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Homemade Yogurt

Recipe photo courtesy of Kate Mathis

Making your own yogurt may sound ambitious, but it's really not. All it takes is two ingredients and 20 minutes of hands-on time.

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2012
Total Time Prep Yield



Cook's Notes

Wrapping the mixture in towels helps maintain a consistent temperature.

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How would you rate this recipe?
  • Wendy Williams
    8 MAR, 2013
    try putting the filled jar in a closed oven with the light on. I have had excellent results this way. (I also use whole milk)
    • fritzheime7203328
      8 OCT, 2017
      I’ll also add that I don’t use a thermometer. I stir it while heating over a medium heat. When small bubbles appear at edge of pan... voila!
    • fritzheime7203328
      8 OCT, 2017
      That’s my trick as well. Sometimes I put a bit of fresh whip cream in as well. I like simple. I make a half gallon at a time, with the same amount of plain yogurt popping it into a lit oven with a towel around it and go overnight plus for a total of 10 hours and then strain for a thicker yogurt.
  • catbrace
    25 AUG, 2017
    I love making my own yogurt and Martha's directions are spot on. Note that the longer you leave the milk yogurt mixture growing, i.e. extending the time from 4-5 hours to 10 hours will make the yogurt thicker and more tart.
  • sserickson
    3 MAY, 2015
    I've read the comments about leaving the warmed milk and culture in a 'warm' space, I wonder if I wrapped the jar in towels and placed it inside my slow cooker on warm, if it would be to warm? Does anyone know what the 'warm' temp should be? Same as rising bread dough? Most yogurt making appliances keep the temperature quite high during this time.
    • catbrace
      25 AUG, 2017
      You dont want the temp to go above 130 or it will kill the bacteria that is making the yogurt. I put my digital thermometer in the warm crock to keep track of the temp.
    • GQuinn
      25 JUN, 2015
      My slow cooker warm setting was too hot ... the milk started to have brown spots. My next attempt I put a towel between the cooker and the ceramic insert...covered the top with a towel as well and then put the lid over that (to prevent water condensation dropping into yogurt). This really worked great. I checked it several times during cooking process and it was hovering around 115C.
  • fantasyworldofs
    19 AUG, 2016
    Step 1: Place the milk... I poured the milk. If I put the container of milk in the pan the plastic would have melted. Step 2: I had a squeeze tube of frozen yogurt, does that work even if there's no live and active cultures in it? Step 3: Transfer to Mason jar. My jar says Kerr on the side, is that okay? Can I use a dirty bathtowel instead of a clean kitchen towel? Obviously I'm poking fun at the instructions. So precise in the wrong places.
  • Kimber6171
    22 JUL, 2015
    I place my liquid yogurt into small jars with lids. I fill my crockpot with hot water from my tea kettle (about a third full) then I add cool water till the water temp is 120 degrees. Then I place my jars of yogurt in the crockpot, so that the water is to the rim put the lid on and cover it with two or three kitchen towels. Leave the crockpot unplugged and check in 10-12 hours. Halfway through the curing time I remove the towels and rewarm the water a bit, once. Then turn off and re-cover.
  • scottbutcher
    25 MAR, 2015
    If your yoghurt is not getting thick, you are either not using live yoghurt to culture your milk or you are adding the yoghurt while the milk is too hot. Alton Brown heats his milk to 120ºF. This temperature will not destroy the spoilage bacteria that remain in commercial milk after pasteurisation. 180ºF will destroy ALL bacteria. Boiling the milk alters the taste of the final product and also makes it more difficult for the milk to coagulate because it denatures the protein in the milk.
  • Kathy_KiTKaT
    8 MAR, 2013
    I haven't used this recipe, but I make yogurt all the time. I think the recipe should be more specific about how warm the warm place needs to be. ??? I cure my yogurt in a large insulated bag with 2 heating pads on the low temperature, for several hours (10 -24) I make 2 quarts at a time and it always turns out delicious and thick!
  • Zeba Ibrahim
    8 MAR, 2013
    The recipe to make yogurt is good if any one of you have the problem of setting the yogurt, just add one green hot pepper to the milk mixture after adding the yogurt and leave it overnight in a warm place. It would definitely result in a set yogurt.
  • hokila
    7 MAR, 2013
    I'd be sure to use a yogurt that has active bacteria/live culture in it for this recipe... and make sure the milk isn't so hot it kills anything I put in it.
  • sassanach
    7 MAR, 2013
    I use 2% milk Heat to 185 degrees, stir to prevent scorching. I use 4 tablespoons of plain yogurt mixed with 2-3 tablespoons of warm milk. When the milk reaches 185 remove from heat, allow to cool to between 105-110 degrees I add the yogurt/milk. Stir well,put a lid on the pot,wrap the pot in a towel,put it in my oven for 6 hours. If you want sour cream leave it longer. After 6 hours I spoon the yogurt into a colander lined with cheesecloth to further strain the whey. temp is important

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