View Full Version : What to do with leftover ricotta?

Kate B
10-06-2008, 07:58 AM
Now that I made the turkey meatballs mentioned in another thread, I have most of a container of ricotta cheese leftover. I'm not much of a lasagna lover; any other suggestions for using it up (or does it freeze?).



10-06-2008, 08:11 AM
I have already frozen ricotta cheese as part of a dish -- stuffed shells or lasagna -- but have never frozen it by itself. Not sure if freezing it would change the texture in some way or not.

I recently made this dessert from Joe's blog to use up some leftover ricotta cheese -- quick and easy to make:


Here's the recipe:

Ricotta Cappuccino (Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis)

1/4 cup vanilla sugar
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
one piece of biscotti, crushed

In a food processor, add vanilla sugar, ricotta, espresso powder, vanilla, cocoa powder and cinnamon. Process for about 1 minute - scrape down the sides and blend until mostly smooth, about 1 minute more.

Scoop the mixture evenly between two small glasses or mugs - cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

To serve - scatter each mug with some of the crushed biscotti. Sprinkle each with a pinch of cinnamon and cocoa.

Makes 2 servings.

10-06-2008, 08:18 AM
What did you think of the meatballs? I used a lot less basil than was called for; I thought they were fine but nothing spectacular.

Have you made CL's Crustless Garden Vegetable Quiche? You can sub the ricotta for the cottage cheese called for in the recipe. And I usually split that recipe in half, otherwise it's HUGE.

Ann Sanders
10-06-2008, 09:01 AM
You can use ricotta in enchiladas, manicotti, pasta shells, lasagna roll ups, cannelloni or this...
A stuffing for Apricots

4 ripe apricots, cut in half, stones removed
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1/8 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ + 1 TBS cup chopped unsalted pistachio nuts
1/4 cup ricotta or cottage cheese


Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F.
Place apricot halves in a baking dish, cut side up. In a mixing bowl, cream butter with sugar until fluffy. Beat in egg yolk, then fold in remaining ingredients. Divide mixture evenly among apricot halves, lightly mounding it into center of each with a small spoon.
Bake on center rack of oven for 30 minutes or until apricots are plumped and juicy, and the stuffing is browned. Serve immediately. Can be topped with fresh whipped cream.

Serves 4

10-06-2008, 09:29 AM
This is an old Weight Watchers recipe which I still love. You can go full fat instead of part-skim if you aren't worried about it.

* Exported from MasterCook *

Lasagna Rollups

Serving Size : 4
Categories : Eggs/Cheese Pasta/Rice

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
2 large eggs -- beaten
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
2 ounces part skim milk mozzarella cheese -- shredded
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese -- grated
1/4 teaspoon oregano leaves
1/4 teaspoon basil leaves
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

8 lasagna noodles -- cooked

1 cup tomato sauce

2 tablespoons parmesan cheese -- grated

Italian parsley

Preheat oven to 350º F. Spray lasagna dish; set aside.

In bowl combine ricotta cheese, eggs, mozzarella, 2 tablespoons Parmesan and the seasonings, mixing well.

Place cooked noodles on a damp towel and spoon 1/8 of the cheese mix lengthwise along center of each noodle; starting with narrow end roll each noodle carefully.

Place in dish and spoon 2 tablespoons of tomato sauce over each roll;

Sprinkle each with roll with 3/4 teaspoon of parmesan.

Bake until heated 35-40 minutes.

10-06-2008, 10:05 AM
I'll crisp up slices of french or sougdough bread, spread a little ricotta on the slices, then top with honey or strawberry preserves. A yummy sweet treat.

10-06-2008, 10:10 AM
I like it spread on the crust as part of a white pizza, or mixed with a little sauce and spread as part of a not white pizza!

10-06-2008, 10:45 AM
Thanks for this thread! It totally reminded me that I have been meaning to make this pizza. It's a Rachael Ray recipe.

Pizza Carbonara

a Rachael Ray recipe

1 refrigerated pizza dough, or one from your favorite pizza joint (I use homemade)
Cornmeal, for sprinkling on pizza pan
Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling
1/4 pound pancetta, chopped
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1 large clove garlic, grated (2 cloves is better)
Black pepper
2 large egg yolks, beaten
1 1/2 to 2 cups shredded provolone cheese
A handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Roll out dough into a large, thin, round or rectangular shape. Scatter a little cornmeal on the pizza pan or baking sheet before placing rolled-out dough on it.

Drizzle dough with EVOO and ***** it with fork tines in a few places.

Place in oven and partially bake for 7-8 minutes.

