Both cottage and ricotta cheese add wonderful flavor and creaminess to any dish you have in mind, but which cheese do you choose? Technically, ricotta isn’t even cheese but rather a dairy by-product, but still, it is used to replace cottage cheese in many recipes.
So, are cottage cheese and ricotta cheese similar, and can you substitute one for the other and still have a tasty dish? Cottage cheese is watery, lumpy, and has a sour taste, whereas ricotta is creamy and isn’t watery. Will this make a difference with food preparation?
Can You Substitute Cottage Cheese For Ricotta Cheese?
Both kinds of cheese are interchangeable
They’re both regarded as fresh cheeses by regular users, used in many different cuisines, adding richness, flavor, and creaminess to any dish. In the event that you’re out of cottage cheese you can use ricotta cheese as a replacement.
When you’re following a recipe, stick to the cheese the recipe suggests. If you don’t have cottage cheese you can use ricotta.
What is great in doing so is that both ricotta cheese and cottage cheese are low glycemic index foods too, so for diabetics, they won’t cause a spike in blood sugar levels.
Soft, white, creamy, and tasty, cottage cheese is a low-calorie cheese, that often comes recommended as part of a diet.
You can enjoy eating it as it is or season it slightly with sea salt and black pepper. It’s a great topping on crackers. You’ll find it a bit lumpier and wetter than ricotta.
The cheese actually comes in different curd varieties and is great for eating on its own or with savory biscuits and fruit. It’s a great substitute for ricotta in lasagne, and vice versa.
Lasagne can be made with cottage or ricotta cheese
So if you were making lasagne with ricotta cheese, if you run out of ricotta cheese, you could replace it with equal parts of cottage cheese. That means if your recipe calls for a cup of ricotta, and you don’t have any, simply replace it with a cup of cottage cheese.
As suggested, cottage cheese has a more liquid nature than ricotta, so keep that in mind when making your lasagne. Most food experts advise you to strain the cottage cheese first before using it to achieve a texture more similar to ricotta.
Both cheeses are versatile
The cool thing about both cheeses are their versatility. Cottage cheese is available as a tasty, lumpy spread, sometimes with reduced sodium and sometimes lactose-free.
Then again the fairly sweet flavor of ricotta makes it a versatile cheese that can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. You can also enjoy it by itself.
With cottage cheese, there are even some brands that include probiotics, providing us with some major health benefits. So if your recipe calls for cottage cheese and you don’t have any, use ricotta.
It’s as close to cottage cheese that you can get. Ricotta also has health benefits for us and has always been a popular cheese for making lasagne and cheesecake.
There are several kinds of ricotta cheese. It’s also a soft, white cheese, just like cottage cheese.
Let’s take a look at some further differences between cottage cheese and ricotta cheese:
- They’re soft, white, and moist cheeses. Soft cheeses like these need to be refrigerated. Both cheeses will last for about 2 weeks after opening.
- Both cheeses are fresh and unripened.
- Ricotta cheese is made from whey – the liquid and milk solids left over from the cheesemaking process. Cheesemakers heat the whey till it coagulates and forms a soft, creamy cheese.
- Cottage cheese is made by heating whole milk, after which it is coagulated into a solid curd.
- Cottage cheese is more liquidy and lumpier than ricotta. It is chunkier, with the size of the curds depending on the type you buy. Cottage cheese comes in different curd sizes, and even though the texture of the curds varies, it is the small curd cottage cheese that resembles ricotta cheese the most. Cottage cheese is always creamy and soft and is saltier than ricotta.
- Ricotta tends to be sweeter than cottage cheese and contains less salt.
- A cup of 2% cottage cheese has 183 calories, while the same amount of ricotta cheese which has a higher fat content, has 369 calories.
- In terms of nutrition, ricotta has a few more vitamins and minerals than cottage cheese. Both are recommended for those who follow the Mediterranean diet.
- Ricotta is regarded as a staple in Italian cooking, whereas in America, cottage cheese isn’t a staple but rather an enhancement to certain dishes.
Sometimes the cheeses aren’t interchangeable
Yes, both cheeses can be used in several recipes interchangeably. However, because of the differences in fat content, texture, and salt, you wouldn’t use cottage cheese and ricotta interchangeably in every recipe.
So for many recipes, you can substitute one for the other, but there are some recipes where this isn’t recommended.
You can say that cottage cheese is used more often than ricotta, and this is possibly because it has fewer calories. It’s true that not everyone, especially kids, are wild about cottage cheese, but when you’re using it as part of a recipe, most people won’t even notice.
Most times you can substitute cottage cheese for ricotta
Cottage cheese and ricotta do have some differences. They are manufactured using different processes so that they each have their own taste and texture.
They are both delicious, and you can swap them in many of your dishes and still provide a delightful treat for everyone’s tastebuds.