Homemade Greek Yogurt
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
It is important to use yogurt with active cultures for your starter - so be sure to check the labels.
Recipe type: Dairy, The Basics
  • 6 cups organic whole milk
  • ½ cup organic whole milk plain yogurt
  1. I make my yogurt in a half gallon canning jar - but you can use what you have that will hold 6 & ½ cups of liquid. You need something non-reactive, like glass or stainless steel, and if you don't have something that will hold the entire amount, you can split it in smaller amounts for the culturing time, such as a couple of quart jars.
  2. Put the 6 cups of milk in a large, heavy sauce pan, and place over medium heat.
  3. You need this to get up to between 165 and 180 degrees - watch it carefully, and stir every few minutes. An instant-read thermometer is pretty simple to use for this, or even a candy thermometer.
  4. ~I have recently found that getting the milk up to around 190ยบ and holding it at that temperature [just turn the heat down a little, and keep checking the temp with your instant read thermometer] for 10 minutes results in better tasting and thicker yogurt. Either method will result in really good yogurt, but I have come to appreciate the slightly fussier method.~
  5. Once the milk is up to temperature, remove from the heat, and allow to sit until the temperature comes back down to between 115 to 120 degrees.
  6. Whisk in the ½ cup of yogurt, until completely mixed in.
  7. Pour the milk mixture into the jar, cover, and place in a warm spot - around 100 degrees is best. My house is on the cold side this time of year, so I keep the jar sitting in a pan of 100 degree water, changing it as needed to keep it warm, or use the "Proof" setting on my oven, if I also happen to be rising bread. I have also made it in my Instant Pot electric pressure cooker, which works like a charm - link below.
  8. You should see some thickening in about 8 hours or so. How long you let the mixture culture is up to your personal taste. I like my yogurt very tart, so I leave mine around 30 hours, but you can stop much sooner than that if you like it on the milder side - about 15 hours or so is going to give you a medium favor. Just taste it, and if it is too mild, leave it a few more hours.
  9. To strain the yogurt, which is what will make it as thick as a commercial Greek yogurt, line a strainer with a couple layers of cheese cloth, or a single layer of a flour sacking type towel. Pour in the yogurt, and then cover the top of the strainer with a large plate [not touching the yogurt - it is just to keep it clean, not to press it]. I actually cut a towel in half to use for this - just throw it in the wash and use over.
  10. Leave at room temperature for about 3 hours, or refrigerate overnight. I let it drain until I have about 2 cups of whey, and a quart of yogurt.
  11. save the whey, if you bake your own bread, or to use in muffins
  12. Store in the fridge. It will keep a couple weeks, and make sure when it begins to get low that you save a half cup for the next batch.
  13. Serve with a drizzle of honey or maple syrup, and maybe some dried cranberries and toasted pecans. Or whatever - when you make your own, you can put what you want in there!
  14. It is also great for salad dressing, tzaziki sauce, etc. if you strain it even longer, you can make yo-cheese, which is like a cross between clotted cream and cream cheese - very yummy on bagels!
Recipe by The Creekside Cook at http://thecreeksidecook.com/homemade-greek-yogurt/