Archived Q&A and Reviews

Making your own yogurt

May 2006

Hi. I'm looking for a reliable, easy homemade yogurt recipe. I'm overwhelmed by what I get when I try Google, so I'd like to hear from anyone who makes his/her own yogurt. If you have a yogurt maker and like it, I'd love to hear about that, too (but would prefer not to buy yet another kitchen gadget!). I'm tried of buying yogurt and tossing the containers, and a cousin in Germany makes yogurt, and it looked easy and tasted great. Thanks. Leila

I bought a Euro Cuisine yoghurt maker at Williams Sonoma about a year ago and love it. It comes with glass jars and lids that are dishwasher safe and makes seven 6 oz. serves at a time. The yoghurt I've made has been creamy and delicious! You can easily add fruit or other flavors or make it plain. It was $29.95 and comes with recipes.

For some reason W-S now sells what looks like the same maker I bought for $39.95. Amazon has one for $29.95.

Enjoy! Yoghurt lover

Yoghurt is an essential part of my diet and I have made yoghurt every day for as long as I can remember. I have never used a yoghurt maker or any such machine. Home made yoghurt is all about the ''culture''. This needs to have live lactobacillus. Commecially available yoghurt typically does not have ''live culture''. Make sure you have the right starter culture - use about 2 tablespoons of existing yoghurt.

Heat some milk in the microwave - should be warm-to-hot but not scalding hot. Test on your wrist for warmth. Mix in 2 tablespoons of yoghurt (with live culture) to the warm milk. Close the lid of your milk+yoghurt culture container. Place the container inside the oven. If you do not have an oven then invert a large pot to completely cover the container. This is to trap some air around the container which will keep the container a little warmer than if the container were kept out in the open. Leave undisturbed for about 6 to 8 hours ( 6 hours in the summer, 8 hours in winter). I typically leave it over night. Check on your yogurt after 6/8 hours - you should find it semi-firm. Place in the fridge to chill and set.

Also, home made yoghurt is usually not as firm as that you buy from the shop. This is because store made yoghurt contains additives while home made yoghurt is 100% milk. If you want the yoghurt to be really firm then I recommend lining a tea strainer with disposable coffee filter and straining the yoghurt through it. This separates out the yoghurt solids.

Whole organic milk works best, but I use 1% milk and that also comes out well.

Hope this works for you. Enjoy! yoghurt addict

Making homemade yogurt is very easy with a yogurt maker. All you need is milk and a tablespoon of natural yogurt with all the right bacteria in it - which you use as a seed to start the process. Just heat the milk up to a particular temperature to kill off any bacteria in it, let it cool to a particular temperature (yogurt makers usually contain a thermometer and instructions - I can't remember exactly what these temperatures were) add the tablespoon of yogurt and blend well, then pour into the containers and run the yogurt maker for a few hours. You'll need to experiment with the timing to get the consistency that you like anon
While I haven't tried this myself, I got this recipe from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Falon and her stuff is pretty reputable.

Yoghurt (Makes 1 quart)

1/2 cup good quality commercial plain yogurt
1 quart pasteurized whole milk, nonhomogenized a candy thermometer

(FYI, the final product may be thinner in consistency than the commerical kind. But no machines needed.) Gently heat the milk to 180 degrees and allow to cool to about 110 degrees. Stir in yogurt and place in a shallow glass, enamel or stainless steel container. Cover the container and place in a warm oven (about 150 degree, or a gas oven with a pilot light) overnight. In the morning transfer to the refrigerator. (Throughout the day, use paper towels to mop up any whey that exudes from the yogurt.) Reserve 1/2 cup of finished product for next batch. love yogurt

I know it's possible to make yogurt without a yogurt maker, and I know it's yet another appliance, but I really LOVE my yogurt maker and use it all the time to make yummy yogurt. I also like not having to decide what to do with dozens of plastic yogurt containers. The one I have is made by Donvier, and came with glass jars. Unfortunately, the new model come with polycarbonate jars, but I know there are some brands that still have glass ones (do a search). Whichever, it should come with a thermometer that marks the ideal temperature for adding the starter.

