How much time does it take to make yogurt?

When I was at my daughter’s house and we made her delicious yogurt, I was impressed with how easy it was, and how little work it took. Granted, the process took a LONG time – I think we started about 8:00 at night and had it packed in quart containers around 11:00 in the morning.

Yogurt, after straining but before refrigeration. It will stiffen up more.
Yogurt, after straining but before refrigeration. It will stiffen up more.

The thing was her recipe Simply the Best Yogurt, Ever, took only MINUTES of actual hands on time, about 30 minutes – and that hands on work wasn’t done in one block of time, but spread over a two day period, making it even easier. A little task here, a little task there. Here’s what took time:

Five minutes: While we were cleaning up after dinner, J took out two pots and poured a gallon of milk in each, got out the starter to warm to room temperature, turned the oven to 170 and turned it off when it beeped, put a thermometer in one of the pots, put the pots on the stove and turned the burners on to medium low.

8 minutes:  About the time the milk came to 200 degrees and had held there for about 20 minutes, we were done with the kitchen, the sinks were empty and dishwasher going…J. took some ice from the ice maker and filled one the sinks about 1/3 of the way with cold water and ice, put a clean pot in it, poured in the milk. She washed the pan, put cold water and ice in the other sink, put the clean pan in it and poured in the milk.

5 minutes:  J. fed the babies, and her husband got my older two grandchildren ready for bed as the milk cooled. (I sat down and enjoyed her cable, which I don’t have at home and checked the milk temp now and then!) When the milk reached 110, we dipped a bit of the milk out of a pot, stirred in the starter, and stirred that back into the milk, put on a lid, wrapped in a towel and put in the oven, then repeated with the other pot. We washed the last pan the milk heated in, which we hadn’t done earlier as both sinks were full.

4 minutes:  In the morning, we put a cloth in a colander, placed it over the bowl, gently stirred the yogurt and poured it into the colander. After that strained, we repeated with the other pot of yogurt.

5 minutes: We stirred some flavoring into one bowl, and packed the yogurt into containers, washed everything.

So there you have it: About 30 minutes of actual hands on time and Simply the Best Yogurt, Ever. Cool, Creamy, Delicious, Smooth and Slightly Tangy…made with two ingredients, milk and a yogurt culture. No additives…

2 thoughts on “How much time does it take to make yogurt?”

  1. Making yogurt has been on my to do list forever! I don’t know why I keep putting it off! I didn’t realize how quick it was, for some reason I imagined it would be a huge elaborate process (yay learning)- now I would definitely give it a try. Does it taste more similar to greek yogurt or regular plain yogurt?

    1. Not strained it tastes more like regular yogurt, but strained it has the texture of Greek yogurt, but with none of what I think of as a “chalky” taste that some Greek yogurts have. I noticed a lot of yogurts have dry milk powder, corn starch and gelatin in them, and I can especially taste the corn starch, while the texture of the getatin ones freaks me out a bit. This yogurt is creamy, and even unsweetened, slightly sweet with just the right amount of “tangyness.”

      It’s how I remember yogurt tasting when I was a young woman and fell in love with it!

      I put it off, too, because I tried make it back in the late 70’s/early 80’s, but with no internet and only a few instructions someone gave me, it never really turned out right. So glad I tried it again…

      “Projects” like this are never without some anxiety – there’s always worry it won’t turn out, something won’t go right, it’s going to be a huge deal to do – especially when you see how long the TOTAL time is….that’s why I wanted to do the time breakdown…it’s easier to see that this is really pretty much a cake walk…

      And also why I wanted to make sure to cover each step in detail and answer every question I could think of on the actual post. My daughter said she researched for over 4 months before she made it the first time…lol…she DOES have some of my anal retentive personality!!

      I love that she researched so many methods and found this SIMPLE way to do it…I love that it’s in the oven and I don’t have to mess with rigs or coolers or yogurt makers, etc. And I really love that it ferments overnight – some recipes ferment in five or six hours, which would be nice, but then it would “break up my day” – if I wanted to take off and do something I’d need to worry about my yogurt, and if were working, and I wanted to make it, I’d need to devote a weekend day to babysit it. With this yogurt, if it were started right after work, it could be refrigerated in the morning and then strained when one got home.

      I like the easy over night method. It seems like a “longer” process but is so easy to fit into a schedule.

      Anyway, I hope you’ll try it and let me know how it goes…read over the recipe and notes and let me know if you have ANY questions!!

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