A few months ago, I jumped on the hype train and bought myself a Instant Pot DUO60 6 Qt 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about this new appliance long term and wondered if it would end up sitting in the cabinet…. Pulled out only for the occasional dinner…. Just like my Crock Pot. I found that I use this thing almost every day. I liked it so much I bought another one. This time I got an 8 Quart Instant Pot.
Yogurt is one of the things I find myself constantly making in my Instant Pot. I started off using my 6 Quart. Which is perfect if you don’t have a family full of yogurt eaters. 1 gallon of whole milk is what will fit in your 6 quart pot. If you opted for the 8 quart, you can fit in 1 and 1/2 gallons of milk. I always use the 8 quart. I figure if I’m going through the process, I might as well make as much as I possibly can.
So you’re staring at your pot, and your milk thinking to yourself, “How do I turn this into yogurt?”. Well, It’s really quite simple. Aside from milk, you will need only one other thing. A package of plain, non flavored yogurt containing live cultures. The live cultures is the key here. Now, if you find you make a lot of yogurt, you never have to buy another starter again. You can just use a little yogurt from your last batch. That will work beautifully and save you the cost of buying a small yogurt.
To start off, you’ll want to pour your milk into the liner of your pot, which you should place inside the machine. Push the Yogurt Button and then use the Adjust button to make it say BOIL. Put the lid on and leave it alone until it beeps and says YGRT on the display.
Get your trusty Meat Thermometer and a Wire Whisk ready. Remove the lid and stir the milk around. I can usually get my milk up to about 175 degree’s just doing this. Unfortunately, you want your milk to be at least 185. Turn off your machine by hitting the Cancel button and then turn on the Saute function. You’re going to want to baby sit it a little now. Using your wire whisk, stir it around every few minutes to ensure it doesn’t scorch on the bottom, and keep checking the temperature.
Once your milk reaches 185 or above, turn off the machine and remove the liner. I put mine on the counter to cool. I use a Stainless Steel Wire Cooling Rack to ensure it gets air flow on the bottom also. Now you just leave it sit until the temperature is below 105 degree’s. I forgot about mine when I got involved in other mom stuff, so mine got a bit cooler than I usually let it get, but as long as it’s still above 95 degree’s, you’re good to go.
When your thermometer says the milks temperature is below the desired range, get a Large Soup Ladle and scoop a few scoops into a 4 Cup Glass Measuring Cup. Get your yogurt starter and put a couple tablespoons in. There’s no need to get technical about the amount. If I’m using a new, single serve yogurt, I use about half of it, and put the rest in the fridge for my next batch. If you are using some from your last batch, I’d say you want about 2 heaping tablespoons worth. Mix that into the milk in your measuring cup to ensure it’s well incorporated and then pour it into the remaining milk in your liner. Stir that around well and put the liner back into the Instant Pot machine.
Now the magic happens. Put the lid on your Instant Pot and push the Yogurt button. Then use the Adjust button to make it say 8:00. Yes, that’s 8 hours. It’ll say 8:00 for about 30 seconds and then it’ll beep and say 0:00. It will now count up to 8 hours. You can go do whatever you want now. Watch TV. Have a glass of wine. Do some laundry. Sky’s the limit. You don’t have to touch your pot for 8 hours.
After the 8 hours have elapsed, the machine will beep and say YGRT on the display again. You now want to remove the lid, remove the liner from the machine, and cover it. I like to use a Genuine Instant Pot Silicone Lid to cover my liner. It’s simple and I’m not wasting foil or plastic wrap every time I make a new batch of yogurt.
Take your liner and put it in the fridge for about 12 hours and your yogurt is done.
You can now eat your yogurt, or if you prefer, you can strain out the whey and make your yogurt thicker. This is what Greek Style yogurt is. It is just nice, thick yogurt with the whey removed.
There are several ways you can do this. Some people use a Euro Cuisine GY50 Greek Yogurt Makerto strain their yogurt. If you like kitchen gadgets, I highly recommend picking one up. Lots of people love this item.
I’m happy to go a little more low tech with this and I bought a stack of Bunn Paper Coffee Filters for a 10-Gallon Urn. I line my Micro-perforated Stainless Steel Colander with a coffee filter and place it inside a Glass Mixing Bowl. The trick is to have room at the bottom for the whey to drip out. I then fill the filter with as much yogurt as it can hold. When I make a batch in my 8 quart, that’s usually about half the pot. Now just let it drip for a few hours in your refrigerator. You will most likely have to drain the whey from the bowl a few times, so the yogurt can completely drain.
Once your yogurt is finished straining, it will be nice and thick. I bought a box of Ball Mason Pint Size Jars and Wide-mouth Plastic Storage Caps to screw on top of them. I fill them with yogurt, leaving enough room for me to add fruit, granola, honey, or whatever flavoring I’d like when I go to eat them. Then I just place all the jars in the fridge so they are easy to grab and eat.
You’ll want to repeat this process for any yogurt you were unable to fit in your strainer the first time.
Now just enjoy the fruits of your labor and rejoice in how easy it was to make your very own yogurt!