Making Homemade Greek Yogurt Is Easy-Yogourmet Yogurt Maker Review

Making Homemade Greek Yogurt

ProductYogourmet Electric Yogurt Maker
Size: 2 quarts
Warranty: 1 year; extra coverage is available for purchase
Price Range: $45-$59

home made yogurt, Yogourmet Yogurt Maker, Greek yogurt
Yogourmet Yogurt Maker

                                                 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MY RATING:


A Bit Of Yogurt History


homemade yogurt, Greek yogurt
Homemade Greek-Style Yogurt

Good old fashioned probiotic yogurt is made from dairy that has been gently fermented into a creamy, delicious food. It is jam-packed with many live bacteria and yeasts that are beneficial for your health, specifically your gut health, and it provides a balanced source of protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.

 

 

 

Many people consider yogurt to be a super-food, especially when it has been sourced from grass-fed cows, goats, or sheep. Dairy sourced from grass-fed, hormone and antibiotic free animals supplies omega-3 fatty acids, whey protein, calcium, magnesium, potassium, vitamin D, vitamin K, natural enzymes, and probiotics. 

grass-fed dairy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Traditionally, dairy based yogurt is made from cow’s milk; however, it can be made from goat’s milk or sheep’s milk.


The process of fermenting dairy milk is not new; it dates back thousands of years to Central Asia, where historical records indicate these people used fermentation to preserve their milk.

Yogurt was highly regarded for its creamy consistency and its many uses. The ancients often stored milk in the stomach linings of animals, where many experts believe healthy bacteria and climate aided in the fermentation process.


Present day dairy preservation is much different. Dairy milks go through a process called pasteurization, which heats the product to the point of killing any kind of bacteria growing in the milk. Therefore, to make yogurt, a starter culture of live bacteria is added, and the milk is set aside to ferment for several hours. The end result: a thick, rich, creamy delight! 

grass-fed dairy, whole milk

homemade yogurt, Greek Yogurt
Creamy homemade Greek style yogurt

Overview


Making creamy, homemade yogurt is super easy with the Yogourmet Electric Yogurt Maker.  A large PVC and BPA free inner container will make up to 2 quarts of homemade yogurt. The maker is versatile because it can also be used to make fresh cheese, sour cream, buttermilk, and kefir. A unique water-bath system surrounds the inner container, creating an even heat, which provides ideal temperatures necessary to develop healthy yogurt cultures. The box includes an easy to follow user manual, thermometer, and cheese strainer.

Yogourmet Yogurt Maker, homemade yogurt, Greek yogurt, SCD
Yogourmet Yogurt Maker

My Review


When I opened the box, I was impressed by the maker’s compact design. It measures 7.8×7.8×10 inches  and weighs 8.8 ounces, making it easy to move around with very little effort. The instruction manual is easy to read and very comprehensive, offering precise instructions, tips, and suggestions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Process-Seven Easy Steps

    1. Pour 2 quarts of milk into a medium sized pot. I use organic whole milk because whole milk contains the most solids and produces a thick, creamy yogurt, but you can use 2%, 1%, or skim milk. 

Note: If you do choose to use lower fat milk, you need to replace the solids by mixing 3/4 to 1 cup of milk powder per 2 quarts of milk. You may also add a package of unflavored gelatin per 2 quarts of milk, following the procedure described above.       

2. Insert the thermometer onto the side of the pot, making sure the stem goes into the milk but does not touch the bottom of the pot. Heat over medium heat until the milk’s temperature reaches 180 degrees. Stir frequently to make sure you have equal heat distribution. Stirring also allows for an overall accurate temperature reading.  yogurt temperature, thermometer3. Remove the milk from the heat. Cover, and allow to cool to 110 degrees. You can speed this process if you add the pot to an ice bath; however, pay careful attention the cooled milk does not go below 110 degrees. It is important to stir frequently if you choose to use an ice bath because you want to be sure the milk is cooling evenly. My preferred method is to allow the milk to cool gradually, without the use of ice.

yogurt thermometer

4. Add lukewarm water to the level of one of the marks inside your yogurt maker, plug in the appliance, and the red light will come on. I always make a full two quarts, so I add water to the high mark; however, if you choose to make a quart batch, add water to reach the low mark.

Note: I have found it best to do this step at the beginning; that way, my water is at the right temperature when I begin the incubation period. Think of it as preheating your oven before baking.