Here's my current recipe for about a quart of yogurt: Just the first time, buy one small cup of an unsweetened yogurt that you like (I use low-fat Nancy's organic). Heat one quart of 1% milk (I use Clover organic)in a saucepan just until it starts to simmer, then turn it off. Put the thermometer in and keep an eye on it until it reaches the marked temperature. Put about one heaping tablespoon of your purchased yogurt into a glass measuring cup and whisk in a litle of the warm milk , then combine it with the rest of the milk. Pour into clean yogurt jars, cover, and put it in the yogurt maker for about 4 hours (will vary, depending on the exact proportions, the age of your starter yogurt, and how thick you prefer). Then put the jars in the refrigerator. That's it! Add any flavorings you like as you eat it. Remember not to eat up the last bit, since you will use it for your next batch. When the culture gets too weak, or you forget to save some, or you are away for a long time, then buy a new starter cup. One more tip - as soon as you pour the cultured milk out of the pan, add some cold water. That will make the pan much easier to clean up R.K.

We make homemade yogurt and it is very easy. Here's our recipe: http://www.senfamily.info/locales/archives/000057.html

1. Prepare the growing medium: Buy some milk from the grocery store, say a quart, preferably 2% or whole.

2. Sterilize the medium: Bring milk to boil on medium heat; lower heat and let boil for a few minutes; let cool to body temperature.

3. Prepare cells you want to grow: All you need is a tablespoon of plain yogurt either from a previous batch you made at home or from the grocery store. If from the grocery store make sure that it has ''active cultures.'' Stir in the yogurt into the previously boiled, now cool, milk.

4. Let cells grow in ambient temperature: Leave the milk with the stirred in yogurt in a warm place (about body temperature) for about 8 hours. This can be in your oven with the pilot light on, or any other place in your house that is warm. The yogurt takes longer to set in cooler temperatures.

We have followed this procedure with excellent results. The yogurt is delicious, not sour like the ones you get in the store. We add some with fresh strawberries for dessert. You can substitute your favourite fruit, jam, or marmalade instead.

Refrigerate the yogurt which will keep for about a week. Save a bit as starter for the next batch

Homemade Yogurt
1 quart 2-percent milk 1/2 cup powdered milk 1 to 2 tablepoons honey 1/2 cup plain yogurt, room temperature
Pour milk into small saucepan and whisk in powdered milk and honey. Place over medium heat and bring to 120 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. Once milk has reached 120 degrees F, pour into a cylindrical plastic container, reserving 1/2 cup. Whisk in the reserved 1/2 cup into the yogurt and add back to the milk mixture. Place container into a narrow wine bucket, lined with a heating pad. Set the heating pad to medium. Let the mixture ferment for 3 to 12 hours making sure the temperature stays as close to 115 degrees F as possible.

After fermentation is complete place into the refrigerator overnight.

This recipe is from Alton Brown from the food network I have not tried it myself but his recipes are usually very good. Good Luck!! Chris

Frozen yogurt popsicles

April 2002

Is there a secret to making frozen yogurt popsicles or is it just a matter of putting your favorite flavored yogurt in a popsicle tray? If you have a recipe, please share. Thanks! Margaret

You really just put the yogurt in the popsicle molds and freeze them. That's all there is to it. I use vanilla yogurt and add some frozen fruit sometimes for color. Martha Stewart had some good recipes in her magazine last summer; check the website as the recipes may be online. Hilary
You can buy ''yogurt in a tube'' (Go-gurt or Expresse....there are several other brands) and freeze those just as they are. There's no fun stick, but kids can hold and eat it just like ''Otter Pop'' type popsicle Elise
It is as simple as putting the ingredients in an ice pop maker. I do layers of yogurt, and frozen juice oncentrate that has been slightly diluted. I usually use OJ or cranberry. Sometimes I put small chunks of fruit in too. Marianne

