Homemade Yogurt with Crock-pot

For those who don't want to buy a dedicated machine for yogurt making, I thought I'd try the ol' Crockpot Yogurt technique. The yogurt came out nearly identical to the yogurt maker machine batch. Give this one a shot but be aware that homemade yogurt is thin. Store-bought yogurt is thick and rich because of all the gelatin they add to it. You can add gelatin to yours but if a thick yogurt is important to you, I'd recommend draining your homemade yogurt overnight and you'll end up with "Greek" style yogurt.

Homemade Yogurt with Crockpot

Turn your crock pot to high and pour in 1/2 gallon of milk. I use whole milk and a 2 quart size crockpot insert.

Heat on high for about 2 1/2 hours. Until the temperature of the milk reads 180 degrees. (I stick my digital thermometer in the vent hole in the lid and just check it when I walk by).

Once it heats to 180 degrees, turn your crock pot off and unplug it. Take the cover off and let it cool until the temperature of the milk comes down to 110-115 degrees. This takes about an hour.

After it's cooled, stir in  1/2 cup of plain store-bought yogurt with live active cultures and mix very well.

Place the cover back on the crock and wrap the entire crock pot in a thick bath towel or two.
Let it culture overnight, 8-12 hours.

In the morning stir yogurt and store in  a container of your choice. Save 1/2 cup of this plain unflavored yogurt as a starter for your NEXT batch. Then add flavorings at this point. Honey, sugar, or fruit. Or you can drain it first for thicker yogurt and THEN add your flavorings.

Refrigerate for at least 8 hours before using.

This makes a half gallon of yogurt which seems like a lot. We go through most of this in a week between two kids and my husbands parfaits every morning. But next post will show you how to turn some of your homemade plain yogurt into Greek Yogurt and Cream Cheese!

I will leave you now with the most awesome picture ever of my 1 year old. Spaghetti night!!


Anonymous said…
I have 2 questions: What are the bath towels for, and will you experiment with the different breads of yogurt starters? Different bacteria give different yogurt consistency (creaminess) and flavor (from sweet to more tangy). Thoughts?
- Ptite
The bath towels insulate the crockpot and keep it warmer longer. Which aids in the culturing process. And yes, I plan to try different starters, I've used generic plain yogurt and dry yogurt cultures so far. I'll have to start writing down the qualities of the yogurts with each brand.
lisa said…
How do you strain the yogurt? what would you use? This is awesome, I am going to try this. I do like my yogurt greek style tho. Thanks again, I love reading your blog. You really are virtuous. When my children were younger and I was a stay at home mom, I cooked, crafted, designed, created, and served my family and I loved it. It blessed them and me. You have inspired me again. I now am older, run my own day spa, but so miss being home, canning, doing, etc. You truly are a Proverbs 31 woman. God Bless you!
Chynna said…
Wow..Thanks!!!! I am excited to say that I am a stay home mom (not by choice but by the economy presently) I have always been in the corporate America so this is hard for me to be home....I have been trying to figure out things to do while home that I can do to enhance family life for us. This is something that is healthy because I know what is put in it...This is amazing...God is truly leading and showing me that this isn't so bad after all....
Anonymous said…
Thank you so much for posting this. I can't wait to try it!!!
I've found that a name brand whole milk like Bordens or Kleinpeter and a name brand Greek yogurt like Oikos or Chobani as a starter, makes the best homemade yogurt.
Anonymous said…
i made this yesterday and let it culture for 10 hours. it came out a little liquidy. did i do something wrong or is that how its supposed to turn out
Anonymous said…
That's how it's supposed to turn out. She states in the beginning of the recipe "Give this one a shot but be aware that homemade yogurt is thin. Store-bought yogurt is thick and rich because of all the gelatin they add to it. You can add gelatin to yours but if a thick yogurt is important to you, I'd recommend draining your homemade yogurt overnight and you'll end up with "Greek" style yogurt." It is quite good though. I drain it for about 8 hours and then use it in my ice cream maker for Greek frozen yogurt.
Unknown said…
Was just curious if there was a way to make it dairy free? We have started trying to reduce dairy in hopes of it helping my hubby with his heartburn but he LOVES yogurt and the dairy free is so expensive! Would you just try it with one of the dairy free milks?
Lacey Craig said…
What's the best way to drain it, for a thicker consistency?
Anonymous said…
I agree, I don't have a large enough mesh sieve, but maybe it's worth investing in one to drain the yogurt in? Or do you just use cheese cloth?
Anonymous said…
Why do you make your own? Is it cheaper or does it taste better? Or does it just have less chemicals?
I just use clean kitchen towels and a large colander to drain them in, then wash them and reuse. :)

I make my own for all those reasons! It's cheaper, tastes WAY better, no chemicals or preservatives, and most store-brands use gelatin to thicken their yogurt instead of draining it, which means mine is higher in calcium and protein than theirs. Plus the whey I get when I drain them is AMAZING for cooking with and homemade beauty products. Win win win!
Mary Anne Davis said…
I made my first batch of home made yogurt last ninth and left it on a heating pad on high with a towel cozy. It came out pretty thick and now I am straining it for the Greek style quality. I read that keeping it at 110 all night is important, so the added warmth overnight might help produce a thicker product.
Carol Parham said…
If you cook it for 24 hours instead of just 6, 8, or 10, most if not all of the lactose will be destroyed. I'm on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) and this is what I do following that diet. Then I make frozen yogurt by mixing 1 c. yogurt with 1 T. raw honey and 1/2 t. pure vanilla extract, then putting into an electric frozen dessert machine for 10 minutes. To make more, just double or triple the recipe.

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