Have you ever wondered what makes lasagna so creamy and delicious? The answer is ricotta cheese.
Ricotta is a fresh cheese made from milk, cream, and vinegar.
It has a mild flavor and a smooth, creamy texture that makes it perfect for lasagna.
If you don’t have ricotta on hand, there are several substitutes that will work just as well.
In this article, we’ll share the 5 best substitutes for ricotta cheese in the lasagna that will have your family and friends coming back for seconds.
Why Use Ricotta Cheese in Lasagna?
Ricotta cheese is a staple in many Italian dishes, including lasagna.
But what makes ricotta so special? Here’s a look at the origin, history, and benefits of this delicious cheese.
Ricotta is a type of whey cheese that originated in Italy.
Ricotta means “re-cooked” in Italian, and the name refers to the way the cheese is made.
Ricotta is made by coagulating the whey proteins that are left over from making other types of cheese.
The resulting cheese has a creamy texture and mild flavor.
Ricotta is often used in lasagna because it provides a creaminess that other cheeses cannot match.
Ricotta also pairs well with tomatoes, another key ingredient in lasagna.
When combined, these two ingredients create a rich and flavorful dish.
If you’re looking for a delicious way to add some extra protein to your diet, ricotta cheese is a great option.
Ricotta is also lower in fat and calories than other cheeses, making it a healthier choice.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Ricotta Cheese In Lasagna
If you’re in a pinch and need a ricotta cheese substitute for lasagna, you have several options.
While ricotta cheese is a key ingredient in the lasagna that can’t be replaced, there are a few substitutes that will work in a pinch.
Here are the 5 best substitutes for ricotta cheese in lasagna:
1 – Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is a mild-tasting cheese with a slightly crumbly texture.
It ranges in color from white to yellowish, and it is typically made from skimmed or low-fat milk.
While cottage cheese is lower in fat and calories than most other cheeses, it is also a good source of protein and calcium.
Cottage cheese can be enjoyed on its own or used as a replacement for Ricotta cheese in lasagna.
When substituting cottage cheese for ricotta, it is important to drain the cottage cheese first to avoid a watery lasagna.
Simply place the cottage cheese in a strainer or colander and press down on it with the back of a spoon to release any excess liquid.
Once the cottage cheese is strained, it can be used in place of ricotta in your lasagna recipe.
2 – Ricotta Salata
Ricotta Salata is a type of Italian cheese that is made from sheep’s milk.
It has a mild, slightly salty flavor and a firm, crumbly texture.
Ricotta Salata is often used as a substitute for Ricotta cheese in lasagna.
To substitute Ricotta Salata for Ricotta cheese, simply crumble the cheese and mix it with a little milk to form a thick paste.
Then spread the mixture over the lasagna noodles before adding the sauce.
The cheese will melt and combine with the sauce to create a rich, flavorful dish.
3 – Feta Cheese
Feta is a brined cheese that originated in Greece.
It is typically made from sheep’s milk, but it can also be made from goat’s milk or a mixture of the two.
Feta cheese has a strong, salty flavor and a crumbly texture.
It is often used in salads and as a topping for pizzas and other dishes.
Ricotta cheese is a milder, sweeter cheese that is frequently used in lasagna.
If you are looking for a substitution for ricotta cheese in lasagna, feta cheese is a good option.
The strong flavor of feta will help to offset the sweetness of the tomato sauce, and the crumbly texture will mimic the texture of ricotta.
4 – Goat Cheese
Goat cheese has a tangy, slightly acidic flavor that is often described as “goaty”.
It can be creamy or crumbly in texture, depending on its age.
Goat cheese is a good substitute for ricotta cheese in lasagna.
When substituted, it gives the dish a more complex flavor.
The acidity of the goat cheese helps to balance the sweetness of the tomato sauce.
Goat cheese can also be used in desserts, such as cheesecake or mousse.
When used in sweet dishes, it is often combined with honey or fruit.
5 – Cream Cheese
Cream cheese is a type of cheese that is soft, mild, and slightly tangy.
It is made by adding rennet and bacteria to milk, which causes the milk to thicken and form curds.
The curds are then drained, pressed, and flavored with salt.
Cream cheese has a smooth, creamy texture and a slightly sweet flavor.
It can be used in a variety of dishes, such as cheesecake, bagels with lox, and creamy pasta sauces.
When substituting cream cheese for ricotta cheese in lasagna, it is important to use a full-fat variety of cream cheese.
This will help to prevent the lasagna from becoming watery.
In addition, it is best to drain the cream cheese before adding it to the other ingredients.
This will help to prevent the lasagna from becoming too rich.
In conclusion, there are several substitutes that can be used for ricotta cheese in lasagna.
These include cottage cheese, Ricotta Salata, feta cheese, goat cheese, and cream cheese.
Each of these cheeses has its own unique flavor and texture that will add a new dimension to your lasagna dish.
When substituting one of these cheeses for ricotta, it is important to keep in mind the flavor and texture of the cheese.
This will help you choose the best cheese for your particular dish.