This ricotta cheesecake comes from my sister-in-law’s Italian grandmother. The ricotta gives the cheesecake a light and airy texture. We paired our cheesecake with some fruit-based jam, which gave it some extra flavor.
Over the holidays, I was fortunate enough to spend some time with my dad and my brother and his family. To be extra safe, we wore masks when we were around each other. Even though it wasn’t fun wearing masks all day long, our health and safety was most important. Thankfully, everyone remained healthy post-holidays so I’m glad we took the extra precaution.
I got to spend some quality time with my sister-in-law during the time. She and I rarely get to sit down and chat one-on-one so it was nice to be able to do that. While my husband was playing with the kids (with Addie and with my niece and nephew), my sister-in-law and I caught up on all kinds of things.
As we were talking, she asked if I had ever tried a ricotta cheesecake. She mentioned that her grandmother had a recipe that yielded this light and fluffy cheesecake. I said no, and she shared a handwritten recipe card from her grandmother. She mentioned that she tried making her own ricotta at home for this recipe, and that it was super easy.
While I chickened out on the homemade ricotta, I did make the ricotta cheesecake using store-bought cheese. My sister-in-law was right: the cheesecake was definitely soft and cloud-like. We liked it better after we paired it with some fruit jam. First, we tried some triple berry jam, and the next time we tried raspberry jam. Both were good and made the cheesecake better. You can also pair this with fresh fruit as well, but I like it with the intensity and sweetness of the jam. Even my family and I have a stronger preference for traditional cheesecake, this is a great, lighter alternative if you’re not into dense cheesecakes.
Thanks again to M for sharing your grandmother’s recipe, and I’m glad we got to catch up!
Husband’s rating: 3 out of 5
Addie’s rating: 3.5 out of 5
My rating: 3.5 out of 5
Italian ricotta cheesecake
- 1 pint sour cream
- 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese softened
- 1 pound ricotta
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs separated
- 3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 Tablespoons corn starch
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter melted
- Preheat your oven to 375°F. Generously grease a 9" or 10" springform pan and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, beat the cream cheese, sugar, egg yolks, corn starch, flour, lemon juice and vanilla on medium speed until well blended, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add in the melted butter, sour cream and ricotta and mix well.
- Transfer the batter to another large bowl and clean your mixing bowl. If you're using a handheld mixer, simply get out another large bowl. In the spotlessly clean bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, beat the egg whites on high speed until you achieve stiff peaks. Gently fold the egg whites into the cheesecake batter until blended.
- Transfer the batter to your prepared baking pan and smooth out the top. Tap the pan on the counter a few times to get out any air bubbles. Bake in your preheated oven for 70 minutes.
- After the cheesecake has baked (it may have a slight jiggle in the middle), crack the oven door open and leave it in there for another 2-3 hours. Then take it out and let rest at room temperature. Cover and place it in the refrigerator to chill overnight.
- After the cheesecake has thoroughly chilled, slice and serve. This tastes best with fresh berries or fruit jam of your choice (we enjoyed it with both raspberry jam and a triple berry jam blend).