I did it. I did it! I finally made my own homemade Greek Yogurt. It has been on my list of things to try for SO long. Kind of like making my own laundry detergent. I am thrilled with how easy it is and how wonderful it tastes! Simply 2 ingredients to get you started.
BONUS – It is so much cheaper. And you know how much I like that. The half of a gallon of milk I used cost me a whopping $1.25 and I made 1-½ quarts of Greek Yogurt. I’m sure you have seen the prices of Greek yogurt. At my local grocery, I pay anywhere between $3.99 – $5.99 for one quart. We eat about 3 quarts of the week! This is going to be a HUGE savings for us.
There are 2 ways you can actually make your own yogurt. I chose to make it in my slow cooker the first time but I am going to try just heating the milk in the microwave next.
As I have said many times before….if I can do this…YOU can do this! 🙂 I will be making it at least twice a week for us now.
If you would like to sweeten your yogurt, just use honey, agave or maple syrup. You can even use a drop or so vanilla extract to flavor it as well.
½ gallon fat free milk OR 2 Quarts
½ cup of plain, unsweetened yogurt (with live cultures – I used FAGE 0%)
chinois strainer or a cheese cloth and colander
How to Make Greek Yogurt
Pour milk into the slow cooker and cook on high for 2 – 2 ½ hours.
Heat to 180 degrees. (Mine took 2 ½ hours)
Turn off the slow cooker and allow milk to cool to 110 degrees (will take 1 ½ – 2 ½ hours. Mine took exactly 2 hours)
Allow the ½ cup of plain, unsweetened yogurt to come to room temperature while the milk is cooling.
Once the milk has reached 110- 120 degrees, mix in the yogurt into the milk and wisk gently. *Be sure milk is below 120 degrees or it will kill the live cultures.
Place the lid back on the slow cooker and wrap the slow cooker with several towels. Let it sit somewhere undisturbed so it can ferment for about 6-8 hours or 12 hours. It needs to look jello-like.
Then, remove the towels from the slow cooker and place it in the refrigerator for about 2 hours to cool completely. Below is what mine looked like after 8 hours of fermenting.
Do not shake or stir. It will set much better just left to cool. Below is what mine looked like after being in the refrigerator over night. From 9 pm until 7 am. You can see the whey that has risen to the top even more.
It is ready to eat at this point if you like. Just whisk until smooth and you are all set to add any fruit, honey, maple syrup, nuts and/or granola.
But, you can easily make it “Greek” yogurt by straining the whey from the yogurt in a very fine mesh strainer, like the chinois strainer I mentioned above, for about 30 minutes. I found mine at Homegoods for $10.00 🙂
I strained 2 cups from my 2 quarts of milk.
I ended up with over 1-½ quarts of Greek Yogurt! My daughter had already indulged in a bowlful by the time I got to taking this picture. 🙂
OH….and don’t forget to save a ½ cup to use on your next batch as a starter.
How to Make Fat Free Greek Yogurt
- ½ gallon fat free milk 2 quarts
- ½ cup plain unsweetened Greek yogurt with live cultures - (I used FAGE 0%)
- food thermometer
- slow cooker
- chinois strainer or a cheese cloth and colander
- Pour milk into the slow cooker and cook on high for 2 - 2 ½ hours.
- Heat to 180 degrees. (Mine took 2 ½ hours)
- Turn off the slow cooker and allow milk to cool to 110 degrees (will take 1 ½ - 2 ½ hours. Mine took exactly 2 hours)
- Allow the ½ cup of plain, unsweetened yogurt to come to room temperature while the milk is cooling.
- Once the milk has reached 110- 120 degrees, mix in the yogurt into the milk and wisk gently. *Be sure milk is below 120 degrees or it will kill the live cultures.
- Place the lid back on the slow cooker and wrap the slow cooker with several towels. Let it sit somewhere undisturbed so it can ferment for about 6-8 hours or 12 hours. It needs to look jello-like.
- Then, remove the towels from the slow cooker and place it in the refrigerator for about 2 hours to cool completely. Below is what mine looked like after 8 hours of fermenting.
- Do not shake or stir. It will set much better just left to cool. Below is what mine looked like after being in the refrigerator over night. From 9 pm until 7 am. You can see the whey that has risen to the top even more.
- It is ready to eat at this point if you like. Just whisk until smooth and you are all set to add any fruit, honey, maple syrup, nuts and/or granola.
- But, you can easily make it "Greek" yogurt by straining the whey from the yogurt in a very fine mesh strainer, like the chinois strainer I mentioned above, for about 30 minutes. I found mine at Homegoods for $10.00 🙂
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is there a way to make this yogurt with less sugar than 12 grams
The sugar is naturally in the milk itself so I’m not sure there is a way to get around that. 🙂
Hi Sherri…I am anxious to try your recipe. Sounds easy enough for me….I find myself spending a lot more money on store bought than I would like ….keep you posted …thanks.. Lilly
I used this recipe two times and both times it turned out like soup . As I read more recipes they said use whole milk if you use less than whole milk it will come out soupy. I didn’t want soup, I wanted yogurt.
