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Feta Cheese vs. Ricotta Cheese — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Published on January 31, 2024
Feta cheese is a brined, crumbly Greek cheese made from sheep's or goat's milk, while ricotta cheese is a soft, creamy Italian cheese made from whey.
Feta Cheese vs. Ricotta Cheese — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Feta Cheese and Ricotta Cheese


Key Differences

Feta cheese, originating from Greece, is traditionally made from sheep's or goat's milk. Ricotta cheese, hailing from Italy, is made from the whey of sheep, cow, goat, or buffalo milk.
Feta cheese is known for its crumbly texture and tangy, salty flavor, often aged to develop its characteristic taste. Ricotta cheese has a creamy, soft texture with a mild, slightly sweet flavor.
The production of feta cheese involves curdling milk, brining, and aging. Ricotta cheese is produced by reheating the whey from other cheese production, coagulating the remaining proteins.
Feta cheese is a staple in Greek salads, pastries, and as a table cheese. Ricotta cheese is versatile in Italian cuisine, used in lasagnas, cheesecakes, and as a spread.
Feta cheese typically has a higher salt content due to brining, while ricotta cheese is lower in fat and salt, making it a lighter option.

Comparison Chart



Primary Milk Source

Sheep's or goat's milk
Whey from sheep, cow, goat, or buffalo milk


Creamy, soft


Tangy, salty
Mild, slightly sweet

Common Culinary Uses

Greek salads, pastries, table cheese
Lasagnas, cheesecakes, spreads

Compare with Definitions

Feta Cheese

Often used in Mediterranean cuisine.
Feta cheese is essential in Greek salads.

Ricotta Cheese

An Italian whey cheese with a soft texture.
Ricotta cheese is used in many Italian desserts.

Feta Cheese

A brined Greek cheese made from sheep or goat milk.
She crumbled feta cheese over her salad.

Ricotta Cheese

Made from leftover whey from cheese-making.
Ricotta cheese is a byproduct of cheesemaking.

Feta Cheese

Contains higher salt content.
Feta cheese is salty due to its brining process.

Ricotta Cheese

Lower in fat and salt than many cheeses.
Ricotta cheese is a healthier cheese option.

Feta Cheese

Known for its crumbly texture and tangy flavor.
Feta cheese adds a tangy taste to dishes.

Ricotta Cheese

Used in pasta fillings and cheesecakes.
She filled the cannoli with sweetened ricotta cheese.

Feta Cheese

Aged and stored in brine.
Aged feta cheese has a rich flavor.

Ricotta Cheese

Has a mild and slightly sweet flavor.
The ricotta cheese added a delicate sweetness to the dish.

Common Curiosities

How is feta cheese made?

From sheep's or goat's milk, aged and stored in brine.

How is ricotta cheese made?

By coagulating the proteins in the whey left from cheesemaking.

What is ricotta cheese?

A soft, creamy cheese made from whey, originating in Italy.

Is ricotta cheese suitable for baking?

Yes, especially in desserts and lasagnas.

What is feta cheese?

A salty, crumbly cheese traditionally from Greece.

What does feta cheese taste like?

It has a tangy, salty flavor.

Is ricotta cheese a healthier option?

Yes, it's lower in fat and salt.

What's the texture of feta cheese?

Crumbly and firm.

Is feta cheese healthy?

In moderation, though it's high in salt.

What does ricotta cheese taste like?

Mild and slightly sweet.

What's the texture of ricotta cheese?

Creamy and smooth.

Can you cook with feta cheese?

Yes, it's great in baked dishes and salads.

What dishes use ricotta cheese?

Lasagna, ricotta cheesecake, and cannoli.

Can you substitute feta for ricotta?

Not directly, as they have different textures and flavors.

What dishes use feta cheese?

Greek salads, spanakopita, and as a table cheese.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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