How to Make Yogurt

Yogurt has increased in popularity in recent years, and for good reason. It’s a wonderful source of healthy fat and protein as well as millions of beneficial probiotic bacteria. It’s also delicious!

Did you know you can make your own easily at home? Yogurt is nothing more than cultured milk, and, like sourdough, all you need is a starter to get going-which is actually just about 1/4 of a cup of yogurt!

There are many different methods for making yogurt, and this is simply one of them. You can make it in a specially-designed yogurt maker, in a crock pot, even in an oven or a crock. You’ll have to figure out what works best for you, but this will give you a good idea of the process and what you might need to start your own yogurt making process!

(Note: this recipe is for regular pasteurized milk, not raw. We’ll have to do a recipe on raw milk yogurt in the future)

What you need: 

To make yogurt, you only need a few things:

  • Quart mason jar
  • Candy thermometer
  • Sauce pan
  • A quart of organic milk (not ultra-pasteurized)
  • 1/4 cup yogurt starter (yogurt with “live active cultures” on the package, only use plain with no added ingredients)

Instructions: 

  1. Bring 6 cups of milk to 160-175 degrees F on the stove. Watch closely-it gets hot very quickly.
  2. Allow the milk to cool to 110 degrees. Check frequently-you don’t want it to get too cold, it has to be right at 110.
  3. Skim off any layer that has formed once the milk is cooled to 110, and pour into the mason jar. Add your starter and mix thoroughly.
  4. Put a lid on the jar and keep at this temperature. This is the trial-and-error part, and you’ll have to figure out the best way to do this for you. You can wrap the jar in towels and put in an insulated grocery bag or cooler, or even the oven (turned off) with the light on. You can also just place the jar in a crock pot filled with an inch or so of water if you can set the temperature to 110.
  5. Check it 12 hours later to see if it has turned into yogurt. Check carefully to retain the heat if you need to let it sit for another 12 hours.
  6. To get a thicker yogurt, you might want to strain it through cheesecloth in a bowl in the fridge overnight. Either way, store in the refrigerator and use within 2-3 weeks. Enjoy!

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