Drizzle EVOO in a small skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Cook pancetta until crisp, 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cool.

Brush the baked pizza crust with some of the grease from the skillet you cooked the pancetta in for a little extra flavor.

Add beaten egg yolks, ricotta, Romano, grated garlic and black pepper to a bowl and stir to combine.

Spread the ricotta cheese mixture out over the pizza crust, then top with provolone cheese.

Scatter the reserved pancetta all over and bake 12 minutes or until crust is crisp and the cheese is evenly golden on top. Scatter parsley over cooked pizza, cut into wedges and serve.

10-06-2008, 10:53 AM
Mrswaz, that sounds so good! Why egg yolks specifically, to lighten could I use egg beaters you think? yummmmm

10-06-2008, 11:58 AM
Mrswaz, that sounds so good! Why egg yolks specifically, to lighten could I use egg beaters you think? yummmmm

I would think that would be fine myself. I checked back to see if I did use the egg yolks and I did that... It's been so long since I made this, but I'm sure it contributed some to the texture, as well as flavor. Two egg yolks isn't very much though, so maybe just two tablespoons or so of eggbeaters would do it.

I also used regular bacon, btw. It worked just fine for us. :) Here is the blog post (http://tummytreasure.com/blog/?p=587) I did when I made this.

10-06-2008, 12:07 PM
yummmm, thanks! That will be on my table before the week is up!:)

Kate B
10-06-2008, 12:26 PM
Thanks for all of the great ideas!


10-06-2008, 12:38 PM
From a while ago, but I REALLY LIKED these.

Gale Gand's Sugar-Dusted Vanilla Ricotta Fritters

• Staff Favorite

Gale Gand, an F&W Best New Chef 1994, is the executive pastry chef and a partner at Tru in Chicago. She's also the host of Food Network's Sweet Dreams. Her follow-up to the cookbook Gale Gand's Short + Sweet is a collection of recipes from Tru, which will be published later this year. Gand got this recipe from her mother-in-law, Vita Seidita; the fritters are also good sprinkled with cinnamon sugar or dipped in jelly.

Vegetable oil, for frying
3 large eggs
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 pound whole milk ricotta cheese (1 cup)
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

1. In a large saucepan, heat 2 inches of vegetable oil to 375°. Set a large wire rack over a baking sheet, top with paper towels and position it near the saucepan.

2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat the eggs, granulated sugar and vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the ricotta and beat until smooth. Add the flour and baking powder and beat just until blended.

3. Using a very small ice cream scoop or 2 teaspoons, slide 8 walnut-size rounds of batter into the hot oil. Fry over moderate heat until deep golden all over and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fritters to the rack to drain. Continue frying the remaining fritters in batches of 8. Arrange the fritters on a platter and dust well with confectioners' sugar.

MAKE AHEAD The fritter batter can be refrigerated for up to 6 hours. Fry just before serving.

--Gale Gand

This recipe originally appeared in September 2004. Food & Wine - September 2004

10-06-2008, 01:29 PM
Here are a couple of sweet options... (the ricotta cappuccino posted above it also quite tasty!)

Ricotta-Cheese Cookies (http://desertculinary.blogspot.com/2006/03/cookies-with-surprise-ingredient.html)



8 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large eggs
7.5 ounces ricotta cheese
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt


3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon milk (may need more if not thin enough)
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
colored sanding sugar

Preheat oven to 350

In large mixing bowl, cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy at least 3-5 minutes. Add egg and mix until combined. Beat in ricotta, vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon almond extract.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the butter mixture and beat just until combined.

Using a tablespoon cookie scoop, drop dough on top parchment lined baking sheets - about 2" apart. If you want a slightly smaller, but domed shaped cookie leave as is. If you would like a larger, but flatter cookie - gently flatten the dough balls with your finger. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until cookies are very lightly golden and the center springs back when lightly touched. Let cool for 1 minute on the baking sheet and carefully move to a wire rack to cool completely.

In small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar, milk and almond extract. With small metal spatula, spread icing on cookies. Sprinkle sanding sugar while the tops are still wet. Set aside and let dry completely.

Cherry-Vanilla Ricotta Muffins (http://desertculinary.blogspot.com/2008/06/workin-those-fresh-cherries-into.html) (Adapted from Mollie Katzen)


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour (can use all-purpose, if desired)
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/8 teaspoon of baking soda
1 tablespoon fresh grated lemon zest
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon vanilla
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 cups fresh sweet cherries, pitted and sliced

Preheat oven to 350

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder, salt, baking soda, zest and sugar.

