making over these past few weeks, and I wish that all of this information had
been in one place. So, I’ve made an attempt to lay it all out here for you, in
case you are inspired to make your own Vegan yogurt. I sure hope you do, it’s
amazing what happens with a little knowledge and some guts.
Stuff you will need:
milk, 1 quart (4 cups). Of course you could make more, but all of the
proportions in this blog post apply to 4 cups of milk. If you do
decide to double the amount of milk, you will need to double the amount of
thickener, but not the amount of Vegan Yogurt Starter/Culture (stick with
cup (a two cup liquid measuring cup works perfectly)
- Medium saucepan
Machine, or your oven, dehydrator, crock pot, or brand new Instant Pot–Whatever your method, it is imperative that you test it out before making yogurt to ensure that you can achieve a steady temperature of between 108 and 112 degrees. You can do this with a water test and a thermometer. Just let your method run for hours, testing the water every hour or so. It turned out that my first Cuisinart machine was defective and I didn’t know it until after three failed attempts at yogurt making. I was so frustrated! Then I ran the water test and found out that my machine was running at 125 degrees, killing the yogurt culture! Uuuuuuuggggggghhhhh. I replaced my machine with a new one and ran a new water test. My second machine worked fine and guess what? My first attempt at making yogurt in it was met with success.
Choose an unflavored variety of alternative milk with the least
number of additives possible.
The more thickener you use, the thicker
the final product will be. The consistency can approach that of Greek yogurt
when you use the maximum amount of thickener.
described in steps number 3 and 4 below:
simmering milk and whisked vigorously:
the way to use Agar is as follows: For every 3 to 4
cups milk, dissolve 1/2 teaspoon agar into 1/2 cup of water. Bring the agar and
water mixture to a boil. Allow the mixture to cool sufficiently prior to adding
it to the heated milk (just before adding the culture).)
grinder) to reduce 1/2 tsp-1 tsp granules to powder
FYI, this is not a certified Kosher product, but the ingredients are as follows:
Rice maltodextrin, live active bacteria (Bifidobacterium bifidum, Lactobacillus
acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp bulgaricus,
Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Streptococcus thermophilus).
coconut, etc.) should work as well as a packet of starter. More is not necessarily better. I have read that 1 Tbsp might
actually work better than mare than that because the bacteria like to have a
lot of room to breathe.
There are five stages of yogurt making:
sure that everything you are using to make the yogurt is very clean. You
can even go as far as pouring boiling water on everything, or dipping
everything into a large pot of boiling water, but it doesn’t
one packet of Vegan Yogurt Starter from your refrigerator or freezer or between
1 Tbsp and ½ cup of plain Vegan yogurt (soy or coconut, etc.) from your
refrigerator and let it come to room temperature.
- In a medium
saucepan, pour 1.5 cups of your alternative milk of choice. Begin heating on LOW
temperature. You do not want the milk to scald (burn) or boil. If it does,
you must toss it out and start over, so keep that heat on low. The milk
should simmer between 150-180 degrees. Use your candy thermometer to
ensure that the temperature does not go over 180 degrees.
- While the milk is warming, place
your thickener into a small bowl with ½ cup of the milk from the carton
(the room temperature milk). Whisk until thickener is totally dissolved.
This is your slurry.
slurry into the saucepan with the simmering milk and whisk. Continue to
heat and whisk until you start to get some thickening, similar to a light
gravy or sauce. Once again, do not bring to a boil. Once thickened, remove
the remaining room temperature milk from the carton into the saucepan with
the thickened milk and whisk.
- OPTIONAL: And this is totally optional folks, you could let the milk simmer here for a while to get really thick. Whisk it from time to time. It all depends on how thick you want the final yogurt to be. If you want a Greek yogurt consistency, this could be the way to go. Once thick, remove from heat.
THE MILK COOL: You can speed up the cooling process by placing the saucepan onto
a bowl of ice water. The ice method makes a huge difference in the amount of time this whole process takes, I highly recommend it. Using your candy thermometer, measure the temperature of the mixture.
THE MILK: When the temperature of the milk mixture is under 110 degrees,
pour the milk into the plastic container of your Cuisinart yogurt machine.
If you are not using the Cuisinart, see Note 1.
the milk with the whisk to make sure that the temperature is consistent throughout the
milk. Measure again and if the temperature is in fact under 110 degrees, whisk
in the Vegan Yogurt Starter or your desired amount of plain vegan yogurt.
the mixture warm at 108-112 degrees for 6-9 hours.
