Making Yogurt using a Dehydrator

Post by community member:

I love homemade yogurt. I like knowing exactly what goes into my yogurt. I like being able to pronounce all of the ingredients in my yogurt: milk and yogurt. That’s pretty simple. I’ve made yogurt using a yogurt maker, my crockpot, a thermos and my Excalibur dehydrator. All are excellent methods but today I’m going to focus on using the dehydrator, hence the name at the top of the blog!!

Pay close attention because this is a really complicated procedure. Only kidding! Actually I think I’m attracted to this method because it’s so darn easy.

How to make Yogurt in a Dehydrator:

Open your container of milk and pour it into a saucepan. I normally make a gallon of yogurt at a time so I use a big pot.

Place the pot on the stove and heat over medium heat until the temperature reaches 185-195 degree.

This scalds the milk. Turn off the heat and allow the milk to cool until the temperature is 110 degrees. If the milk is any hotter it may kill the yogurt culture. NOTE: I use raw milk to make my yogurt so I only heat the milk to 110 degrees. I do that because I choose to keep the properties of the raw milk in tact in my yogurt. If you are using store bought milk I would scald it, if using raw milk, do what you are comfortable with.

Milk at the right temperature

When the milk reaches 110 degrees, whisk in 2 to 3 tablespoons of yogurt with active yogurt cultures.

Previously made yogurt

Make sure the yogurt is well mixed with the warm milk. I use yogurt that I’ve made previously or Dannon plain yogurt. Use any yogurt that contains active yogurt cultures not all do.

Transfer the milk/yogurt mixture to jars. Place lids on jars. I use quart jars because I have a ton of them and they fit well in my fridge. If you aren’t making a lot of yogurt use pint jars if you have them. I prefer glass containers; use what you’re comfortable with. Just make sure it’s clean and you can cover it.

Remove all the trays from your dehydrator.

Preheat your dehydrator to 105 degrees.

Remove the front cover and place your jars on the bottom of the dehydrator.

Place the cover back on the dehydrator and allow to incubate for 8 to 10 hours.

Do Not Peek. Yogurt doesn’t like to be disturbed. Don’t shake the jars or stir. Just let it sit peacefully and become yogurt.

At the end of the incubation period place the jars in your fridge. The yogurt will continue to thicken as it cools.

Enjoy your yogurt the next day.

Yogurt with fresh fruit and homemade breakfast cereal.

That’s it. You’ve got yogurt. I told you it was easy.

A few things to be aware of: if using raw whole milk, you will have a nice layer of cream on top of your yogurt. Your yogurt will also produce whey. I just mix this with my yogurt or drain it off and use it to make bread. This yogurt will not be as thick as what you buy at the store. If you want thicker yogurt, don’t add more yogurt, which will just make it tangier not thicker. You can add gelatin or powdered milk to help thicken it but because I use raw milk, I choose not to add either. I like the yogurt just the way it is.

Think outside the breakfast bowl when using your yogurt. I use my yogurt anywhere that calls for sour cream, buttermilk or any other cultured milk. I make a wonderful Honey Oatmeal bread that calls for buttermilk, I substitute yogurt. It’s great in smoothies and other goodies.

As I said, I’ve used many other methods to make yogurt but I consistently have excellent results using this method. If you have an Excalibur dehydrator, give it a try. I think you’ll be hooked with the simplicity of yogurt making as much as I am.

Get the handy print page and save this to your recipe box here:
Yogurt in a Dehydrator.

You can find Kelly at Yahoo’s Canning2.

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