At the risk of sounding like a tree hugging, birkenstocks wearing, Subaru driving, recycled bags carrying, Whole Foods shopping, granola eater (not that’s there’s anything WRONG with that!) I did what felt like a very hippie-like thing today…..I made my own yogurt! But not ANY kind of yogurt….GREEK yogurt!! My new best food friend! In several recent posts I have gushed about how much a LOVE Greek yogurt and all the yummy stuff you can do with it, so I won’t take up room in this post with MORE gushing…but suffice it to say…it’s good stuff! So when I saw this recipe online for making your own homemade greek yogurt from scratch…I got a little excited! Greek yogurt is pretty pricey! Quite a bit more than regular yogurt….but Oh So Good….so I happily pay the price. However, if there were a cheaper, but just as delicious option…I’m all for that!
But I hesitated because it seemed fairly involved (ie. TRICKY for an amateur like myself!) and I wasn’t sure I was QUITE ready for that. But then I happened up on Shannons Kitchen Creations and her method for making the same recipe IN THE CROCKPOT! Now THAT sounded like something I could do! And I DID!
After all was said and done, however, I think next time I make it I will actually COMBINE the two methods. Because the first recipe calls for using a candy thermometer and making sure the mixture is at a certain temp before moving on to the next step. The second recipe only gives lengths of time you spend on each step of the recipe. I think this is a critical difference…..as you will see further down in my post.
So what follows is my adapted version of the two recipes:
Crock Pot Greek Yogurt
- 8 cups (half-gallon) of whole, 1%, 2% or skim Pasteurized Milk. Do NOT use ultra-pasteurized
- 1/2 cup store-bought natural plain yogurt. (Once you have made your own, you can use that as a starter)
Add a half gallon of milk to crock pot.
and cook on LOW for approximately 2 1/2 hours.
Using a candy thermometer, check the temperature of the milk. When the milk has reached 180 degrees, unplug the crock pot, remove the cover, and let it sit for another hour or so. You are waiting for the milk to come down in temperature to between 105 and 110 degrees.
When the milk has reached that temp, scoop out 1 to 2 cups of the warmish milk and whisk in 1/2 cup of store-bought yogurt. Then pour the mixture back into the crock pot. Wisk to combine.
At this point I added 3/4 cup honey. I am not a fan of PLAIN yogurt, Greek or otherwise, and since my favorite store-bought variety is honey flavored, I thought I would make my homemade kind honey flavored as well.
Leave the yogurt undisturbed for 7 or 8 hours, or overnight.
In the morning, carefully take the crock out, unwrap it and remove the lid, and check to see whether the milk has turned to yogurt.
(If your batch isn’t quite thickened, return it to the oven and check on it again in an hour.)
Now here’s the part that makes it GREEK yogurt: refrigerate the yogurt for at least three hours to allow it to completely cool and thicken. Line a large strainer with four layers of damp cheesecloth and put inside a bowl. Pour the yogurt in; refrigerate for one hour. Pour out the liquid that has accumulated in the bottom of the bowl; this is the whey. Return the bowl to the refrigerator for one more hour, strain the liquid again and the yogurt should now look…….
… thick and creamy.
Now go ahead and eat it just like that or mix it with your favorite fruit, granola, etc.
This was my evening snack. Frozen blueberries mixed with Greek Yogurt. Yum-O!
Tasted delicious, creamy and just the right amount of sweetness. And……
I MADE IT! :-)