How to Make Goat Cheese


Goat Cheese

Goat cheese is a tart, creamy cheese that is often used in gourmet dishes. You might find this cheese is expensive to purchase, but you can make it at home for a fraction of the price, especially if you have your own dairy goats. In addition, this delicious cheese is a good source of calcium and vitamins and will enhance the flavor of your favorite salads, pizzas, and appetizers. 

There are two ways to make goat cheese. First, you can heat it and create the curds with white wine vinegar or lemon juice. You can also make goat cheese in a similar manner using rennet and starter curds. Both methods are easy and can be made at home. 

In this article, we’ll talk about the different methods for making goat cheese. The easiest way uses lemon juice or white wine vinegar to curdle the milk, but we’ll also talk about how to make goat cheese with rennet. We’ll discuss how to store goat cheese safely and give you a delicious and easy salad recipe. But first, let’s take a quick look at what goat cheese is. 

What Is Goat Cheese?

Goat cheese is also known as chevre. Chevre is the French word for female goat. It’s a white, creamy-textured cheese that may taste a little bit tart or sour. Since goat’s milk is a little bit easier to digest than cow’s milk, the cheese made from goat milk might be easier to digest. 

Goat milk is used for everything from pizzas to salads to appetizers. In many parts of the world, goat milk is the main source of milk and cheese. You can make different kinds of goat cheese, but the most common cheese made from home is a soft cheese. 

Is Goat Cheese Pasteurized or Unpasteurized?

Pepperjack Goat Cheese

In the United States, cheese made from unpasteurized milk must be aged for 60 days. Otherwise, any fresh goat cheese has been made from pasteurized milk. If you make your own goat cheese, you can make it from either pasteurized or unpasteurized goat milk. It’s up to you, just avoid using goat milk that has been ulta-pasteurized.

Making goat cheese is pretty easy, and you can do it at home without any special equipment, other than a good culinary thermometer, a strainer, pot, and cheese cloth. 

When making goat cheese, the goat milk is warmed and is allowed to curdle. The curds are drained from the whey and then pressed into a form and refrigerated. Fresh goat cheese is soft and crumbly with a creamy texture. 

Materials Needed for Making Goat Cheese 

Ingredients

  • 1-quart goat’s milk 
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar or lemon juice
  • salt 

Other Materials 

  • Non-reactive pot, such as stainless steel 
  • Cheese Cloth 
  • Food thermometer 
  • Colander
  • Wooden spoon

How to Make Goat Cheese

  1. Pour one quart of goat’s milk into your non-reactive pot. Place it on the stove and heat it over low heat. Slowly heat the milk until the temperature reaches 185 degrees Fahrenheit. Don’t let the milk reach a full boil, and be careful it doesn’t scorch. You’ll know you’ve reached the right temperature when gentle bubbles form and the surface of the milk looks foamy. 
  2. When the milk reaches 185 degrees and looks right, turn off the heat and add your white wine vinegar or lemon juice. 
  3. Stir the milk. 
  4. Let the milk sit for 10 minutes. You should see loose curds forming on the surface. It will have the appearance of curdled milk. 
  5. While you’re waiting, drape three layers of cheesecloth over your strainer or colander. It should be large enough to pull up the sides around the curds to drain them. 
  6. Carefully pour the goat’s milk into the strainer. The curds should catch in the cheesecloth.
  7. Set the strainer over a bowl first if you want to save the whey. You can use the whey for other things. You can just strain the goat milk over the sink if you don’t want it. 
  8. Next, you’ll pull the sides of the cheesecloth up, creating a little bag with the curds inside. Hang the pouch with a rubber band so that all the whey can drip out. For example, you could slide the rubber band over a long-handled spoon. Place the spoon over the top of a tall pot or jar so the bag of curds can hang. 
  9. Leave the bag of curds hanging for one to two hours, then gently squeeze the pouch, so the rest of the moisture drips out. 
  10. Place the curds from the cheesecloth into a bowl.
  11. If you like, season the curds with salt and any other seasonings like dried herbs.
  12. Knead the salt and seasonings in the curds just like you would knead bread dough. This will soften the texture of the cheese to make it smoother and creamier. 
  13. Refrigerate the cheese for several hours. 
  14. You can shape your cheese into a log with a cookie cutter or just leave it in a bowl. Cover it tightly and keep it in your refrigerator. 
  15. It should have a smooth, creamy texture. 

