How to make yogurt: Homemade yogurt recipe

I’ve written, how to make homemade yogurt for babies in little jars in this post. Making yogurt at home is pretty easy once you get the hang of it. Especially, the speculation around what additives they use to extend the life of the yogurt as well as to thicken it, makes the effort worthwhile.
When I was a kid, my granny use to make the yogurt at home. I remember my parents buying raw milk and pasteurizing by scalding and quickly cooling it down. Then a portion would be used for yogurt and the rest for drinking and desserts etc. As times changed, we’ve shifted to the easy solution and started using store bought yogurt, until my children were born. Once they started solid foods, I’ve started daily making my own homemade yogurt. Unless a member of our household finishes the whole thing, without leaving a starter, we never buy yogurt from a store. And if a practical person, due to laziness, makes her own yogurt, anyone can do it.
Let’s get to instructions:
1. I recommend that you assign a glass or a ceramic container to make your yogurt. These can be medium sized jars or bowls. I use the 1,5 qrt. ceramic container in the picture below. You can use smaller containers for individual use as well.
2. Bring the milk to a boil, for a quick period. Then turn off the stove. To prevent the milk from boiling over, see this post.
3. Prepare your covers. I use old baby blankets to wrap up the yogurt.

4. Pour the hot milk into the container, that is preferably already sitting on the covers that you’ll use to wrap the yogurt, and let it cool down. I took the pictures in the kitchen to prevent spilling.
5. Prepare you starter yogurt.

6. The tricky part to make sure your yogurt turns out as it’s supposed to be is the timing that you put in your starter yogurt. When I first started making my own, I measured the temp of the milk to make sure I am adding my started at the right time. Add your started into the milk, when it’s about 105-107F (41-42C).

7. Measurements for starter yogurt:

    A. 1 tablespoon for 16 oz. milk
    B. 2 tablespoons for 1 quart.
    C. 1 for 1,5 quart

8. Add the starter yogurt, with preferably a wooden spoon instead of metal one.

9. Just let starter yogurt slide into the milk from the spoon and do not stir it into the milk.

10. Do not move or shake the milk after this point.

11. Place your container onto your covers. Close the lid of your container and wrap.

12. Once you wrap the container, let it sit between 5-7 hours depending on the temperature of the environment. I usually put my yogurt close to the heater vent. I do not put directly on it, then it becomes too hot and the yogurt comes out sour, which some might like.

13. The last step is to cool the yogurt. Once you take your yogurt out of the covers, you have to let it wait in the refrigerator at least for 12 hours. Try not to move and shake a lot on the way to the refrigerator either. The best times to start your yogurt are:
A. either right before going to bed, so that you can take it out and put it in a refrigerator when you wake up
B. or in the afternoon, so that you can take it out right before bedtime and put it in the refrigerator.

14. Your yogurt is ready. It’ll most likely be much softer than store bought equivalents. If you make your yogurt in a hot place or keep it longer than 7 hrs, it turns out to be more sour. You can thicken the yogurt by draining it on a cheesecloth, placed on a wire strainer. I haven’t tried this one because once the yogurt is done, it’s gone.

15. Make sure you spare a portion for a starter for your next batch, before the yogurt finishes.

Pint it for later:


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