I first learned of labneh several years ago when I took a soft cheese-making class. I am an avid cheese lover, and this easy roasted garlic labneh hits the spot every time.
Why You’ll Love This Garlic Labneh
What’s better than a three-ingredient spread that instantly elevates a salad, pizza, sandwich, or cracker? Not much, at least in my book. The most important ingredient in this garlic labneh is time. If you’re planning to serve it for company, make sure to plan 24 hours in advance.
Garlic Labneh Ingredients
- Whole milk yogurt - This is the base of your labneh, so make sure you choose a high-quality yogurt that you love.
- Roasted garlic - The deep, savory, slightly sweet, roast-y flavor of the garlic takes this labneh to the next level.
- Salt - It brings out the flavors of the yogurt and roasted garlic. It also helps draw out the moisture in the yogurt so that it firms up. Don’t skip it!
How To Make the Labneh
- Combine the yogurt and salt. Mix well.
- Place in a strainer double-lined with cheesecloth. Place it over a bowl to catch the liquid and whack it in the fridge. Then, we wait. This is the hardest part of this recipe! Good things take time — 24 hours, in this case. If you cannot find cheesecloth in your local area, Amazon is an easy source.
- Meanwhile, roast the garlic. Slice a whole head of garlic in half and pour in about a tablespoon of olive oil. Wrap it in foil and roast in a 400 oven for about 35-45 minutes. When it’s ready, the cloves will be soft and you’ll be able to squeeze them out of the head easily — just wait for it to cool before you attempt to handle it!
- Remove from the cheesecloth and mix in the roasted garlic. It’s now ready to enjoy!
Roasted Garlic Labneh FAQ
I prefer whole milk yogurt for its richness, but I’ve made this with low-fat yogurt when it’s all the store had — it worked just fine.
You can omit the roasted garlic and enjoy this labneh plain. You can also marinate it by preparing a jar with olive oil and herbs. Drop the labneh in the oil in balls. Let it marinate in the fridge for several days to intensify flavors.
It’s also delicious sprinkled with za’atar. Or maybe you’re craving the freshness of spring and want to serve the labneh with peas and herbs in a salad. The beauty of labneh is that it’s so customizable!
For a simple and satisfying snack on those days when you don’t have enough hours in the day, I love the marinated labneh on rice cakes and toast. It’s also a lovely base on pita with roasted veggies. Or you can use it as a dip on a mezze platter or charcuterie board, drizzled with olive oil, crushed red pepper, basil, and oregano.
More Fresh Cheese Appetizers
Once you’ve mastered labneh, you’ll be craving fresh cheeses every day! Try these appetizers next:
Easy Roasted Garlic Labneh
- 32 ounces plain whole milk yogurt
- 1- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 garlic bulb
- 2 teaspoons olive oil Plus more for drizzling
- salt and pepper for sprinkling on top.
- za'atar seasoning
- Mix the salt with yogurt.
- Pour yogurt into double layers of cheesecloth. Tie the cheesecloth onto a wooden spoon hanging over a bowl- as shown in the photos. Place into the fridge. Let it sit for at least 24 hours. The whey will strain out.
- Open the cheesecloth and remove the cheese. It is ready! If you are adding roasted garlic, place the labneh into the fridge covered until you are ready.
- For roasting the garlic, cut it in half and drizzle each half with about 2 teaspoons of olive oil.
- Wrap the garlic in tin foil and place it on a baking pan.
- Bake at 400 degrees for about 35-45 minutes. The garlic will turn a caramel color and will be soft.
- Remove it from the oven and let it cool.
- Once it has cooled, squeeze out the garlic. Mix most into your labneh. I like to reserve a little to top the labneh with when I serve as well.
- Swirl the labneh into your serving dish. Drizzle generously with olive oil. Add the reserved garlic to the top, and sprinkle with pepper and salt if needed.