese is cottage cheese. It is a light, mild cheese with similar flavors to ricotta cheese but fewer calories.
Keep in mind, when you do the swap that the cottage cheese is a bit runnier than ricotta and is less creamy. Add a small amount of cottage cheese when you replace it. You don’t want to mess up the texture of your recipe.
2. Goat cheese
Fresh goat cheese will be a good replacement for ricotta cheese in various ways. Keep in mind that the aged goat cheese has a stronger taste. Therefore, make sure to add suitable amounts so you won’t affect the taste of the other ingredients.
The fresh one has an earthy flavor with a soft texture and works in many recipes as a substitute for ricotta cheese. Make a note of the taste of the cheese as many people may not enjoy it.
3. Sour cream
Ricotta cheese can be substituted by sour cream as well. The textures are quite different so make sure to use proper amounts so you won’t have any effects on your dish. You can use most of the recipes that require ricotta cheese.
4. Cream cheese
Cream cheese is another suitable substitute for ricotta cheese. The difference between the two is that cream cheese is made with milk and cream while ricotta is made out of milk only.
Therefore, you can use them as a replacement for one another. However, don’t forget about the different textures and lower fat content since it will be less creamy.
A popular Italian cheese that is a common ingredient in different sour and sweet dishes is Mascarpone. This cheese can be a great replacement for Ricotta in many ways.
The taste is different so keep an eye on the tastiness and flavor of the mascarpone. Use in dishes that have other strong flavors since in other recipes it may overpower them.
6. Parmesan cheese
A hard, mature type of cheese that is another way to swap Ricotta cheese in your cooking is by using parmesan cheese.
This type of cheese will fit perfectly well in savory dishes and heavy sauces for pasta or lasagna. The texture of this cheese is quite different. Also, parmesan cheese has a stronger taste.
Another important thing about the texture is that you shouldn’t use it straight since you’ll get a greater texture and the consistency will become salty and tangy. Add it to pasta, pizza, lasagna, or some sauces.
7. Fromage Blanc
Another good replacement for Ricotta cheese will be the Fromage Blanc. This great cheese is typical for France or Belgium. You can add it to many recipes that call for ricotta cheese.
It has a buttery texture with a fresh, milky flavor that is a bit different from the texture of ricotta cheese. However, it can serve you well.
8. Buttermilk cheese
Buttermilk cheese is also a suitable replacement for ricotta cheese in many ways. This is a type of cheese that is moist and is curdled just like ricotta.
It has a sweet and creamy texture which is a bit different from ricotta, but buttermilk cheese has an acidic taste which is good for most of the recipes that call for ricotta. You can add it to both sweet or savory dishes, especially in pasta.
9. Pot cheese
A soft, crumbly, and creamy cheese that makes a good substitute for ricotta is pot cheese. This type of cheese is a bit drier and has a firmer texture.
It needs more moisture. Therefore, you can always add cream or yogurt to help with that so you can achieve the same effect as if you have used ricotta. To conclude the pot cheese is good to use in almost every recipe that calls for ricotta.
A Mexican type of cheese that is similar to Ricotta cheese is the Requeson. Made in a very similar way, this type of cheese has a sweet, milky taste with a creamy and moist texture, which is similar to ricotta.
However, the difference between the two is in the consistency, since ricotta is a bit drier and the Mexican cheese is more spreadable. It is safe to say that you can add this cheese in desserts, baking dishes, or spread it.
11. Mozzarella cheese
A famous and commonly used type of cheese that can be a good substitute for ricotta is Mozzarella cheese. They are quite similar and related.
The sweet and mild taste of the mozzarella will blend nicely with the other ingredients and give a nice consistency and texture to your dishes. You can use it for baking, pizzas, or lasagna.
Topfen or also known as quark is a type of cheese that is usually found in Germany or Austria. This is another way to substitute ricotta. It is made from sour milk which is earned until it becomes cruddled.
Topfen has a sweet and creamy texture with tangy, acidic traces. It is similar to sour cream and can fit perfectly in most recipes. Use it in pasta, lasagna, pizza, or other similar recipes.
13. Clabber cream
Made from unpasteurized milk which curdles and turns sour is the Clabber cream which is another way to replace ricotta. It has a thicker texture and consistency.
The rich and mild sour traces of the clabbered cream make it so special and nice. You can add it as a topping, spreads, veggies, and fruit.
Another type of cheese that can do good in your recipes instead of ricotta is paneer. But it may be unlikely not to have this in your fridge, but it’s good to know your options.
Also known as Indian cottage cheese, Paneer is similar to cottage cheese with a strong dry texture. You need to crumble and blend to achieve a similar texture to the ricotta. You can use it to bake, on top of pizza, pies, pasta, or lasagna.
Ricotta cheese can be replaced by Brouse, a soft cheese that is made out of goat or sheep’s milk. It has a similar texture to ricotta which makes it a good replacement in most recipes.
Also, they share a similar taste. Meaning, you can add this cheese in many combinations in your cooking. Use it in baking or some uncooked dishes.
16. Bechamel sauce
Not a cheese type of substitute, but ricotta can be replaced by bechamel sauce in different ways. It is a white sauce with silky and smooth neutral flavors.
It is usually used to add richness to your meals. You can always combine it with cheddar and add it on top of the lasagna. It works well in many savory dishes, baked pasta, potatoes, and any other recipe.
Another Italian type of cheese that can do good in your recipes instead of ricotta is burrata. It is made of cow’s milk and has a looser and creamier texture which is very similar to ricotta.
It is solid on the outside cheese but stracciatella and cream on the inside. The milky butter flavor is what makes it similar to ricotta and is commonly used in many dishes.
Vegan Ricotta Cheese Replacements
Since all of the above ricotta cheese substitutes come from the milk of an animal, we have decided to add a few extra vegan options.
They are suitable for people who do not consume dairy products and need only dairy-free alternatives. If you are lactose intolerant, they can help you imitate the taste of ricotta cheese in your future recipes, so let’s check them out.
Starting off with tofu or you may know it as Japanese tofu, has a creamy texture and sweet taste. It is similar to the taste and texture of ricotta cheese. This way you’ll imitate the ricotta flavor in many recipes. Add it to either cooked or uncooked meals.
19. Coconut cream
Coconut has many uses and yet another use can be to replace ricotta cheese, thus you can use coconut cream as a substitute for this cheese in your cooking.
It is a vegan alternative that will help you imitate the ricotta cheese taste. This cream will provide a sweet, creamy, and fluffy flavor to food, which will be the same as if you have used ricotta. Add it to desserts, dips, shakes, even smoothies.
20. Soy yogurt
Although it is a liquid product, soy yogurt will be a good replacement for ricotta cheese. Keep in mind that this product may not be suitable for every recipe due to its texture.
However, you’ll get the same sweetness. Adapt based on your recipe and typically you can use it in dips, sauces shakes, and even salads as a dressing.
Can I substitute ricotta for cream cheese?
Yes, cream cheese is one of the best substitutes for ricotta cheese. However, keep in mind that the texture will be firmer and it may be more grainy.
Can I substitute Greek yogurt for ricotta cheese in baking?
You can use Greek yogurt for baking instead of ricotta cheese. However, first, you need to strain it before use. Keep in mind that you will get a more liquid consistency.
Can I substitute cottage cheese for ricotta in lasagna?
You can use cottage cheese in lasagna and other similar dishes. First, you need to strain or blend the cheese before use so you’ll have a very similar texture.
Can you substitute yogurt for ricotta cheese?
Yogurt is a good replacement for ricotta cheese. You can use it to make sauces, dips, and many other recipes.