I posted about my homemade yogurt experiment a few days ago on my FB page. Initially, I was going to test and refine homemade yogurt recipes until I found one that worked perfectly. Instead, I decided to just post about my results as a frugal experiment. I plan on doing more frugal experiments like this in the future.
I used this homemade yogurt recipe (Edit: The site is currently down. I included my own crockpot yogurt recipe in this comment) . It worked well, but not quite perfectly. This may very well have been my own fault since it was my first time making my own yogurt. The only issue I had with the finished result is that it isn’t as thick as I’d like. It isn’t runny, but it isn’t firm either.
Aside from one adjustment – subbing the honey for sugar – I followed the recipe exactly.
I got strange looks from my husband when I wrapped a towel over the crockpot to seal in the warmth overnight. All I could say was, “it’s part of the recipe!”
The next morning, I lined a strainer with coffee filters and let my yogurt strain to separate the whey from the yogurt and hopefully thicken it up a bit. I used a bowl to catch the whey and I let it sit in the fridge for four hours before packaging it up.
When it was done, I packaged the yogurt up in 1 cup containers. I placed strawberry preserves on the bottom, layered the yogurt on top and drizzled honey on top of the yogurt. I mixed strawberry preserves into the large container to make strawberry yogurt as well.
I was able to make about 6 cups of yogurt. The recipe I used said it would produce less yogurt, but I attribute the extra to the thinner-than-expected consistency.
And now what you’re all waiting for… the cost.
½ Gallon of Whole Milk: $1.95
Yogurt Starter (small container of store brand yogurt): $0.59
Total First-time Cost: $2.72 for 48 ounces of yogurt.
-The total cost goes down to $2.13 after the first time since I can use the homemade yogurt as the yogurt starter.
– Your cost may be lower. A gallon of milk costs about $4 in my area – so ½ gallon is a little under $2.
Homemade Yogurt vs. Store Bought Yogurt Cost Comparison:
Equivalent amount of store-bought yogurt (1 ½ 32-oz containers): $3.43
Homemade first-time cost: $2.72
Homemade cost after first time: $2.13
After the first batch, your savings are $1.30 per batch.
If you go through one batch of yogurt per week, you’ll save $67.60 per year.
Overall, I think it’s worth making homemade yogurt – especially since it’s so simple to make using a crockpot. Not only is the cost lower, but there is also a considerable improvement in taste.
Have you ever made homemade yogurt before? If so, do you have any tips for beginners like me?