Labneh balls
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Labneh balls - Pickled cream cheese balls

It's all so fresh, like Labneh... How I've missed that! Do you know that feeling when, after what feels like an endless period of chaos, you've finally settled down again to some extent? When, after a move, those pesky boxes that were all over the place can finally be unpacked and disappear? With every unpacked box, a piece of you comes back. That's a great feeling! One or two things are still standing around everywhere - but once the kitchen is set up and furnished, it will at least smell like home again. And then, at the latest, it's time for Labneh balls!

Unfortunately, I haven't blogged for a while and I'm super happy to be writing these lines again. By the way, I only realised the other day that I had pressed the "Go live" button about a year ago. Yes! The blog has actually turned 1 year old now. A lot has happened since then and I have learned a lot. To celebrate, here's something I love to eat incredibly with mezze: pickled labneh balls. Labneh is Lebanese cream cheese - and yes, you can form it into balls and pickle them in olive oil with the most delicious herbs and spices.

Cream cheese

And not only the labneh balls taste delicious - the oil also takes on the flavour of the herbs. So take a scoop or two of labneh from the jar, drizzle a little of the olive oil over it, sprinkle with a good pinch of zatar and enjoy with fresh bread. I also like to add a few flakes of coarse sea salt (but I add salt to almost everything...).

After all the stress of moving house, it was a great pleasure to fill my table with little things and feast all evening and arrive at my new home.

Recipe for Labneh balls

pickled labneh balls
Print recipe
Preparation time 10 Min.
Preparation time 10 Min.
Resting time 5 d
Working time 5 d 20 Min.
Servings 15 Balls



For the Labneh

  • 800 ml Yogurt (10%)
  • 1 pinch Salt

To insert

  • 500 ml Olive oil
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 4 Branches Thyme

To serve



  • Salt the yoghurt lightly and stir it thoroughly once.
  • Put the yoghurt in a straining cloth or clean kitchen towel and let it drain in the refrigerator for at least 1 day.
  • The next day, wring out the yoghurt in the cloth.
  • Peel the garlic and squeeze it lightly. Put the garlic and the fresh thyme in a preserving jar and fill it halfway with olive oil.
  • Shape the yoghurt mixture into small balls by hand and place them in the jar.
  • After the jar is full, pour in olive oil.
  • Close the jar. You can serve the balls after about 5 days. However, the longer they bathe in the oil, the more intense the flavour will be.


Always goes well with pickling (a little inspiration):
  • Garlic cloves
  • Fresh thyme
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Fresh oregano
  • Chili
  • Peppercorns
  • and and
*Recipe contains affiliate links.
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  1. That sounds delicious!
    And it's a great takeaway too!
    Thanks for sharing

    1. Hello Alexandra,
      thank you so much for the flowers 🙂
      Best regards

  2. Hello Rafik,
    I think I have just found a new favourite blog! Ever since I saw the first picture, my mouth has been watering and I want to run to the kitchen. I imagine my computer is emitting scents! How could I live without these divine recipes?
    No time to write more, I'll get right on it!

    1. Hello Birgit,
      Thank you so much for your great feedback. I am so happy to be able to inspire you so much here. Have a go and let me know afterwards how you liked it 🙂 .
      Best regards

  3. Hello Rafik,
    I made this yesterday and am now waiting with bated breath. I used rosemary, thyme and -because my olive oil wasn't quite enough- a little garlic oil. Now the jar is sleeping in the fridge. We'll test it on Tuesday evening!

  4. Oh no, the feedback on the taste was still missing!
    It was delicious, very mild. But after 1-2 days in the fridge, my olive oil had become so solid that I could practically no longer remove these very soft, delicate balls. I had to let the jar sit at room temperature for about an hour before the olive oil became liquid again. But next time (yes, there will definitely be again) I will definitely add at least one chilli to the jar as well. By the way, I was able to store the balls for a good month without any problems.
    I wonder if this tastes good with sheep's milk yoghurt?
    Tasty greetings

  5. 5 stars
    I wanted to make this for so long, but the instructions were always too stressful for me. Now I've made the labneh for the second time and it's faster than hanging out the washing 😂 My tip: after I've put the yoghurt in a cheesecloth, tie it up, put it in a sieve and of course hang it over a bowl. Then an idea 💡 came to me. I weighed the yoghurt down with 2 of my weight plates, so the liquid would come out faster. I left the whole thing in the fridge for 2 days. The finished labneh then had a nice round shape, then put into balls, yummy 😋

    1. Hey Anja,
      Thank you very much for your great feedback! I'm very pleased that you like the Labneh balls 🙂

      Kind regards

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