This easy Whipped Ricotta Dip is made with just a few simple ingredients, and takes just 10 minutes to prepare! This delicious appetizer is perfect when served with toasted baguette slices, fresh veggies, or pita chips.
This creamy whipped ricotta dip is an elevated, yet simple appetizer that is perfect for pretty much any event. This version features extra-virgin olive oil, lemon, fresh herbs, and a touch of honey for the perfect balance of flavors.
What is Ricotta?
Ricotta is an Italian whey cheese that is commonly used in popular dishes such as lasagna, cheesecake, and gnocchi. It translates to "recooked", which makes sense because traditional ricotta is made by cooking whey that has been drained from cheesemaking, then straining the newly formed curds from the whey.
Modern ricotta is often made with both whey and milk, making for a creamier texture. This is what you're most likely to find if you are purchasing your ricotta from a grocery store.
Why You'll Love it:
- It's incredibly easy to make - a few simple ingredients and 10 minutes is all that is needed!
- Can be made with fresh ricotta OR store-bought ricotta.
- When it comes to ricotta dip recipes, this one is extremely versatile. Garnish it with your favorite toppings, or stick to the suggested ones for a yummy Mediterranean-inspired appetizer.
- It's a crowd pleaser and perfect for dinner parties, holidays, or special events.
- Ricotta: I recommend using whole milk ricotta cheese, as it's much creamier than lower-fat versions. You will need about 1 pound (or 454 grams).
- Lemon: Fresh lemon always tastes best! You'll need the juice of one-half, and a little lemon zest makes for the perfect garnish.
- Olive oil: This is a classic combo with ricotta. You'll need some for the whipped ricotta base, and then a few teaspoons for drizzling on top. I recommend using a good quality oil that you love the flavor of.
- Honey: While this is optional, whipped ricotta dip with honey is a personal favorite. Its sweet and earthy flavor is the perfect addition to this bright and creamy dip.
- Fresh herbs: Almost any fresh herb pairs well with this neutral-flavored dip, but I really think thyme and chives are a perfect choice.
- Garnish: There are a lot of options for garnishing this easy whipped ricotta dip - Chopped Greek olives, olive tapenade, lemon zest, fresh herbs, etc.
- Food processor (or blender): All of the ingredients for this creamy whipped ricotta dip are blended together in a food processor. If you don't have one, you can definitely use a high-quality blender instead (like a Vitamix or the budget-friendly Ninja Professional).
Check the recipe card for a full list of ingredients and the quantities needed.
How to Make Ricotta Dip
Step one: Add the ricotta, lemon juice, honey, half of the olive oil, fresh herbs, and salt and pepper to a food processor or blender.
Step two: Process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the container if needed.
Step three: Transfer the whipped ricotta to a shallow bowl, add a drizzle of olive oil, and optional garnishes (chopped Greek olives, roasted red peppers, lemon zest, fresh herbs, etc).
Making Whipped Ricotta Without a Food Processor
If you don't have a food processor, you can whip the ingredients together using either a stand mixer or an electric hand mixer.
Mix on medium speed until the dip is fluffy, with a creamy texture. Add your preferred garnishes on top of the dip and serve!
Serving Ricotta Dip
This easy whipped ricotta dip is made with only a handful of ingredients and has simple flavors, making it super versatile.
Here are a few serving ideas for this delicious dip:
- Toasted baguette slices (crostini)
- Pita chips or pita bread
- Fresh vegetables
- Cherry tomatoes
- Cucumber slices
- As a spread for canapés
Frequently Asked Questions
Whipped ricotta will be slightly grainy, but it should not be noticeably so. To avoid an excessively grainy texture be sure to select a whole-milk ricotta cheese (rather than part-skim ricotta or traditional), and whip it with a small amount of lemon juice and/or olive oil until creamy.
If your whipped ricotta is very runny, there are several possible issues. The first is that you added too much liquid, and the second is that the particular batch of cheese was very liquidy to begin with. To prevent this, add only as much liquid (olive oil, lemon juice, or water) as is needed, and strain the cheese before whipping if you notice a lot of pooling liquid.
The best way to thicken ricotta cheese is to strain it before using it in a recipe. Most ricotta cheese is thick enough, but some brands have more liquid than others (such as lower-fat or traditional types). Place the cheese in a colander that has been lined with a layer of cheesecloth (or a clean flour sack towel) and allow the cheese to drain for 20-30 minutes.
This whipped ricotta recipe stores well, and is perfect for preparing in advance for guests.
Transfer any leftover creamy ricotta dip to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.
Preparing in advance
Whip the ricotta, honey, half of the olive oil, lemon, salt, and black pepper in a food processor. Transfer to an airtight container and keep it in the fridge.
When ready to serve, transfer it to a shallow bowl and drizzle with 2 teaspoons of olive oil and garnish according to your taste.
- Garnishing: You can top this dip with whatever you like! Feel free to get creative and explore different flavors. Hot honey, red pepper flakes, roasted (or sundried) tomatoes, roasted garlic, or garlic confit are all delicious options.
- Ricotta Tips: Use good quality, whole milk ricotta cheese. You want it to be thick, with only a small amount of liquid in the container. If your ricotta is very runny, you can strain it in a colander lined with a single layer of cheesecloth or a flour sack towel.
- Is store-bought ricotta or fresh cheese best? Of course, you get bonus points if you make your own ricotta or purchase it freshly made from a Farmer's market, but store-bought is perfectly fine.
If you loved this recipe for Whipped Ricotta Dip, let me know by leaving a 5-star review in the recipe card, OR tag me on Instagram @maritimecountrykitchen!
Whipped Ricotta Dip
- Food processor or blender
- 1 pound whole milk ricotta cheese
- 4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil divided
- ½ fresh lemon juiced (1 ½ tablespoons)
- 2 teaspoons honey (optional)
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives or 1 teaspoon dried
- 1 ½ teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or ½ teaspoon dried
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Chopped Greek olives (or tapenade) optional
- Additional fresh thyme leaves or herbs of choice
- Add the ricotta, 2 teaspoons of olive oil, lemon juice, honey, chives, and thyme to a food processor or blender.
- Process until smooth and creamy.
- Taste and adjust herbs, salt, and pepper to your taste.
- Pour the mixture into a wide, shallow bowl.
- Drizzle with the remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil, and garnish with chopped olives (optional), additional fresh thyme leaves (optional), and/or lemon zest.
- Serve and enjoy with toasted baguette slices, pita chips, pretzels, or fresh chopped veggies.
- Chopped Greek olives
- Lemon zest
- Roasted red peppers
- Roasted tomatoes
- Sundried tomatoes
- Roasted garlic
- Garlic confit
- Fresh herbs
- Hot honey
- Infused olive oil