recipe for mascarpone

2-Ingredient Homemade Mascarpone

8 hours 10 mins
Vadim Rachok
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In this article, I want to tell you how to make Italian-style cream cheese mascarpone at home. I have prepared a recipe for mascarpone that is richer and more decadent than any store-bought option. If you want to make homemade cream cheese that you can use in desserts or just as a simple spread, this recipe is for you. 

What is Mascarpone?

It is a rich, creamy cheese that originated in Italy. Mascarpone is known for its creamy texture and mild, lightly sweet flavor. It is made from whole cream and is a main ingredient in many Italian desserts, most notably tiramisu. Similar to cream cheese or clotted cream, mascarpone has a soft, spreadable consistency. 

You can use it in both sweet and savory desserts. It is often used in cheesecake, frosting, and mousse recipes in addition to tiramisu. On the savory side, mascarpone can be used to enhance risottos, pasta dishes, and soups. It provides a rich, creamy texture.

The Origin of Mascarpone

Mascarpone originated in the Lombardy region of northern Italy, where its production dates back to the late 16th or early 17th century. Its name is thought to derive from the Spanish word “mascarpón,” which was used to describe a type of cream cheese. Traditionally, Mascarpone was made in the fall and winter months when cream was at its richest.

Mascarpone cheese recipe

Mascarpone Ingredients

  • Cream: Cream is mascarpone’s main ingredient, providing the rich, luxurious texture of this Italian cheese. The high-fat content of the cream is essential to the creation of the smooth, velvety consistency that is characteristic of mascarpone. 
  • Lemon juice: The lemon juice acts as the acid necessary to coagulate the cream and begin the coagulation process, which results in the formation of mascarpone. The acidity of the lemon juice causes the proteins in the cream to denature and form a curd, which is then passed through a strainer to achieve the desired consistency. 

How to Make Mascarpone at Home?

  1. First, pour the cream into a large saucepan or frying pan. 
  2. Then, place on the stove and heat. 
  3. Bring to a boil, but do not let it boil. Stir constantly. 
  4. Then, reduce to a minimal temperature and add the lemon juice. 
  5. Stir for 2 minutes until the mixture thickens. 
  6. Pour the mixture onto a sieve with cheesecloth. 
  7. Then, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 6-8 hours. 
  8. The cream cheese is ready!

Chef Recipe Tips:

  • The cream can be replaced with sour cream. However, the mass of the cream cheese will be less. 
  • You can replace the lemon juice with 0,04 ounces (1 g) of citric acid.

How to Store Mascarpone? Can you Freeze Mascarpone?

homemade mascarpone recipe

  • For best results, use mascarpone when it is fresh.
  • Cover and store mascarpone in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
  • If you have extra mascarpone, wrap it and freeze it for up to 6 weeks. 
  • To use it, I let it thaw in the fridge overnight, then use it as normal – all it needs is a good stir.
  • Just be aware that frozen mascarpone can lose some of its texture and flavor. This is why thawed mascarpone is best used in cooked dishes such as sauces, soups, and casseroles, but not in tiramisu.

Difference Between Mascarpone and Cream Cheese

  • The amount of fat: The fat content is the main difference between mascarpone and cream cheese. Mascarpone is made with heavy cream, while cream cheese is made with whole milk.
  • Sweet against savory: The higher fat content of mascarpone cheese gives it a slightly sweeter, more buttery flavor. Cream cheese has a lower fat content, making it more of a savory cheese. Mascarpone’s neutral, less acidic taste makes it ideal for sweet baking. 
  • Cream cheese, on the other hand, has a higher acidity, making it more like a savory cheese.
  • The texture: Mascarpone is softer and creamier. Cream cheese is firmer and more spreadable.

homemade mascarpone cheese recipe

Mascarpone FAQs

Why is my homemade mascarpone grainy?

Whisking too long or at a low temperature will cause the mascarpone to become grainy. Too much whisking of the heated cream will break up the fat and cause a grainy mascarpone texture. Gently stir the mixture occasionally to make sure nothing burns on the bottom.

When the cream comes to a simmer, add the lemon juice and whisk until the cream begins to thicken like a custard. The very small amount of casein in heavy cream is curdled by excess acid.

Mascarpone is high in fat, so it sets when cold. You can try heating it in the microwave for a few seconds at a time or in a double boiler on the stove over medium-low heat. Stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature, stirring and re-whipping periodically.

Why is my homemade mascarpone bitter?

Spoiled heavy cream: If your cream was not well sealed and refrigerated, it may have spoiled, causing the bitterness.

Acid source: There’s a small chance your mascarpone tastes bitter if you use lime instead of lemon.

2-Ingredient Homemade Mascarpone
Author:Vadim Rachok
I'm showing you how to make homemade mascarpone, or Italian-style cream cheese, which is very similar to regular cream cheese, except pretty much better in every way. It's not quite as tangy, but it is richer and more decadent. Whether you're going to use it in classic desserts like cheesecake or tiramisu, or just as a simple spread for bread, this recipe couldn't be easier, and only requires 2 ingredients.
recipe for mascarpone
Prep Time:
10 mins
Cook Time:
6-8 hrs
Total Time:
8 hrs 10 mons
The ingredients you need:
18,6 ounces (500 g) cream 33%
0,4 ounces (10 g) lemon juice
Let’s start !

Pour the cream into a large saucepan or frying pan. 


Place on the stove and heat. 


Bring to a boil, but do not let it boil. Stir constantly.


Reduce to a minimal temperature and add the lemon juice. 


Stir for 2 minutes until the mixture thickens. 


Pour the mixture onto a sieve with cheesecloth.


Cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 6-8 hours. 


The cream cheese is ready. 

Nutrition Information
Servings Per Recipe: 4 Calories: 1613
% Daily Value *
 % Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g16%
Saturated Fat 8g39%
Sodium 13mg1%
Total Carbohydrate 1g0%
Protein 1g1%
Potassium 27mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data. (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption. Powered by the ESHA Research Database © 2018, ESHA Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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