Trying a new yoghurt maker - success!

5 April 2018
I've made yoghurt in my kitchen for more years than I care to remember. I started making it using live cultures in fresh yoghurt and moved on to live powdered cultures about five years ago. When the yoghurt was made, I loaded the warm yogurt into a warm jar, wrapped the jar in warm towels and placed it in a pre-warmed oven.  Most of the time, the residual heat was enough to set the yoghurt.
Last week my new sponsor, Valerie at Green Living, sent me a yoghurt maker to try. I made my first batch yesterday and even though I thought there wouldn't be much difference, there was. Mixing the milk with the cultures was the same but instead of trying to keep it warm with a variety of measures, I poured the mix into the yoghurt maker, turned it on and walked away. Eight hours later I had a very nice firm yoghurt. The yoghurt maker heats up slightly to provide a consistently warm temperature at exactly the right temperature.




I made a litre of lactose-free yoghurt which was divided into two batches.  One was flavoured with two teaspoons of cherry jam to make a sweet yoghurt, which is much tastier than the shop bought flavoured yoghurts. It doesn't contain the dairy preservatives used in the flavoured yoghurts either.  It's just lactose-free milk, the yoghurt culture, a teaspoon of sugar to feed the bacteria (due to the absence of lactose in the milk), 2 drops of calcium chloride (for a firmer yoghurt) and the cherry jam. The other half batch is now sitting in the fridge, draining. I've put it into a cloth which is sitting on a strainer over a bowl. The whey is running off and tomorrow I'll add a small amount of finely chopped green onion, salt and pepper. This makes up a very simple cheese that Hanno loves and often has on his homemade rye bread. The green onion can be replaced with finely chopped cucumber, capsicum/pepper, chilli jam or parsley.

This half batch will drain overnight in the fridge and be made up in the morning.  I'll post a photo of it tomorrow.
You can use any type of milk - oat, almond, coconut, low fat, full cream, lactose-free - to make yoghurt this way. I'll make full cream A2 yoghurt next week and when my son comes visiting again I'll make a vegan-friendly yoghurt using coconut milk.  Yoghurt is such a versatile food so the next batch will be two litres so I have plenty on hand for cooking, cheese and yoghurt.

I'm happy to recommend the yoghurt maker to you. It did make the process easier and I didn't have to keep checking the temperature. I just filled the bucket, turned on the yoghurt maker and walked away for 8 hours. Valerie sent along very comprehensive instructions with the maker, information about culture storage, as well as a new bottle of calcium chloride and the yoghurt culture - enough to make 100 litres. Thanks Valerie! If yoghurt making is part of your regular kitchen tasks, it's worth thinking about adding this to your kitchen.  I'll be using mine a couple of times a week from now on.


19 comments

  1. This looks very similar to my 1litre yogurt maker (made in UK by salter) which I use weekly. I keep cartons of uht milk in the cupboard so I can always rustle up a batch. Like you I do the drained soft cheese too. BRILLIANT GADGET!

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  2. There is no room for any gadgets in my tiny kitchen so I make my yoghurt with a saucepan and then Thermos flask. I must say the texture can be a little variable as the holding temperature is never the same each time, but I can alway drain away some whey for about an hour and it firms up like a Greek yoghurt. Thanks for the tip about adding sugar when using lactose free milk. I did wonder why my LF batches weren't quite the same. A dollop of jam is always the best for adding a sweet flavour!

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  3. I just ordered some of the yoghurt culture & I looked at the yoghurt maker,I used to have an electric yoghurt maker about 32 years ago, then I was given an insulated jar type which I have used on & off but the results aren't consistent, so I'll definitely give it some thought in the future. I'm going to try your idea of adding jam to my yoghurt too, never thought of doing that. Thanks for all your good ideas.

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  4. Long time yoghurt maker here too. While I do use a similar electric maker, the use of calcium chloride is new to me.
    Reading the info on the Green Living site, I think this will solve a lot of the inconsistencies which have arisen in the past few years using commercial milk.

    Thank you for the tip!!

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  5. In the US (since shipping charges from Australia will get you) this maker seems to be offered by Home Depot under yet another name.

    We've been buying big tubs of non-fat Greek yoghurt from Costco. The house brand is good, but the Fage is better. I'm just surprised that you flavor that much of the batch all at once. We prefer different things in our yoghurt (currently hubby likes frozen berries and nuts in his, I prefer dried cranberries and honey) so we mix up when we want when we are going to eat it. I've never tried to make the cheese you describe from the Greek yoghurt we're currently buying, but I've made it often from the non-Greek variety.

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  6. I’m not much of a yogurt eater. I love it but the food budget just never seems to stretch that far. After reading everyone’s comments I will see about buying a used yogurt maker and giving it a try. Thank you

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  7. I’ve got an easy yo but I haven’t used it in ages so I must get back to it. I’m tempted to buy an electric one for my son though as he is vegan and non dairy yoghurt is very expensive. Thank you for the reminder

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  8. My bread maker has a yoghurt setting. I live in a teeny tiny house so appliances that can do more than one thing really save on space! And yes, something that provides consistent temperature makes it just that bit easier, doesn't it!

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  9. I had the pleasure of attending Valerie’s classes at Loganholme Library to make mozzarella cheese. Went back to the shop and bought one of these yoghurt makers. Loved it. I actually put my yogurt into a bottle because I give some away. Being on an island I get my milk from the mainland so I make a big batch each time. I love my yoghurt maker. Just have to master the mozzarella which by the way was so yummy, I didn’t think I could eat mozzarella without the pizza!!! 😂😂

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  10. I have a Swiss Made yogurt maker that gives me 7 individual servings. I can adjust the thickness by the length of time I leave it turned on but will have to try draining some and then adding some savoury bits.

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  11. This looks fantastic! Very no fuss - my favourite kind. The thing that I thought of was how it would be much cheaper to use this than having to leave the oven on for ages. I will be looking into purchasing this yoghurt maker. Thanks!

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  12. This sounds so awesome! I need to include Greek style yogurt in my diet, this sounds like a fun way to include a healthy food. And cheese?? Thank you Rhonda for the tip.

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  13. We also have a yogurt maker. I used skimed milk powder to thicken it instead of drops. It works well.

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  14. I have used one of these for several years now and wouldn't like to be without it. In fact I have two and it makes it so easy, when cool I decant it into small individual jars and then we flavour them as we use them. I always drain off some of the whey and I use that in my bread maker when making my daily loaf. Setting up the yoghurt & the breadmaker are part of my morning routine then I sit and half a coffe and watch the birds.

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  15. Anna from BrisbaneApril 06, 2018 8:12 pm

    I bought the exact yoghurt maker from Green Living Australia a few years ago and also can't recommend it highly enough. I make yoghurt for my toddler and myself once a fortnight and it has saved us a fortune!

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  16. Rhonda, Thank you so much for your lactose-free yogurt recipe.

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  17. I have this yoghurt maker from green living Australia. I just add 1 litre of long life milk, tiny bit of culture and 1/4 cup milk powder for thickness. Perfect yoghurt every time!

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  18. Oh I haven't seen this one yet! What's the difference between this one and the Easiyo please? I only just found out that hubby likes yogurt, so this would be ideal as it's too expensive to buy for us at the moment. Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. I don't know the Easiyo, Francesca.

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