Yogurt in the Crockpot

Crockpot Yogurt Tutorial


*yields approx. 3 cups of yogurt

INGREDIENTS
4  cups fresh not-about-to-expire milk (Whole milk will result in thicker yogurt… skim
a lot runnier… if it’s about to expire, your yogurt will be on the sour side. Trust me.)
2  tablespoons plain yogurt… this is your “starter” (MUST contain live active cultures
try Dannon, Oikos, or Chobani. You can use more starter if you want your yogurt more sour-
tasting. After you make this recipe, you can reserve some for later use as a starter if you
wish. After about four times of re-using your own yogurt for a starter, it gets a little too sour,
and you might want to go buy a new starter.)

DIRECTIONS
 1.) Plug in your crockpot, and turn it on LOW. Leave it alone. Place 2 tablespoons of plain
yogurt into a bowl to warm up a bit.
2.)  Pour 4 cups of milk into a saucepan, and heat on medium. (Any hotter, and the milk will
burn to the bottom of the pan.) Stir every few minutes, (not constantly) and keep a close eye
on it. I know a lot of people are very technical with thermometers and such to get the yogurt
to a specific temperature. I’m not that way. I prefer to eliminate that step and just watch for the “almost
boiling over” point, which is the right temperature.
3.) While the milk is heating, plug one side of your sink, and fill it with 2-3 inches of cold
water. 
4.)  When the milk is bubbly, frothy, has a skin on top, and is just about to boil over, (which
will inevitably happen around 20 minutes later) it is hot enough. At this point, you can
remove it from the stove, and into the cold water bath in the sink, OR you can slightly
decrease the heat, and keep the yogurt heated and simmering for up to 20 more minutes
for a THICKER yogurt.
5.)  Allow the milk to cool for about 10 minutes. When you dip your pinkie in, it should be
the temperature of a warm bath… not hot. I set my microwave timer so I won’t forget about
it and let it get too cold. 
6.)  Pour about 1 cup of the warm milk into the bowl with the yogurt starter. Pour the rest
into the heated crockpot. Gently stir the milk and yogurt starter together in the bowl, then
pour that into the crockpot, and stir as well.
7.)  Unplug the crockpot, and wrap it in a large towel to keep it warmer longer. The yogurt
works its magic as it incubates the warm environment. Let it sit there for 10 – 12 hours.
Overnight is a good way to do it. Waking up to fresh yogurt is a pretty nice way to start the
day…. ahem… back on point: The longer it sits, the firmer the end product.
8.)  After 10-12 hours, unwrap your crockpot, and check out your yogurt. Go ahead and
have a proud moment… dance, squeal, pump your fists in the air, but Do NOT stir it! It will
 not set up well. Put your crockpot bowl in the the refrigerator. Let it set for at least 4 hours.
9.) Serve and enjoy! If you don’t want the liquid on top of the yogurt (the whey) you don’t
have to stir it in. You can carefully pour it out. (Or strain it with a cheesecloth if you have
one… which I don’t… you can strain it for a few minutes to hours depending on how thick
you want your yogurt.) This yogurt will stay fresh for 7-10 days in the refrigerator.

TIPS: If you make this and decide it’s still not as thick as you want it. OR if you don’t have a
cheesecloth to strain out the whey (me) and want thicker yogurt, you can try adding:
a.) 1/2 c dry milk per quart of milk used. Mix it into the milk before you start heating
it on the stove.
b.) 1 teaspoon of gelatin per quart of milk used. Mix it into the milk before heating.
Allow it to set for a few minutes to start working its magic before you start heating it.

*As previously stated, my girls like different flavors. I don’t recommend adding flavors to
the yogurt while you make it, because it may mess with the bacteria culturing. You can add
honey and fruit or vanilla afterwards as desired. As with any yogurt, adding flavorings or
fruit and stirring it a lot will break the yogurt down and make it less firm… but  tasty
nonetheless!
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