Overhead shot of a plate topped with a slice of Italian Cheesecake
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Italian Cream Cheese and Ricotta Cheesecake

This super rich, creamy, tangy, no frills, crustless Italian-style cheesecake is easier than you’d think to prepare at home!

Italian cream cheese and ricotta cheesecake is always a HUGE hit with everyone at the table.

Perfect for holiday desserts, dinner parties, and celebratory meals.

Overhead shot of a whole cheesecake sitting on a red plate.

A few years ago, my Italian in-laws came over for New Year’s Eve, and I wanted to make a delicious dessert to go with our prime rib dinner. I had recently come across a great sale on ricotta cheese, so there was only one thing on my mind…

Cheesecake.

Glorious, decadent cheesecake.

This is a super rich, creamy, tangy, no frills, crustless Italian-style cheesecake. It was a HUGE hit with everyone at the table. And it was much easier than I had anticipated to prepare!

I made a few changes to the directions from the original recipe. I added some layers of foil on the outside of the pan and then placed that in a baking sheet with a water bath to help cook the cheesecake more evenly and prevent cracking.

Overhead shot of a whole cheesecake with a slice taken out sitting on a red plate.

I also decided to leave it sit in the oven for an extra hour before I chilled it.

The only thing I may change next time is to let it cool on the counter for a while before putting it into the fridge. I had a bit of condensation form under the foil that was covering the cheesecake, and it made a little wet area on top of the cake, which had a bit of discoloration.

All cosmetic.

Still ridiculously delicious.

(Psssst: stay tuned for a post coming up with tips for how to “fix” some common cheesecake troubles – I have some fun tricks for you!)

Overhead shot of two plates, each topped with a slice of Italian Cheesecake

This is a surefire hit for any dinner party! Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to let it chill – several hours to overnight. It just gets better and better the longer it sits in the fridge. But it’s pretty hard to resist picking on it!

I’ve made this cheesecake (and a few variations!) a few times now, and it always turns out deliciously! It’s a really solid Italian cheesecake recipe that has gotten many, many thumbs up. Italians and non-Italians all agree on this one – it’s a keeper!

One final note – go the full-fat route when making this cheesecake. But if you do decide to use reduced/fat-free, do report back to let me know if it worked out for you!

Looking for more 5-star dessert recipes? Check out some of our favorites:

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Overhead shot of a plate topped with a slice of Italian Cheesecake

Italian Cream Cheese and Ricotta Cheesecake

  • Author: Big Flavors from a Tiny Kitchen - Ashley Covelli (adapted from Allrecipes)
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes (plus chilling time)
  • Yield: 12-16 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Italian

Description

This super rich, creamy, tangy, no frills, crustless Italian-style cheesecake is easier than you’d think to prepare at home! It’s always a HUGE hit with everyone at the table. Perfect for holiday desserts, dinner parties, and celebratory meals.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 (8 ounce) packages full fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (16 ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 16 ounces full fat sour cream

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bring a pot or kettle of water to a boil. Lightly grease a 9-inch springform pan. Wrap the outside of the springform with 2 layers of aluminum foil and place it inside of a deep roasting pan or baking dish.
  2. Add cream cheese and ricotta to a large mixing bowl. Mix together with an electric mixer until well combined. Add sugar, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla, cornstarch, flour, and the cooled butter and mix well. Stir in the sour cream until no white streaks remain.
  3. Pour the mixture into the prepared springform pan. Pour hot water into the perimeter of the baking dish until it comes about 1/2 inch up the sides of the springform pan.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven 1 hour. Turn oven off and leave in oven 2 hours more (don’t open the oven door until all 3 hours have passed).
  5. Remove cheesecake to the counter to finish cooling, then cover and transfer to the refrigerator to chill completely, preferably overnight, before serving.

Notes

If the cheesecake is still warm when you need to transfer it to the refrigerator, cover the pan with a layer of paper towels, then aluminum foil. This will help prevent any condensation from forming and dripping down, which can discolor the top of your cheesecake.

Recipe adapted from Allrecipes.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 466
  • Sugar: 27.9 g
  • Sodium: 181.9 mg
  • Fat: 33.7 g
  • Saturated Fat: 19.4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 33.3 g
  • Fiber: 0.1 g
  • Protein: 9.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 158.7 mg

Keywords: cheesecake, ricotta, Italian

Recipe Card powered byTasty Recipes
2 photos of a cheesecake - one overhead shot of 2 slices of cheesecake on plates with forks off to the side and one 3/4 view of a whole cheesecake with a slice taken out of it, sitting on a red plate.

