How to Make Sodium Citrate at Home for Cheesemaking


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With the addition of a little sodium citrate almost any cheese can be made into a smoothly melting cheese. Sodium citrate reduces the cheese's acidity, makes the proteins in the cheese more soluble, and prevents it from separating into an undesirable consistency; creating a smooth, creamy texture that stays together.

My recipe for Sodium Citrate;
125g (1/2 cup) Pure Water
97g (3.42oz) Sodium Bicarbonate
74g (2.61oz) Anhydrous Citric Acid

The thickness of the cheese sauce will depend on the ratio of liquid to cheese. If you weigh the cheese and then add the liquid as a percent of the weight you will get:

- Cheese plus 0% to 35% liquid - firm, moulded cheese, cheese slices
- Cheese plus 35% to 85% liquid - thick and flowing cheese sauce, good for dips and quesos
- Cheese plus 85% to 120% liquid - thin cheese sauce, cheese foam, fondues, mac and cheese
- Cheese plus 120% liquid or more - continues to become thinner and thinner.
- The final ingredient is sodium citrate, which causes the cheese to stay together as it melts. It's typically used in a 2.0% to 3.0% ratio of total liquid plus cheese weight.

Since sodium citrate brings a salty, sour taste it's important to use appropriate proportions while keeping the flavour of the dish in mind.

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