In a medium bowl, whisk together ricotta and buttermilk until well combined. Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Mix in the lemon juice and vanilla. Pour into the dry ingredients, along with the melted butter and cherries, and stir just until combined.

Evenly divide the batter between the wells of a 12 cup muffin tin lightly coated with nonstick spray. Bake until lightly browned and a toothpick placed in the center comes out mostly clean with a few moist crumbs attached, about 18 to 25 minutes. Remove and let sit in the muffin pan for 5 to 10 minutes before turning them out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 12 muffins.

karen w
10-06-2008, 05:29 PM
PANCAKES! Very yummy made with ricotta cheese!


10-06-2008, 06:03 PM
I also love the pancakes, I make crepes, and fill with the ricotta adding an egg, some sugar, and cinnamon. Roll up the crepes with the cheese mixture and put in a 350 oven for about 20 minutes, very good.:)

10-06-2008, 07:38 PM
What did you think of the meatballs? I used a lot less basil than was called for; I thought they were fine but nothing spectacular.

Great question, did you actually like the meatballs?
I also made them and while I really enjoyed the flavor I didn't see how the ricotta improved the texture... as Stefania mentioned, it was nothing spectacular, but I enjoyed it! (the basil flavor was great, I really liked that!)

I love simply seasoning the ricotta with salt, pepper and olive oil, make it like a paste and spread on toast or eat with pita crisps... yumm!!
Ricotta is delicious and another way of using it that we love is seasoning it the way I mentioned above and then putting it into hollowed tomatoes (without the seeds and pulp). I fill the tomatoes with seasoned ricotta (add herbs to the ricotta too, it is good!), then I top it with parmesan and bread crumbs and bake the tomatoes. You get delicious ricotta stuffed tomatoes, DH and DS love these, we cannot get enough!!

10-06-2008, 07:56 PM
Not sure if you are a bread person but this is a nice bread to make w/ ricotta: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/PrintRecipeOld?RID=R194

Sheila in MD
10-07-2008, 05:49 AM
A few years ago, CL had an article on muffins using ricotta-IIRC, there were several recipes...anyone else remember this?

Sheila in MD

10-07-2008, 12:27 PM
You can also use it as the basis for stuffing vegetables - eggplant, zucchini, mushrooms, etc. Either as a nice vegetarian entrée or as side dishes.

Kate B
10-07-2008, 02:07 PM
Great question, did you actually like the meatballs?
I also made them and while I really enjoyed the flavor I didn't see how the ricotta improved the texture... as Stefania mentioned, it was nothing spectacular, but I enjoyed it! (the basil flavor was great, I really liked that!)

I actually very much enjoyed the meatball recipe. As I mentioned, I made them in a muffin tin and enjoyed them hot the night I made them. Now I'm feasting on meatloaf sandwiches, which are a Fall favorite of mine. I thought the ricotta kept them very moist without using the standard tomato sauce, which I don't care for much.

Next time I think I'll add some additional cheese, like gorgonzola or provolone.


PS: I am loving the additional suggestions for using up the ricotta; thanks!

10-07-2008, 02:17 PM
This is really good. You could add some cooked, cubed chicken too.

What's the meatball recipe (or thread)?

Ricotta Fettuccini Alfredo with Broccoli

2 cups small broccoli florets
2 tablespoons butter or stick margarine
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups fat-free milk
2/3 cup (2 1/2 ounces) part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
4 cups hot cooked fettuccine (about 8 ounces uncooked pasta)
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

Steam broccoli, covered, 3 minutes or until crisp-tender.

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour, and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cook 15 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly. Stir in cheeses, salt, and pepper, and cook 5 minutes or until cheese melts. Stir in broccoli and pasta. Sprinkle with parsley.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)

CALORIES 421 (28% from fat); FAT 13.3g (sat 5.3g,mono 4.5g,poly 2.4g); IRON 3mg; CHOLESTEROL 23mg; CALCIUM 437mg; CARBOHYDRATE 53.6g; SODIUM 529mg; PROTEIN 21.5g; FIBER 3.8g

Cooking Light, MARCH 1999

10-07-2008, 03:23 PM
I bookmarked this recipe earlier in the week from the Picky Palate blog:
Ricotta Stuffed Spinach and Broccoli Pizza Pie. (http://www.picky-palate.com/2008/10/my-oh-my-i-love-pizza-pieand-cookies.html) YUM!

Kate B
10-08-2008, 08:45 AM
Alleycat - here's the thread with the meatball recipe:



10-08-2008, 10:01 AM
Thanks, Kate. Like you, I've got some leftover ricotta to use :)