Pros and cons of buying a yogurt maker vs making your own yogurt in a slow cooker, plus a review of the best Greek yogurt machine!
One of our goals for 2017 was to reduce the amount of plastic we use in our food. The reason for this was twofold. One was for our health. Research shows that the components of plastics can leach into food. Although the effects of this aren’t completely clear, it has been linked with things like cancer, heart disease and other chronic diseases. The second reason was to do our small part to help the environment. When you There isn’t really a downside to using less plastic.
Previously I occasionally made batches of Greek yogurt using our slow cooker. The taste and quality of homemade yogurt was so much more satisfying than store-bought yogurt, once we made the switch our consumption went up. We were consuming about a gallon of homemade yogurt a week.
That meant at least a batch of crock pot yogurt per week! I was waking up in the middle of the night to put it in the fridge, and having to set an alarm every hour to check the temperature. Given the more rigorous monitoring needed for crock pot yogurt, it just wasn’t a sustainable option.
We started looking at yogurt makers to help continue this healthy habit, but cut down on the time it took to make yogurt.
Crock Pot Greek Yogurt vs. Buying a Yogurt Maker
After considering several different factors, from amount of yogurt it was able to make per batch to cost. We settled on the Cuisinart yogurt maker. The selling point for me was the ability to automatically cool the yogurt once the fermenting time was done. That meant no more setting my alarm for 1 am to turn of the machine and transfer it to the fridge. So convenient.
In short, buying a machine was 100% worth it for us. Even with the 15 minutes of prep, it’s still an incredible time saver. We absolutely love having it. The machine is petite and doesn’t take up much counter space. In order to turn the homemade yogurt into Greek yogurt, we also bought a strainer. A flat of half pint mason jars completed our setup so I can take yogurt with me to work.
My one complaint about the Cuisinart yogurt maker is that the container is too small. It only makes 1.5 quarts of yogurt and for us 2-3 quarts would be better. That being said, it has one of the large capacities of the machines we looked at. There are also yogurt makers who make several jars of single serving yogurt.
Tips for Making Greek yogurt at Home
Oh, and some tips for making Greek yogurt whether you are using a slow cooker or a yogurt maker:
- The longer you let it ferment, the less lactose, which can be good if you want to enjoy yogurt but are lactose intolerant.
- You could also try A2 milk if you get GI symptoms from dairy.
- For the cultures, pick a yogurt that you already enjoy to get started.
- Once you have the flavor you want, you can use that yogurt to start the next batch.
- Play around with the time you let the yogurt ferment as this can alter the flavor and texture. For us, seven hours is the sweet spot.
Want to make Greek yogurt using a slow cooker? Check out this post:
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