Lemon Ricotta & Mascarpone Cheesecake

I love the light texture of a good ricotta cheesecake but by adding mascarpone to the mixture, the cheesecake becomes creamier while remaining very light. I made this light cheesecake yesterday for our Easter dessert and really was pleased how it turned out. It was moist, light, with just a hint of lemon flavor.

Along with lemon zest, I used Fiori di Sicilia, which I buy at King Arthur flour. I love the combination of citrus and vanilla in this extract, and use it often in a lot of my baked goods. If you do not have Fiori di Sicilia, you can use half a teaspoon of vanilla extract, and half a teaspoon of lemon extract.

This is a cheesecake that can be made crustless as in the version I made yesterday, or you can add your favorite graham or pastry crust. If your ricotta cheese is very wet, drain it in a sieve over a bowl for an hour or so which will ensure a creamier cheesecake. This cheesecake is delicious simply dusted with powdered sugar, drizzled with a fruit puree, or topped with fresh berries as shown in my photos.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 

Ricotta Mascarpone Cheesecake

Ricotta Mascarpone Cheesecake

Yield: Serves 8 - 10
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

A very light, fluffy cheesecake using a combination of cheeses.


  • 2 Pounds Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 Pound Mascarpone Cheese
  • 1 1/2 Cups Granulated Sugar
  • 6 Large Eggs
  • 2 Large Egg Yolks
  • Zest From 1 Large Lemon
  • 1 Teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia (See Note Above)
  • Powdered Sugar

To Serve:

  • 1 Pint of Fresh Strawberries, Sliced & Tossed With 1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Zest And 2 Teaspoons Sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Generously butter a 9 inch spring-form pan, then cover bottom and sides with aluminum foil.
  3. Place spring-form pan into a larger casserole dish and pour in enough water to come up the sides of the spring-form pan by 1 inch.
  4. Using a mixer, beat together the ricotta, mascarpone and sugar until light and fluffy, then add the eggs and egg yolks one at a time beating between each.
  5. Add the lemon zest and Fiori di Sicilia (or extracts) and mix until blended.
  6. Pour the batter into your prepared spring-form pan and bake for 1 1/2 hours.
  7. Turn the oven off, and let the cheesecake sit in the oven for another 30 minutes.
  8. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool to room temperature.
  9. Use a sharp knife to help loosen the sides of the cheesecake from the pan and place on a plate.
  10. Refrigerate the cheesecake for several hours before serving. Just before serving sprinkle with powdered sugar.
  11. Serve small slices topped with sliced macerated berries.

Did you make this recipe?

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  1. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for as a dessert to cap a Sicilian meal. Question: okay to make it two days in advance? Will it keep in the fridge?

  2. Uncomplicated recipe with impressive results! Light, creamy texture with perfect hint of lemon….wonderful with red raspberry puree drizzled over each piece. Also good with melted dark chocolate. Leftovers kept perfectly well for 4 days in fridge. Might work better to place springform in slightly larger cake pan rather than aluminum foil wrap. Then place them in larger pan with water. Aluminum wrap allowed some water to leak through slightly.

  3. Just made your cheesecake. I needed something lighter for husband’s birthday cake. I don’t know what size pan you used because I had leftover cheese mix. BTW I don’t have the extract so I used orange zest, lemon zest and vanilla extractto taste. The cheese mix was very tasty too. I can’t wait. It is so light. I don’t care for heavy cheesecake. I also reduced the sugar to a cup. It is delicious. This is a forever recipe! Thank you

  4. Total Fop! Not sure what went wrong. Undercooked. Followed directions exactly. Something to do with placing dish in water bath ….

  5. Hello there, I love this cheesecake I’ve made it a few times, just wondering will it freeze well and how long do you think it will take to defrost
    Thanks Babita

  6. Just wanted to say thank you for the wonderful recipe of
    It is one of my absolute favorite things to make for special occasions.
    I fell in love with Italy as a young traveler and decided to become a chef because of the lasting impression it made.
    When you make things with the freshest ingredients and to have love of food, family & friends then… il pasto è una cosa bellissima!
    Warmest Regards

  7. While I love the cake, the center was undercooked. Can I assume that I need to check that the center is not giggling before taking out, and if it is, extend the baking duration?

    1. Oven temperatures can vary. I use a thermometer to check my oven every few months. Did you leave the cake in the oven for the extra 30 minutes as stated in the directions?

  8. I made this wonderful cheese cake twice. Family loved it. Problem I had was that after cooking & cooling in oven then cooling completely on rack before refrigerating the cake drained a sweet liquid. This continued after refrigeration as well.

  9. Getting ready to make this luscious looking cheesecake, thought I had 8 oz of mascarpone – but I was wrong. I do have 16 oz Ricotta and 8 oz cream cheese and the rest of the ingredients. Is there anything I need to change or do differently if I use cream cheese in place of mascarpone since there is a difference in the two? Thank you

  10. Made this twice. Once in 8in pan, center was a little ‘loose’. The second time in a 10in pan. Better! Had to let it drain/sit overnight, then it firmed up a lot better. Good taste, creamy and balanced texture.

    Curious if batter can be made in smaller ramekins or minis for less time, etc.? Thanks again for recipe!

  11. Can’t stop making this cheese cake. Everyone loves it every single time and it’s always requested. Delicious … thank you so much for sharing

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