6 Healthy Homemade Yogurt Recipes

By Ashley Marcin on 24 April 2015 0 comments

One of my more indulgent grocery expenses is yogurt, and those tubs really add up. It doesn't matter what kind — plain, Greek, Icelandic, vegan, etc. — I'm hooked on all those healthy bacteria and tasty flavors.

But did you know that you can make yogurt in the comfort and convenience of your own kitchen? It's true. Even better: It costs far less than the cartons at the store. So, go get your apron, 'cause it's yogurt-making time!

1. Crock-Pot Yogurt

What could be easier than simmering DIY yogurt in your slow cooker? Start by pouring half a gallon of milk into your crock pot and setting it on low for just under three hours. Let it sit for three hours more. Then take a few spoonfuls of the warmed milk and mix with a half cup of your favorite yogurt as a starter (it should contain "active cultures" listed on the label). Combine with the rest of the pot, cover with a towel, and let rest for another eight to 12 hours before spooning into airtight containers and transferring to your refrigerator.

2. Countertop Yogurt

This raw yogurt can be made right atop your kitchen counter. You'll need raw milk, packaged cultures, jars, a nonreactive saucepan, and some clean cloths. Heat your milk in the saucepan until it starts to rise, then let cool to room temperature before stirring in the cultures to create your starter. From there, take one tablespoon of starter and place in a glass jar. Fill the rest up with raw milk (leaving one inch for headspace). Let sit on your countertop overnight, then place in the fridge to set.

3. Coconut Yogurt

This delicious coconut milk yogurt requires just four ingredients. Coconut milk (full fat, canned works best), sweetener, starter (like probiotic powder), and optional thickener. Once you gather these items, the process is simple. Heat the coconut milk and sweetener until just boiling, then allow to cool to 115 degrees Fahrenheit. Stir in the thickener. Once cooled, add the probiotics as well. Then let culture for eight hours to a full day.

4. Almond Milk Yogurt

Another great vegan alternative is this almond milk yogurt — starting with pure almonds. You'll need some additional thickening agents for this mix, including agar agar and arrowroot powder. From there, soak almonds in filtered water overnight. Blend everything in a high-powered blender and strain out solid pieces. You'll heat this milk and combine with the thickeners before adding to a yogurt maker and letting sit another good eight to 10 hours before chilling.

5. Greek Yogurt

Making thick Greek yogurt is very much like the processes in the other recipes. The difference is in the straining. So, after you've mixed and heated and set your yogurt, you'll line a colander with cheesecloth. Pour the yogurt inside and gather the corners to let it drain for five hours (or until you reach your desired consistency). That's the secret step.

6. Kefir

I only recently started enjoying homemade kefir — a drinkable yogurt — as part of my everyday routine. And like most things, you can make it at home using whole ingredients. The key here is fermentation, which occurs when you allow milk to sit with kefir grains for 12 to 48 hours. After this critical part of the process, just pour through a strainer, store, and retain grains for future kefir-making sessions.

Have you made yogurt at home? What's your favorite method?

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