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Recipe: No-Bake Cottage Cheese Dessert

By Viv Moon, 08 Feb 2017 Bush Cooking

Recipe: No-Bake Cottage Cheese Dessert

A cheesecake with a cottage twist.

A few years ago when we were running tag-along trips in Southern Africa and catering for our clients, we tried this simple dessert I came across over there.

It was easy to make (it takes a lot less effort if you have an electric hand beater) and everyone really enjoyed it – kind of like a light cheesecake, as the cottage cheese makes for a creamier texture.

Makes: 6-8 servings

  • 385g can sweetened condensed milk
  • ½ cup lemon juice (bottle is fine, but fresh is better)
  • Zest of at least one lemon – optional, but it will add much more lemon zing.
  • 1 cup smooth cottage cheese (or creamed cottage cheese)
  • 1 cup cream – whipped
  • 1 tbsp gelatine – dissolved in ½ cup boiling water

Prep Time: 15 minutes (if using a prebaked pie base)
Setting Time: best made at least 12 hours before consumption (leaving overnight is ideal)

  • Mix ingredients together and beat until smooth. If you are having trouble getting the smaller lumps of the cheese out, press the cheese mixture through a sieve, then beat again until smooth.
  • Spoon onto your preferred base and refrigerate until set (will take a few hours).

To serve, here are a few ideas for the base:

  • Make a biscuit crumb base and fill with the topping.
  • Decorate with fruit.
  • Crush some biscuits (chocolate, butternut, etc.) into the bottom of individual small bowls/cups and top with the filling.
  • Use a ready-baked pie shell and fill with the cheese mixture. Top with some toasted coconut and, if you want to be really decadent, some shaved white chocolate.


  • Try using some lemon-flavoured jelly crystals for more flavour. You could probably replace the cottage cheese with cream cheese, but no one will ever know you’ve used cottage cheese in this recipe.
  • If you ever see one of those old-fashioned hand-winding beaters, then buy one and keep it in your camp kitchen kit. They still work really well and are very handy.
  • If you make this at home, put the cottage cheese in a food processor and blend until smooth before mixing with other ingredients.


  • Puree the cottage cheese with coconut, honey and vanilla essence to make a delicious spread.
  • Mix it in with your pancake batter.
  • Incorporate it into your smoothies.
  • Combine with salmon, capers and dill for a great topping on savoury biscuits.
  • Substitute it with a little skim milk to make buttermilk.
  • Combine with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese for a light pasta bake sauce.

For more tasty ideas, visit 4X4 Australia's Bush Cooking recipes.