Can you substitute mascarpone for ricotta cheese?

  • 4
    In general, or for a recipe or type of recipe?
    – mech
    Sep 6, 2018 at 12:57

2 Answers 2


Welcome! You absolutely can substitute mascarpone for ricotta. I do it all the time with lasagna, pizza, etc. as many people don't like the texture of ricotta. I do add a pinch of salt to the mascarpone.

  • 2
    another thing that you can try if your guests don't like the texture of ricotta is pass it through a sieve, twice if necessary, as it removes a lot of the grittiness
    – Agos
    Sep 19, 2018 at 7:55

In a pinch, yes. They're both soft cheeses with a delicate flavour and an Italian name, but they have significant differences you should be aware of before attempting a substitution:

  • Ricotta contains a lot more water than mascarpone (feels lighter)
  • Mascarpone contains a lot more fat than ricotta (feels heavier, richer)
  • Ricotta has more carbohydrates (feels sweeter)
  • The composition of the protein and carbohydrate part is very different, though this will be less noticeable

I would be especially wary of this substitution where ricotta is presented "by itself" - in recipes such as cannoli, cassata, pastiera the substitution will not work well.

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