DIY Thursdays: Homemade Cream Cheese


Sometime ago, I searched for homemade cream cheese recipes on the net. There were quite a few that popped up, but most of them used rennet as the coagulating agent. For those of you who didn’t know this, rennet is an enzyme obtained from the stomachs of calves, lambs and such other mammals. Vegetarians, sorry to burst your bubble, but most store bought hard cheeses (with the exception of soft Philly cream cheese) have rennet in them.

The recipes of cream cheese that didn’t use rennet seemed long winded, complicated and not so convincing. So my search for homemade cream cheese recipe was put to an end and I continued buying Philly cream cheese even though it was an expensive proposition; now I couldn’t stop making cheesecakes, could I?

Couple of days ago, I looked up homemade cream cheese again and hallelujah! I found this amazing recipe on  There is always this skepticism involved in making cream cheese at home, because one is never sure about how it will turn out especially when used in making cheesecakes. But this cream cheese is of the perfect consistency, can be used in cheesecakes unflinchingly or frosted on cupcakes.

I will never buy cream cheese from a store again, and I can continue to make cheesecakes like I always used to, but free of guilt.


What you need:

  • Large, heavy bottomed dish
  • Candy thermometer
  • Large colander
  • Cheese cloth or tea towel
  • Long wooden ladle
  • Long, wide-mouthed glass jar
  • String, to tie


  • 1.5 liters heavy cream (I used Amul fresh cream)
  • 1/3 cup distilled vinegar
  • Pinch of salt

Yield: about 450 grams

Add salt to cream and in a heavy bottomed pan, bring to boil, or until your candy thermometer shows 82 C. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, put off the heat when small bubbles start appearing on the surface and steam comes on top.

Allow it to cool for 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and mix. Cover the vessel with a tea towel and let it sit at room temperature for 8 hours or overnight.

The cream should’ve curdled. Now, place a tea towel or several layers of cheesecloths on a colander, pour the mixture into it, gather the edges of the tea towel to make a pouch and tie it together with the string. Tie the string to the wooden ladle and hang it in the jar. Leave some gap between the pouch and bottom of the jar for the whey to drip in. Place it in the refrigerator.

Next day, lightly squeeze the pouch to extract any additional whey. Unbundle the pouch and you’ll have firm, spreadable cream cheese, ready to be spread on a cracker!

Recipe courtesy:




Filed under Cheese, DIY Thursdays

29 responses to “DIY Thursdays: Homemade Cream Cheese

  1. Payal

    Thanks for the recipe.. how does this taste? does it taste like philly cream cheese..I am often skeptical to make my own at home not so much because of consistency but the taste.

  2. a very useful post …and thanks for sharing ….

  3. How do I store it ?
    Whats the shelf life ?

  4. vandana

    Thankyou for the recipe its easy n came when I needed it the most, wanted to make cheesecake for my son’s birthday…thankyou once again

  5. Wow, such a useful recipe.. Homemade, easy to try and simple!!

  6. Menka

    Will def try…. My previous attempts didn’t quite get me the desired consistency, though had tried a diff recipe. Cheesecake here I come!!

  7. Thats a wonderful recipe, though I follow another recipe but this sounds more tastier, Thanks for sharing 🙂

  8. Shweta

    I made this at home and when I opened the tea towel this morning to find that beautiful cream cheese inside, my heart leapt with joy! 🙂 Perfect texture and great taste! I don’t think I’ll ever buy cream cheese again! Thanks for this wonderful recipe!

    • I’m so glad it turned out well Shweta. People are skeptical to try because they aren’t sure how it will turn out. Where did you come across my recipe?

      • Shweta

        Hi, I’d bookmarked your cream cheese recipe sometime ago. If I remember right, the link was on Home Bakers’ Guild on FB. I’m so glad I finally got around to making it! 🙂 Thanks again!

      • Oh very nice Shweta. If it is not too much of a hassle could you please post on the guild that it was indeed a siccess? I’d like for people to try the recipe without any hesitation now. I would be very thankful!

  9. Shweta

    Hi, I tried the same recipe with Milky mist cream and it didn’t work. I used 800 ml of cream and roughly 35 ml of vinegar and a pinch of salt.
    The last time, I used Amul fresh cream and the result was great. What do you think would’ve gone wrong this time? 😦

  10. Shweta

    Hi, I checked the Milky Mist packet and it says Medium fat cream as against Amul which is low fat. I added more vinegar and let it sit at room temperature for another 4 hours and then it curdled better. Then I hung it in a tea towel for 8 hours and it came out pretty good. 🙂 It tastes a little more sour than I would like it to be but I guess I managed to salvage it!

    • tanvi

      Hey I tried it with milky mist too. Its been sitting for far more than 12 hours and it has thick creamy consistency. It does not look curdled at all. And it tastes somewhat like sour cream. Anything I can do to curdle it?

  11. Shreya

    Hi ! Just wanted to ask do i need to add sugar as i am planning to bake a red velvet cupcake with cream cheese Frost as im not sure how will it taste . thanks in advance

  12. Ruchika

    Hi.. want to know if i can use muslin cloth instead of tea towel or cheese cloth.. also where can i find cheese cloth and tea towel???

  13. Sneha

    Would this work well in a baked cheese cake? I must try this out.

  14. reshmabudhia

    Hey is this basically hung curd? What’s the difference between the two?

    • Reshma, hung curd is hanging curd in a cheese cloth. This is boiling cream and curdling it with vinegar and then suspending it in a cheese cloth. Both are vastly different.

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