I’ve been reading about adding pectin or unflavored gelatin to home made low fat yogurt. If using 2% or full fat milk; it doesn’t need it, however you do need to strain some whey off so that it’s not so runny….might be worth a try!
All you have to do to thicken it up is use 1/2 cup nonfat powdered milk. The cultures need something to eat in order to thicken. I am not sure why this posting says it works without using the nonfat milk powder. Here is a link that talks about ways to thicken yogurt. https://www.thekitchn.com/better-homemade-yogurt-5-ways-125442 Especially look at bullet 4. I have been making yogurt for about a year now and am a lazy person. So I use a cuisinart electronic yogurt maker – it heats for your desired set time – I always use 8 hours – then goes into a cooling stage. It could sit like that for days. You could even eat right from it if you wanted to. I don’t. I like real thick Greek style yogurt, so I transfer the yogurt once it has set in the cool stage for at least 8 more hours over to a Euro Cuisine Greek yogurt maker. I put it in the fridge for a few hours then BAMM nice 0% fat Greek yogurt (if you used 0% milk and the milk powder routine) ready to put in a bowl with your favorite fruit.
Wondering if this method is still what you are using and recommend? I’m ready to make my own Greek yogurt and appreciate the guidance very much. I can find the Cuisinart and Euro both used and low cost so if this is a good method I’m ready.
I’ve been making it for about a year now the recipe is correct heat to over 180 amd cool to 110-120 and let set for 8-12 hours in a warm place. My oven light keeps the interior warm. you then have to strain the resulting soupy mixture you can strain it to a yogurt consistency a Greek yogurt consistency or leave it even longer to create a Greek yogurt cheese consistency. The more whey you take out of the yogurt the thicker it will get from what I’ve read the sugar also stays mostly in the whey.
I read the same thing, but also found that they say you can use 2% as well for good results. I have made it with 2% A2 milk with great results.
Very neatly explained
You can make this with non fat instant dry milk powder making into 2 quarts. Then buy something like Aldis 2 G yogurt that is low fat and use as a starter( 1/2 cup). Strain overnight and it turns put super thick.
Is there any use for the whey you strain?
Yes, I used it in smoothies. It keeps for several days in the refrigerator.
Drink it. You can also use it in a variety of wheys (Pun intended). From yogurt you get a ‘sweet Whey’ and from things like cheese you get an acid Whey. Here is a site that describes wheys (again pun – the pun is fun) to use your Whey. https://www.culturesforhealth.com/learn/general/ways-to-use-whey/
Hi I know this is an older post, but I just tried it and it didn’t work well. It came out slimy. Any idea what happened? I did notice that it only took 30 minutes to cool it down from 180 degrees to 115 degrees.
Normally how long can a batch be stirred in the refrigerator after it is finished being made? Would like to know to see how many batches I can make ahead.
It will definitely be great for a week but beyond that I’m just now sure. I have never made several batches at a time but have made it several times a week and mark the containers with dates. 🙂
Hi Sherri – Thanks for sharing this with the Let’s Get Real party. It is going to be my featured post at this week’s party.
I love homemade yogurt this looks so good! Hope you are having a great day and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Come Back Soon!
This looks so interesting to make yourself and so delicious! Thank you so much for linking up at Tasty Tuesday! Your recipe has been pinned to the Tasty Tuesday Pinterest board! Please join us again this week!
Thanks for sharing! One of these days I am planning to try this. My husband and I both love greek yogurt!
This sounds like something I should be doing. I have two questions please.
1. Could I use a coffee filter over a strainer to strain?
2. Could you just heat the milk in a pot as long as it heated to 180°?
To Madonna, you can use cheese cloth (what I use.) A coffee filter might take a really long time to get results. I put the cheese cloth over a glass measuring cup like what Sherry used above. I also just heat the milk in a large pan to 180 degrees. At that point, I pour it in a large crock bowl; when it’s cooled to 110 I add the live cultures via Greek yogurt, whisk them in, cover the bowl with a plate, wrap the whole thing in a towel and stick it in my oven, with just the light on. Leave it there for 12-14 hours (12 has always been enough for me) and then you have the same result as the crock pot. Good luck! Love making my own yogurt!
It is so wonderful! And easy!
1. I think a coffee filter may be thicker and have to use smaller batches and possibly messier to use but it’s worth a try if you mind kind of testing it.
2. Yes, you can heat the milk in a pot or in the microwave even. Just be careful not to burn the milk in a pot. My 2nd batch I actually heated my milk in the microwave in a 2 quart Pyrex bowl. It took 19 minutes in my microwave to be exact, stirring occasionally. Then I added it to my crockpot to cool to 110 degrees and followed the rest of the steps from there.
Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions. 🙂
I tried making Greek yogurt once and loved it! I have a yogurt maker and used it instead of the crock pot, but didn’t have one of those nice little gadgets you had for straining, and cheesecloth didn’t work so well. I’m definitely going to be getting one of those!
Thank you for sharing! You have me inspired to make some Greek yogurt again! 🙂