February 1, 2017

Homemade Yogurt the Easy Way


Many years ago I discovered a very simple way to make yogurt. These days I use fresh milk from our goats, but way back in the early days of motherhood I used to make it with cow's milk from the grocery store; you can use either one. In addition to the milk, you'll also need a small container of plain yogurt with live, active cultures plus some powdered milk.

How to make yogurt at home without a yogurt maker.



Use 2 quarts of milk, 2 tsp of yogurt, and 1 cup of powdered milk. The powdered milk is optional according to my cookbook (Goats Produce Too! by Mary Jane Toth) but I've never made it without. It makes the yogurt thicker.

Warm the milk to 115°F in a saucepan or stockpot.


Warm the milk to 115°F in a saucepan or stockpot. Remove it from the heat and stir in the powdered milk, then the yogurt. Mix well with a whisk and pour into clean canning jars (pints or quarts) and add lids.

This is where my method gets real easy. You don't need a yogurt maker or a dehydrator. I put the jars into a small insulated cooler, then fill the cooler up to the "necks" of the jars, just below the lids, with hot water. Close the cooler and leave undisturbed for 6-8 hours. It's that simple.

The easy way to make yogurt at home.


If you use Greek yogurt as your starter, you'll be making Greek yogurt; if you use regular yogurt you'll make regular yogurt. I've even used flavored yogurt in a pinch. When we lived in Iceland it was very hard to find plain, unflavored yogurt so I used strawberry-flavored skyr (Icelandic-style yogurt). My homemade yogurt was faintly strawberry-tasting, but as I made each subsequent batch the flavor mellowed. The important thing is to use yogurt with live, active cultures.

Homemade yogurt is delicious on its own, in smoothies, with fruit or granola, and as a substitute for sour cream in recipes. You know what's in it and what isn't; it's good, wholesome food that's good for you and your family.

Don't forget to save some of this batch to use as a starter for your next batch of yogurt.



