Yogurt is so easy to make and you can save a few bucks making it yourself! No special equipment or starters. All you need is some milk, a cooler, a thermometer, and some store-bought yogurt to make your first batch. You can make additional yogurt by saving a cup from each batch you make. There is also a special note on buying heirloom yogurt cultures. At the end, there is also my favorite yogurt recipe.
How to Make Yogurt
– 3/4 Gallon of Milk (pref whole milk, not ultra-pasteurized)
– 3/4 Cup Store-bought Yogurt Starter (Stonyfield Organic Whole Plain works great)
Slowly heat milk to 160 degrees*. (If using raw milk, heat to 180 degrees). Pour into quart mason jars. Allow to cool to 110 degrees*. Add 1/4 cup of store-bought yogurt (or previously made yogurt) to each jar. Gently stir and add tight lids. Fill water cooler with water that is 110 degrees* and completely submerge jars for 5-8 hours. The longer the more tart! After 5-8 hours, check to see that yogurt pulls away from jars. If so, it’s ready! Place in refrigerator to cool and thicken a bit or you can strain through a muslin or linen napkin for 1-2 hours to thicken it even more. Save some yogurt from this batch to make the next batch. You can keep making yogurt from previous batches for about 5 times before you need to buy a new store-bought starter.
Make a new batch every 7 days to keep yogurt starter active.
Cut recipe or double recipe as needed.
***TEMPERATURE IS VERY IMPORTANT***
Yogurt Doesn’t Take: You are using ultra-pasteurized milk or a non-dairy milk or you may be using old yogurt strains or you may need to try a different brand of starter (Stonyfield works every time for me) or your temperatures were too high or too low.
Yogurt is Clumpy: Your milk was too hot when you added yogurt or your water in your cooler was too hot.
Yogurt is Too Sour: Allow it to sit in the cooler less time
Yogurt is Too Thin: Your starter strains may be getting old. Strain it longer through a muslin and try a fresh starter.