Thursday, February 5, 2009

Homemade Plain Yogurt {Surprisingly Easy}

I love making Homemade Yogurt. I have been hooked ever since I saw this recipe featured on the Martha Stewart Show a couple years back. This yogurt is a bit time consuming and a little work. Well, not work on your part, but work as in time to set up and culture. It's really easy to make.

This recipe isn't complicated at all and you don't need a bunch of equipment all you need is a yogurt starter and milk. Yogurt Starter is yogurt that has been made with active live cultures; this is the good bacteria that will turn your milk into yogurt.

You can purchase a small size plain non flavored yogurt at the grocery store. Make sure it says Made with live cultures. Then you will need milk whole, 2% or Skim which ever you prefer. That's it, that's all you need to have fresh homemade plain yogurt.

I love to top my yogurt with fresh fruit, granola or freezer jam um its so good mixed together. Just top it with your favorite fruit and toppings. This yogurt will last 2 weeks if stored properly covered in the refrigerator.

Once you make homemade yogurt you will wonder why you have never made it before now. You can make homemade yogurt for a fraction of the price of store bought yogurt. Go on and give it a try it is simpler than you think.

I saw a recipe at A Year of Crock potting where you can make the yogurt in your crockpot while you sleep. I have not tried that recipe yet but, I might try it next time.

These are the ingredients you will need:
Whole, 2% or Skim Milk and one small container of plain yogurt with Live ACTIVE Cultures.

it will usually state Live Active Cultures in small print on the back of the yogurt container.

Using a thermometer add the milk to a 4 quart size saucepan. Heat the milk to 185 degrees. Then remove from heat and let cool until it reaches 110 degrees.

When milk cools to 110 degrees add 1/4 cup of the plain yogurt. Stirring until blended.

cover with plastic wrap and poke 2 - 3 holes in the top for ventilation. Place in a warm place (90 degrees) and let sit for 4-6 hours until the milk mixture begins to thicken around the edges and the yogurt is set.

I place mine in the oven on OFF and just turn the oven light on. You can also place it in the microwave or leave it out on the counter at room temperature. Room temperature will take longer up to 10-12 hours.

Yogurt will be thick

Place in a covered bowl in the refrigerator until completely set and chilled. Reserve at least 1/4 cup of this yogurt to begin next batch. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks in an airtight container.

The yogurt turned out so good.

Homemade Yogurt

5 - cups whole, low-fat, or skim milk (I used whole milk)
1/4 - cup plain yogurt with active cultures

In a heavy-bottomed 4-quart saucepan, heat milk, stirring frequently over medium heat, to 185 degrees. Remove from heat, and let cool to 110 degrees. Place yogurt in a medium bowl.

Using a whisk, gradually stir in cooled milk, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring until smooth between additions. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, poking two or three holes for ventilation.

Transfer to a warm place (about 90 degrees) . Let sit until milk begins to thicken around the edges and the yogurt is set, about 4 - 6 hours. I place mine in the oven and leave the oven light on or I place it in the microwave oven.

Yogurt will be "done" in 4-6 hours but you can let it incubate for up to 12 (on the counter at room temperature) depending on how tart you like it and how much beneficial bacteria you wish it to have.

Place in a covered bowl in the refrigerator until completely set and chilled. Reserve at least 1/4 cup of this yogurt to begin next batch. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks in an airtight container. Serve plain or with any kind of pureed or fresh fruit.

Cook's Note: If you want your yogurt thicker (like Greek Yogurt), line a fine strainer with a coffee filter. Scoop the yogurt into the filter. and the excess water will come out of the bottom. When it is as thick as you want add the yogurt back to the container.

Suggestions for flavoring plain yogurt:
Use fresh strawberries, blueberries or peaches, granola, peach or cherry pie filling, or stir in plain vanilla, freezer jam , regular jam or fruit preserves or even applesauce.

You can even take about 1 - tsp of flavored jell-0 (I like strawberry) and mix it in with about a cup of yogurt. There is no rule here so just experiment.

Recipe courtesy of: Martha

Tina, The Mom in Mommy's Kitchen


Shawna said... #

Tina! That is fabulous...I would have never thought it would be so easy to make YOGURT!!! Impressive...and yes, I'll be trying this!

Mary | Deep South Dish said... #

Nice tutorial! I think my new rice cooker/steamer/crockpot might do this too. Now you need to make some homemade greek yogurt out of that homemade yogurt. It's easy too - just a matter of straining really. I have some notes about it if you ever want to give it a try.

Tina Butler said... #

Mary I saw something on Greek Yogurt and I wondered what it was. I will go over to your site and check it out.

Anonymous said... #

I just found your blog a couple of days ago. A friend and I were just talking about making yogurt. Thanks for the recipe! I am also looking forward to trying the White Mocha recipe as well.


Stephanie said... #

You're kidding! I just made yogurt last night!! It was my first time making yogurt. I used the crock potting recipe that you mentioned. Mine came out thinner than yours, because I didn't insulate the bottom of the pot as well as the top and sides, but it was fun anyway. Next time I'll try it your way on the stove and in the oven. That's so cool that we both made yogurt!

Anonymous said... #

I used to make yogurt (before kids) and I really should get back to doing it. Thanks for the tips.

Joie de vivre said... #

Good for you! I make my own as well. :)

(F)redddy said... #

Looks heavenly. I can't wait to try it. I made your beef tips n' mushrooms the other night and I was sad, the next day after lunch, when it was all gone. You can only lick a plate so clean!

Anonymous said... #

That sounds great! I LOVE yogurt but never thought to try it on my own! YUM

Anonymous said... #

Yay!! I have been wanting to make homemade yogurt for some time. This has given me the opportunity to try out a new recipe. BTW, I love your site and am always checking it out. Good job!!!

Anonymous said... #

I made the yogurt!! We actually liked it better than storebought so I will be making more this week. I will also try my hand at cottage cheese and if I can get my hands on 1/2 of a rennet tablet, I will try mozzarella. Love it!!

Yaky said... #

I made the yogurt, That is fabulous, Thanks

Tina Butler said... #

I am so glad you liked the recipe. Its pretty easy isnt it? I am going to try and flavor it next time.

Jane said... #

I eat vanilla yogurt everyday but I never thought about making it. Thanks for the recipe Tina!

Elizabeth said... #

THis looks so easy and yummy! My only question is how to flavor it? I love vanilla yogurt but not to into the plain

Tina Butler said... #

Elizabeth if you scroll to the end of the post you will see some options on flavoring the plain yogurt.

Elizabeth said... #

I guess I missed it the first look. Thanks so much.

Linda said... #

This is still my fave go-to recipe for homemade yogurt. As a matter of fact, getting ready to make some now!