Cream Cheese Making Instructions

Cultured Cream Cheese is a fermented dairy product obtained by fermenting regular cream with beneficial lactic acid bacteria until it thickens, then straining it to make a firmer spreadable cream cheese. The entire process is very easy to follow, takes very little active hands on time, has a high yield, and the result is amazingly delicious!

Making cream cheese is easy, in fact cultured cream cheese is one of the easiest cheeses you can make!

Mildly tart, lusciously rich and creamy, homemade cultured Cream Cheese is delicious. Because it is full of probiotics, cultured cream cheese is much more beneficial to your digestive system than regular cream cheese, plus when you make it yourself, there’s no limit to the flavors you can make!

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Our Cream Cheese is soft, creamy, and delicious. Our cultured Cream Cheese comes in two flavors - the traditional classic, crisp and slightly tangy taste and a lighter, milder, sweeter, and creamier French style.

Both starter varieties make soft, thick, delicious and versatile spreadable Cream Cheese of exceptional quality with an unforgettable flavor, consistency, taste and aroma.
Simply select a pack size and enjoy making some great Cream Cheese!

Our Cream Cheese starter makes deliciously creamy and thick Cream Cheese of exceptional quality. Our Cream Cheese starter comes in two varieties – one with the traditional classic, crisp and slightly tangy taste and the other – a lighter, milder, sweeter, and creamier French style cream cheese (why two varieties?). Making instructions are the same for both varieties.

This is a heirloom Cream Cheese starter with live active bacteria – you can reuse cream cheese from your previous batch to culture your new batch, for as long as you wish.

Cream Cheese is a mesophilic product, which means you can culture it at room temperature.

It is super easy to make Cream Cheese using our Bacillus Bulgaricus Cream Cheese starter culture.

All you need is a pack of our starter and cream.

Our Cream Cheese starter works with any type of dairy cream — raw or pasteurized regular cream, double cream, half-and-half, or a mixture of cream and milk.

You can also use non-dairy heavy cream, however when using vegan creams you might need to add a thickener as those won’t usually thicken on their own.

The higher the fat of the cream you start with, the thicker and more delicious your cream cheese will become.

There are two ways to make Cream Cheese – the traditional mesophilic way and a faster, fail proof way, which I personally recommend as it yields results faster. The two methods are explained below.

 

Traditional Mesophilic Cream Cheese Making Instructions

Use this method if you prefer to make your Cream Cheese the traditional way, manually or with the help of a yogurt-making machine.

What you’ll need:

  • jar or another container to culture the cream in
  • lid or a towel to cover that container during incubation
  • cheesecloth or muslin to strain the cultured cream

How to make it:

  1. Let your cream warm up to room temperature (around 76°F / 24°C) on its own, or if you want to speed up the process, gently heat it up that temperature.
  2. Add the starter from the pack to the cream and stir until it dissolves.
    Note: Do not whisk. Whisking introduces air bubbles into the cream and that slows down incubation.
  3. Cover the jar with a lid or a towel to keep the cream clean from dust and air-borne particles. Towel is maybe better because it allows air to still go in, which speeds up activation a bit.
  4. Let the cream sit for about 24 hours and then check if it has set (firmed up).
    Note: Cream has set if it separates somewhat cleanly from the sides of the jar when you tilt the jar. It should resemble the consistency of thick yogurt. It will likely be firm at the top while still being somewhat watery further down, and it should separate easily from the jar when tilted.
  5. If it hasn’t set in 24 hours, then keep it going and check every 2-4 hours until it sets. It may take up to 72 hours to set depending on the ambient temperature and other conditions in your environment.
  6. Pour the thickened cream into the cheesecloth and allow the whey to drip out for 12 to 24 hours, or until the cheese is as dry as you’d like. The longer you strain it, the firmer your cream cheese will be.
  7. Remove the cream cheese from the cheesecloth and move to a jar or a storage container. Cover with an air-tight lid.
    Note: If you plan to add add any flavorings to your cream cheese, add them at this point while the cream cheese is nice and soft and easy to mix (it will firm up considerably later on in the fridge). You can simply add some salt for a classic Philadelphia style cream cheese taste or anything that you like your cream cheese with – scallions, chives, walnuts, cinnamon, sugar, etc. I rarely add anything to mine as I like the natural creamy cheesy taste.
  8. Place the Cream Cheese in the fridge for at least several hours so it can properly firm up. Cooling the Cream Cheese will help it thicken and improve its taste.
  9. Enjoy!

Do not forget to save a cup of the ready-made cream cheese to use for making your next batch! Keep that in the fridge and make sure you use it to make your new yogurt within 3-4 days to ensure all bacteria is viable and in great condition.

 

Fail Proof Cream Cheese Making Instructions

If you have difficulties getting good results with the traditional method, try this fail-proof manual method instead. It allows you to speed your Cream Cheese making a bit compared to when using the traditional method above. It is about the incubation step only, there’s not much you can do to speed up the straining step unless you have a centrifugal or another kind of power strainer.

This method relies on keeping the cream warm during incubation, which speeds up the process by making the culturing environment more beneficial to the development and procreation of the lactic acid bacteria.

