Can You Use Mascarpone Instead of Ricotta in Cannoli

Mascarpone Instead of Ricotta in Cannelloni

A cannoli is a sweet Toscano pastry where the outer shell is a fried dough tube that is crumbly and the filling is a sweet creamy filling.

Cannoli can be sprinkled with nuts, fruit, or cocoa to make a delicious dessert, or use red and green toppings to make a cannoli Christmas treat.

The real thing about Italian cannoli is that they will be filled with a mixture of ricotta cheese plus some sugar or maybe fresh honey and a flavoring such as orange or even rose-flower water.

However, There Are Other Cannoli Types That Are Not Filled With Ricotta, Why?

The answer to this question is likely because of these two key ingredients: ricotta and butter. Ricotta is a cheese with a soft, curdy texture. It’s made in Italy and typically imported from there since it isn’t found as common elsewhere.

Mascarpone vs Ricotta in Cannoli 
Mascarpone vs Ricotta in Cannoli 

But it’s also one of the most versatile ingredients and can be used to make lasagna, stuffed shells, and–our favorite—cheesecake! In fact, you’ll find a special type of cheesecake called tiramisú.

We have also seen cannoli filled with, cream cheese, mascarpone, or custard. My kids like them with ice cream.

All these fillings are nice and also creamy, smooth, and sweet, really they are not true cannoli, but who actually cares!! – They taste yummy. Ricotta vs mascarpone both of these is pretty acceptable to almost all but the true cannoli purest.

More on the Fillings

The filling of cannoli isn’t whipped cream, pastry cream or custard; it’s cheese! And, traditionally, it’s fresh sheep’s milk ricotta.

Cheese is delicious, right? It’s especially delicious when it’s combined with some pasta. Now, did you know that traditional cannoli are made with sheep’s milk ricotta? Ricotta, itself a type of cheese, is made by shredding or boiling leftover yogurt, milk, or butter drinks. So technically, ricotta itself isn’t a cheese because they are made of milk.

In the U.S., ricotta is usually made of whey or milk, but traditional cannoli are filled up in the middle with fresh sheep milk ricotta that has sugar added and blended to a smooth consistency.

 Ricotta from cows is thought to have a mild taste compared to other say sheep-based ricottas, which makes sense since it comes from cow’s milk. And of course, it’s delicious either way!

Ricotta is a soft, liquidy cheese. It is smooth and creamy, and is often used in pastry pies as a filling.

Ricotta is a main filling but that’s really only because of tradition.

Mascarpone as a Substitute For Ricotta in Cannoli
Mascarpone as a Substitute For Ricotta in Cannoli

Can You Use Mascarpone as a Substitute For Ricotta in Cannoli? 

Mascarpone cheese can be used as-is essentially a triple type cream cheese, similar to ricotta, but having a texture like custard — not grainy, like ricotta can be.

Laurentina is a softer cheese, like a Philly cream cheese. It is made of cow’s milk and is often used in Italian desserts like tiramisu and cannoli.

Why? The overall moisture content of mascarpone is low. Because of the thickness, plus density, mascarpone is not so likely to become runny and soggy as creamy and less viscous ricotta. If possible (though not always necessary), use mascarpone, as you’ve likely noticed many recipes using.

Some bakers will skip using the ricotta altogether, or just substitute it for mascarpone, which offers the best qualities of both kinds of cheese. Think of a taste that is almost the same as traditional ricotta but with the creamy style of mascarpone.

What Is Cannoli Filling Made Of?

Cannoli filling commonly referred to as a ricotta filling is made of ricotta, mascarpone, and powdered sugar. Cannoli filling is creamy, soft, and indulgent, and is perfect on any occasion.

A cannoli is an Italian pastry snack that’s normally filled up with sweet ricotta and or mascarpone filling, though some people prefer to employ mascarpone because it’s easy to pipe and control.

Your cannoli may have been under-cooked or over-cooked. Cannoli filling should be soft and lump-free.

If you are looking for a dish to satisfy your sweet tooth, you have come to the right place – regular cannoli are decadent treats that taste great but tend to be on the heavier side. If you are looking for a healthier option, try vegan cannoli instead of the traditional ricotta filling. While vegan cannoli may not taste quite the same, you won’t feel guilty eating it.

Which Is Better Ricotta vs Mascarpone for Cannoli

Ricotta is a cheese that has less fat content than mascarpone and is also lighter. This makes it a more healthy choice.

Can You Use Substite Mascarpone for Ricotta in Cannoli?

Of Course, ricotta is an excellent substitution when baking cannoli. It will not alter the taste of the item or make a significant difference.

My first choice would be cannoli that is made using ricotta. My second choice would be cannoli made with mascarpone.

Cannoli however is usually made by filling with ricotta, but some folks prefer to have mascarpone. When making cannoli, it really just depends on your personal choice.