Yogurt from the grocery store often tastes rather unnatural and terribly sweet. This is because there is lot of sugar and artificial flavorings in yogurt. If you want to avoid this, but still want your yogurt, what do you do? Make yogurt yourself of course! This is easier than you think and you can also save money.
DIY Yogurt: Why Yogurt Is Healthy
In theory, yogurt provides us the same benefits as fresh milk: high quality protein, depending on the fat content a more or less large dose of vitamins A and D, as well as plenty of calcium and magnesium. However, intolerance and digestive problems are a lot less common when eating yogurt. Lactic acid contributes good digestive health and ensures a healthy intestinal flora. It does this by creating an acidic environment in the digestive tract and where unwelcome microbes are displaced. Unfortunately a lot of yogurt products found in grocery stores nowadays have hardly any of these benefits. They contain lots of sugar, starch and fat. This leaves them with about the nutritional value of a pudding and similar amounts of calories. DIY yogurt, therefore, is a great healthy and low-calorie alternative.
DIY Yogurt: The Ingredients
To make yogurt you need yogurt. Sounds strange, but this is because the bacteria found in yogurt is needed. The second time you attempt this, you can use your own DIY yogurt.
- 1 liter/ 34 oz. of milk
- 150 grams/ 3.5 oz. of plain yogurt (3.5% fat)
- Milk powder (optional)
Heat the milk and keep stirring for about five minutes at 90 Celsius/ 194 Fahrenheit. This helps kill the unwanted bacteria. Then let the milk cool down to 50 Celsius/ 122 Fahrenheit. Stir in the 150 grams/ 3.5 oz. of yogurt. Pour the mixture into glasses and place on a cookie sheet and put in the middle shelf of the oven. Caution: The glasses should not be moved after filling. At 50 Celsius/ 122 Fahrenheit, the glasses should stay in the oven for 30 minutes. Then turn the oven off and let the yogurt glasses sit overnight so they can mature in the oven. Cover the jars and store in the refrigerator. The homemade yogurt should be consumed within 3-4 days. If you want to make a second batch directly, you should keep 150 grams/ 3.5 oz. If you add milk powder the yogurt becomes more solid.
DIY Yogurt: The Milk Is Important
When choosing the milk, you can go with whatever you would like. You could even use goat milk or soy milk. Especially for people who are lactose intolerance, making your own yogurt is a great. Even when it comes to the fat content of milk there are no guidelines. In general, the fattier the milk, the creamier the yogurt.
DIY Yogurt: Natural Aromas
Your favorite flavor of yogurt is vanilla? No problem. Homemade yogurt can also be flavored. You could try cinnamon or vanilla. You can either add a whole stick of cinnamon into the milk and let it sit for 10 hours before heating, or while you are heating the milk just add a few drops of flavoring.
DIY Yogurt: Enjoy It
Now that you are done with your homemade yogurt you could refine it with some fresh or frozen fruit. Either add them whole or throw everything into a blender. Nuts, honey and granola also go well with yogurt. Of course another great example would be EAT SMARTER’s blackberry layer yogurt! You can find all of the EAT SMARTER’s yogurt recipes here.
DIY Yogurt: Environmentally Friendly
If you make yogurt yourself you are not only saving money, but you are also doing something for the environment. Store bought yogurt uses a lot of packaging, which you can save when making yogurt yourself.