Wednesday, May 9, 2012

My Homemade Yogurt Just Got Better!

I've been making my Homemade Yogurt for a while now.  I've experimented and perfected my process to come up with the Yummiest Homemade Yogurt.  Or at least I thought so, until today.

I've been making yogurt so often lately that my daughter sees me pouring hot milk into jars in the sink and knows exactly what's going on.  It's still good on granola and with fruit, but the plain yogurt is just that - plain.  I was craving some of the grocery store flavors - like key lime, and raspberry.  When I mentioned to HandyMan that I was thinking of experimenting, he requested vanilla.

If you look at the basic flavored grocery store yogurts, the additives are basically flavoring and gelatin.  I checked out a few recipe sites that had varying combinations of adding gelatin to yogurt and knew I wanted mostly yogurt and just enough gelatin to add flavor and get it to set up a little firmer than our homemade plain.

Here's the recipes I tried and they worked beautifully!  The flavors are subtle and the sugar in the recipe and in the gelatin mix adds a bit of smoothness to the plain yogurt.  I got 16 of the little 1/2 cup containers with lids and these make fantastic on-the-go snacks and are easy to toss in HandyMan's lunches.  I think I will probably add some 1-cup containers to the stash too - the 1/2 cups are great for snack size and kiddos, but if I were grabbing one for lunch on the go - it'd be a little small.  I've used yogurt straight from the incubator as well as refrigerated yogurt for these recipes and both worked great!

Homemade Vanilla Yogurt
3 cups Homemade Plain Vanilla
3/4 cup milk
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
1 envelope Unflavored Gelatin

Bring milk and sugar to a boil.  Add gelatin and stir until completely dissolved.  Then stir some more to really make sure it's dissolved - otherwise you end up with gelatin granule chunks in your yogurt and it definitely takes away from the experience.  Just sayin'.   Add Vanilla and mix thoroughly.  Combine this syrup/gelatin mixture with yogurt in a blender and pour into individual cups or container.  Refrigerate until it sets.

Homemade [Gelatin Flavor] Yogurt
3 cups Homemade Plain Vanilla
3/4 cup boiling water
1- Box of Gelatin (box intended to add 2 cups of water to make 4-1/2 cup servings, flavor of your choice)

Add gelatin to hot water and stir until completely dissolved.  Combine the jello mixture with yogurt in a blender and pour into individual cups or container.  Refrigerate until it set.

Cost wise - I've been able to get milk for about $2.15 a gallon and gelatin runs anywhere from $0.35-$0.65 a box.  Calculated out, it runs about $0.13-$0.18 per 6 ounce serving.  The reusable cups were a $5 up-front investment.  All told, it fits quite nicely in my grocery budget!

Next up - experimenting with adding fruits!

Linked up at We Are That Family's Works for Me Wednesdays.

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