DIY Yogurt

My family eats a lot of yogurt. Generally, we each eat a cup for breakfast. In the summer I make refrigerator oatmeal which also has yogurt in it. So yeah, lots of yogurt. Lots of money. Being the frugal cook that I am I’ve often thought of making my own, especially since I actually prefer to give my children whole milk as much as possible and whole milk yogurt is almost impossible to find. But I thought I needed a special machine, or some fancy single use equipment. (For the record, I HATE single use appliances.) Nope. I came across this comment over on my online crackhouse, known to most of you as Apartment Therapy, (It might have been The Kitchn, menopause has destroyed my memory)and was immediately intrigued by how easy it sounded. And when you think of it, given how ubiquitous yogurt is in that part of world, it makes sense that they wouldn’t have some fiddly recipe.

Frankly, I learned to make yogurt with a friend from Afghanistan and it was a super-easy, no-monitoring, no-stress way to do it.

I just put whole milk in a heavy pot (I use a LeCreuset dutch oven) until bubbles slightly break on the edge (~just before boiling), let it cool “until the tip of your pinky, when dipped, feels warm to the touch” (quite technical) – stir in some plain yogurt (few scoops/ about 1/2 c) and then I just wrap the whole thing in a huge bath towel and let it sit in the oven (off) for the day or overnight. It’s always worked for me – maybe if I were using raw milk, I’d use a “real” recipe to be sure I wasn’t throwing it down the drain later on!

I made a gallon of yogurt following this recipe. I put in two containers of yogurt since I was making so much. And I was amazed that I actually got yogurt and it was delicious!!! It’s just a bit more runny than store-bought because they put gelatin in it. If you prefer a thicker consistency, like Greek yogurt then you just strain it in cheesecloth, this is also how you make yogurt cheese. I like the runnier consistency for refrigerator oatmeal. Next time I’ll let it sit longer. I was anxious, so I got up at like five in the morning because I was terrified it would go bad. The longer it sits the tangier it gets.

The kids love it because they got to do their own add-ins. Applesauce, granola, honey, maple syrup, preserves, fresh fruit, whatever suits your fancy, for just pennies.

And there you go, nearly a month’s worth of yogurt for about less than $10!! Yay me.



I’m a scratch cook. For the most part, if a member of my family is eating it, it was cooked by me. Except breakfast, which is my husband’s wheelhouse, and let me tell you, that man can throw down on breakfast food. They don’t call it Whit’s B&B for nothing. I love to collect recipes and try new things. I have a basic repertoire that leans heavily on southern and Italian food with a bit of Mexican and Asian thrown in, but I like to mix it up. That’s where the app, Paprika comes in. Yeah, it’s a $20 app, and yes, it took me TWO YEARS to overcome my aversion to expensive apps. But it is so worth it. I love that I can find a recipe online, open it up in the Paprika browser and save it. No muss. No fuss. I have a ton of cookbooks I don’t even use anymore because I rely so heavily on Paprika. Yes, this $20 app is worth the price.

Passionate Cooks: Potato, Sausage & Kale Soup



Y’all better have some. That’s a picture of my legendary Potato, Sausage and Kale Soup, a recipe I reverse engineered from a soup they serve at the Olive Garden. And I can tell you without any false modesty–mine is better. Hey, Muhammad Ali said if it’s the truth, it’s not bragging! -lol-

Now you might be asking, where oh where can I get my hands on the recipe for such a culinary delight? Believe it or not, it’s all yours, along with recipes from nearly a hundred of your favorite authors, for the low, low price of FREE!!! On October 1st ARe will release their free cookbook collection, Passionate Cooks. And yes, I was one of the lucky writers to be included. So, save the date! And please, tell all your friends.

This is a great, easy recipe. It’s rustic, which means you can leave the skins on the potatoes and rough chop. No fancy dicing necessary. Potato skins are so thin these days, that it’s fine to leave them on. I love this soup on a rainy Saturday when I’m too lazy to fuss too much with dinner. Vegetarian? No worries, switch to veggie stock and substitute Great Northern beans for the potatoes. I like to have Meatless Mondays and have served this soup sans sausage and it was a hit! You will have to double down on the spices, and if you use canned beans, be sure to rinse them off before adding them to the pot, otherwise the’ll have a yucky metallic taste. Here I served it with grilled cheese sammies, but it’s equally delish with a lovely crusty Italian bread, or a good old pan of Southern cornbread. A rib sticking meal for sure!