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How to Make Whey and Five Ways to Use It!

Watch the How to Make and Use Whey video

Today, I’ll show you How to Make Whey and Five Ways to Use it. These simple instructions show you how to make “acidic” whey that is probiotic-rich and helps to maintain and improve your gut health.

Did you know that there are two types of whey: Sweet and Acidic? In this video, you’ll learn about their differences and which one you need to make fermented foods and drinks.

The Sweet Whey variety is a by-product of cheese making. It’s high in protein and is often dehydrated to make protein powders. The Acidic variety, on the other hand, is a liquid that makes up part of the consistency of fermented dairy, such as yogurt. When you strain yogurt or another fermented dairy, like kefir, you collect Acidic Whey, which is the by-product of making thick yogurts, such as Greek Yogurt.

Key Ingredient for Lacto-Fermentation

Lacto-fermentation recipes frequently call for Acidic Whey as an ingredient. So it’s important to know what it is and how to make it at home, since you will typically not see it sold in stores. Certainly, there are all sorts of whey protein powders sold at grocery stores, but these powders—the Sweet variety—are not what you want for fermentation purposes. You want the Acidic variety, so it’s best to know how to make it homemade.

Whey is Easy to Make

It’s easy to make the right type of whey that you’ll need for your fermentation recipes. As I mentioned earlier, you just need to extract liquid from plain yogurt or plain kefir. The liquid you obtain as you strain these fermented dairy products is Acidic Whey, and you can use it as a starter for fermentation. But that’s not all.

The Acidic variety has many uses that you’ll learn about in this video. You may be surprised at some of the unusual ways you can incorporate this nutritious probiotic-rich liquid into your diet!

Make Whey from Homemade Yogurt or Kefir

You can certainly make your whey from store-bought yogurt, but why not try making your own yogurt? I’ll show you how in my How to Make Homemade Yogurt – No Machine Required video, and you don’t need any special equipment. All you need is a bowl.

Or if you have some kefir grains and want to learn how to make kefir, follow along in my How to Make Milk Kefir – Discover the Champagne of Milk video to get started.

Either way, you’ll have homemade yogurt or kefir that you can use to make your homemade whey. When making your food homemade, you can ensure that only the ingredients you want are part of your recipe.

More Related Recipes

Once you have your homemade Acidic Whey, you’re all set to use it in your traditional foods kitchen. You can get started by trying your hand at ferments. In these videos, I share how to make homemade condiments that call for whey, including Homemade Ketchup and three types of Homemade Mustard.

Ready for more recipes? You can also use your probiotic-rich liquid to kickstart your fermented vegetables, including sauerkraut, pickles, carrots, and homemade fermented salsa!

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How to Make Whey

5 from 1 vote
Prep: 5 minutes
Straining Time: 1 day
Total: 1 day 5 minutes
Yield: 16 ounces
These simple instructions show you how to make acidic whey that is rich in probiotics.


  • Large measuring cup or bowl
  • Mesh strainer or colander
  • Flour sack towel, cheesecloth, or paper coffee filters


  • 32 ounces Plain whole milk yogurt, unflavored Low-fat or fat-free yogurts can also be used.


  • Pour yogurt into a lined mesh strainer or colander that is placed over a bowl or large measuring cup.
  • Place yogurt in your refrigerator and allow it to drain for 24 hours.
  • Reserve strained yogurt for other purposes. (*See the link in recipe notes.)
  • The liquid that has drained into the bowl or measuring cup is whey. Decant it into a lidded jar and store it in the refrigerator. Your homemade whey will last for 6 months.



*Learn to make Homemade Cream Cheese from the drained yogurt:
Learn how to use whey, and find this recipe and video at
Copyright © 2020 Mary’s Nest, LLC, All Rights Reserved
Course: Pantry Staples
Cuisine: Americana
Keyword: acidic whey, whey
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Disclaimer:I am not a medical doctor, a medical professional, a dietician, or a nutritionist. All content found on the website, including text, images, videos, eBooks or eGuides, social media, or other formats, were created solely for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or proper nutritional advice. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have watched in a video or read on this website. Use caution when following the recipe in this video. The creator and publisher of this video and website will not be held responsible for any adverse effects that may arise from the use of this recipe and method or any other recipe and method on this website or corresponding video channel.

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  1. Debra Baldwin says:

    5 stars
    Help, I took my starter ” cream cheese” first step out of the refrigerator after 24 hrs and it was frozen on the top. I guess I never had a problem with it being too cold in there before. i went ahead and put it in my container. I only got 1/2 the whey that you have in your video.
    I changed out the wet coffee filters this morning. Will I have cream cheese or will it be to runny?

    1. Mary's Nest says:

      Hi Debra, Something that you need to keep in mind whenever you are working with food – especially when making traditional foods – that no two situations will be identical. There are so many variables – different types of yogurt, temperature, etc. But don’t worry, just proceed with the recipe and hopefully all will turn out OK. If it is a bit runny, then try a different brand of yogurt next time or let it drain longer. These sorts of things can often be persnickety but patience and perseverance will pay off in the long run. Love, Mary

  2. jack hollis says:

    thanks mary

5 from 1 vote

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