Whole Milk Yogurt

Fran 10/99 Does anyone know where you can buy plain yogurt that is NOT low-fat? I want to give my baby the high-fat (or full fat) version but all the supermarket seems to have is the low fat (or worse, non-fat) variety. I know making yogurt is pretty easy, but I'd really like to buy it if possible... Thanks --------------------- Kim I use Stony Farms Whole Fat Organic Plain yogurt. It is available at Whole Foods in Berkeley. It is very creamy and my daughter loves it. --------------- Daryl Brown Cow Yogourt makes a great whole milk plain yogurt (in quarts); it can be purchased at Berkeley Bowl, and I think Andronicos, too. --------------- Tanya This is concerning the question about the all natural fat-in yogurt. I did a whole lot of label reading at the grocery store and found that Dannon Natural plain yogurt is, standard, regular fat-in yogurt. Many of the other brands have added ingredients like tapioca and starches or sugar. The only problem is that I can only find it in 32 oz containers at Safeway and Lucky. It does keep well, and my 7 1/2 month old LOVES it! You might be able to find other types at natural foods stores, too. ------------- Kathy Mountain High makes a very good tasting whole milk plain yogurt. I buy mine at Village Market which is a small grocery store located on Broadway Terrace in Oakland. I've also purchased it from WebVan. ---------------- kimberly all the health food stores have whole milk yogurts my babay loves them. I think the nem brand we buy might be Brown cow or somthing of the like ------------------ Andronico's and Whole foods have the PAVEL'S Russian yogurt whole fat. Also, you can find whole yogurt MOUNTAIN HIGH in Lucky's or Safeway. Both are labeled as original (whole fat) yogurts, I use them to make dip with cucumbers. ---------------------- Rose Lucky's in the El Cerrito Plaza and the one on San Pablo just past Moser both carry Full Fat plain yogurt. At the Plaza all the yogurts are together, but at the other one, the full fat ones are in the refridgerated case opposite the rest of the yogurts (with the soy milk and organic type stuff)... Hope that makes sense. I have been using Brown Cow yogurt. The other brands they have are Stonyfield Farms (which is BGH free), Mountain High and Pavels. Sometimes they are out of stock on the plain, or the full fat versions, but they do stock them regularly. The full fat Mountain High and Pavels only come in 2lb tubs. At first I went with the plain, but since then I switched to vanilla. If you do decide to switched to flavored yogurts make sure you read the label... Mountain High uses honey to sweeten theirs, and I had to dump it since my son is not old enough for honey yet. -------------------- Jane I heartily recommend Mountain High whole yogurt. My toddler loves it. It's available at Safeway and at Andronico's. ----------------------- Laurel We give our 14-month-old son Brown Cow or Stonyfield Farms whole milk plain yogurt. They make both organic and conventional types, both of which can be found at Whole Foods on Telegraph and Ashby. You can also find these products at Berkeley Bowl (although I don't know if they carry the organic kinds). We buy the big 1 quart tubs, to save money and packaging. --------------------------- Kathleen Berkeley Bowl and several other stores sell Brown Cow full-fat yogurt. This is unhomogenized, so there is a layer of yogurt cream on top -- if you pull this off, you get low-fat yougurt; stir it in, you get full-fat. Also at Berkeley Bowl and Safeway in North Berkeley is Pavel's yogurt, which has a really nice flavor. Both these brands are also available in health food stores. Brown Cow has a full-fat organic yogurt available at Wild Oats. ------------------ Nicole You can buy full-fat yogurt at Whole Foods market at Telegraph and Ashby, and I think also at Andronico's. There are a couple of brands that are organic, Brown Cow which has a nice layer of cream on top and another brand. I feed my daughter goat-milk yogurt (Redwood Hills, I think it's called) which is full-fat and easier for her to digest than cow's milk. It's available at both stores above, and also at the Berkeley Farmer's Market. -------------------- Caroline I am surprised, because I find full fat plain yogurt either at the Berkeley Bowl, or Whole Foods or ANdronico's. I think the kind I get is usually organic now that I think of it( Brown Cow is the brand I think, and it's much tastier than all the other plain varieties). ---------------------- IANNE We buy full fat, plain yogurt at Andronico's. The brand name is Pavel's and it's rare that they are out of stock. Pavel's also makes reduced fat yogurt, so be sure to read the label. It comes in 8 and 16 oz containers. --------------- About yogurt, we went through the same issue & our doctor recommended Brown Cow whole milk yogurt which you can buy at either Andronico's or Monterey Market. I buy the plain for the kids, but we also indulge in the Maple from time to time! ------ On Yogurt: Yes, I had the same problem! I haven't been able to find plain whole fat organic yogurt in the East Bay, but have found Brown Cow whole fat yogurt at several stores including Berkeley Bowl (and the Rockridge Safeway too I think). My son loves the Brown Cow whole fat plain yogurt (and doesn't seem to like other brands I have tried when I couldn't find Brown Cow). I haven't done it but have thought about requesting some of the stores to carry an organic brand as well. I gave my son some when we were visiting relatives outside of California and he loved it, though I can't recall the brand. Happy eating....... ---------------------- I was surprised that no one mentioned Nancy's Yogurt, which we buy at the Berkeley Bowl and Whole Foods. It's delicious, comes in a great full-fat version (as well as lowfat and nonfat), and like other high-quality brands from smaller producers, comes in its own reuseable Tupperware, which we save and use for tons of things. Brown Cow and Stonyfield are also good picks, of course. ------------- I was also surprised that Nancy's Honey Yogurt wasn't mentioned, but when I checked at Monterrey Market last weekend, it wasn't on the shelf. (We've been buying the lower-fat versions for the past several years.) Maybe they stopped making it? (That would be a shame.) ---------------- The Berkeley Bowl has organic, plain, whole milk yogurt produced by Horizons dairy. They didn't carry it before but I (and others?) made numerous requests and now they have it all the time. If the Bowl is not convenient to you consider asking (bugging) your local grocery to stock it. ---------------- Straus Family Creamery, an organic dairy in Marin, is coming out very soon with whole milk yogurt, too.

