Lately I’ve been working hard to watch what I eat, exercise more, and overall get healthier. I’ve been reading a several awesome blogs (Rabbit Food For My Bunny Teeth, Naturally Knocked Up, Brittney Breathing) that have totally inspired me! They have delicious recipes, healthy living tips, and even some DIY exercise gear.
One food that keeps coming up as a major player in healthy eating is yogurt. And not the kind that comes with crushed up Oreos on top of the lid (yeah, you know what I’m talking about!) but healthy, organic, natural yogurt.
Unfortunately, the words “organic” and “natural” seems to hike up the price with each syllable, so for some it might not seem like a feasible option. But it can be—when you make your own!
Making yogurt is much easier than you think, and it’s so much more delicious than the kind you buy at the store.
And all you need are TWO ingredients:
All you need to make your own yogurt is milk, and some “starter” yogurt. You can buy packets of the starter bacteria, or you can just use some yogurt that’s already been made. Oh, and you’ll need a thermometer too!
I made this yogurt using whole milk, and whole milk yogurt. I never drink whole milk (I’m a skim kinda girl) but I heard that using the whole fat milk and yogurt will result in much thicker and creamier yogurt.
*Update* I’m in the process of making a second batch of yogurt this time using skim milk. I’ll let you know how it turns out*
Step 1: Sanitize glass jars to hold your soon-to-be-yogurt. When I say sanitize, I mean it. Like dishwasher clean. Really, really, clean. Also be sure that there is no water or moisture in the jars at all.
I used two old sauerkraut jars and one small mason jar, but any clean glass jars (with a lid) will work.
Step 2: Pour 4 cups of milk into a pot (I used a cast iron one to ensure even heat distribution) and slowly heat the milk to 180 degrees.
Step 3: Once the milk has reached 180 degrees, pour into your sanitized jars. Then, reduce heat of milk to 110 degrees.
To do this I put the jars back into the pot and filled it halfway with cold water.
I even added ice cubes to speed up the cooling process.
Step 4: Once the milk has cooled to 110 degrees, stir in 2 Tbsp. of yogurt.
*If you’ve distributed your four cups of milk amongst several jars (like I did) be aware how many ounces are in each jar and distribute your yogurt accordingly.
Step 5: Put the lids on the jars, and let them set in a warm place for 8-16 hours. The temperature of the yogurt needs to stay around 95 degrees.
To keep a steady amount of warmth surrounding my jars, here’s what I did:
-Wrap the jars in small hand towels.
-Place jars in a towel-lined cooler
-Cover the jars with a towel
-Place a small sauce pan on one side of the cooler and fill with boiling water
-Close lid to cooler and put in new boiling water every 3 hours.
This method kept my yogurt at an even temperature throughout the 10 hours I let it set. You could also put the jars in a bowl on top of a heating pad and set it to 95 degrees.
Step 6: After the yogurt has set for your preferred amount of time (the longer you keep it at the warm temperature the thicker the yogurt will be) place it in the refrigerator overnight.
Step 7: Wake up and check out your homemade yogurt!
Mmm nice and thick!
If you notice that a yellowish, watery substance is on top, never fear! This is just whey. You can get rid of it by using a paper towel to absorb it.
Before you start diving into your yummy yogurt take out 2 Tbsp. so you will have “starter yogurt” for your next batch. I just placed mine in a baby food jar and be sure to stick it in the fridge.
The yogurt I made was incredibly rich and delicious. To sweeten it a bit I just add a small amount of pure maple syrup and some fruit.
No need to worry about what is in your yogurt, or how much sugar or artificial stuff.
You can also sprinkle on some granola and make a delicious parfait!
Proudly preaching this probiotic here:
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