Oh my goodness gracious, are you ready for this whipped ricotta recipe? The recipe of all appetizer recipes? The one that is super easy to make (we’re talking 10 minutes or less), is creamy, and loaded with bright flavors from fresh herbs, lemon zest, and a hint of sweet honey?!
I know you know I love super easy appetizer and dip recipes, and I know you do, too. I mean, what’s better than snacking on small bites and using grilled bread to simply transfer all the creamy ricotta straight into your mouth?! Nothing.
Nothing is better, and today we’re making homemade whipped ricotta and it is going to be a showstopper at your next get-together. Your guests won’t be able to stop dipping and snacking, and neither will you…this vegetarian app is going to wow everyone!
How to Make Whipped Ricotta
If you’ve never made homemade whipped ricotta before, prepare for your world to be rocked. I first had whipped ricotta at Alma Café in Minneapolis, which is what inspired this recipe. It was so creamy, light, and full of flavor from the herbs and honey, I couldn’t get enough. I knew I needed to recreate it so I could have it whenever the craving struck (and trust me, it happens often, you’ve been warned).
Making whipped ricotta might sound like quite the task, however, it’s actually so easy. All you need is a mixer – either a stand or hand-held mixer, both work great. And that’s it. Really.
Start with fresh whole milk ricotta. The freshest you can get. And do not skimp on the fat content either. The more fresh and whole the ricotta is, the better it’s going to whip into a light and creamy dip.
I like to use Whole Foods’ house-made ricotta, which is sold in the cheese section. If you can’t find fresh homemade ricotta in the store, you can absolutely buy store-bought prepackaged ricotta, just make sure it is made with whole milk.
If you really want to go above and beyond, you can also make homemade ricotta before whipping it. It’s super easy to do. I’ve used a variation of Ina Garten‘s recipe in the past.
Now that we’ve covered the ricotta piece, to whip the ricotta you simply add the whole milk ricotta to a small-medium mixing bowl, and, using your hand (or stand) mixer, whip the ricotta for approximately 2 minutes until it is smooth, light, and creamy. For this step, you can use either a whisk attachment from your hand-mixer or the regular beaters.
Once it’s creamy, light, and airy, it’s ready to be topped!
Topping Whipped Ricotta
When it comes down to it, you can top whipped ricotta with just about whatever your taste buds desire. This recipe tops it with a magical mix of herbs and honey that is addictingly delicious and pairs seamlessly with the creamy whipped ricotta. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:
- Whole Milk Ricotta – we covered this in the paragraph above, but it’s important to mention again: fresh, whole milk ricotta.
- Fresh Mint – there’s nothing quite like fresh mint. Its fresh, slightly sweet, refreshing flavor adds a brightness to this ricotta dip that’s unlike anything you’ve ever had! Especially when it’s paired with…
- Fresh Parsley – with its clean, fresh flavor that’s a little bit peppery and earthy, it balances out the fresh herbs and honey beautifully.
- Lemon Zest – this touch of acidity and bright citrus notes round out the topping flavors, which tend to be on the sweeter side.
- Zest the lemon by using a Microplane or a fine grater. When zesting, be careful to not scrape off the white pith that is just below the zest’s surface, as it can have a bitter aftertaste to it. My favorite method is to rotate the lemon to zest in one hand and hold the Microplane steady in the other.
- Olive Oil – use delicious, high-quality olive oil to let the flavor shine through. We’re just adding a little to balance out the topping, but it makes a difference!
- Honey – high-quality honey makes a huge difference in this recipe because it is such a prominent part of the recipe. However, any honey really will do, just be sure it’s one you enjoy the taste of. The honey is mixed in with the fresh herbs and lemon, creating the most amazing herby topping for whipped ricotta.
- Sea Salt Flakes – add texture and of course, a little saltiness to bring out all the flavors. If you don’t have sea salt flakes, a sprinkle of kosher salt will do, too.
How to Serve Herbs and Honey Ricotta
The best part: EATING IT! Like I said before, if you’re serving this appetizer to guests, be sure to sneak a couple of bites before you present them with it because they’re going to devour it once they’ve had their first bites.
As you may have expected, it’s super easy to put the final dip together and serve it.
