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Homemade Yogurt Cheese

When I began this blog, one of the first recipes I shared with everyone was for homemade yogurt. If you have a yogurt maker, the recipe is ideal for going beyond yogurt to making yogurt cheese, commonly known as labneh in the Middle East. If you don’t want to make it yourself,  just start out with a good quality store-bought yogurt.

Labneh is wonderful as a spread or dip any time of day, even breakfast. It’s smooth and thick, a bit tart and most commonly topped with olive oil and zattar {thyme & oregano}. I love it with pita bread and olives, but at times I even use it on tacos when I don’t have sour cream- my kind of fusion food.

Nowadays labneh is normally bought commercially, but it’s so easy to make yourself at home. All you need is yogurt to start out and then top with what you like best, or nothing at all. Here’s my no-fuss way of making it.

Ingredients

2 cups yogurt

extra virgin olive oil

ground oregano

Directions

  1. Place a bowl to fit underneath a colander. This will catch the liquids coming from the yogurt when it drains.
  2. Line the colander with cheesecloth or a paper towel, then add the yogurt.
  3. Cover the yogurt with the ends of the cloth or towel. Place a dish or bowl on top to cover it completely. Place in the fridge overnight or for about 6-8 hours. It should thicken considerably and you should see liquids in the bowl underneath the colander. The towel or cloth should also be wet.
  4. Release the cheese from the towel and place in a bowl or storage container until ready to use.
  5. To serve, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with ground oregano or other herbs and spices you enjoy. Scoop with pita bread, olives or even dates for a healthy, delicious treat.

My Fave Yogurts

Stonyfield Yogurts

Cultural Revolution Organic Yogurts

9 comments

  1. Yvonne, I have never made labneh at home. It sounds pretty easy from your recipe. I will give it a try!

    Nisrine

  2. My wife loves yogurt and lebneh – we shall try this. Shukran!

  3. Salam Alaykum
    When I click on the link for homemade yogurt, it says that I do not have permission to view drafts. Not sure if anyone else has this problem.

    P.S The homemade cheese looks delicious!

  4. @S- thanks for letting me know. The link should be working just fine now.

  5. I like to eat strained yoghurt at home too. The thickness you get after straining it, is absolutely lovely to eat! My 3 year old daughter and I love to eat it with fresh fruit and a drizzle of honey!

  6. FATIMA ABDULRAHMAN

    Salam, Ive never ttasted itbut now il definately make it

  7. I like this labneh very much and have it always in my fridge. In a market I found plain yoghurt with 10% of fat. This is the best. Before draining I add a bit of salt. Fundamental I add chopped garlic. Than fresh mint, parsley or chivers. (either – or, not all together).

  8. Assalam o Alikum,

    I would add a pinch of salt, red chili powder, dried mint and garlic to labneh.

  9. suraida madronero

    Salam allaikum,ilove to eat labneh ii remember when i was in middle east i used to eat it a lot but now not any more because here in phillipines its hard to find a good yoghurt maybe you can give me the recipe how to make yoghurt?thanks a lot

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