In the past month I’ve started making more and more staples from scratch (bone broth I’ve been doing for over a year now, bread for almost a month, hummus the last month, and the last couple weeks tortillas and yogurt). I’m still learning the latter, yogurt making, but it’s so easy, and as long as you have a thermometer and time, can be done much more cheaply than buying it at the store.
My daughter is going through a yogurt kick, so it can get expensive very quickly (especially when she eats three bites and says she’s done (so it has to be tossed) and then the next time you give her only a little bit she asks for another bowl). I was buying them the Stonyfield whole yogurt 32oz container (which usually goes for $3.89 and is currently on sale for $3.50) and those tube yogurts (which usually go for $4.17, but are on sale for $3.50 and only have 16oz in them, eight 2oz tubes). Let’s calculate this based on full price, since it’s not on sale all the time. Milk is also currently on sale (I buy the kids the store brand organic whole milk, list price is $5.99 and sales price is $5.69). We like the strained yogurt here, so my go to brand for Greek yogurt is Fage (depending on the store I can either get the 17.6oz container (currently $3.99 on sale for $3.00 right now) or the 35.3oz container ($6.99 and not on sale and also very difficul to find).
To make homemade yogurt I use 2 tablespoons yogurt (as my starter, from the last batch, which I set aside so we don’t eat it) and a full gallon of milk (or 128oz). Here’s my original post on my first attempt at yogurt. This makes a gallon of yogurt (or about 76oz* of strained yogurt and I use the leftover whey for bread, see yesterday’s post on using the whey) and I now have a starter, so no need to buy any new ones as long as I keep it going or the integrity remains intact.
- Fage – $3.00 ($0.17/oz)
- Yogurt tubes – $3.50 ($0.22/oz)
- 32oz yogurt – $3.50 ($0.11/oz)
- Milk – $5.69
- Homemade yogurt – $5.69 ($0.04/oz)
- Homemade Greek (strained)* – $5.69 ($0.07/oz)
With the amount of homemade yogurt we have we’d have to spend 4 times the amount of the store bought stuff. $12 for Fage (when it’s on sale), $14 for regular yogurt, or $28 for the tubes (have to buy 8 of them to get to 128oz).
I should add that I make a berry syrup from organic fruits (mix of fresh and frozen, sometimes the fresh starts to go bad before the kids get to them, so rather than toss the remainder I now make the berry syrup to add to the yogurt). I’ll make a separate post about that the next time I make it, but I describe it at the end of this post too.
Hopefully this convinces you that making yogurt from scratch is worth the cost savings and certainly worth avoiding additives and preservatives.