  1. Heat up the cream up to just over 113°F / 45°C
  2. Set aside a small cup from the cream
  3. Keep the rest of the cream in the container you heated it (or distribute it to the culturing containers – 1L mason jars work best)
  4. When the cream in the cup is at 86°F / 30°C (it will feel lukewarm to the touch), add the starter from the pack to it then gently stir it until it dissolves, may take a couple of minutes.
    Note: You are adding the starter to the cream in the small cup, not to the cream in the containers!
  5. When the rest of the cream (in the containers) is ready, at around 90°F / 32°C, distribute the cream from the cup (the one with the starter) to the jars, proportionally to their volume.
  6. Gently stir the cream in the jars.
    Note: At no time whisk. Whisking introduces air bubbles into the cream and that slows down incubation.
  7. Place a blanket in your microwave (or oven). Microwaves and ovens are thermo-insulated and minimize the loss of heat.
  8. Place the jars in the microwave on the blanket.
  9. Loosely cover the jars with their lids or a towel.
  10. Cover with and wrap around another blanket or a large towel. Make sure the blankets are covering the jars from all directions to minimize heat loss. This will make sure jars stay warm all throughout the incubation process.
  11. Leave overnight (about 8 hours). Check if the Cream has set (it should have) and if it hasn’t, leave it for a couple of more hours, and keep checking a couple of hours apart, until it sets.
  12. Note: Cream has set if it separates somewhat cleanly from the sides of the jar when you tilt the jar. It should resemble the consistency of thick yogurt. It will likely be firm at the top while still being somewhat watery further down, and it should separate easily from the jar when tilted.
  13. Pour the thickened cream into the cheesecloth and allow the whey to drip out for 12 to 24 hours, or until the cheese is as dry as you’d like. The longer you strain it, the firmer your cream cheese will be.
  14. Remove the cream cheese from the cheesecloth and move to a jar or a storage container. Cover with an air-tight lid.
    Note: If you plan to add add any flavorings to your cream cheese, add them at this point while the cream cheese is nice and soft and easy to mix (it will firm up considerably later on in the fridge). You can simply add some salt for a classic Philadelphia style cream cheese taste or anything that you like your cream cheese with – scallions, chives, walnuts, cinnamon, sugar, etc. I rarely add anything to mine as I like the natural creamy cheesy taste.
  15. Place the Cream Cheese in the fridge for at least several hours so it can properly firm up. Cooling the Cream Cheese will help it thicken and improve its taste.
  16. Enjoy!

Tips and Notes on Making Cream Cheese

The heavier the cream, the less whey will drip out after culturing and the thicker your cream cheese will be. Your cream cheese yield will depend on how much whey you drain out of the cream during the straining step. Expect cream cheese yield of around 60-80% of your starting cream weight.

Unlike other cultured products, you cannot easily adjust the tartness and the flavor of your cream cheese by controlling the method and time of incubation. That is why we have two different varieties of cream cheese starter that yield two different flavors of cream cheese – one, the traditional classic, crisp and slightly tangy cream cheese taste, and the other – a lighter, milder, sweeter, and creamier French style cream cheese. Choose the flavor you like better or try them both!

There are other methods out there that call for using rennet to make cream cheese, etc. The one that I’ve given you here is the easiest method that yields the best results. You can certainly use any of the other methods that you want to try – the starters will work with them all.

I had to get creative for the straining step. My kitchen cabinet doors don’t have handles or knobs (I know for a fact that people hang the cheesecloths from those) so I hung my cheesecloth from a rolling pin put across two high stacks of books and let it drip into a bowl.

The liquid that drains during the straining step is going to be very thick in the beginning, almost like yogurt, and very think towards the end, like clear whey. Save the liquid – it’s basically cultured buttermilk! Cook with it, drink it, incorporate it in some recipe, etc.

Once you are finished straining your cream cheese will feel thick but still not as thick as you might imagine it to be. Don’t worry! It will get much thicker after a couple of hours in the fridge.

Try adding some salt to your cream cheese – it will give it that familiar Philadelphia style taste but will also help keep it fresh longer. Salt of course is entirely optional. I eat mine without.

The Process in Pictures

Let cream warm up to room temperature or gently heat it to room temperature.

Add starter.

Stir in the starter well until it dissolves.

Let cream set until it thickens, 12-24 hrs.

Transfer cream to cheesecloth and drain, 12-24 hrs.

Remove from cheesecloth.

Add salt or flavorings to your liking, transfer to a storage container and move to fridge to firm up.

Enjoy!

Up to 36% off
New
(48 reviews)
$2.99$30.99

Our Cream Cheese is soft, creamy, and delicious. Our cultured Cream Cheese comes in two flavors - the traditional classic, crisp and slightly tangy taste and a lighter, milder, sweeter, and creamier French style.

Both starter varieties make soft, thick, delicious and versatile spreadable Cream Cheese of exceptional quality with an unforgettable flavor, consistency, taste and aroma.
Simply select a pack size and enjoy making some great Cream Cheese!

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