Friday, May 14, 2010

Making Yogurt

I learned from my new friend, Jeanie, how much fun and healthy making your own yogurt is! And it's pretty easy as well. While it is possible to make yogurt without a fancy machine, I decided it would be easier to purchase a machine to help me keep the temperature regulated. (Otherwise, you have to do that manually, and that was a little more work than I was interested in.)

I purchased the yogourmet, which I got on sale for $39.95. Usually they run a little higher, but look for a good place to buy it. But like I mentioned earlier, there are ways to make it without a machine as well.

The first thing you do is pour 8 cups of milk. That's the base for your yogurt. And then you boil it until it reaches between 180 to 190 degrees. (I even sometimes microwave it.) This kills any bacteria that might be remaining in the milk.

After you heat it up, then you need to cool it down. A ice water bath will help you cool down your mixture more quickly if you like. The temperature should remain at 105 degrees from now on. Plug in your yogurt maker now so it can begin heating up.

Add 2 teaspoons of plain yogurt as a starter. I like to use a more natural brand like Mountain High that has a lower sugar content and lots of good live active and probiotic cultures. I've also been told that some people really like Dannon plain yogurt. You should usually use a store-bought yogurt for your starter because of the active cultures it contains. If you always use your homemade yogurt for your starter, the amount of live cultures will become lower as time goes on.

You will need to mix the yogurt starter and a little bit of your heated milk well in a separate container, and then add it to the rest of the milk.

And since I usually use 1% milk, I also add 1/3 c. of instant nonfat powdered milk. If you use whole milk (which is preferred), you can omit this step.

Next you just pour it in your yogurt maker. Leave it on your counter without moving it for 4 to 4.5 hours, then put it in your refrigerator for 8 hours afterward before stirring it, to let it set.

The yogurt you have made is plain yogurt, so you will probably want to flavor it with fruit, granola, or vanilla, and xagave or honey to sweeten it. You can have fun coming up with all sorts of fun flavors. I just take a small amount out at a time, instead of making it all one flavor. Then I can use it for different flavors. The yogurt lasts for 3 weeks!


  1. Curious since this is made from store bought products how is it healthier? Is it because of the additions you use to sweeten it? Thanks.

  2. Most of the store-bought yogurts have a huge amount of additives. They also have a lot of sweetener as well. When I make Yogurt I am using 2 tsp. of the purest yogurt to 8 cups of milk. The powdered milk is 100% nonfat milk with nothing added. This Home-made yogurt doesn't have all the preservatives and additives. You then get to create whatever flavors you want. It has been a lot of fun!

  3. Also I can save money,when I make it at home.I figure I can make 8 cups of yogurt for $1.50-1.75. A big savings.