Homemade Mozzarella Recipe — Dirt Farmer Jay (2024)

Learn how to make mozzarella at home!

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If you’ve ever considered making fresh mozzarella cheese but thought it would be tricky, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. Not only is it delicious, but our homemade mozzarella recipe is simple to make. Making mozzarella cheese takes an hour or less, depending on your home’s temperature and the temperature of the ingredients. Once you’ve made this homemade mozzarella cheese recipe, you’ll wonder why you ever opted for the store-bought variety!

Read on to learn how to make mozzarella at home! You can also watch Dirt Farmer Maggie making fresh mozzarella by visiting our video’s link at the end of this page. Enjoy!

What You’ll Need to Make Mozzarella at Home

You’ll need the following ingredients for our homemade mozzarella recipe:

  • ¼ cup water with ¼ teaspoon of rennet added and stirred in

  • 1 gallon of whole milk

  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt

Expert Tip: Do not use junket rennet tablets. They are not strong enough to curdle the milk. You can buy animal or vegetable liquid rennet online. It’s also easy to find rennet at specialty brewing or cheesemaking stores.

Before you get started making the fresh mozzarella, check to make sure you have a thermometer on hand. You’ll use the thermometer to measure the temperature of the cheese during the cooking process. Digital thermometers are best for this recipe. If you haven’t yet invested in this kitchen tool, it’s a must-have for a wide variety of recipes!

You’ll also need to have a large pot, stirring spoon, strainer (or slotted spoon), a large bowl to strain the whey into (if you want to save it), a microwave-safe bowl, and rubber (or latex) gloves. Once you’ve gathered all the tools and ingredients, you’re ready to start making homemade mozzarella!

Directions for Making Fresh Mozzarella

After you’ve gathered all the ingredients and tools, you’re ready to make mozzarella at home. The amount of time it takes to make this easy mozzarella cheese recipe will depend on the warmth of your ingredients and kitchen. However, a good expectation is an hour or less. You can speed up the process by warming your milk in a sink filled with warm water for 20 minutes before you get started.

Once you’re ready, follow these steps to make mozzarella at home:

1. Prepare the Milk

Pour a gallon of milk into a large pot. Add the water and citric acid mixture into the milk.

2. Heat the Milk to 90 Degrees

Turn on the burner of your stove to medium heat. Affix your thermometer to the side of the pot, making sure the tip is well into the milk but not touching the bottom of the pan. Stir slowly and constantly until the milk reaches 90 degrees.

Expert Tip: To speed up the process, you can pre-heat your gallon of milk in a sink full of hot water for about 20 minutes. If you follow this process, your milk may already be at 90 degrees when you start. Check the temperature before you get started. If you’re at the right temp, you can move on to the next step!

3. Add Water and Rennet to the Warm Milk

When the temperature of the milk reaches 90 degrees, remove it from the heat. Add the water and rennet mixture into the pot. Gently stir the milk for 30 seconds. Once this is done, cover the pot and let it rest for five minutes.

4. Warm the Mixture to 105 Degrees

If your milk has curdled into a solid piece, use a long knife and cut the curd into 1-inch squares. The curd (or pieces of curd) will float on top of the whey. Turn on the burner of your stove to medium heat. Begin to stir the mixture slowly and gently until the temperature comes up to 105 degrees. Remove from the heat and stir for an additional five minutes.

5. Separate the Curds and Whey

Now you will separate the curds from the whey. To do this, I use a large strainer. However, if you prefer, you can use a slotted spoon with small holes. As you remove the curds, place them into a microwave-safe bowl. Once you’ve removed all the curds, you can dispose of the whey. Keep in mind; the whey will continue to weep out of the curds. If you see this happen, pour off the whey.

Expert Tip: Instead of tossing the whey, you can save it for use in soup or mashed potatoes!

6. Head the Curds to 135 Degrees and Add Salt

Microwave the curds for one minute on high. Pour off any excess whey that has wept out of the curds. Insert your thermometer into the curds to check the temperature. You want it to get to 135 degrees. Continue microwaving the curd in short 10 to 15-second bursts until it gets to this temperature.

When curds reach 135, drain off any excess whey, sprinkle one teaspoon of coarse salt on top, put on rubber or latex rubber gloves, and mix in the salt with your gloved hands.

7. Work the Homemade Mozzarella Cheese

Pick up the cheese and fold it on itself several times. It will be very hot and soft. Let it stretch itself by holding it up and letting its weight pull it apart. When it gets shiny, you’re almost there. Make sure you don’t overwork the cheese!

As the cheese begins to cool, shape it into the form you want (e.g., ball or log). Once you’ve formed it into the shape you desire, lay the cheese on a plate. It will continue to spread as it cools. Once it has cooled, cover the cheese and store in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to one week, but I guarantee you’ll eat it much quicker!

Expert Tip: I usually form my homemade mozzarella cheese into a log shape and store it in tightly wound plastic wrap. This shape allows for easy slicing!

Bottom Line

Not only is this cheese delicious, but our mozzarella cheese recipe is easy to make. Plus, the more you make it, the easier it gets! Making fresh mozzarella takes an hour or less, depending on the temperature of the ingredients and your home. To speed up the process, have the ingredients and tools you’ll need at the ready.

Once you’ve started making mozzarella cheese at home, you’ll wonder why you ever purchased it at the grocery store! This homemade mozzarella cheese is great to eat plain, and it can also be used in lots of recipes. A couple of our favorite dishes to make using this homemade mozzarella cheese recipe are Caprese salad and eggplant parmesan!

Leave a comment if you made this mozzarella cheese recipe and how you like to eat it. Also, please let us know if there are other recipes you want us to try. We love to hear from our readers and viewers!

Homemade Mozzarella Recipe — Dirt Farmer Jay (2024)
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