Easy Cheese in an Instant Pot

Instant Pot Cheese Easy recipe Claudia Lucero sneak peek freebie

Ready to make cheese in your Instant Pot?! This recipe is not in my new book, Instant Pot Cheese. This is an extra simple recipe you can start with right now. No rennet, citric acid or special equipment needed. You do need milk but it's cheese, what did you expect?! ;)   

I developed this recipe while working from home. It is an easy one to make in the background and check in on when you take breaks from other things. Read through the whole recipe first. You'll see what I mean! 

ps. if your machine doesn't have the yogurt function, you can still use this recipe more actively but you will need a thermometer. See the notes at the bottom. 

Ingredients (feel free to cut the recipe in half for a mini batch)

1/2 gallon whole cow's milk (8 cups), not ultra pasteurized (regular pasteurized milk from the grocery store or raw milk from a farm are both great!)
2 cups cultured buttermilk
1/4 cup lemon juice 
1/2 teaspoon flake salt or 1/4 teaspoon sea salt (adjust to your taste) 

  1. Pour the 1/2 gallon of whole milk into your Instant Pot and press the Yogurt function until it adjusts to the BOIL setting.

  2. Lock the lid on. No need to set on seal, we're not cooking this under pressure. Walk away while it gently heats to just the temp we need. That will be about 165 degrees Fahrenheit. It will take about 30 minutes depending on how chilled your milk is to start. It doesn't actually boil by the way. It's more like a pasteurization setting. Tricky eh?

  3. The machine will beep to alert you. It will shift to the yogurt function. Note: This is a lower temp so your milk will eventually cool down if you leave it too long. 

  4. If you have a thermometer you can confirm the temperature. It's ok if it is higher than 165 degrees Fahrenheit but if it's lower, repeat the BOIL step.

  5. Pour the buttermilk in, stir a couple of times. Pour the lemon juice in, stir a couple of times. You will see some curd immediately. Stop stirring.

  6. Allow the curd to set and develop for 5 additional minutes by just locking the lid on and setting a timer.

  7. Turn off and unplug your Pot.

  8. Pour curds and whey through a colander lined with cheesecloth or a clean, lint free tea towel. You can keep the whey for smoothies, making polenta, boiling potatoes and all kinds of other tasty uses by catching it in a large heat-resistant bowl. It freezes very well, just leave at least 10% space in your container for expansion.

  9. Stir in salt to taste and if you'd like, have fun adding herbs or spices you enjoy. Chives, black pepper, whatever you like

  10. You can pack your cheese into a form to make a wheel (even a ramekin or cupcake tins work!), or you can just put it in a storage container to spoon out as you need. This cheese even makes a great cheesecake, fruit tart base, pasta filling and of course it's perfect as a nice spread for crackers and veggie sticks. 

If you enjoy this cheese and recipe, you will love my new book Instant Pot Cheese! It is available in all major and some independent book sellers. It features 30 recipes including 7 dairy-free. 

Instant Pot Cheese Claudia Lucero 

If your machine doesn't have the yogurt function or you just want to use a stove top burner, adjust as follows. 

Instant Pot 

Use the sauté setting on low to heat the milk between 165F-175F. Stay nearby and stir frequently to prevent scorched milk. 

Stir in the buttermilk and lemon juice. Turn Pot off and carefully use oven mitts or a towel to remove inner pot from the base and place it on a trivet or other safe surface. Allow the curd to set for 5 minutes. 

Drain the curds and whey and complete the recipe in the same way as above. 

Stove Top

Heat the whole milk in a thick bottomed pot at medium heat. Turn off at 165F-175F.

Stir in the buttermilk and lemon juice. Move the pot off the hot burner to allow the curd to set for 5 minutes. 

Drain the curds and whey and complete the recipe in the same way as above. 


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