Soy Yogurt

I'd like a recommendation. I've recently discovered cultured soy yogurt (non-dairy), which is very tasty. I've found it at Trader Joe's and Berkeley Bowl, but only in the little individual size that costs about 99cents. Does anyone know anywhere that sells a larger size (or a less expensive small size)? Thanks!
Very good cultured soy yogurt that is unpasteurized after the probiotics are added (lactobacillus acidophilis) is Nancy's Yogurt. It comes in quart size and the plain is sweetened with amazake. Yumm! Try Whole Foods Market.

Yo Baby Yogurt

June 2001

Has anyone seen Stoneyfield Farms Yo Baby Yogurt at their local store? I found them recently at my local Safeway and was thrilled to find the right size flavor and whole milk yougurt, but they seem to have stopped stocking it. I asked them about it but didn't get very far. I've looked in my local natural foods stores (Food Mill) and produce market (Farmer Joe's). Have you seen it in your Safeway or local? Thanks.

we get our yobaby at Raley's or El Cerrito Natural Foods which I believe also has a store in Berkeley. Which I think is Berkeley Natural Foods. I have found they are cheaper at Raley's. This week they are 2/$5.00 at the natural food store they are $3.70ish. melinda
You can find it at Andronico's, Berkeley Bowl, and Whole Foods, and Wild Oats Market (replies from many people)
Berkeley Bowl carries Yo Baby whole milk yogurt, and another version (can't remember the name, but has environmental super heros theme) that is low fat for older kids.
i've seen & bought various types of their yogurt (lowfat, whole milk, yogurt squeezes, etc.) at both the el cerrito natural grocery on san pablo (across from darla's baby boutique) and the berkeley natural grocery on gilman (near tiddlywinks). Jessica
I have seen this going on and off the shelves at my local Alameda Safeway. It was there last time I went about 2 weeks back but was off the shelves for a couple of months around the beginning of this year. It's available at Berkeley Bowl, though, pretty consistently. Gita.
In Oakland, I have found the Yo Baby yogurts only at the local Albertson's as well as at Whole Foods and Andronicos. I also order it from Webvan. One decent substitute, if you continue having problems finding it, is the Brown Cow whole milk yogurts (with fruit at the bottom). I usually serve the top 75% of it and leave out the sugary fruit at the bottom. Good luck! Nicole
Yes, I've bought this product recently at both the Safeway at Pleasant Valley/Broadway in Oakland and at Whole Foods on Ashby in Berkeley. (What kills me is that they add sugar to the darn stuff. Doesn't anyone make a kid-sized container of whole-milk yogurt without added sugar?!) Darcy
yo-baby yogurt: I have a solution for the person who complained about the sugar in yo-baby yogurt. Stonyhill (the company that makes yo-baby) also sells whole milk PLAIN yogurt in big tubs. You can find it at the Redwood Heights Safeway and just add some applesauce or other fruit to it. Genevieve