What Is Labneh?
Labneh, also spelled labne, is a Middle Eastern (and particularly Lebanese) strained yogurt. Labneh is spreadable like cream cheese and tangy like sour cream. Since labneh is made with yogurt but spreadable like a soft cheese, many people call it "yogurt cheese." If you have yogurt—whether it's homemade yogurt or good-quality supermarket yogurt—you can make homemade labneh.
How to Serve Labneh
Drizzle your homemade labneh with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle it with fresh herbs, lemon zest, or za'atar for a quick and beautiful labneh dip. Or, serve it as part of a mezze, or appetizer platter, featuring an array of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern savory snacks such as baba ganoush, lavash, warm pita bread, homemade hummus, marinated feta cheese, salt-pickled veggies, chickpea salad, and olives. You can also use labneh in place of cream cheese on bagels or toast.
Simple Homemade Labneh Recipe
Prep Time10 min
Total Time24 hr 10 min
- 2 cups plain Greek yogurt (whole milk yogurt will have a richer flavor)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste (optional)
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
- Line a fine-mesh strainer with two to four layers of cheesecloth. Set the strainer over a deep bowl. Transfer yogurt to the cheesecloth and fold the cheesecloth over the yogurt to gently cover.
- Refrigerate, and allow the whey to drain from the yogurt until the labneh cheese has reached desired consistency, about 1–3 days. Season with salt, if desired.
- To store, place labneh in an airtight container and cover with olive oil. If desired, roll labneh into small balls and store in a jar, covered with olive oil.
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