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Jerusalem bagels and Labneh garnished with olive oil, sumac and za'atar.


Labneh is a fresh cheese made by salting and straining yogurt; it's a delicious condiment that's also great as a dip, mixed into sauces, and spread under salads. Here's how I make my Labneh, garnished with olive oil, za'atar, and sumac.
Course Condiments & Pickles
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Keyword dip, easy, spread, yogurt
Level Beginner
Main Ingredient Dairy
Diet Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Low-Carb, Pescatarian, Vegetarian
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Straining Time 1 day
Total Time 1 day 2 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 184 kcal


  • 800 grams yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil for garnish
  • za'atar for garnish
  • sumac for garnish


  1. Whisk the salt into the yogurt.
    Mixing salt into yogurt with a blue spatula in a glass bowl.
  2. Wet a clean piece of food-safe cotton fabric such as a butter muslin and wring out any excess water. You can also use a large coffee filter or even a wet paper towel. Line the inside of a wire sieve with the damp cloth or filter and set it over a bowl.
    Wet cotton cloth draped over a strainer to act as a filter for the Labneh.
  3. Pour the yogurt into the lined sieve. Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours. You'll have a lot of whey accumulated in the bottom of the bowl which you can discard (or save and use to marinate meat or fish). Put the sieve back over the bowl and continue to drain the yogurt overnight.
    Yogurt added to strainer lined with cotton fabric for straining yogurt.
  4. When the Labneh is done, it should be at least as thick as soft butter, but you can continue straining it longer if you want it to be firmer.
    Yogurt in lined strainer after the whey has been strained off.
  5. Transfer the Labneh to a serving dish and use a spoon to flatten it out and make swirls in the top.
    Spreading Labneh around a serving dish with s spoon.
  6. Drizzle the Labneh with good olive oil. Garnish with za'atar and sumac.
    Sprinkling za'atar over Labneh.
Nutrition Facts
Amount Per Serving
Calories 184 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 5g25%
Cholesterol 26mg9%
Sodium 674mg28%
Potassium 310mg9%
Carbohydrates 9g3%
Sugar 9g10%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 198IU4%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 242mg24%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.