A friend gave me a gallon of chocolate milk, and being that we already had plenty of milk in the house, I decided to make some yogurt with it. I searched Google to see if it was possible to make yogurt from chocolate milk and did not find any searches to answer my question. The only search that came close was someones concern that the carrageenan in the chocolate milk might interfere with the thickening of the yogurt. So I decided to try making yogurt with the chocolate milk and I am happy to say it worked.
I also decided to try a new method of making the yogurt with a slow cooker and a electric blanket. I first had to find out what setting on the electric blanket was equal to 110 degrees,the temperature needed to cure the yogurt at. I did this by plugging in the blanket and sticking a thermometer in the bunched up blanket. For each dial change on the blanket I left the thermometer in for 15 minutes. My blanket reached 110 degrees at number 4 on the dial.
Then I heated up the gallon of milk on the stove until it reached 185 degrees. I stirred the milk often to prevent scalding of the milk. To make the yogurt thicker,add a cup of powder milk to the milk before heating it.
Once the milk got to 185 degrees, I placed the pan in a sink of cold water until the milk temperature reached 110 degrees. Make sure to not get any water into the pan.
Once the milk reached 110 degrees, I added 1 cup of vanilla yogurt to the chocolate milk and stirred well.
After I stirred the yogurt into the milk, I placed it into my slow cooker crock, that I took out of the base, and placed the cover on it. I then placed the crock on the electric blanket and wrapped it up. I turned on the blanket at my setting number 4. Your blanket might maintain 110 degrees at a different setting so find out as directed above before making the yogurt. I left the crock under the blanket for 8 hours.
After 8 hours, I placed the crock in the fridge for another 12 hours before taking the lid off. I was very pleased with the way the yogurt turn out and it tasted great too.
You can also make yogurt with plain milk too. I also made a batch with 2% milk and added 1 cup of powder milk to it before heating up the milk. I then followed all the same steps but, left it in the electric blanket for 12 hours this time. The powder milk and longer cooking time makes the yogurt more creamy.
To make the yogurt greek style, you need to strain the yogurt after all the above steps for about 2 hours. There are several ways to do this. You can use two coffee filters in a colander with that placed in a bowl or buy this cool strainer I found on Amazon. Place the yogurt in the fridge when straining it.
You just put the yogurt in it for 2 hours, while in the fridge, and you will have greek yogurt.
I love being able to make yogurt for less money than in the store. A gallon of milk costs $2.50 for me and a cup of yogurt is $1.00 so $3.50 for 4 quarts of yogurt is a awesome price. To make 2 quarts of yogurt just cut all the ingredients in half.
1 gallon milk
1 cup powder milk
1 cup plain yogurt( take out of fridge the same time you take out the milk)
electric blanket set to 110 degrees
slow cooker crock and lid
Pour milk into a pan and stir in powder milk. Heat milk over medium high to 185 degrees and stir often.
Remove from stove and place pan in a sink of cold water, make sure not to get any water in the milk mixture. Let the milk cool too 110 degrees, this takes about 10 minutes or so. Pour the milk into a slower cooker crock and stir well. Place lid on the crock and wrap with preheated electric blanket. Leave crock under the blanket for 12 hours. It is tempting to look at it while under the blanket, but no peeking, just leave it alone.Then place crock in fridge for another 12 hours. It is important to not stir the yogurt or move it while it is in the fridge for those 12 hours. This will disturb the process, just simply place in the fridge and leave alone.After the 12 hours, spoon yogurt into containers. This yogurt will be good for about 3-4 weeks in the fridge. Make sure to save a cup of yogurt for your next batch.
I am always amazed that my milk turns into yogurt. I saved quart yogurt containers from store bought yogurt to store my yogurt in. This recipe makes 4 quarts of yogurt or 16 cups.