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13 Insanely Delicious Ways To Use Ricotta Cheese

It's basically a weapon for making all food awesome.

You've probably had ricotta cheese tucked into lasagna or cheesecake, but imho you should be adding it to practically everything. Here's how.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

You can find ricotta in the dairy aisle at your grocery store or actually it's surprisingly easy to make it yourself. Here are 13 ideas — both savory and sweet — for how to use a fresh batch.

1. First of all: You can put it in a bowl, drizzle it with your best olive oil, add salt, pepper, and crackers and call it a day.

Lindsay Hunt / BuzzFeed

Or call it a fancy dinner party appetizer that took you 10 seconds to make. Ideally the salt is flaky sea salt and the pepper is freshly ground. If you don't have crackers, a spoon is just fine. No shame.

2. Mix it with some cooked frozen spinach, Parmesan, and a little mayonnaise to make a dip.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

Usually spinach dip has loads of cream cheese and mayonnaise. This has a lighter ricotta base with salty Parmesan and ~just a little~ mayo.

Here's how to make the dip:

Microwave 1 (10-oz.) package frozen, chopped spinach according to package directions. Squeeze excess water out and mix with 1 cup each ricotta and Parmesan, and ¼ cup mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Serve with tortilla or potato chips. Makes about 3 cups.

3. Take lazy Sunday breakfast to a new level by spooning it onto your scrambled eggs. (Chives are optional. Toast isn't.)

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

Ricotta takes soft scrambled eggs to the next level, trust us.

Here's how to make the eggs:

Beat 2 large eggs with a salt and pepper in a small bowl. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter or olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. When the butter starts to foam, turn the heat down to low.

Add the eggs and stir constantly with a rubber spatula for 30 seconds to 1 ½ minutes. When the pan is mostly little clumps of eggs and just a little eggy liquid left, remove the pan from the heat and stir until the eggs are just cooked, about 30 seconds longer.

Scoop the eggs onto a plate and dollop with ¼ cup of ricotta. Serve with buttered toast and then, if you want, sprinkle with some chopped chives. Serves 1.

4. Mix it with cream cheese, powdered sugar, chocolate chips, and vanilla to make quick Cannoli Dip.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

I cannoli tell you how insanely delicious this is. LOL, sorry.

Here's how to make the dip:

Whisk 1 cup each ricotta, cream cheese, and powdered sugar in a medium bowl. Fold in ⅔ cup mini chocolate chips and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Serve with broken up waffle cones. Makes about 4 cups.

5. Combine it with grilled fruit, crunchy granola, and honey for a snack or dessert.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

Grilled peaches have all the tender deliciousness of pie or crumble—but healthier. Set them on a smear of ricotta to catch all the juices.

Here's how to make the peaches:

Preheat a grill to medium-high. Brush 4 halved peaches with a little bit of mild-flavored oil (like vegetable or canola) and then grill until charred and tender, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Serve with 1 cup ricotta, ½ cup granola and a generous drizzle of honey. Serves 4.

6. Stir it into your spaghetts.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

Add ricotta to spaghetti with marinara just before serving for pockets of richness or fold it in fully for a creamier sauce.

Here's how to make the spaghetti:

Cook 1 pound spaghetti according to package directions. Stir in 3 to 4 cups of your favorite marinara. Dollop with 1 cup ricotta and then top with fresh basil, a drizzle of olive oil, then season with salt and pepper. Serves 4.

7. Make this deceptively easy mug cake.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

Cake in two minutes? Yes, please. Microwave cakes can be tough, but the ricotta keeps this light and tender.

Here's how to make the cake:

Whisk ¼ cup each flour and ricotta, 2 tablespoons each melted butter and maple syrup, and 1 large egg. Top with ⅓ cup raspberries. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Dust with powdered sugar and serve immediately. Serves 1.

8. Toss it with watermelon, avocado, and a crunchy seed or nut for a refreshing salad.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

Watermelon salad might seem weird, but the ~super fresh crunch~ of the fruit contrasts perfectly with creamy avocado and ricotta.

Here's how to make the salad:

Top 4 cups chopped watermelon with 1 cup ricotta, 1 cubed avocado, and 3 tablespoons sunflower seeds. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and top with fresh basil. Serve immediately. Serves 4 as a side.

9, 10, 11, 12, and 13. Make a TOAST

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

You can smear ricotta on toast and then top it with almost anything for an easy meal.

Try it with corn and scallions, or pesto and tomatoes, or a fried egg. You can also eat it for dessert: top with strawberries and honey or banana and nutella. Get the recipes here.

P.S. You might have the ingredients already to make your own ricotta. To learn how, click here.

Lindsay Hunt / Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed