In my house, we go through a LOT of yogurt! It’s a quick and easy breakfast staple, so my morning meal almost always includes it in some fashion. Smoothies, overnight oats, or just a bowl of it topped with frozen fruit are all my go-to’s. I prefer Greek yogurt for it’s thicker texture and higher protein content, and at over $5.00 for a 500ml container of the stuff it doesn’t come cheap! So when I found out that my new Instant Pot can make homemade yogurt I was pumped!
Cost comparison at my usual grocery store:
4 litres (4000 ml) of 2% Milk: $4.69- will make an equivalent amount of regular homemade yogurt, or about 2 litres of Greek yogurt.
Cost per litre homemade Greek yogurt: $2.34
1/2 litre (500ml) 2% plain store-bought Greek yogurt: $5.49
Cost per litre store-bought Greek yogurt: $10.98
SO, you can see it’s quite economical to make your own homemade yogurt. Even if you strain yours to get a thicker greek-style yogurt you’re still saving a considerable amount of money.
So, what do you need to make your own yogurt? Milk and….yogurt! Yes it’s that simple. Most commercial brands of greek yogurt contain enough live active bacteria to allow you to use it as a starter culture for your own batch of yogurt. Then, just reserve some of your homemade product to use for future batches. You can also purchase a commercial starter but I’ve had excellent results using store-bought yogurt as my base.
The Instant Pot doubles as a great yogurt-maker because it can maintain the correct temperature for the time needed to allow the yogurt to ferment, 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Trying to do this on the stovetop would be damn near impossible, and you would have to babysit your pot all day to make sure it isn’t too warm or too cold. With the instant pot yogurt setting you just press a button and walk away!
Instant Pot Homemade Yogurt
- Prep time: 10 minutes
- Fermentation time: up to 24 hours. Your yogurt will be ready in as little as 8 hours, but the longer you let your fermentation go the more complete it will be thus creating a lower-lactose yogurt. If you have trouble digesting lactose I would recommend the full 24 hours.
*I have the Instant Pot Duo Mini, if you have a different version the exact settings may vary, but each device does come with instructions for using the yogurt setting*
- Milk (I like to use 2%, but use whatever type of milk you prefer)
- 1/2 cup store-bought Greek Yogurt
Part 1: Prepare your Instant Pot
1. Start by sanitizing your instant pot. Fill the instant pot with a few inches of water, and turn on the pressure cook setting for 2 minutes. Close the steam vent. Let the Instant Pot finish it’s cycle (it will beep when it’s done). Open the steam vent, let it release all of the pressure, open the lid and discard water.
Part 2: Boil your milk
My instant pot holds about 2 litres of milk, but if you have a larger one you can make more at a time. This step takes about 45 minutes depending on the size of your instant pot.
2. Pour milk into Instant Pot and close lid
3. Open the steam vent
4. Press the YOGURT button on your Instant Pot until the panel reads BOIL. Allow the instant pot to complete this cycle, it will beep when it is done.
5. Cool your milk to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. For this step use a kitchen thermometer. You can leave your milk to rest at room temperature until it reaches 110 degrees, but this can take awhile. I make an ice bath in my kitchen sink and submerge my instant pot about halfway up the sides. I place my thermometer in the pot and stir the milk until it reaches 110 degrees. This takes about 7-10 minutes.
Part 3: Add your starter culture
6. Once your milk is cooled to 110 degrees stir 1/2 cup store-bought yogurt into the milk. Place pot back into the base and press the yogurt button again until a timer appears (can be set up to 24 hours). Make sure your steam vent is open. The Instant Pot will hold this 110 degree temperature for the set time which is optimal for the bacteria to do their job.
7. After 24 hours your yogurt is ready! Keep prepared yogurt in the fridge- and your finished product can be used to start future batches of yogurt.
If you want to make thicker Greek-style yogurt, simply line a strainer with 2 layers of cheesecloth, place over a bowl and pour your yogurt into it. The liquid portion of the yogurt will separate and drip into the bowl while the thicker portion remains in the cheesecloth.