Rating: 5 stars
2 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 2
  • 4 star values: 0
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
  • 2 Ratings

Labneh is a thick, luscious Middle Eastern cheese made from strained yogurt, and this is the perfect labeh recipe for entertaining. You can find it in some specialty food market and well-stocked grocery stores, but it's easy to make at home by straining regular whole-milk yogurt overnight. The result is a creamy spread with the texture of cream cheese, but with extra tang. You might have seen labneh cheese as an appetizer on menus alongside hummus. Serve this labeh recipe with pita chips or crudités, or spread it on toast. It’s the perfect make-ahead and hands-off appetizer to make for holiday parties. Top it off before serving with toasted and crushed pink peppercorns, coriander, and fennel seeds, plus a drizzle of olive oil for a divine treat. (And we won't tell if you give some store bought labneh the same treatment.)


Credit: Jennifer Causey

Recipe Summary

48 hrs 10 mins
10 mins
6 servings


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Line a fine mesh strainer with cheesecloth; set strainer over a medium bowl. Spoon yogurt onto cheesecloth; wrap overhanging cheesecloth up and over yogurt to cover. Refrigerate until very thick, about 48 hours.

  • Scoop yogurt into a serving bowl; stir in salt. Reserve drained yogurt liquid (you should have about 1⅔ cups) for another use.

  • Place peppercorns, coriander seeds, and fennel seeds in a small skillet; cook over medium, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Let cool slightly, about 5 minutes.

  • Transfer peppercorn mixture to a cutting board; crush mixture with a skillet, pressing down and tilting skillet back and forth, until peppercorns and seeds split. (Alternatively, you may crush mixture using a mortar and pestle.) To serve, sprinkle yogurt with crushed peppercorn mixture; drizzle with oil.