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Homemade Queso Fresco (Queso Casero)

Easy homemade queso fresco for all of your favorite Mexican dishes!
Course Cheese
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Resting Time 1 day 1 hour
Total Time 1 day 1 hour
Servings 10 ounces


  • 1/2 gallon whole milk
  • 1/3 cup white distilled vinegar or lemon juice
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 cloves of garlic previously minced and sauteed, optional
  • 1 teaspoon salsa macha optional
  • 4 layers of cheesecloth
  • Colander
  • small bowl


  • In a large heavy pot, add the milk and heat to medium.
  • Using and instant read thermometer, you want to bring the milk up to between 165-180 degrees F.
  • Once the the milk reaches the correct temperature, gradually stir in the vinegar. Stir gently with wooden spoon. Just add 1 tablespoon at a time.
  • When the curds separate from the way, remove pot from heat and let it sit for 30 minutes.
  • Line a colander with 4 layers of cheesecloth. It should hang over the sides slightly.
  • With the lined colander in the sink, carefully drain the cheese. Once it's all transferred, leave in sink to drain for 20 minutes.
  • When ready, gather the cheesecloth and twist to remove all of the excess moisture from the cheese.
  • Transfer cheese to a bowl. Season to taste with salt and knead the cheese for a few minutes.
  • To the small bowl, add the salsa macha and garlic and spread out evenly. take the cheese and press it down firmly into the bowl until it's an even compact layer. Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.
  • Next day, loosen the edges slightly with a small knife or spatula. Flip over onto serving plate. Slice or crumble and enjoy!