Spread the creamy whipped ricotta on a plate or in a small serving bowl. Then, top with the honey and herb mixture.
What should I dip in Whipped Ricotta?
We must, obviously, have something to shovel the dip into our mouths with. Of course, I’m fully in support of spoons, but there’s one other super tasty, deliciously crisp, and salty option that is actually the most *perfect* pairing for the dip.
Grilled Baguette Slices. Rub baguette slices with a little olive oil, grill them on a grill or use a grill pan, sprinkle with some salt, and serve ’em up! You can also easily make crostini in the oven for the same crunchy-salty bread combination.
The salt and crunch from the bread really are a match made in heaven with the creamy ricotta and herby, slightly sweet honey topping.
Want to keep it gluten-free? Serve with gluten-free crackers, or use a gluten-free baguette (or bread) to toast up. It’s also delicious with fresh vegetables – crudités style.
If you’re looking to pair it with a cocktail for happy hour, this appetizer dip pairs beautifully with a light, crisp, citrusy white wine. A chilled rosé would also be excellent. Really, you can’t go wrong.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you want to store just the whipped ricotta, place it in an airtight container and store it in the fridge for 1-2 days. If you’ve already added the herb topping to the dip, store it in an airtight container and cover the top of the dip with plastic wrap, and place it in the fridge for no longer than 1 day. Please note that the herbs have a higher chance of spoiling once they’ve been added to the dip and then stored.
Yes, you can! Even though this is an easy, 10-minute recipe if you need to prepare it ahead of time, start with the whipped ricotta. Prepare the whipped ricotta and place it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. I don’t recommend preparing the herbs until you’re ready to serve, so they stay as fresh as possible.
Basil would be an excellent substitution for either the mint or the parsley (or an addition!). Because of the honey, you want to substitute an herb that has a sweet aspect and that will play off of those flavors. Fresh thyme would also work in place of the mint.
100% yes! The more whipped ricotta, the better!
There is no wrong answer here! Anytime you need a quick, easy, uber-flavorful appetizer is a perfect time to serve whipped ricotta! I find it goes over well at dinner parties as an appetizer while friends mingle, it’s great on game day or over the holidays as part of a snack spread before the big meal.
Not only does it make an excellent appetizer dip, but you can also use the whipped ricotta (either alone or with the herb mixture) on sandwiches, as a cheesy base for a naan flatbread pizza, or on a slice of sourdough toast for breakfast!
More Creamy Dip Recipes to Love
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Get the Recipe Whipped Ricotta with Herbs and Honey
- 1 cup whole milk ricotta, the freshest you can get
- 2 Tablespoon fresh mint, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil, additional for baguette slices
- 3 teaspoons honey
- Generous pinch of sea salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 Baguette, sliced, if using
- Place the ricotta in a small mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer with a whisk attachment or beaters, whisk ricotta for 2 minutes until it's smooth and creamy; you may still see tiny bumps of ricotta, this is ok. Place the whipped ricotta in a serving bowl or spread on a plate.1 cup whole milk ricotta
- In a separate bowl, stir together the mint, parsley, lemon zest, olive oil, honey, and salt. Pour the herb and honey mixture on top of the whipped ricotta. Top with freshly ground black pepper as desired. Serve with grilled baguette slices, crackers, or vegetables.2 Tablespoon fresh mint, 1 teaspoon fresh parsley, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, 1 Tablespoon olive oil, 3 teaspoons honey, Generous pinch of sea salt, Freshly ground black pepper
Grilled Baguette or Crostini
- Grilled Baguette: to serve with grilled baguette slices, brush olive oil on each side of baguette slices, and place on a grill pan over medium-high heat for 1-2 minutes on each side, until toasted. Sprinkle with salt and serve.1 Baguette
- Crostini: Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spread the baguette slices on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil (don’t drench them, dry areas are ok), and turn them over, spreading them in the olive oil a bit to coat, and flipping to coat as well. Sprinkle the slices with salt and pepper. Toast in oven for 5-7 minutes, flipping halfway through. Watch carefully so they don’t burn.
By the Way…
This recipe is part of our easy vegetarian appetizer collection. Check it out!