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51 Comments

      • Ashley

        The water bath keeps the oven air moist and helps prevent cracking on the cheesecake. It also helps it bake evenly. I haven’t tried it without the water bath, so I can’t say how well it would work without but if you try it please let me know how it goes! Hope you enjoy 🙂

      • Ashley

        I don’t have any experience with high altitude baking but from what I’ve read, the water bath while baking should help. I’m not sure if you need to make any other adjustments. Please let me know how it goes if you try it out, Lisa!

  • Keely

    I just put this recipe together and it’s in the pan…problem however as I just realized that I was supposed to add two packages of cream cheese! Yikes…hoping that it will still cool up ok.

  • Ruth Ackermann

    To keep condensation from “dripping” on your cheeseacke place a few layers of paper towel across the top of the pan and hold in place with the foil…. it will absorb the moisture and no make white puddles on your cheesecake… i do it all the time….

  • Dianna Champlayn

    Ashley I am looking forward to cooking this cheese cake for my prince’s birthday…thus hopefully I can do it justice.
    Cheers thank you.
    Dianna.a passionate cookie

  • Danielle

    Baking this cheesecake as we speak! It’s been in for one hour and still very jiggly and liquidy. Do I continue to bake until it’s firmed up, or does the two hours in the oven off help firm it up?
    Thanks!

    • Ashley

      I haven’t ever checked on it to see if it’s still liquidy after the baking time – I just leave it in the oven for an additional 2 hours to set, so I’m not totally sure. Did you open the oven door to determine the texture? That may allow heat to escape and throw off the cooking time. I hope it works out for you!

  • Amber

    When u wrap the spring pan with foil, do u put water in the other pan I know ppl that has, I’m hoping I don’t have to making it today






    • Ashley

      Yes – the foil helps keep any water from leaking into the pan with the cheesecake mixture in it. The water helps the cheesecake cook more evenly. You could try to do it without, but I’m not sure how well it would bake. Good luck! Let me know how it turns out!

  • Yvonne

    I’ve made this exact recipe for yrs except w/a few differences. When done, I shutoff oven & then crack the door open a few inches. If it won’t stay, put a wooden spoon in the door to keep it open an inch or so. Next, even tho I bake it in a water bath, I put a small 1-2” baking dish of water on oven floor or just under cheesecake while preheating & during bake time. This makes the air very moist & allows the cake to bake without cracking the cake top. And last, once it’s done, I shut the oven off & leave it in the oven OVER NIGHT! Or st least 8-12 hrs! This allows the cake to setup slowly as it cools. Then I refrigerate it loosely covered or in a Tupperware container. Also this cheesecake feeezes AMAZING!! We often cut it & then once frozen. You can remove one slice at a time & it thaws in just a few mins.






  • GIgi

    Not exactly what I had hoped for. I used high quality full fat ingredients and the result was just okay. I wouldn’t serve it to company, though it looked beautiful, the taste and texture just didn’t check all the boxes for me. I wish I had followed Karen Springer’s lead and baked it 2 hours at 350°F. It may have had a better texture.
    I did appreciate Ashley’s tips…they certainly made the result picture perfect!






    • Ashley

      Sorry to hear that it wasn’t a hit for you. It definitely has a different texture than the one I grew up eating, but my family loves this one. Thanks for the feedback!

  • RTV

    This filled 3, YES 3 spring form pans! I thought the ingredients sounded like waaayyyy toooooo much for a 9 inch spring form pan and it was!!






    • Ashley

      I’m sorry to hear that you had trouble with this. I’ve made it many times and haven’t had trouble, and have had many many other people make it without having too much filling either. Is your pan shallow instead of deep perhaps?

  • Amy

    Good Morning!! I am planning on making 2 of these, but my pans are 8” & 10”. I intend to cook them separately, but am wondering if you have any suggestion about how to alter the cook time or temperature to account for the different pan sizes?






    • Ashley

      Hi Amy – I don’t have experience with different pan sizes but my inclination would be to put the larger one in the oven a little earlier than the smaller one. Maybe just 20 minutes or so? Since they stay in the oven for 2 hours after the heat gets turned off, they’ll still have plenty of time in the oven. Let me know how it works out!

  • June

    What a delicious recipe! I did cut back on the sugar just a little though. In my oven it took between 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours to bake. Today, I’m baking it using the convection feature in my oven so it’ll probably take up to 2 hours this time. Thanks for sharing!






