How to make your own Ellenos-Style yogurt. Simple and inexpensive.

I am an ELLENOS Yogurt junkie. It's so damn good. But it's also very very expensive. Like $4 for 4 oz expensive. So, in order to keep my yogurt fix at a fraction of the cost, I wanted to learn how to make my own. I had NO IDEA it was so easy to make yogurt.

Seriously easy.

Benefits of Yogurt (Dairy)

Yogurt is a good source of Ribloflavin, B12, Calcium, Phosphorus, Zinc, Selenium and Pantothenic Acid. Grassfed dairy is a great source of Vit. K2 (menaquinone) needed for blood clotting and bone health, but some of this may be destroyed by the heating process. Grassfed dairy also has conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which has been studied for it's link to fighting cancer. You'll also be getting some healthy probiotics into your digestive system.

 

What you'll need to make your own yogurt

Directions for Instant Pot

  1. Place milk in your pressure cooker. Press 'Yogurt' and choose the "boil" feature. Alternatively, you can boil the milk in a pan. Not scorch the shit out of it. But boil it to kill off any bacteria. Important because you are going to culture this batch and bad bacteria love culture too.
  2. Once it has boiled, remove it from the heat source. Take the stainless steel bowl out of the pressure cooker or the pot off the stove. Let it cool to 100F. Why? You don't want your good bacteria that you are going to add in to die from the heat. No thermometer? Once the container is comfortable enough to handle, you're fine. Expect about 20-60 minutes to cool.
  3. Put your bowl of milk back in your pressure cooker. Now, add in 1 tsp of yogurt (the plain stuff you bought) per cup of milk into the bowl. This is not exact, but don't over plop a bunch of yogurt in. You want the cultures to be hungry and complete for the milk so less is more. Stir with a CLEAN spoon until it's all mixed in. **Unclean stuff will add in bacteria you don't want. So don't lick the spoon after you scoop out the yogurt and then stir. Your germs are going to grow in your batch and that won't be good. 
  4. Close the lid (it won't be under pressure) and set it between 100-110 degrees for 8 hours. Longer times will produce a tarter yogurt. I did 8 hours and it was delish!
  5. After the 8 hours are up, scoop out your yogurt into a container. For regular yogurt, cover and place in the fridge to firm up for 4+ hours or overnight.
  6. Making GREEK yogurt? Scoop the yogurt into a cheesecloth-lined stainer. Make sure there is a bowl underneath to catch the WHEY protein. Place in the fridge overnight to strain.

The next morning your rich, creamy yogurt will be ready to eat.  This seriously rivled Ellenos's plain greek yogurt. You can add some sliced fruit if you need some sweetness, but I'm telling you, the deep richness was deserving of it's own space. 

 

**Save the Whey and put it in your smoothie. It's pure whey protein (just like the stuff you buy at the store) and used to be sold as a standalone in the old days. It's valuable and nutritious. 

** Important temps to remember: 181F is boiling. You need this to sterilize and kill off anything in the milk. 100-110F is the temp you want for fermentation and culturing. If you add your starter into this at a higher temp, it will be killed and you'll just make warm milk.

 Side-by-side. Greek yogurt and the Whey I strained from it.

Side-by-side. Greek yogurt and the Whey I strained from it.

 

Directions for Slow Cooker

  1. Pour the milk into your slow cooker.  Close the lid and cook on low for 2 1/2 hours. Alternatively, you can boil it on the stove. 
  2. Once it's cooled to 110F, stir in your starter. 1 tsp per cup (approx.). Make sure it's mixed in well. Don't lick the spoon then stir. Bad bacteria will then grow and you'll have a nice batch of tongue germ yogurt. 
  3. Once you mixed in the starter, put the lid back on and wrap the slow cooker in a towel to keep in the heat. The slow cooker should be off now. Let it ferment for 8-10 hours in a warm place.
  4. After the 8 hours are up, scoop out your yogurt into a container. For regular yogurt, cover and place in the fridge to firm up for 4+ hours or overnight.
  5. Making GREEK yogurt? Scoop the yogurt into a cheesecloth-lined stainer. Make sure there is a bowl underneath to catch the WHEY protein. Place in the fridge overnight to strain.

 

The next morning your rich, creamy yogurt will be ready to eat.  This seriously rivled Ellenos's plain greek yogurt. You can add some sliced fruit if you need some sweetness, but I'm telling you, the deep richness was deserving of it's own space. 

**Save the Whey and put it in your smoothie. It's pure whey protein (just like the stuff you buy at the store) and used to be sold as a standalone in the old days. It's valuable and nutritious. 

Yep. It really is that simple and makes a lot of yogurt. This saves you money AND you can brag to all your friends that you now make your own kick-ass yogurt from scratch!

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And grumpy people are just not fun to be around.