Homemade Vegan Yoghurt
Good vegan yoghurt is really hard to find. Good vegan yoghurt that is also affordable is almost impossible to find. Especially here in Australia, so I decided to make my own.
Growing up, yoghurt was a staple food in my diet, and it was the one thing I did find a little more challenging excluding from my diet when I first went vegan. Muesli with fruit and greek yoghurt was the typical breakfast for me for many years, and I'd also have it throughout the day as snacks or a dessert. For me, so far, the store-bought stuff just hasn't cut it.
In Switzerland, that's a different story. The soy yoghurts found in the supermarket is really good, with great ingredients and basically the same price as dairy yoghurt. I especially love the Migros soy yoghurt. Here, not so much.
This is because, vegan yoghurt here is either: A.) Made from coconut and costs half a fortune. Or B.) Made from soy but tastes like glue, and often has a number of unnecessary added ingredients, like thickeners, preservatives and sugar.
Making your own yoghurt is actually surprisingly easy!! This yoghurt is so creamy, thick and delicious, as well as being amazing for you (full of gut-healthy probiotics, packed with fibre, calcium and plant protein, and free of cholesterol, added sugar and artificial ingredients), it is definitely worth giving a try!
Before we get to the recipe, here are some important tips:
1. I bought an EasiYo yoghurt maker. I just got it from my local supermarket and it wasn't expensive at all, and is fantastic!! It definitely makes the yoghurt-making process a whole lot easier and more energy-efficient, as it uses hot water and an insulated container to keep the yoghurt at 35 degrees Celsius for fermentation, instead of having to run your oven at a super low temperature for 8 hours
2. Be sure to sterilise your equipment with hot water first. Just a precaution!
3. Choose a good quality soy milk. It needs to have minimal ingredients (no thickeners or additives) and be made from whole soy beans, not just soy protein isolate. I use either Vitasoy Protein Plus or BonSoy and it works the best by far, other brands I've tried just haven't given the same result.
4. I ordered a vegan yoghurt starter, which is just live probiotic bacteria, online from Green Living. It works really great! I've also tested the recipe using a heaped tablespoon of vegan yoghurt as the starter instead, which also works. You can use any kind of dairy-free yoghurt (soy/coconut etc) but you do need to make sure its one with live cultures in it!
1 L organic soy milk
1/8 tsp vegan yoghurt starter (probiotic) or 1 heaped tbsp vegan yoghurt
Be sure to read through all my tips listed above before you start, to set yourself up for success!!
Sterilise the container you want to make your yoghurt in by rinsing it with boiling water.
Pour the milk into your container and mix in the yoghurt starter.
Now put the container into your yoghurt maker, according to directions. I used an EasiYo, so I filled boiling water up to the filling line, then put my container in and placed the lid on. If you don't have a yoghurt maker, you can place your container (use a glass jar for this method!) in the oven at a temperature of 35 degrees.
Leave yoghurt to set for 8 hours. If you would like a more sour/tart yoghurt, leave it for up to 12 hours.
Transfer your yoghurt to the fridge to cool and enjoy!
As I mentioned above, make sure the soy milk you are using is a good quality one, made from whole soy beans and with only soy beans and water as the ingredients
I ordered my vegan starter online. You can also use 1 heaped tbsp of non-dairy yoghurt as your starter instead.
This yoghurt keeps for up to about a week in a sealed container or jar in the fridge. You will know it's gone off if it tastes fizzy (not nice!)
I have tried this recipe with oat and pea protein milk and it doesn’t work at all (the protein content isn’t high enough or there are other ingredients present which interrupt the fermentation)! If you want to try with a milk other than soy, do so at your own risk :)