Who can resist a delicious dessert made with sweetened ricotta? Here’s a round up of my 9 best Italian desserts with ricotta, from traditional classics to some of my own creations!
Ricotta’s mild, slightly sweet flavor and creamy texture lends itself well whether in sweet or savory recipes. I enjoying cooking and baking with it so much that I dedicated a whole category of recipes under the heading Ricotta that you can check out!
Dessert recipes made with ricotta are, and have always been, the most popular recipes on my blog. So I know I’m not the only one who can resist sweet ricotta treats!
I’ve rounded up 9 best Italian desserts with ricotta recipes from my blog here for you. From traditional family recipes to a few new creations of my own, this list of ricotta dessert recipes has something for everyone, whether you’re a novice baker or a more experienced one!
You can purchase ricotta at most grocery stores, but did you know how easy it is to make your own homemade ricotta? That’s why I’ll start off this list with my ricotta recipe which you can make in just a few simple steps!
Sicilian Cannoli with Ricotta Filling
Let’s get started with this iconic dessert that Sicily is known for world wide: cannoli with ricotta filling! Making your own shells is definitely an undertaking and they do require frying. However it is so worthwhile as they keep well stored in an airtight container for weeks before they are filled. They can also be filled them with a creamy custard filling but of course, as you know by now, ricotta filling is by far my favorite!
Sicilian Cassatelle with Ricotta
This is another popular Sicilian dessert typically enjoyed during Carnevale. This is the celebration that marks the beginning of Lent. Cassatelle are referred to as sweet ravioli and are filled with creamy ricotta to which you can also add chocolate chips. Traditionally fried but are delicious baked as well.
Mom’s Sicilian Ricotta Pie
My mother’s ricotta pie is the dessert that I associate with my childhood. Commonly enjoyed at Easter time but definitely not exclusively, at least not for me! A sweetened pie crust is filled with a creamy, lemon scented ricotta filling. It doesn’t get better than this!
St-Joseph’s Day Baked Zeppole with Ricotta
Italians celebrate St-Joseph’s Day on March 19th each year by eating zeppole. Most are made with a deep fried shell but I make this baked version which starts with a basic pate a choux recipe. This elegant dessert is easier to make than you think!
Sweet Ricotta Easter Calzone
One of the easiest ricotta cakes you’ll ever make is this Sweet Ricotta Easter Calzone, a specialty from my husband’s family originating from Bari. All you have to do is mix all the ingredients together and bake. Perfect for when you need a simple last minute dessert!
Easy No Crust Easter Pastiera
This recipe for Easy No Crust Easter Pastiera is a simplified version of the traditional Neapolitan dessert that combines rice or cooked grain and ricotta baked in a pie crust. Similar to a cheesecake, all ingredients are combined and baked in a spring form pan.
Pizzelle Cannoli with Ricotta Filling
When you want the flavor and look of cannoli but with less work, Pizzelle Cannoli with Ricotta Filling are for you. These thin waffle like cookies are rolled immediately when they come off the hot iron and filled with a creamy ricotta cream just before serving. And, I think they’re rather pretty!
Rhubarb Ricotta Almond Tart
Inspired by the rhubarb which grows plentifully in my garden each spring, I created this beautiful tart. It combines the tart flavor of rhubarb with creamy sweet ricotta on a nutty almond flour crust. Simple yet elegant!
Fig Jam, Ricotta and Pistachio Crostata
There’s nothing like the taste of fresh figs, however the Canadian climate makes it challenging to grow this fruit. That’s why I rely on fig jam to make this rustic, free form crostata. Once again filled with a creamy ricotta cream, it’s topped with fig jam and sprinkled with pistachios (preferably from Sicily) for crunchy texture.
So there you have it, my 9 best Italian desserts with ricotta! Definitely far from exhaustive and without a doubt I’ll be adding to this list in the future. But for now, I hope this is enough to entice you to try baking with ricotta whether you want to put something together in minutes or want the challenge of a more complex recipe.
If you try out any of these recipes, please share your creations with me by tagging me with #mangiabedda or @mangiabedda on Facebook or Instagram. Buon appetito!