Homemade Cream Cheese

Breakfast, DIY, Sides

If you’ve ever thought Homemade Cream Cheese was too difficult to make, this post is here to prove you wrong. Homemade Cream Cheese is fluffy, fresh and so utterly delicious.

Homemade Cream Cheese

Naturally, cream cheese is also very important to me. I’ve been wanting to make homemade cream cheese 4evrrrrr. I’m so glad I finally got brave and decided to do it. It definitely took me a few times to get exactly right.

Supplies You’ll Need to Make Homemade Cream Cheese

Most of the supplies you’ll need to make homemade cream cheese are easy to find, especially on Amazon. Here is what you’ll need:

Homemade Cream Cheese

Homemade Cream Cheese

What’s the Difference Between Homemade and Store Bought Cream Cheese?

There are plenty of things that I think are silly to make homemade. Cream cheese IS NOT ONE OF THEM. The texture is a million times better than the cream cheese you buy at the grocery store. It’s so much smoother, lighter, creamier. The main difference is that store-bought cream cheese usually has a gum listed in the ingredients (guar gum, xanthm gum, etc.) which mean it’s a lot thicker and denser. Well, not this one.

It’s so good, that I probably won’t ever go back to store-bought cream cheese ever again.

Homemade Cream Cheese

How to Make Homemade Cream Cheese

  • Combine the milks. In a big pot, add the heavy cream, whole milk, buttermilk and salt.
  • Warm to 75 degrees F. Heat the milk mixture to this temperature.
  • Mix in the rennet. Add the rennet and mix throughout. This is going to make it so the solids separate from the whey.
  • Allow to stand at room temperature in a warm place. In order for this to actually work, the temperature has to be nice and warm.
  • After 14 Hours, strain it. This takes about 14 hours for the whey and solids to separate. Line a sieve or strainer with a few layers of cheesecloth. Nestle it over a large bowl. Pour the mixture into the cheesecloth.
  • Allow it to drain. This should take about 4 hours for it strain.

One thing I’m SUPER excited about is what I’m doing with the leftover whey. Be sure to save it, use it in place of buttermilk in biscuits or pancakes!

If you make it, let me know on Instagram!

Homemade Cream Cheese

Homemade Cream Cheese

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5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 16 hours 10 minutes
Serving Size: 2 cups of cream cheese
Calories: 75kcal
This Homemade Cream Cheese recipe is super easy. It's creamy, fluffy and tastes so much better than the store-bought version we're all used to.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups whole milk, ultra-pasteurized is ok!
  • 2 tablespoons buttermilk, shaken
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 drops liquid vegetable or animal rennet, dissolved into 2 tablespoons of water

Directions

  • In a large pot, combine heavy cream, whole milk, buttermilk and salt. Heat to 75 degrees F. (Warm to the touch.)
  • Mix in rennet being sure it’s evenly distributed. Cover with clean kitchen towel and allow to stand in place that’s 75 degrees for 14 hours. Just a heads up, I tried this once during the day and once at night. No surprise that the batch that sat for 14 hours during the day was MUCH better. It was just warmer and was overall a better environment for the cream cheese.
  • Line a fine-mesh strainer with a few layers of cheesecloth; and then nestle it over a large bowl. Pour the cream/milk mixture into the cheesecloth and allow it to strain, on its own (don’t work it through), for about 4 hours to 5 hours. When it's completely drained, the final product should be a creamier, smoother and lighter version of cream cheese that you're probably used to. It keeps in the fridge for 2 weeks.

Notes

What to Do With the Whey Leftovers: 
Put them in homemade biscuits (in place of the buttermilk) 
Put them in cinnamon roll dough (in place of the milk) 
Equipment: 
Vegetable Rennet | Cheesecloth | Stainless Steel Bowls + Glass Bowls 
CourseBreakfast, Condiment
CuisineAmerican, Jewish
Keywordcream cheese recipe, homemade cream cheese, how to make cream cheese
Calories: 75kcal
Did you make this Recipe? Tag me Today!Tag @acozykitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #acozykitchen
Looking for more breakfast/brunch recipes? 
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48 Comments

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Recipe Rating




  • Reply Amy July 22, 2020 at 2:06 pm

    Can you please post the strength of the rennet you used because they vary, thanks.

  • Reply Jacob October 29, 2019 at 9:59 pm

    instead of heating the milks, could I just leave them out for an hour to come up to room temp before adding the rennet and do everything in a bowl or something similar?

    Or will leaving it out cause problems? Or does the faster change from cold to warm that the stove provides make a difference? I noticed the milks are supposed to be 75 before the rennet, and then you keep it at 75 in room temp.

