Today I will be showing you guys how to make homemade yogurt! Its a simple and relatively quick recipe that will save you money in the long run. I don’t know about you but 16ounces of yogurt costs me a little over 3.00 for a decent brand name. That’s anywhere from 10-20 dollars for 2 quarts of yogurt. Well this recipe, including the cost of the starter ($5.00 for 6 packages but we only use two so 1$.67) and the cost of the milk (I used whole milk, 2 quarts, cost me 2.25.), makes 2 QUARTS of yogurt and only cost me $3.92!! Can you believe it! Plus the next time you make yogurt, you’ll only need to buy milk since you can use your already prepared yogurt as the starter. Cool huh?!
2 quarts milk
yogurt starter, either 2-3 tbsp plain yogurt or prepackaged dried yogurt starter
Bring 2 quarts of milk to 180 degree fahrenheit over medium heat. Do not allow the milk to boil or you will end up with a nasty cottage cheese. Keep stirring your milk while heating it to prevent burning and curdling.
Once you milk gets to 180 degrees you can either boil it for 30 minutes if you are really worried about bacteria or you can do as I do and turn the flame off and let it cool down.
You need to allow the milk to naturally come down to 105-110 degrees fahrenheit, if the milk is too hot you will not be able to make milk. This is because no matter which starter you use, its a living culture. Enzymes/bacteria starts to die at around 108 degrees. So don’t try to rush this process! While you’re letting the milk cool down, set out your starter and allow it to warm up to around room temp. The closer your starter is to milk, the easier the culture process will begin, allowing you to have more success!
Once your milk drops down to the correct tempurature. Take your starter and mix it with around 1/2 cup of your lukewarm milk. Dissolving/mixing it thoroughly, so there are no lumps or clumps of starter left. Now mix this in with the large batch of milk. *Optionally if you wanted to add sweetener, now is the time to do so.
Divide your milk among your containers, I used 8oz mason jars.
Now you need to decide what you’re going to ferment your milk in. I used my Excalibur dehydrator because it will keep the temp steady, but if you don’t have an Excalibur there are other options. You can put the yogurt in your oven with the pilot light on, you can use a heating pad with towels in a box, or just google other methods. Alternatively you can buy a yogurt-maker however I am not a fan of unitaskers. I would say if that’s the case just spend a little more and get the Excalibur dehydrator since you can use it for multiple things! Put your jars in your ferment-er and set it at 105-110 degrees and forget it about.
Yogurt will take anything from 4-12 hours, depending on how sour you want it. I let mine go for about 7 1/2 hours, but you may want to go longer or less depending on taste. Don’t be afraid to taste your yogurt as its “cooking”. You will never know when to stop if you don’t! When your yogurt has reached your desired taste, remove it from the ferment-er and store in the fridge. Make sure to save some yogurt, for the next batch to be used as the starter!
Makes: 2 quarts, Preparation time: 1-2 hours, “Cooking” time: 4-12 hours