Making homemade yogurt in the Instant Pot has become a routine weekly task for me. With the cold start method, you don’t have to heat up the milk, it takes 5 minutes to get it started, making it the easiest possible way to make yogurt. Best of all, it result is perfectly creamy, smooth and tangy yogurt.
Homemade yogurt is the perfect snack any time of day. Ever since I discovered the cold start method of making yogurt in the Instant Pot, it has made the process incredibly easy. If you make yogurt using the traditional method, it takes quite a while to heat up the milk, then to cool it to the proper temperature before adding the culture. And that’s all before you even start the hours of incubation time! With this method, you just pour the cold milk right into the Instant Pot, add the live cultures and turn the Instant Pot Yogurt function on and let the machine do the rest for you. SO easy!
The yogurt turns out so thick and creamy. I never even have to strain it; there’s hardly any whey at all. If you haven’t tried making homemade yogurt, this is the recipe to try.
There are so many delicious ways to enjoy the yogurt. You can add different flavorings and sweeteners to it, like jam, fresh berries, fruit, honey, maple syrup, granola or nuts. It’s also really nice to have on hand for baking and can be substituted for sour cream.
Video of the Easiest Way to Make Homemade Yogurt
Ingredients for Homemade Yogurt (Cold Start Method)
- 1 gallon whole milk, it needs to be ultrafiltered for the cold start method
- 4 Tablespoons yogurt with live cultures (I use Chobani Whole Milk Greek Yogurt or 1 small jar Oui vanilla yogurt)
- sweetened condensed milk, optional (to taste)
What Kind of Milk Do You Need To Use For Homemade Yogurt?
In order to make cold start yogurt where you don’t have to heat the milk, you need to use ultrafiltered milk.
Since the Fairlife milk is ultra filtered, it doesn’t need to be boiled at all. Not only does this make the process of making yogurt much easier, it also comes out much creamier and thicker.
Note: Fairlife whole milk comes in a container that is slightly less than a half gallon. I use 2 containers when I make this yogurt. It will not yield a full gallon, but is close enough (104 oz instead of 128oz). The amount doesn’t have to be exact. (When I make yogurt with regular milk, I use the full gallon.)
If you want to make yogurt with regular milk, you need to use another method to make yogurt, where you heat the milk first. Watch the detailed video and recipe HERE.
I have never tried making yogurt with other non-dairy milk (almond milk, cashew milk, etc.) so I have no idea if it works, how to adjust it, etc.
What Kind of Starter Do You Need To Add To the Milk When Making Yogurt
You can buy a yogurt culture, usually a powdered substance, but the easiest way to make yogurt is to use store bought yogurt that has live cultures in it. Make sure the yogurt has actual live cultures in it, not stabilizers and other weird ingredients. You can use store-bought yogurt (I like Chobani Whole Milk Greek Yogurt). Once you’ve made your own yogurt, you can use that to make yogurt and have a never ending supply. (As long as the yogurt is fresh.)
My kids love the texture and flavor of Oui yogurt, so I use that one sometimes too. The small jar is just the right amount of yogurt culture that you need to make yogurt. (Also doesn’t have to be exactly 4 Tablespoons).
How to Make Homemade Yogurt (Cold Start Method)
- Pour the milk into the Instant Pot. (Cold, right out of the refrigerator)
- Add the yogurt and the sweetened condensed milk (if using) and whisk to combine.
- Turn on the Yogurt button and set it for a minimum of 6 hours, up to 12 hours. (I like to do this overnight.)
- To store, scoop out the yogurt and store in the refrigerator for 7-10 days.
How To Sweeten Yogurt
If you don’t use sweetened condensed milk but want to sweeten the yogurt, you can add honey, maple syrup, agave syrup or jam. You can also add vanilla extract, fresh fruit or berries (mango, peaches, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries are our family favorites.) Granola, coconut flakes, chocolate chips are also great toppings.
Homemade Yogurt in the Instant Pot (Cold Start Method)
Creamy, rich and tangy yogurt is so easy to make in the Instant Pot and is very cost effective too. Using the cold start method is the easiest and fastest way to make yogurt.
- Prep Time: 15 min
- Cook Time: 6-8 hours
- Total Time: 0 hours
- Yield: 10 cups 1x
1 gallon ultra filtered whole milk
4 Tablespoons yogurt with live cultures (I use Chobani Whole Milk Greek Yogurt, or 1 jar Oui vanilla yogurt)
1 can sweetened condensed milk, optional
- Pour the milk into the Instant Pot, add the yogurt and sweetened condensed milk, if using. Whisk to combine.
- Turn on Yogurt function, adjust set the time for a minimum of 6 hours, up to 12 hours. (I like doing this overnight.)
- When the yogurt is done, cool and store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for 7-10 days. There is no need to strain this type of yogurt.
Keywords: Homemade Greek Yogurt, Homemade Greek Yogurt in the Instant Pot, How to make homemade yogurt, easy homemade yogurt, how to make homemade yogurt, Instant Pot yogurt recipe, Cold start yogurt recipe
This recipe was originally published on September 14, 2018. I have since updated it to clarify the recipe and add more details and tips.
This video and blog post is not sponsored and I am not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned.