March 23, 2011

Homemade Yogurt

I have been making yogurt the past couple of months.  I was hesitant.  I don't like plain yogurt.  Why on earth would I make some?  Yes, I know it's healthy.  But it's sour.  It doesn't taste good.
Now that I'm 2 or 3 months into it, I like it.  My taste buds have changed.  I don't mind the sour.  When I eat it as a snack I add granola, jam (especially rhubarb pineapple jam), applesauce, canned fruit along with the syrup (especially home-canned plums), or some combination of these.  It's good.  My favorite way to eat it is with applesauce on pancakes.  I also eat it instead of sour cream on tacos and chili.  I really like it in smoothies with fresh and/or frozen fruit (if it's too sour, I add a little honey; too thick, a little milk or juice).
Yogurt is easy to make.  It takes about 12 hours to make, but only about 13 minutes of active time.
You can use any type of milk.  If you use powdered milk from the LDS cannery, it will be very sour.  Regular milk from the store is not quite so sour.  Morning Moo's milk alternative does not work just by itself.  It does work 1/2 and 1/2 with other milk (powdered or regular).
Here is a brief synopsis of how to make 2 quarts of plain yogurt:
1.  Heat 8 cups milk to 180° F.
2.  Cool milk to 115°.
3.  Add 1/2 cup plain yogurt (You want one with lots of LIVE bacteria, and no added ingredients; I use Dannon, then my own homemade)
4.  Pour into 3 clean quart-sized jars and screw on clean lids.  Try to pour even amounts into each jar.
5.  Keep milk between 90°-110° for 8-12 hours to allow bacteria to multiply.  I accomplish this by pouring lukewarm tap water into a cooler, and keeping the water between 90° and 110°.  I check the water every few hours to make sure it's still warm enough.  If it's below 95° I replace half the water with warmer water.
6.  When the milk looks like yogurt (hard), put it in the fridge for 12 hours.  I like to start the yogurt making process first thing in the morning, then let it refrigerate all night.  Fresh yogurt for breakfast!

Prior to making yogurt for the first time, I would highly recommend reading more detailed directions.  Use your favorite search engine (I love Swagbucks!) to find one.  I used this recipe without any of the sweeteners. is currently doing a series on yogurt making.  The first post has a video with a lot of good information on the health and cost benefits of making your own yogurt.  She makes yogurt in a crockpot.


  1. My sister makes her own too. I'm not quite that adventurous yet, but I have been using store-bought plain yogurt to replace sour cream.

  2. If you eat it regularly already, you really should try making it. It's a lot easier than one would think.