This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops.


~~~~~

My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a
simple, self-reliant, God-dependent life. You can follow me at:
Facebook | Pinterest | Bloglovin | Subscribe via email

60 comments:

  1. I love that book :) I add the dried milk too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a handy little book, isn't it, Sandra? I've about used mine to death.

      Delete
    2. It's a handy little book, isn't it, Sandra? I've about used mine to death.

      Delete
  2. Good idea, Kathi, thanks!

    Fern

    ReplyDelete
  3. Nice post! Can't get enough yogurt. I eat it every single day!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I read this idea so many years ago I don't even remember where I found it. Someone was very smart!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Kathi,
    I like your method. I make my own yogurt from Raw cows milk and freezed dried yogurt culture and pure gelatin, but I make 8 quarts at a time, and I also do not use a yogurt maker. I dissolve the gelatin in a smaller pan with the milk and then heat the milk to about 130 degrees, add the gelatin mixture for to thicken it, then cool it before adding the culture to about 110 degrees. I pre-heat my oven to 170 degrees and then turn it off and let it ferment in the oven in a large pan with a glass lid and wrap a towel around it for 6-8 hours undisturbed. I then store in quart canning jars and I have enough for quite a while. Visiting from Homestead blog hop.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for posting! Making yogurt is one of the things on my list. I just might work up the nerve to try it, now. :) Cindy in OK

    ReplyDelete
  7. Marla, that's a lot of yogurt to make at one time! Yes, you're better off using your oven in that case. I've done that as well, and it is easy - until the day I knocked over a jar inside the oven while getting them out. Ugh. I see that you use a pot in the oven which is much safer!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Cindy, I hope you'll give it a try, it's extremely easy. Just buy your favorite brand of plain yogurt (Greek works too) and be brave!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I make my yogurt(6 quart batches) in a cooler as well. My method is a little different tho. I'll have to try yours! Found you on the Our Simple Homestead Blog Hop! Blessings

    ReplyDelete
  10. Kim, thank you so much for visiting! Six quarts is a lot of yogurt to make at one time, whew!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Love that you used the cooler to make this so easy!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thank you, Meg - yes, it's super easy! Thank you for stopping by.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I can't wait to try your method, Kathi! Looks easy - I've been using the crockpot method.
    Hey, I just took a double batch of your double chocolate granola shared recipe out of the oven.
    It smells wonderful! Thanks for all your helpful ideas, recipes, tutorials and beautiful pix of your homestead.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I hope you like that granola, Mary, I think it's great and need to make another batch.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Thanks for sharing the process! Does the yogurt come out thick?

    Thanks for linking up at the Weekend Blog Hop at My Flagstaff Home!

    Jennifer

    ReplyDelete
  16. It does come out thick, Jennifer, but if you want it to be even thicker, just put it in a jelly bag, muslin or cheesecloth and let the whey drain out. You can even do that with a carton of store-bought yogurt, you're left with "yogurt cheese".

    ReplyDelete
  17. I've used this method, so if I can do it, anyone can. It's so easy. I use empty gallon jugs filled with water instead of adding the water directly to the cooler. Works like a charm. Enjoy!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I hadn't heard of this variation before, Daisy. In a big cooler using the gallon jugs would sure help with the amount of water one would need. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Thanks for sharing! I love homemade yogurt and I've been wanting to try it without the yogurt maker I have so that I can get more (and not have it in tiny jars!). I've never heard the powdered milk thing, can't wait to try it. I wish I had fresh goat milk!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Embee, you can make as big a batch as you like with this method, just have a cooler big enough to hold all the jars. Use quarts with a larger batch, or pints with a smaller batch. It's very flexible! Enjoy!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Just wanted to let you know that you’ll be featured this week, so stop on by the Weekend Blog Hop at My Flagstaff Home! (www.myflagstaffhome.com)

    Jennifer

    ReplyDelete
  22. Anonymous5:21 PM

    Although I know many use powdered milk to help thicken yogurt, it really isn’t a good idea. Powdered milk has lots of additives**, and has an ingredient in it that is actually harmful to health. I can’t remember what it is called, but it isn’t healthy. I’d go for either thinner yogurt or what one reader uses: gelatin!

    **just like 2% and skim milk, they put stuff in it to make it taste better, they do the same with powdered milk. do some research and you;ll see.

    Great idea about the cooler.I’ll have to try it. I use a padded, quilted form that fits my quart jar and have for years, but I’ll give this a try!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Thank you for pointing that out. I've never made yogurt without powdered milk but will give it a try. If it were noticeably thinner I would just strain it. Whey is good for several uses.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thank you for linking up to the August Country Fair Blog Party!
    Laurie - Co-Host

    ReplyDelete
  25. Excellent tutorial, Kathi! It's so helpful to have a step by step recipe like this. Thank you for sharing how to make Yogurt the Easy Way with us at Hearth and Soul. Pinned :-)

