Whipped Ricotta Is The Simple Solution For The Creamiest Pasta

We're always on the hunt for the best ingredients to create the creamiest bowl of pasta. While heavy cream seems to have that role occupied, it never hurts to explore other avenues to get some luscious noodles. When looking for pasta that's ultra-rich, whipped ricotta has never let us down.

Though underrated, ricotta is the best cheese to include in your pasta dishes. Ricotta is made from the remnants of the cheese-making process, but a dollop or two of whipped ricotta can be the star of any dish. It has a mild, milky flavor that gives pasta a subtle boost and an incredible texture. While it can initially be a little grainy, some time in the blender or food processor is the best way to make whipped ricotta as smooth as possible. Once whipped, it can be folded into pasta a few minutes before taking it off the stove, giving it a flavor more indulgent than heavy cream.

After coating the pasta in the whipped ricotta, you can add a few spices to taste or simply mix the whipped ricotta with another pasta sauce. If you want the flavor of pesto in your pasta dish without it tasting overwhelmingly like the sauce, you can stir the two together or just add some ricotta into the food processor when making pesto from scratch. Its creamy flavor works well with bright sundried tomato pesto or milder varieties like almond mint pesto.

What flavors can you add to whipped ricotta?

If you don't want to mix the ricotta into another sauce, a few ingredients can turn the cheese into the perfect creamy coating for your pasta. Ricotta is a milder cheese, so something acidic like lemon zest is sure to wake it up. The fruitiness of it complements whipped ricotta's sweeter side while giving it a pop of flavor. Sprinkle some in there along with salt and black pepper for a simple, bright sauce for pasta.

Fresh herbs bring an earthy flavor and delicate streaks of green to your whipped ricotta pasta. Add dill, chopped basil, or fresh sage to give the ricotta a peppery, herbaceous bite. These simple ingredients can dress up flavorful dishes like hazelnut cream pasta or creamy cajun pasta without taking away from the overall taste.

If you do want to step up the whipped ricotta a bit, add rich, nutty flavors to coat the pasta with. A bit of brown butter mixed into the ricotta gives it a caramelized flavor in a matter of minutes. Roasted garlic or caramelized onions can also do the same for the cheese. After heating, crush the garlic or onions into a paste and add it to the blender or food processor with the ricotta.