The longer the culturing time, the more sour the
yogurt will be. I have found that I can culture my yogurt at 8-9 hours
in my Cuisinart Machine to achieve that yogurt taste.
A yogurt machine does the warming work at a
constant temperature for you.
If using store bought Vegan yogurt as your
culture, it may take longer than 8 hours (maybe even up to 12) for the yogurt
to reach your desired taste.
If you do not have a yogurt machine, see
instructions for other options below.
6-9 hours of culturing (you set the exact time on the Cuisinart), the
Cuisinart machine will begin the cooling process automatically (the Cuisinart machine is the only machine that will switch from warming to cooling for you, without you needing to be both awake and at home for this step,, which is why people pay the big bucks for it). If you are
not using the Cuisinart, simply place the yogurt into your refrigerator
(with an airtight lid) for a minimum of 5 hours and up to 8-12 hours. The
yogurt will thicken a lot during the refrigeration step.
sweetening and/or flavoring the yogurt can be done only after it has completely
thickened and cooled, but you will be surprised at how delicious it is plain!
milk reaches 110 degrees, stir in the starter right in the saucepan. Then transfer
the mixture to whatever container(s) you are culturing the yogurt in. You can
make yogurt in any container that you can keep warm. Oftentimes with other
yogurt machines, this will be small individual containers. But you can use
mason jars, bread pans, etc.
Culturing yogurt without a yogurt machine:
- In an electric
oven: Turn on the light in an electric oven, then wrap the yogurt in a
dishtowel and put it inside the oven.
- I a
crock pot: http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/2010/08/homemade-vegan-yogurt-in-the-crock-pot/
If you are not looking for a thick yogurt, you can skip the thickening
step all together and go with this extremely simple method for making
crock pot Vegan yogurt: http://www.easy-homemade-yogurt.com/Homemade-Soy-Yogurt.html#.Uuqjtj1dUl9
- In a
new Instant Pot: http://www.hippressurecooking.com/video-how-to-make-yogurt-in-instant-pot-duo/
- In a
dehydrator: keeping the yogurt in a dehydrator on the lowest temperature
setting (no higher than 110 degrees) with the shelves removed for 6-8
- In an
insulated cooler: wrap the jar in a dishtowel and put it in an insulated
cooler with the cover on.
temperature of each of these methods ahead of time by heating some water
to 110°F and holding the jar of water for the required number of hours
using the method of choice. Test the water temperature periodically to ensure
that the incubation method will hold the warmth properly.”
Optional: Strain the Yogurt
certain dips or recipes) or cheese, you can even go the extra mile and strain the yogurt
after the cooling step. You can strain the yogurt
through a cheese bag or coffee filter, or use this gizmo (which I did purchase and LOVE!)
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which will let a good deal of the excess water drip out, leaving you with a thicker
yogurt. With the method that Debby taught me that I have outlined above, the yogurt comes out so thick that you might find it to be similar to Greek Yogurt.
Edited to note:
Optional: Making Vegan Yogurt the Easy Way
It was brought to my attention that yogurt could be made very simply by just adding one packet of Vegan yogurt starter to a box of soy milk, closing the cap, shaking the milk, pouring the milk into the container of your yogurt machine, turning the machine on and viola! In 8-9 hours Yogurt! (Well, after the 8-9 hours the yogurt needs to cool for many hours, but you get my point.) No pots, no whisks, no heat, no time . . . nada! So I did it. And it does work. So if all this seems daunting to you, just do it the simple way! The difference will be that the end result is not nearly as thick as what happens when you use the method detailed in this blog post. You might still love it! But now that I am used to the thicker Vegan yogurt, I’m going to say that it’s worth the extra time and clean up to make the thick yogurt. I just loved it and since I started making it a day has not gone by that I haven’t eaten homemade Vegan yogurt. What a wonderful addition to my diet.
3/13/14, edited to add:
Making Larger Batches of Yogurt in Your Cuisinart:
The batch came out just as well as my smaller batches have, and I have to say that I don’t think I will go back to making 4 cup batches. With 6 cup batches I can make yogurt less frequently and also have enough yogurt during the week for things like Vegan Tzatziki and Vegan Raita to go with out dinners. Score!