    If my room temp is colder than 75 degrees, should I keep this on low flame? or just let it sit for longer?

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme October 30, 2019 at 12:48 pm

      Not sure since I didn’t test it that way–sorry!

  • Reply Jacob October 29, 2019 at 9:45 pm

    What did you do with the Whey? It doesn’t say?

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme October 30, 2019 at 12:47 pm

      I made biscuits. They’re linked to the recipe in the *notes* section of the recipe!

  • Reply Megan August 26, 2019 at 11:45 pm

    Does the end product taste any different? If so, how? I am thinking of making my own cream cheese and sour cream for a New York cheesecake. Do you think the difference in texture would affect how the cheesecake would turn out?

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme August 28, 2019 at 12:28 pm

      I’m not sure, I haven’t made a cheesecake with it. But I suggest going through the trouble to make homemade cream cheese if you’re spreading it on a bagel or toast. It’s a much fluffier texture!

  • Reply Chelsea June 2, 2017 at 12:30 pm

    Thanks for sharing your recipe! We have only eaten raw dairy products for the past year due to health problems with pasteurized/homogenized dairy (lactose intolerant people typically are fine with raw dairy since lactase is not destroyed by the high temps of pasteurization). do you know if this an acceptable recipe for raw dairy?

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme June 2, 2017 at 9:09 pm

      Oh I think it will be delicious and perfect to make cream cheese. It will most likely be easier because ultra-pasteurized milk doesn’t have any cultures, making it sometimes difficult to make cream cheese with. But raw milk should work great! Let me know the results!

  • Reply Sue Sheriff July 16, 2015 at 11:27 am

    I love homemade food and I also offten make cream cheese at home. Thank for your share. it ‘s very helpful.

  • Reply layla July 1, 2015 at 9:58 am

    have you ever simply drained yogurt thru cheese cloth? its almost exactly like cream cheese and much easier and cheaper 🙂

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme July 1, 2015 at 10:56 am

      Yes! It’s called lebneh! Very delicious but it tastes super different from cream cheese, in my cheese-loving opinion. 😉

      • Reply layla July 1, 2015 at 1:02 pm

        It may depend on the type of yogurt. I only had it in Egypt and it tastes the same to me. Perhaps the yogurt used is less tangy, I do add a bit of salt though. I also adore cheeses 😀 I hope I get the chance to try your recipe soon 🙂 thanks

  • Reply Roxi June 30, 2015 at 7:34 am

    What about fat free?

  • Reply Jem June 28, 2015 at 2:27 pm

    Can you further explain in depth the purpose and uses of gums in store-bought cream cheese? What are they made of and why are they bad to consume?

    -Curious, Cream Cheese Lover

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme June 28, 2015 at 9:08 pm

      Guar gum is usually the thickener and stabilizer that’s used in cream cheese. I don’t think it’s like the worst thing in the world for you (we consume them all the time in all sorts of foods). Here’s more info on it:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guar_gum

      I like this cream cheese not necessarily because “it’s better for me.” It more has to do with loving the texture without the gums. This is much lighter and fluffier, while store-bought cream cheese is a whole lot more dense.

  • Reply Stephanie June 28, 2015 at 11:36 am

    I am a cream cheese freak! I never thought about making it myself, though. It doesn’t seem like it’s that hard, either.

    Thanks for sharing!

    http://aneducationindomestication.com

  • Reply Cynthia Bliss June 26, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    This has got to be more EXPENSIVE than store bought cream cheese. You have to buy 2cups of cream and 2cups of milk plus the rennet and cheese cloth. And the time that it takes you to make it. Plus you left your oven on for 16 hrs., what about the electricity cost?
    How much did you end up getting in the end?
    Here where I live store brand cream cheese goes for about $2.00 for 8ozs.

    • Reply Marie Reichert July 3, 2020 at 12:49 pm

      Actually, its not too expensive. I regularly make cream cheese this way I get a gallon of milk ~3.00 and a pint of heavy cream (~1.50), so total of $4.50 (Aldi). The liquid rennet I have lasts forever, so I don’t really count into the cost. In the end I get about 3-4 cups of cream chees :).

  • Reply Leslie Rossi June 25, 2015 at 10:49 am

    YUM! I had no idea you would make your own cream cheese. I also love carbs! I secretly love bread baskets at restaurants and no meal is complete without bread!

    Leslie
    http://alifewellconsumed.com

  • Reply John June 25, 2015 at 8:55 am

    What a cool recipe! I love being able to know exactly what is in my food and this allows me to do that with this kind of cheese that I love so much.

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