  • Virginia Aspesi

    Hi Ashley:
    Big, big, big mistake. I overbeated when I put in the sour cream.
    It is incredibly soft.
    What will make a ricotta chessecake firmer?
    More cornstarch or flour??
    Jus in case I do it again, want the insurance for firmness.
    Flavor is terrific!
    Thanks,
    Virginia






    • Ashley

      Hi Virginia – did you refrigerate the cheesecake and let it fully chill after the baking time (and the time sitting in the oven without opening the door)? It should set up after it fully chills. Sorry you had trouble with this!

  • Virginia

    Hi Ashley:
    I spoke to soon. Yes, it did sit up perfectly overnight in the ref., so I didn’t overbeat it.
    I think the flour/cornstarch prevents it from being too soft.
    Thanks again fr the best cheesecake ever.
    My family says so and thanks you too!!!
    Stay safe,
    Virginia






    • Ashley

      I’m so glad it ended up working out! That’s a problem I haven’t run into with this recipe so I’m relieved that it didn’t end up being problematic for you. Glad your family enjoyed it, and thanks for reporting back!

    • Ashley

      Hi Tony – glad you enjoyed the cheesecake! The sour cream is there – it’s the last thing on the ingredient list after the butter: “16 ounces full fat sour cream”.

  • June

    Love this recipe! I’ve made this several times already and it’s always a big hit!! Thank you for sharing! I do have a question though. The tubs of ricotta come in 15 ounces not 16 ounces. Do you know if 15 ounces is enough. I usually purchase the 32 ounce size and split it.






    • Ashley

      Thanks so much for the feedback, June! I’ve never changed the amount before but I think it’s worth trying it with 15 ounces to see how it goes. If you do give it a try, please let me know how it goes!

  • Andrea

    This is a variation on a cake tha has been in my family for years. Called Dotties Cheescake after my aunt’s recipe. The only difference is we use cottage cheese instead of ricotta. Also we separate the eggs. And fold in beaten egg whites at the end. I also made it with all low fat cheeses and sour cream a few time It came out very good, just slightly less creamy. being Italian, I will definitely try it with ricotta. Who knew you could improve on heaven!






    • Ashley

      I’ve heard of doing cheesecake with cottage cheese, also. My Italian in-laws absolutely LOVE this cheesecake. The texture from the ricotta is pure heaven. I may have to try out your folded egg white variation sometime to see if it somehow makes it even MORE fluffy. Thanks for the feedback, Andrea 🙂

  • Leslie Muzingo

    I’m excited to try this recipe as I’ve always had trouble with my cheesecake cracking. I’ve also always put ricotta cheese in my cheesecake along with cream cheese and goat cheese. Would it hurt the texture, do you think, if I put a bit of goat cheese in? I know it is great on the flavor side –thanks!

    • Ashley

      I think goat cheese would be a lovely addition! I think it should work out as long as you soften it before mixing so it’s nice and creamy. Let me know how it goes!

  • Joann

    I am planning on making this cake tomorrow can you please tell me when I take it out of the refrigerator to serve how long do I leave it at room temperature before serving thank you joann

  • Alexandra Hargett

    Does this cheesecake taste like maggianos cheesecake? I’m trying to find a recipe online but haven’t found one. I tried a ricotta cheesecake recipe and the entire cake tasted soggy, very disappointing. Before trying this recipe I wanted to make sure that it wasn’t soggy but light

    • Ashley

      Hi Alexandra – thanks for reaching out! I’m not familiar with Maggianos so I’m not sure if it is similar to theirs or not. I will say that ricotta adds a lighter texture than strictly cream cheese-based recipes. I haven’t ever thought the texture of this particular recipe was soggy. It’s not as dense as the no-bake ones from the box mix that I used to make with my mom as a kid. I hope that was helpful – let me know what you think if you end up giving it a try!

  • Sherry Hobby

    Love this cheesecake, I was wondering how long it keeps in the fridge and if you can freeze it, it’s just my husband and myself now, so we can’t eat it all before it goes bad. I made with gluten free flour (Cup 4 Cup brand) and tapioca starch, also I used my stand mixer, can’t hold on to the hand mixer that long.






    • Ashley

      Thanks for the feedback, Sherry! I’m glad to know it works with GF flour and tapioca starch. This cheesecake freezes beautifully! You’ll be rewarded with a lovely slice of homemade cheesecake another day in the future. I’m actually working on updating this post so I’ll be sure to mention that in the revamped article when I do.

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