How to Make Homemade Mascarpone Cheese

DIY Mascarpone Cheese
Creamy homemade mascarpone cheese is easy to make right in your own kitchen, and you can use it in all sorts of recipes, both sweet and savory! ~ theviewfromgreatisland.com

Creamy homemade mascarpone cheese is easy and fun to make right in your own kitchen — use it in all sorts of authentic Italian recipes, both sweet and savory — and save a lot of money while you’re at it!

Homemade Mascarpone Cheese

You know I love me a good DIY project.  This one was especially satisfying because mascarpone, the creamy Italian soft cheese, is such a high end product.  It can be hard to find, and it’s expensive when you do.  You probably know it as a critical ingredient in TIRAMISU, and I l love to sneak it into RISOTTOS to give them a rich finish.  Mascarpone is called a ‘cheese’ in the technical sense, but it is very close in flavor and texture to a British clotted cream, so it’s perfect on scones and biscuits, too.  To qualify as a great DIY project a recipe has to be relatively easy to pull off, and the finished product has to be a spot on version of the original.  This homemade mascarpone ticks both boxes deliciously.

Making Homemade Mascarpone Cheese

You will need a couple of pieces of equipment — a clip on thermometer for the pan, and a piece of  cheesecloth for draining the cheese.  You are going to be bringing heavy cream up to a boil, and then adding lemon juice to coagulate and thicken it.  There won’t be any actual curds, because heavy cream doesn’t curdle like milk does.  You’ll drain it to remove any whey, and then you are left with an incredibly rich cheese.

DIY Mascarpone Cheese

All cheese making recipes specify using heavy cream that has not been ultra-pasteurized as the starting point.  It’s one of those truisms that gets passed from recipe to recipe.  Ultra-pasteurizing just means that the milk is flash heated to a higher point than regular pasteurization.  Almost all heavy cream is ultra-pasteurized nowadays, because it results in a longer shelf life, so finding anything else can be a challenge.   I actually  made my first batch with regular heavy cream because I am an impatient sort, and it turned out almost identical to the next batch I made with the non-ultra-pasteurized cream I found at Whole Foods.  The only difference I could tell was that the ultra-pasteurized cream resulted in a lightly softer end product.  So make what you will of that.  Common wisdom says to use non ultra-pasteurized cream.

How to Make Mascarpone Cheese

Homemade Mascarpone

Ingredients

  • 2 cups heavy cream (non-ultra-pasteurized is preferable)
  • 1-2 Tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Pour the cream into a small heavy bottomed pot and heat on medium until it reaches 190 degrees on a candy thermometer. Heat the cream gently so it doesn't scorch.
  2. Add the lemon juice, and keep the cream at 190F for another 5 minutes, stirring gently. I found it easiest to keep moving the pot on and off the flame to maintain the temperature. The cream will thicken and coat the back of the spoon.
  3. Let the cream cool to room temperature, which will take about half an hour.
  4. Line a mesh strainer with several layers of cheesecloth, and set that over a bowl to catch the dripping whey. Pour the cream into the cheesecloth. Cover loosely with plastic and refrigerate for 8 hours.
  5. Remove the cheese from the cheesecloth and keep in a tightly closed container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  6. Plan to use the cheese within a week or so.
https://theviewfromgreatisland.com/minimal-monday-homemade-mascarpone/

Notes:

 

Don’t forget to pin this Homemade Mascarpone Cheese!

Creamy homemade mascarpone cheese is easy and fun to make right in your own kitchen --- use it in all sorts of authentic Italian recipes, both sweet and savory --- and save a lot of money while you're at it! #diycheese #homemadecheese #cheesemaking #tiramisu #creamcheese #homemadecreamcheese #easycheese #mascarpone #Italiancheese

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43 Comments

  • Reply
    Louise
    April 28, 2018 at 6:16 pm

    I’m going to use my sous vide to get the cream to reach and stay at 190 – that’s the beauty of a sous vide and you don’t have to worry about the cream burning or taking the pan on and off the stove. Just set it to 190 and it stays there. I also use my sous vide to make yogurt.

  • Reply
    Lauren
    March 29, 2018 at 10:29 pm

    Hi Sue,

    Thank you so much for this recipe. Mine came out all right and I am thrilled because I use mascarpone to make sponge cake that my daughter loves.

    One question, more out of curiosity. My mascarpone has a stronger lemony taste than commercial mascapone. Do you know why commercial mascapone doesn’t have any scent or taste of lemon? Thanks.

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 30, 2018 at 7:06 am

      Hey Lauren ~ I believe that’s because commercial mascarpone is made with citric acid, a natural chemical similar to lemon juice, but without the fresh lemon flavor. You can actually easily buy citric acid and try that yourself. I bet your sponge cake is wonderful!

  • Reply
    Faith
    February 15, 2018 at 9:17 am

    Thanks for posting this recipe; I’m definitely going to make my own. I found this site because I was searching for why mascarpone is so expensive – I still want to know why it’s so expensive? Does it come all the way from Italy maybe?

    • Reply
      Sue
      February 15, 2018 at 9:44 am

      Great question, Faith, I just bought some the other day that was made in Wisconsin, but it was still expensive!

  • Reply
    Aynur Garránt
    January 21, 2018 at 3:22 pm

    Where can I find non pestorize cream.?

    • Reply
      Sue
      January 21, 2018 at 4:09 pm

      If you have a health food store nearby, check there, Aynur.

  • Reply
    Pamela
    November 4, 2017 at 7:09 pm

    I don’t have cheesecloth, can I use a coffee filter in my strainer? I’m excited to try this!

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 4, 2017 at 7:39 pm

      I think a coffee filter would take a lot longer, and I’m not sure it’s big enough, Pamela, but more power to you if you try!

  • Reply
    Uliana
    January 4, 2017 at 8:05 am

    Great Recipe! The cheese is great! I plan on making mascarpone ice cream with fig!

  • Reply
    Christina
    July 10, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    190 degrees… Celcius or fahrenheit? ?
    Im from Denmark (europe) we use celcius

    • Reply
      Sue
      July 10, 2016 at 2:08 pm

      that’s 190F Christina, I just updated, thanks!

  • Reply
    Estelle
    March 30, 2015 at 4:55 pm

    This looks terrific.. two questions.. we have our own cows – can we use the cream that we skim from our cow milk when pasteurizing this to make the mascarpone? and second, do you know how many ounces of mascarpone each recipe makes?
    thanks!

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 30, 2015 at 6:15 pm

      I’m sure the cream from your cows will make a spectacular cheese, Estelle — how lucky you are! And I think the recipe makes about 8 oz of mascarpone. Have fun!

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