Two Ridiculously Easy Ways to Make Homemade Yogurt
by Daisy Luther, The Organic Prepper
Yogurt is full of good bacteria, and it’s delicious too! But those little six-packs touting “active cultures” are also filled with other ingredients that you probably don’t want to add to your diet if the purpose of eating yogurt is good health.
Here are the ingredients in Yoplait’s plain yogurt:
Cultured Pasteurized Grade A Nonfat Milk. Contains Less Than 2% of: Corn Starch, Kosher Gelatin, Pectin. Made With Active Yogurt Cultures Including L. Acidophilus.
Corn starch and pectin are nearly always made from GMOs, so if you are trying to avoid genetically modified food, you probably don’t want to eat this yogurt. Yoplait does not promote the fact that they use rBGH-free milk, so it’s a good bet the milk is loaded with hormones. Since there are no requirements to tell us about GMOs and hormones on the labels, we have to go with the most likely scenarios.
Flavored yogurt is even worse. Here are the ingredients in Activia yogurt:
Cultured Grade A Non Fat Milk, Strawberries, Water,Modified Food Starch, Contains Less than 1% of Inulin, Acacia Gum,Modified Corn Starch, Kosher Gelatin, Pectin, Natural Flavor, Carmine(for Color), Sodium Citrate, Malic Acid, Sucralose, Calcium Lactate,Xanthan Gum, Acesulfame Potassium.
This particular flavored yogurt contains probable GMOs, chemical additives, probable rBGH-tainted milk, and artificial sweeteners.
It gets even better. Not only is homemade yogurt healthier than store-bought, it’s much less expensive, particularly if you prefer to give your family organic or raw dairy products.
Here’s the math:
A gallon of milk makes approximately 2 quarts of yogurt.
- 1 gallon of organic milk is $6.99 from our local Safeway.
- 1 quart of organic yogurt is $4.99.
- By making our own yogurt, using a little of a previous batch to start the new batch, the cost per quart is only $3.50.
Something I strongly recommend for your preparedness supplies is some freeze-dried yogurt starter. If disaster strikes, you won’t be able to run to the store to get a small container of yogurt to start a batch, so this is great to have on hand. It is definitely more expensive than using ready-made yogurt as a starter, but it’s a great way to extend the life of milk in a down grid scenario. This freeze-dried starter doesn’t contain anything other than live cultures.
It’s easy to make yogurt at home. The only issue for some folks is that it is time-consuming. While it does take time, it isn’t all hands-on time. You have to be near the stove to watch the temperature of the milk. Because of this, I usually start my milk as we’re finishing up dinner, then finish the process as I’m cleaning up the kitchen for the day. Since I’m going to be in the kitchen for an hour then anyway, it doesn’t seem like I’m spending a huge amount of time making yogurt.
There are cool little yogurt making machines that you can buy for a very reasonable price – less than $30. But you don’t have to have a machine to make yogurt. I’m going to tell you about two very simple methods for making yogurt. You can go off-grid and make it in a thermos, or for larger batches, you can use your dehydrator.
The first steps are the same for both methods. (Actually, the first steps are the same if you have a yogurt-making machine too.)
How to Make Homemade Yogurt
Here’s what you need: