Baked Ricotta Pudding Cake

Baked ricotta pudding cake

The Spruce / Jennifer Meier

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 40 mins
Total: 65 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
260 Calories
10g Fat
29g Carbs
11g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 260
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g 13%
Saturated Fat 5g 23%
Cholesterol 168mg 56%
Sodium 331mg 14%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 11%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Protein 11g
Calcium 153mg 12%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Ricotta is one of those secret ingredients in baking that often gets overlooked, but Italian-styled baked goods use it quite a bit. Ricotta can add so much, and this baked ricotta pudding cake recipe, for example, is a comforting dessert with a texture somewhere between angel food cake and pudding. Soft and airy and yet rich and creamy, the flavor is mild and not too sweet.

The baked pudding will come out of the oven puffed up, then quickly collapse—but that's what it's supposed to do. Although you'll be tempted to dig in immediately, this dessert actually tastes better at room temperature.

Try to find the creamiest ricotta that you can for this recipe. Many grocery stores sell ricotta that is grainy, not smooth and creamy, and it will negatively affect the texture of this dessert. If you can, buy ricotta from a cheese store instead, or make it yourself. It's not hard to do.

When it finally cools enough to enjoy, you can top slices of this cake with fresh berries or a drizzle of chocolate sauce if you like, but it's delicious on its own. 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup ricotta
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Confectioners' sugar, optional, for dusting

Steps to Make It

  1. Heat oven to 350 F and butter a 1-quart baking dish.

  2. In a medium bowl, mix together ricotta and egg yolks until smooth. Add vanilla, flour and all but 2 tablespoons of the sugar.

  3. In a separate small bowl or bowl of an electric mixer, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Slowly add remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and continue beating until egg whites become more firm and stiff peaks form.

  4. Gently fold the egg whites into the ricotta mixture.

  5. Scrape batter into the prepared baking dish and bake for 40 minutes. The middle should be fairly firm and not jiggle much when the dish is gently shaken.

  6. Let cool and dust with confectioners' sugar.

  7. Slice and serve on its own or with fresh fruit or a drizzle of chocolate sauce.

Variations

This cake would be delicious with citrus zest, such as that of an orange, lemon, or lime, added in. Add the zest with the sugar that you combine with the egg yolks. (Leave it out of the sugar you add to the egg white mixture; you just want whites and sugar.) If you'd like to get even fancier, you can make a candied citrus peel, and garnish this plain but delicious cake with that, too.

Tips

Eggs will separate the best when they are cold; if there is any amount of yolk in the whites, they will not whip up. Allow the whites to come to room temperature before whipping.

How to Store and Freeze Baked Ricotta Pudding Cake

Ricotta pudding cake will keep at room temperature for a couple of days or in the fridge for 4 to 5 days. You can also freeze this cake for longer storage. Wrap it first in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil, and freeze for 3 months. Defrost in the fridge or at room temperature and serve as you wish.