Vegan since 1975, I decide to answer the question, "What DO you eat?" These posts tell about some meals and recipes my family and I have enjoyed over the years.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Homemade Soy Yogurt

I decided a couple of months ago to try to make SOY YOGURT with the soy milk from my soy milk maker. I like a certain brand of vanilla soy yogurt, but twenty four ounces of it costs $3.49 when it isn't on sale. Now I can make nine cups of it using only half a cup of commercial soy yogurt, and at last I think I have, after four versions, perfected my recipe.

The only odd ingredient is guar gum, which I have mentioned before in the miso dressing recipe. It is a vegetable gum which thickens and creates a smooth mouth feel. A little goes a long way.

1--soy milk maker
1--insulated cooler
1--towel for the bottom of the cooler
1--warm jacket or blanket to cover cooler
3--Quart jars filled with hot water to heat the cooler
4--clean pint jars with lids or plastic wrap to cover yogurt
1--sauce pan

1/2 cup--dry soybeans in 1 liter of water, made into hot soy milk in soy milk maker
2 cups--cold soymilk
1/2 cup--organic cornstarch
1/2 cup--organic sugar
1/2-1 teaspoon--guar gum
1 teaspoon--vanilla
1/2 cup commercial soy yogurt with live culture, or a couple of vegetarian capsules opened up, with dry live culture (still to be tested, but I think it will work)

To make soy yogurt, first buy a soy milk maker (if you use a lot of soy milk, it will quickly pay for itself). The soy milk maker turns out hot soy milk, and that is just what you want for this recipe. Buy the soy milk maker (or anything else you need on Amazon) by going to Amazon through my blog, and it won't cost you anything more and it will benefit me. Look for the link.

The soy milk maker will produce a liter and a half of hot soy milk per half a cup of dry soybeans (one cup, soaked) and water filled to between the lines embossed on the inside of its container, in twenty minutes.

During that time, wash and scald (my faucet water is hot enough) four pint mason jars.

Mix together a half cup of cornstarch (I use organic) and a half cup of sugar (organic) with a teaspoon of guar gum. I measured and stirred right in the cup measurer.

Blend two cups of cold soy milk with one teaspoon of vanilla. While the blender is moving, add the dry ingredients. You are trying not to let the guar gum clump up, which it will readily do. Mixing with the cornstarch alleviates this tendency.

Perhaps by now the soy milk maker is beeping. Pour the hot soy milk and the cold soy milk mixture together into a heavy bottomed saucepan. Whisk it like you would a pudding. If you think you can walk away and do something else, you will end up scorching the bottom, like I did. So don't do that. In a few minutes—five? ten? I always lose track—it should thicken.

Have a large bowl of cold water in the sink, and place the saucepan in it, continuing to whisk it around. Add cold water to the bowl as it warms up. The pudding is cooling off as you stir it, and in a short while you should be able to leave your very clean finger in it with no discomfort. (This would be 115 degrees on a candy thermometer, but I think you will find the finger gauge a simpler solution).

At that point add the half cup of commercial soy yogurt and whisk it in. Pour the yogurt-to-be into the four clean pint jars. I cover them loosely with plastic wrap, but loose lids would probably work better. Maybe they don't even have to be loose. I will experiment with that variable another day.

Have a smallish insulated cooler ready with a towel folded inside on its bottom. Fill three lidded quart sized jars with very hot water—again, I used my faucet water. Put them and the four smaller jars into the cooler and shut the lid. Throw a heavy coat or blanket over the top and leave it overnight. I have so far tried six, eleven, thirteen and twelve hours, and I liked the tanginess of the yogurt after the longer amounts of time. You might want to refresh the hot water, if it is convenient for you, but mostly the cooler stays warm enough to culture the pudding into yogurt.

Refrigerate, and enjoy it over the next few days. It should last a week. You could flavor yours differently, with jam, say, or more or less sugar or vanilla, but the plain vanilla is tasty enough for me. I sprinkled mine with cacao nibs.

I was able to make yogurt without as much cornstarch or guar gum, but it separated into curds and whey and was a lot thinner. I think you and your family will be a lot happier with the consistency and thickness of these particular amounts. If your batch turns out too thin because you didn't do what I said, then use it as a smoothie base instead of soy milk, and no one will be the wiser. Or in pancake batter. Or you can just follow these instructions and get it right the first time.


  1. Nice guide thank you!/ I love it! very creative! That's actually really cool Thanks.

    Cooking Equipment

  2. Thanks, Prolix--I am making it every week, now, and enjoying it with my home made granola! This week I am going to try using the dry probiotics to make sure they work as well as the commercial yogurt starter. If so, I will add that info to this post. I am hoping it does, because the eventual savings will be even more.

  3. Thank you! I make soy yoghurt in a very similar way!

  4. I just noticed I left "blender" out of the list of equipment needed. I'd better fix that! Thank you for using my blog.