Labna, Lebaneh, Laben
4335 mins (prep 4320, cooking 15)
4 ingredients
5 servings
This is the yoghurt cheese made in the Middle East. It is EASY to make, but there's a lot to explain! I saw other recipes on here but they call for store-bought Greek yoghurt (different flavor) or low fat store yoghurt (yuk) instead of home-made, which is very easy to do and gives far better flavor. The consistency of home-made is not as creamy as store yoghurt because it doen't have added thickeners and stabelizers in it. You're just going to drain it anyway, and the flavor's so much better that when you taste it, you won't care if the yoghurt itself doesn't look picture perfect.I have heard this called different things depending where in the M. E. people are from. I learned this in '87 from a Christian Arab man from Nazareth who was taught by his mother. He (Elias) called it 'lebani' my dad calls it 'labna' (we were in Saudi Arabia) and there's probably many more related names. This recipe calls for some archaic methods which will not meet with approval from many people. It is the old way of doing things. For instance, I really do doubt it's neccessary thes days to kill bacteria by heating the milk, but I don't know, & I do all the steps as I was shown by Elias. We are so conditioned today to believe that without refrigeration we'll all be immediately dead of a bacterial infection; not so. I have made this for 25 years and the recipe has never failed, and no-one has sickened and died! If they could do this in the M.E. without refrigeration, I'm pretty sure I can pull it off in middle America, lol.

Categories:  saudi-arabian , breakfast , palestinian , appetizer , low-carb , low-in... , jewish-(sephardi) , southwest-asia-(middle-east) , low-sodium , eggs~dairy , time-to-make , 5-ingredients-or-less , low-cholesterol , low-calorie , easy , >-1-day , heirloom~historical , number-of-servings , inexpensive , healthy-2 , from-scratch , for-large-groups ,
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  • 1 gallon whole milk (or 2%, goats milk would be super if you can get it)
  • 1/2 cup yogurt, with active cultures (plain -not vanilla!)
  • salt, to taste


Serving Size (23.66 g)
Servings 5
Amount per Serving
Calories 14.43 Calories from Fat 6.93
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0.77g 5.92%
Saturated Fat 0.5g 12.4%
Trans Fat 0.0 %
Cholesterol 3.08mg 5.13%
Sodium 10.88mg 2.27%
Total Carbohydrate 1.1g 1.84%
Dietary Fiber 0.0 g 0.0%
Sugars 1.1 g %
Protein 0.82g 8.21%
Vitamin A 23.42IU% Vitamin C 0.12mg%
Calcium 28.63mg% Iron 0.01mg%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your diet value must be higher or lower depending upon your calorie needs:
  Calories 2,000 2,500
Total Fat Less Than 65g 80g
Sat Fat Less Than 20g 25g
Cholesterol Less Than 300mg 300mg
Sodium Less Than 2,400mg 2,400mg
Total Carb   300g 375g
Dietary Fiber   25g 30g
Potassium   3,500 mg
Protein   50 g
Calories Per Gram
Fat 9•Carbohydrate 4•Protein 4