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Yummy, Healthy Homemade Yogurt Recipe

I always plan to post healthy recipes, but just never seem to get it done!  Today I was chatting with a client about yogurt, and decided this would be a great recipe to share.  I stopped buying yogurt at the store almost a year ago and started making my own.  It’s super easy, tastes awesome, and is so much cheaper than that crazy $3-$4 per carton that they charge to buy ready-made Greek-style yogurt.

You can use this recipe to make any style of yogurt, but since I like the Greek, creamy,custard-style, that’s what I used for my starter.  My dad (who shared this recipe with me) prefers the flavor of “Activa.”  It’s pretty tart!  Almost lemony tasting.  But I’m a fan of sweeter, Greek yogurt so my first starter was “Fage” brand.   After your first batch, if you remember to save some, you can use your own homemade yogurt as your starter when it’s time to whip up a fresh batch.

I haven’t played with making fruit-flavored yogurts.  Personally, I like it plain and can add things to it before I eat it if I want to change my flavor.  If you’ve been successful adding flavors to the cooking process, please drop a comment and share what’s worked for you that you absolutely love the taste of.

OK, here it is:

Yummy Homemade Yogurt Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 quart milk (can use skim, 2%, or whole)
  • 1 cup powdered milk (add more for thicker yogurt, less if you like it thin.)

How To:

  1. Mix milk & powdered milk and put in a double boiler pan and heat to 170 degrees.  (I think I’m using a meat thermometer to periodically check my temp!)
  2. While milk is heating, sterilize your jars.  Either boil jars & lids, or run through a hot cycle in the dishwasher.
  3. Once milk reaches 170 degrees, turn off heat, cover (to keep sterile) and let cool to at least 100 degrees.
  4. When milk has cooled to at least 100 degrees, add ½ cup or more of starter.  (Dad recommends 1 cup starter for 2 quarts of milk.)
  5. Put yogurt in jars, secure lids, and then do one of the following:

Option A:  If your oven has a proofing setting, (used to help bread rise.) use it to cook for 12 hours at 103 degrees.

Option B: Use a dehydrator.  Remove trays so jars will fit.  Set for 103 degrees and cook for 12 hours.

Option C: Use a water bath.  Fill an insulated cooler with HOT water (103 degrees).  Place jars in water bath, & close the lid.  Check occasionally to see if you need to add some warmer water.  Let set overnight (12 hours)

After it’s “cooked” for 12 hours place jars in fridge and enjoy! *Remember to save a jar to use as a starter for your next batch!

**IF you use a whole carton-2 quarts of milk, 2 cups of powdered milk, 1 cup of starter, this will make approximately 6 not-quite-full pint jars.  The recipe above is 1/2 of this!  (my pot’s not big enough to cook 2 quarts at at time.)

My Dad has the luxury of a proofing oven.  I’m using a dehydrator.  And I have friends who use the insulated cooler method.  Give it a try and see what works best for you!  What’s great about this is you have options.  Huge fancy equipment is not required to produce a good batch of yogurt!

Have fun in the kitchen!  This is so easy to make, it’s a shame to waste your hard-earned income on expensive yogurt at the store.  Plus, if you’re re-using your jars, we’re keeping tons of plastic containers out of the trash!  Making yogurt is good for your health, and a healthier planet!

Benefits of Yogurt:

There are lots of great health benefits from eating yogurt!

  • The probiotics in yogurt help to maintain a healthy digestive tract.
  • As a milk product,  yogurt is a good source of protein.
  • Yogurt contains nutrients like calcium, vitamin B-2, B-12, potassium, and magnesium.

Eating yogurt regularly may help reduce the risk of osteoporosis, may reduce the risk of high blood pressure, and the active “live” cultures may help certain gastrointestinal problems like constipation, diarrhea, and inflammatory bowel disease just to name a few.  My dad (Dr. George) is a firm believer that yogurt can even help you regulate to a normal weight!

Yogurt is good for you and tastes GREAT!


My Top 10 Tips for Ways to Eat & Enjoy Yogurt:

  1. Enjoy with fruit.
  2. Enjoy with nuts.  (I like pine nuts, almonds, or pecans.)
  3. Use instead of sour cream on a baked potato, or taco.
  4. Add to your favorite smoothie.
  5. Add 1 or 2 Tablespoons right before serving to a bowl of chicken noodle or vegetable soup.
  6. Sprinkle with a little cinnamon & sugar for a custard/ice-cream like treat.
  7. Add your favorite herbs and use as a dip for crackers & veggies.
  8. Sprinkle with crushed flax seeds, hemp seeds, or sesame seeds.
  9. Mix Yogurt with water and use like milk in any recipe.  (great for pancakes!)
  10. Use to make salad dressing for a creamy vinaigrette.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy eating yogurt?  Drop a comment and share!

Posted by Aliesa George in Food and Nutrition, Recipes for Healthy Eating and tagged , , , , , , .

Copyright: If you reprint a post on this site or re-post it on your own blog or website, you must include the following attribution: © MMVIII-MMXIII, Aliesa George and Centerworks©. Used by Permission. Originally posted on Centerworks.com.

 

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