Try this super easy recipe to make your own “cream cheese”. One one ingredient necessary!
Homemade cream cheese is not the same thing as traditionally packaged “cream cheese” at the store and is often called Farmer’s cheese or “Cottage” cheese. This Farmers (cream) cheese is slightly less “creamy” than store packaged cream cheese.
You will need:
2-3 cups 2% or whole milk
When your milk gets close to the bottom of the jug, save the last few cups for this recipe. Close to expired or completely expired milk will be the best option as it is primed to separate. As long as the milk does not have a sour smell, it can still be used to make cream cheese.
Step 1: Remove jug, with remaining milk, from the fridge and set on it’s side on the kitchen counter. Leave it on the counter for 24-48 hours, the time depends on how long it takes the milk to separate the cream from the whey. You will know it is ready when you can visually see the separation of white liquid and clear liquid in the jug. (FUN FACT: This step is called clabbering).
Step 2: Collect a bowl which can gather the whey drippings and a cheese cloth, which will hold the cream. Drape the cheese cloth over the bowl and pour the contents of jug into the bowl, using the cheese cloth as a strainer. (I fold my cheese cloth in half to have a finer strain, so the cream can’t seep through). Next, gather the edges of the cheese cloth together and tie together to form a sac. Suspend over the bowl and let the draining process continue for 24 hours. (I use twine, or a rubber band, to tie together and to hang from a cupboard handle.)
Step 3: The cream cheese is now finished and ready to enjoy. Refrigerate for up to 2 months. Add flavors and ingredients to your plain cream cheese if desired. Just note that once the ingredient is added to the cream cheese, it’s shelf life is shortened to about 10 days.
NOTE: Try substituting plain whole yogurt for the milk. Follow the same pattern, by placing the yogurt on the counter for clabbering. The process for yogurt only takes 2-4 hours however and then is ready to strain. Step 2 and 3 are the same.
Here are a few of my favorite additions to cream cheese:
- My own canned Jellies and Jams
- Fresh Strawberries
- Fresh Blueberries
- Fresh Avocado
- Poppy Seeds
- Fresh basil or mint leaves
- Shredded veggies and/or onions
- Agave Nectar
- Peanut Butter (my son’s favorite dip for apple slices)
- Ranch dressing
© Can Stock Photo Inc. / olenayemchuk