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Learn how to make Italian lemon ricotta pie with this simple recipe. If you are not familiar with what a lemon ricotta pie is or have never made one yourself, don’t worry, either had I until a few years into my marriage.
This is in my opinion one of the easiest Italian dessert recipes I know of and I encourage you to give it a try.
How to Make Italian Lemon Ricotta Pie
I provide step by step instructions below as well as a video. However, the video omits the lemon zest – but just add the zest to the other ingredients when mixing… it’s all in the instructions below. 😉
Like all my Italian recipes I share, this lemon ricotta pie is very easy and simple. Do not be intimidated! This is a wonderful dessert that is perfect for any holiday or really, any time of the year!
The lemon is not overpowering, but subtle and very refreshing.Jump to Recipe
What Does Lemon Ricotta Pie Taste Like?
A ricotta pie is somewhat similar to a cheesecake in texture and form.
Don’t get confused with a ricotta cake which is more like regular cake made with lots more flour.
If you like lemon flavored desserts, you should check out my Italian lemon cake recipe too!
You can see my original photo from over 10 years ago (taken with a basic point and shoot, but at least you’ll see what it looks like without filters, enhancing etc!).
Is Ricotta Pie Easy to Make?
This is a traditional Italian recipe (very popular at Easter and Christmas time) and very simple to make. The most unique ingredient would be the ricotta cheese and confectioners sugar which you can easily get at any grocery store.
Basically, you mix all the ingredients together, except the egg whites.
You whisk the egg whites until they have stiff peaks.
Then you blend those in gently and pour into the spring form pan or cake pan.
Bake it, then let it cool and add the confectioners sugar prior to serving.
Yes, it’s that easy…. if I can do it, so can you!! If you look at my profile image on this site (at the time of this writing), I’m actually holding a ricotta lemon pie!
Is Dough Used with this Recipe to Make a Crust for Lemon Ricotta Pie?
The answer is no.
Many people think that there is supposed to be a crust for the pie, but for a ricotta pie there is no crust.
So although it is similar to a cheesecake as I mentioned above, there is no dough – no crust.
The pie will still hold it’s shape.
How Much Lemon Zest to use in a Ricotta Pie?
In my recipe I use fresh lemon zest of a whole lemon. This comes to about one tablespoon.
Simply add the lemon zest to the other ingredients.
Surprisingly the lemon zest does not overpower the full recipe. It adds a subtle flavor that makes this desert bright and flavorful.
Toppings to Use on the Ricotta Pie
When making this easy recipe, you can add additional toppings besides just confectioners sugar.
Try to use fresh fruit such as:
Some people even top with chocolate, although I have not.
Where’s the Lemon in my Ricotta pie Video?
Unfortunately the video below shows the recipe without lemon, but you can still follow the video just make sure to add in the lemon zest per my instructions.
Note: the video does not mention the pan size I used. I used a 9 inch for the video.
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Italian Lemon Ricotta Pie Recipe
Lemon ricotta pie is an easy Italian dessert I received from my Italian husband. It is a great dessert recipe for the holidays or parties. Easy and simple to make! Enjoy!
- 1 1/4 lb ricotta cheese (whole milk) (20oz or approx 2 1/2 cups)
- 3 tbsp white sugar
- 1 tbsp white flour
- pinch salt
- 3 egg yolks
- 3 egg whites
- grated zest of 1 lemon
Preheat oven to 375F
Combine the ricotta, sugar, flour, salt, lemon zest and egg yolks (only the yolks), in a large mixing bowl until very smooth without lumps or clumps
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. If you have an electric mixer, use the whisk that came with it.
Using a spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the ricotta mixture.
Spray the cake pan or spring form pan with cooking spray or butter and dust with some flour. Once even coated dump any excess into the sink by simply tapping the sides.
Bake for 35 minutes uncovered
Let cool for 1 hour to allow pie to set and settle (it will deflate)
Before serving, top with confectioners sugar (don’t be shy). If you have fresh blueberries or other fruit, add these either on top or as a side dish.
For this recipe you will need a handheld or electric mixer and a cake pan or spring form pan (preferred).
original post Nov. 2015