Note: Although I have never had a problem with my unit, other Yogourmet Yogurt Maker owners recommend using this dimmer to help maintain the proper incubation temperature. It is important for your water-bath to maintain 110 degrees for the entire incubation period. Internal house temperature could raise or lower the temperature of the water-bath.

dimmer, plug-in lamp dimmer
Lutron TT-300H-WH Electronics Plug-In Lamp Dimmer, White

5. At this point, you add the starter cultures. If you are using powdered starter, pour one package of starter into a cup and gradually add 5-6 tbs of the cooled milk. Once the starter has been completely dissolved, empty into the balance of the cooled milk in the batch container and stir. Take care to make sure the starter and milk blend evenly.

yogurt starter cultures

 

My method


When I first got my yogurt maker, I used the starter cultures and they worked well.

However, after they ran out, I decided to use plain, organic yogurt from the store. The important thing to remember if you choose to use store bought yogurt as your starter, make sure you buy a brand that has live cultures in it.

TIP: I also use 3/4 – 1 cup of my homemade yogurt as a starter yogurt. When using my previously made homemade yogurt as a starter, I have found it is best to make only 4-5 batches from the original batch. After that, I purchase yogurt from the store and start all over again with fresh cultures.

At the beginning of my yogurt making process, I measure out 3/4 of a cup of starter yogurt, cover it, and let it rest on the counter until I am ready to add it to my cooled milk. It is important to allow it to warm to room temperature before putting it into the cooled milk; this way the temperature of your milk won’t drop below the 110 degree mark. 

homemade yogurt, Greek yogurt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gradually add 5-6 tbs of the cooled milk. Once the starter yogurt has been completely dissolved, empty into the balance of the cooled milk in the batch container and stir. Take care to make sure the starter yogurt and milk blend evenly.

6. Cover the batch container with its lid, slip it into the yogurt maker, and place cover on the appliance. At this point, the user’s manual suggests incubating for 4 to 4 1/2 hours. I allow my yogurt to incubate a full 12-24 hours. I like the longer incubation periods because it allows massive amounts of probiotics to develop.

7. To stop the incubation process, take the batch container out of the yogurt maker and place in the refrigerator for about 8 hours. Your yogurt is then ready to serve. 

Note: At this point, the yogurt is creamy,  much like French style yogurt. I like Greek yogurt; therefore, I strain it for about an hour to drain some of the whey. To strain yogurt, you can buy cheese cloth; however, I found inexpensive cotton cloth diapers work just as well. 

cloth diapers, flat fold
Gerber Flat Fold Cloth Diapers

My Method


I place a mesh strainer over a glass bowl, and then I line the strainer with the cloth diaper. Yogurt is then added and covered by the excess cloth. I allow the yogurt to strain for about an hour or until it reaches my desired consistency. Each batch of yogurt is different, but the average time is about an hour.

homemade yogurt, cheese cloth

After yogurt has reached desired consistency, place in an air-tight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. 

Save the whey to use in place of other liquids when baking; it gives breads and pancakes a delicious sourdough taste. Whey can also be used for lacto- fermented fruits and vegetables. It works well as a brine to tenderize chicken or turkey before roasting.

whey from Greek yogurt

Minor Complaint:


The yogurt maker comes with one batch container, making it difficult to use a full gallon of milk. In order to make a second batch, you need to purchase another batch container, which is kind of expensive. I found an inexpensive 2 quart glass jar; it fits perfectly into the yogurt maker. Please note: it is slightly smaller than the batch container; therefore, it is best to use a slightly less amount of milk.

glass jar, yogurt maker
64 oz. jar for yogurt maker

Homemade Yogurt Makes Delicious Cheese


Making delicious yogurt cheese is easy; however, it is important to remember if you plan to use your yogurt to make yogurt cheese, do not add gelatin to the yogurt.

The instruction manual gives directions for using the cheese making bag included with your maker; however, I have never used mine. Instead, I strain the yogurt using my method above; however, I strain for a longer period of time. 

Straining time for yogurt cheese varies. For cheese, the consistency of cream cheese, strain for about 4 hours. If you prefer a drier cheese, strain for about 6-8 hours.

Remove cheese from the strainer and add salt and other spices to taste. Stir slowly with a spoon or spatula, then refrigerate.

