Whipped ricotta is the stuff summer dreams are made of! 3 ingredients and two minutes – that’s all you need to create a whole range of deliciously simple appetizers. Plain or flavored, you can use it to make ricotta dips and spreads or use it as a base for crostini!
What you’ll need to make Whipped Ricotta:
- Ricotta cheese: Use a high quality, artisanal ricotta cheese.
- Good Olive Oil – you definitely want to use a high-quality olive oil in this.
- Heavy Cream – this is optional, but I really like the additional creaminess!
- Salt – perhaps the most crucial ingredient! Use a non-iodized salt – seas salt, fleur de sel, or kosher salt all work really well.
How to make Whipped Ricotta:
- In a medium bowl, add the ricotta and, using either a stand or handheld mixer, whip the ricotta on medium speed. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
- Add the cream and increase the speed to high and whip until the ricotta is smooth and fluffy.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add in any flavorings you’d like – such as lemon zest, parmesan cheese and fresh or dried herbs.
Whipped ricotta makes a fabulous “blank canvas” for appetizers! here are some ideas to get you started!
Whipped Ricotta Dip: Serve with assorted crudites and/or crackers, breadsticks or baguette slices.
- Herbed Ricotta Dip: Combine the cheese with 2 tablespoons chopped tender fresh herbs. I like to combine parsley, thyme, with a little fresh mint. If you don’t have fresh herbs, substitute 1 1/2 teaspoons of dried herbs or herb blends like herbs de Provence, Italian seasoning, or any other herb blend that you like!
- Lemon Ricotta Dip: Combine the ricotta with the zest of one lemon and stir.
- Cheesy Ricotta Dip: Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of freshly grated Parmesan and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. So good!
To make the spread, omit the cream and just use the olive oil since you want a slightly thicker mixture.
Honey Ricotta: Slather toasted baguette slices with the whipped ricotta and drizzle your favorite honey on top!
Pesto Ricotta: Stir in 1 Tablespoon of prepared pesto and slather on top of grilled bread slices. This is delicious on it’s own, but even better topped with chopped summer ripe tomatoes and a little drizzle of good olive oil and salt!
Whipped Ricotta Crostini:
Whipped ricotta makes a fabulous crostini! Slather on grilled baguette slices and top with:
Grilled Sweet and Savory Grapes: Perhaps my favorite crostini topping, the grilled grapes develop a winelike flavor that’s absolutely fabulous with ricotta! See the recipe for details!
Roasted Vegetables: Roast 3 cups of diced tomatoes, zucchini, onions, and bell peppers in the oven with olive oil, salt and pepper. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.
Other Appetizer Recipes to take a bite of!
Whipped Ricotta Recipe
Whipped Ricotta with Savory Grapes
- 1 cup fresh ricotta artisan variety or homemade
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil for brushing
- 1 -2 Tablespoons whipping cream
Grilled Red Grapes
- 2 cups seedless red grapes
- 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds toasted and crushed
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
- 1 clove garlic pressed
- 24 baguette slices
For Whipped Ricotta:
- Add the ricotta to a medium sized bowl. Using either a hand or stand mixer, whip the ricotta on medium speed, slowly drizzling in the olive oil .
- Add 1 Tablespoon of whipping cream and whip. If the mixture is still too thick to spread, add an additional tablespoon of whipping cream.
- Season with salt and pepper. If not using right away, place in a covered container and refrigerate.
For the grilled crostini:
- Brush the baguette slices with the olive oil. Broil for 2 – 3 minutes until the baguette slices are golden brown.
For the grilled grapes:
- In a medium bowl, combine the grapes, olive oil, sherry vinegar, fennel seeds, brown sugar and garlic.
- Stir to combine and set aside.
- Thread the grapes onto small wooden skewers.
- Grill over high heat for 2 – 3 minutes turning frequently.
- Either set out the whipped ricotta, crostini and grilled grapes and let everyone assemble their own or spread each baguette slice with some of the whipped ricotta and top with a few grapes. Drizzle the remaining marinade over and sprinkle with fresh thyme if using.
- You can marinate the grapes up to two days in advance.
- You can whip the ricotta up to a day in advance. Cover and refrigerate.
- Use homemade ricotta or a high-quality artisanal ricotta for this recipe!
- The grilled grapes are also delicious spooned over lightly seasoned grilled chicken or pork!