    ReplyDelete
  26. You're welcome, April. Thank you for the Pin!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Can this be done with vanilla yogurt or does it have to be plain?

    ReplyDelete
  28. Lisa, it's preferable to use plain yogurt BUT I once used strawberry yogurt as my starter because that's all I could find. It worked. My finished yogurt had a very faint strawberry taste but not enough to be "strawberry yogurt". If you'd like it to taste like vanilla yogurt you'll have to add flavorings after it's made. I hope that answered your question. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  29. whoa, this seems so simple to do. thanks for the info. would be much better than getting unknown ingredients in the store bought stuff.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I'm trying to cut back on using plastic containers and we go through a lot of yogurt at our house. I've been intimidated to make my own until I read your post. Can't wait to give your method a try! Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good for you, Shelley. It's worth a try!

      Delete
  31. Hi Kathy, I quit making yogurt when my oven light broke. I had it down perfectly with that light! I will try this method. Thanks, Dash

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dash, I feel your pain! I started out using the oven also, but we moved so often that I'd have to learn all over again with each new oven. I hope this solves that problem for you!

      Delete
  32. Hi Kathy,
    My kids go through tons of yogurt! I had always used the cooler, but had never thought about using hot water! I'll have to try that!

    Thanks! I'm here from the Our Simple Homestead Blog Hop

    Elizabeth
    www.familyfarmschool.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for visiting, Elizabeth, I hope this works even better for you than the cooler alone. :-)

      Delete
  33. I love this cooler trick. I want to make yogurt soon (for the first time!) so I pinned it for reference. Thanks for posting on the Waste Less Wednesday Blog Hop!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good luck, Katy, but I know you'll do great the first time!

      Delete
  34. RIGHT, she says in a determined tone of voice, I am absolutely going to give this water bath method a go. I have never managed to make yoghurt successfully before and we eat so much of it (and I hate throwing away all those pots that I can't recycle. Pinning now for future reference a wish me luck! #WasteLessWednesday

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope this works for you, Katy! "Nothing ventured, nothing gained." I admire your never-quit attitude!

      Delete
  35. Sounds so easy and inexpensive - pinned and shared

    ReplyDelete
  36. Came over from Travel & Soul link party. Pinned. :) I've always wondered how to make my own yogurt!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm happy to meet you, June. Thank you for visiting and I hope you'll be back. :-)

      Delete
  37. I didn't realise you had lived in Iceland, Kathi! Also, I had no idea it was so straight-forward to make your own yogurt! Thank you so much for sharing this post with Hearth and Soul.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It really is easy to make, April. Yes, we lived in Iceland for two years; we loved it!

      Delete
  38. Good Morning Kathi, I love yoghurt, especially Greek yoghurt and I have always meant to try making my own yoghurt, but for some reason or another I have never gotten around to it.... that is until today.
    Thank you so much for your step by step instructions. I am really looking forward to making my own yoghurt.
    Best Wishes to you.
    Daphne

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad it was helpful, Daphne. Let me know when you make some!

      Delete
  39. Hi Kathi,
    I like your recipe. I make raw yogurt but make a little different than you do - I use raw fresh milk and I use grass fed beef gelatin to thickened it which also gives it more protein. I also use a freeze dried starter I buy from an Amish store. It is easy and inexpensive - costs us pennies and we know that we are not eating alot of additives and junk in it. Homemade yogurt is great once you learn what works for you. Visiting from #WasteLessWednesdays

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a good idea to use grass-fed gelatin to thicken the yogurt instead of powdered milk. I'll have to see if I can find some. Thank you for visiting, Marla.

      Delete
  40. Hi Kathi,
    I am just so excited you decided to share this on Our Simple Homestead blog hop. I have always wanted to try my hand at making yogurt and you made it so simple and easy to do. I can't wait to give this a try with my goats. :) Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad, Tracy Lynn. Let us know how you do!

      Delete
  41. I started making some yogurt for the first time this year with my instant pot. My husband says the homemade yogurt makes creamier smoothies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think he's right. :-)

      Delete
  42. I can't wait to try this. Thanks so much for sharing

    ReplyDelete
  43. Thanks so much for this. Do you think it could be made with slightly clabbered milk? And how hot should the water be for the last step? Thanks again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Mary. I've not tried using clabbered milk, but I always use milk that is a few days old. Give it a try. It might make sour-tasting yogurt or very tangy, but all you'll be out is the time it takes to make it, right? The water for the last step should the hottest water that comes out of your faucet. Good luck!

      Delete

Thank you for stopping by. I hope you'll leave a comment - I would love to hear from you. If you wish to email me instead, please click here. Thank you!

Please note that anonymous comments are usually deleted unread because of the high amount of spam. Instead of commenting anonymously, consider choosing the NAME/URL option - just fill in your name, leaving a URL is optional.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...