How To Make Yogurt Two Ways

I grew up eating homemade yogurt – sounds spoiled, but it’s actually quite common in Indian households. My father makes the yogurt in our family most of the time. His mother, my beloved grandmother and Dadi as I call her, is #1 yogurt maker if I do say so myself. When our family visits her in India, she makes individual portions of yogurt for us all each day in little stainless steel containers – how cute is that?!

It is totally satisfying and also way more tasty to make yogurt on your own, but I have to admit that you have to have certain things working in your favor to do it right. It definitely helps that my apartment is always steaming hot because yogurt needs a warm temperature to set. I actually end up wearing summer clothes and having cold drinks in the dead of winter. When people come over, they’re first confused and then ask for some summer clothes themselves.

My cutest nephew’s nanny, Kenda makes yogurt in a crockpot or slow-cooker. I thought this was interesting and wanted to share her recipe in addition to my stovetop one. Also one piece of advice with yogurt is that it may not come out the exact way you want it the first time, but if you keep at it you will figure out what works best for your conditions – kind of like bread making. I have referred to thermometer temperatures in the recipe, but me and my family don’t use one. With practice you will be able to feel the right temperature without a thermometer.

Where my mother is from in South India, you typically end a meal with mosaru anna, which literally means yogurt and rice. When I was younger I thought that mosaru anna was one word because everyone says it together all the time:) In my father’s home in the North, yogurt is referred to as dahi and often served with roasted cumin powder, bhuna jeera, on top:

If anyone has any other tips from making yogurt, please add them in the comments section. Thanks for sharing your recipe Kenda!

I’ve found in making yogurt quite a bit that if you’re not paying attention this sometimes happens, but it looks funny:

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  • meeso

    I am so happy to see this, especially the crock pot method! I have been wanting to make homemade yogurt for quite a while now but have been intimidated to try! I love the way the yogurt and raita’s taste in the restaurants and store-bought yogurt just has an awful taste in comparison! “Take the other tablespoon of yogurt and rub it along the inside walls of the dish holding the milk.” How do you do this, is this in the dish that’s already full of milk? Sorry for my confusion :) Thanks for sharing this!

  • Vishwani

    We make yogurt all the time but it never looked so good as it does in your pictures, especially the one where the round spoon carves a crater. Another spice that goes well is “rock salt” or “black salt”, known in India as “saindha namak” or “kala namak”. It is slightly reddish in color and I saw it during my last visit to Patel Brothers in Atlanta. A little sprinkle on yogurt or salad will do wonders if you like salt taste that is not just salt but is zesty (or pungent) too.

  • shriya

    Tell me about it, I am spoiled with homemade yogurt too. Can’t live without it. Thanks for this informative post. Really very nice.

  • Chitra

    Hi Meeso – yes you just rub the yogurt starter on the walls of the container that is holding the milk. Let me know if you have any more questions!

  • Ann Marie

    Wow, that looks awesome! I like the crockpot recipe!

  • Smriti

    My mom makes yogurt just using the microwave. It is pretty easy and turns out really well.

  • umaabythelake

    Yes, I’m also looking forward to trying out the crockpot recipe (we currently do the stove method). Would be nice to not have to spill milk in our oven anymore. I’ll send feedback if we get around to trying it.

  • cumincoriandercardamom

    Your pics are lovely, I have never gotten the hang of making yogurt in US even with the above method.. I guess i just am doing something wrong!! Will try again.

  • Maryland

    I have tried making yogurt all different ways and for my money I will take a yogurt maker every time. I have made over a dozen gallons of yogurt in the past 4 months and they have all come out beautifully. My wife and I are so happy with our success that we started a website:

    Good luck,


  • Poonam

    I need to try this… My Yogurt does not set well!!

  • Anjana’s Kitchen world

    hey, so glad i found your site. loved it:) is ur mom from karnataka. coz u said mosaru anna:)

  • Anonymous

    thanks for the yogurt recipe. I want to get some yogurt cultures from india because my doctor said it is better germs for my system. He suggested Colombia brand yogurt but i cannot fine it in Florida. I have made yogurt before and will try these new ways. Kay

  • Anonymous

    nice blog. helps beginners like me. Thanks.

  • Marek

    I had heard that having metal touch the milk or the culture prior to culturing the yogurt kills the bacteria in it and that I should never use metal…not metal spoon, no metal container, not even a metal thermometer to check the temperature. Is this a myth?

    • safecook

      Yes that’s true… that’s why i use MEC 100% natural clay cookware. no metals there to leach out into my milk. :) these are the best pots i’ve used. have tried them all but the taste of food cooked in these pots is unbeatable.

  • safecook

    oh use a clay pot. Choose a 100% natural clay pot like the ones Miriams Earthen Cookware sells. Yogurt sets so perfectly in a clay pot and there are no toxic metals in natural clay so no worries of metals reacting with your milk or yogurt. use wooden spoons with your clay pots.

  • jyotirgamoy pathak

    This is how I make my homemade yogurt….

  • stephen ashley

    greek turmeric yogurt