You can experiment by adding different ingredients such as fresh garlic, fresh basil, red peppers, chives, and fruit. It’s your cheese, flavor it any way you like. 🙂


Product: Yogourmet Electric Yogurt Maker
Size: 2 quarts
Warranty: 1 year; extra coverage is available for purchase
Price Range: $45-$59

MY RATING:

 I highly recommend this Yogourmet Yogurt Maker



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Author: Kathy

Hi! Welcome to In Abbas Kitchen! I would love to sit with you at my dining room table, getting to know you while we sip hot cups of tea and nosh on slices of warm banana bread. However, since that won't be possible, I'll settle on letting you get to know me.I am passionate about loving God with all of my heart, mind, body, and soul. I love to laugh at myself and with people. I believe laughter is contagious, and it establishes a sense of connection between two people. I love heart-to-heart chats with friends and loved ones because I believe transparency is the foundation of all meaningful relationships. I believe in the power of prayer; God listens. I try to see the good in people, even if I am the only one who can see it. I enjoy food; my food philosophy is to eat clean, whole foods while maintaining proper portion control. I work hard to maintain a realistic balance between healthy salads and not so healthy coffee mocha chunk ice cream. :) I believe moderation is the key to creating lasting healthy eating habits.At In Abba's Kitchen, you will find healthy recipes, Bible studies designed to inspire you to grow in your faith, ideas for wholesome living, and product reviews for my favorite kitchen tools and foods I use. You will also find my weight loss story.Although weight loss is not the basis of this site, it is a major component of my life. My weight loss journey has inspired the creation of this site, and it has given me a new found freedom and confidence. My desire is to walk with you on your journey, helping you with your weight loss struggles, inspiring you to grow in your faith, and helping you to find freedom from the things holding you back from being all you were meant to be.

8 thoughts on “Making Homemade Greek Yogurt Is Easy-Yogourmet Yogurt Maker Review”

  1. Hi My Friend, Liked your article a lot. I have made yogurt the old fashioned way several times and about half the time, it didn’t turn out well. May have to invest in the one that makes small individual batches. love ya Wanda

    1. Hi Wanda,
      I’m glad you found my article useful. Here are some reasons why your yogurt didn’t turn out: your milk wasn’t fresh enough, your started didn’t have enough live cultures in it, your temperature got too warm or too cool. It is extremely important to maintain the 110 degree incubation period. If you do choose to purchase a yogurt maker, please consider coming back here and purchasing one of the ones featured here on my site. Send an email to kathy@inabbaskitchen and I will be glad to help you choose one that is right for you. Thanks for reading my article! Kathy

  2. Hello Kathy,

    Thank for sharing the methods and tips, and in particular, the cons where how much milk should be considered. I did not realize that a batch container can be quite costly. Is there any other alternative to the container like an oven tray instead? I am sure such trays cost quite cheap and would cost less than $10.

    1. Hi Tar,

      Thanks for stopping by! An oven tray wouldn’t fit in the unit; however, the glass jar I mentioned fits perfectly, and costs only $5.99. When you stop and think about it, that’s not a bad investment–especially if you take into account the money you will be saving by making your own yogurt.

      Kathy

  3. I love yogurt in general and I want to get this product soon to make yogurt even healthier. You gave Yogorumet Yogurt Maker five stars and you gave a history lesson on yogurt process originated in Central Asia which was the most interest part in my opinion because I simply love history. Thank you for giving me a deeper insight of yogurt.

    Elias

    1. Hello Elias,

      Thanks for stopping by. I thought the history behind yogurt was an interesting tid-bit. I love yogurt too; I use it for all sorts of things such as smoothies, vegetable dips, salad dressings, and my husband even enjoys it in his egg salad in place of mayo. I am very pleased with my Yogourmet Yogurt Maker, and I think you will be too.

      Kathy

  4. I didn’t know yogurt makers existed until I read your article. My family have been making yogurt through a much longer process, and it seems as though this yogurt maker could cut that down quite a lot. I really like your advice about using live cultures from organic, grassmilk. Looking forward to reading more of your articles.

    1. Hi! Thank you for stopping by! Making yogurt through the longer process works just as well; however, in this face paced world, it pays to use the convenience of an electrical appliance. don’t get me wrong. I am all for the old fashioned way of doing things–especially when it comes to food prep. Sometimes you can find an acceptable alternative, which is what I found with the Yogourmet Electric Yogurt Maker. I can’t always find organic food sources, but organic is always my first choice.

      Kathy

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