How to Make Goat cheese with Starter Culture 

Block of Goat Cheese

Making goat cheese with a starter culture is also very easy, but it does take a little bit longer for the curds to form. For best results, you’ll want your kitchen to stay as close to 73 degrees Fahrenheit as possible. If your kitchen is too cold, the curds won’t form. If you need to, you can let your culture rest in a cold oven with the light on. This will keep the culture warm but won’t heat it up too much. Always follow the directions on the specific packet of starter culture, but this guide will give you a good idea of how to make your goat cheese using a starter culture. 

Ingredients

  • 1-quart goat’s milk 
  • One packet of goat cheese starter culture with rennet

Materials 

  • Non-reactive pot, such as stainless steel 
  • Cheese Cloth 
  • Food thermometer 
  • Colander
  • Wooden spoon
  1. Gently heat your goat milk in a non-reactive pot, such as stainless steel. Heat it until it reaches 86 degrees Fahrenheit, then turn off the heat. 
  2. Add your starter culture to the milk and stir it in with a wooden spoon. 
  3. Cover the pot. 
  4. Allow the milk to culture for 12 to 18 hours.
  5. The cultured milk will have the consistency of yogurt; there may be some whey (liquid) in the pot as well. 
  6. When you’re ready to drain your cheese, put several layers of cheesecloth over top of your colander. Place the colander over a bowl if you want to save the whey. Otherwise, you can drain it into the sink. 
  7. Gently dump out your cultured cheese into the cheesecloth and let it drain. 
  8. Pull up the edges of the cloth around the cheese to make a little bag. 
  9. Hang up your bag so it can drain. Let the cheese drain for 6 to 12 hours.  
  10. Once the cheese has drained, you can pour the curds into a bowl and add salt if you like or any fresh herbs or spices. 
  11. You can shape your goat cheese into a log with cookie cutters or just leave it in a bowl.
  12. Keep it tightly covered and in the refrigerator for up to one week. 

How to Store Goat Cheese 

Goat cheese needs to stay in the refrigerator. If you keep it tightly covered, it should stay good for one to two weeks after you make it. 

If you want to extend the life of your goat cheese, you can freeze it. Wrap it in freezer-safe plastic and put it in your freezer. It should last for up to 6 months. However, the texture of your cheese will be affected, and you may want to keep the frozen cheese to use in baking recipes rather than eat it raw. 

If you see any mold on your goat cheese, discard it. 

How to Use Goat Cheese 

Goat cheese can be eaten with crackers like any other cheese. It goes great with spinach dishes, in quiches, and definitely on gourmet pizza. I love goat cheese with spinach and beet salad. 

Goat Cheese and Beet Salad 

Ingredients 

  • Spinach 
  • Canned beets, sliced
  • Chopped walnuts
  • Oil and Vinegar Dressing

A goat cheese salad is easy, brightly colored, and flavorful. This salad is quick, easy, and makes a beautiful presentation.

Put a layer of spinach on your plate. You can also add arugula or other greens if you prefer. 

Arrange your sliced beets on top of the spinach. Sprinkle the goat cheese and chopped walnuts over the spinach and beets and drizzle with oil and vinegar to taste. 

Related Questions 

Can you use anything else to make your goat milk curds? 

Citric in water can be used in place of vinegar or lemon juice. Simply dissolve your citric acid in water and then add it to the pot of milk when you start heating it. This will have the same effect as vinegar. 

Can you eat moldy goat cheese? 

Do not eat goat cheese if it is moldy. Discard it immediately. It is best to make goat cheese in smaller batches so it doesn’t go bad before you can eat it. 

David

Hi! I’m David. For most of my life I have been interested in emergency preparedness. Over the many years things have changed a great deal. From freeze dried food, to LED lanterns, preparing for an emergency has never been easier. The continual research I have done over the years have become the basis for this website. Now it is one of the most trusted sources to learn about emergency preparedness. Read More

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