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Learn How to Make Homemade Yogurt

Mary's Nest Homemade Yogurt YouTube

Watch this video on YouTube

Hi Sweet Friends,

When there are so many choices of yogurt at the grocery store, many of which are reasonably priced, why would you ever want to make homemade yogurt?

The fresher the better

Well, it is still more thrifty than anything you can buy from the store—but more importantly—fresh homemade yogurt will be teaming with many more probiotics than those sitting on the shelves at the grocery store!  And my recipe couldn’t be easier.  All you need is a bowl.  No machine required!

Mary's Nest Making Homemade Yogurt

Use whole milk for the creamiest yogurt

You can make homemade yogurt as rich and creamy as you like, especially if you use whole milk.  And you can also control the level of tartness that you like.  Less tart—culture it for a shorter time.  More tart—culture it for a longer time.  It’s all quite easy.  And the nice thing about homemade yogurt is that it’s very forgiving. So don’t worry. It’s hard to mess up. You can do this! 🙂

Mary's Nest Milk Comparison

Step-by-Step Instructions

In my YouTube video above,  I walk you step-by-step through the process of how to make homemade yogurt.  So give it a try today.  You can do this!

Ready for more cultured dairy?

And if you would like to try your hand at another type of cultured dairy, be sure to check out my video on How to Make Milk Kefir – The Champagne of Milk!

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You can print the recipe below.

How to Make Homemade Yogurt

5 from 4 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Culturing Time: 4 hours
Total: 4 hours 15 minutes
Yield: 4 Cups
Homemade yogurt is so superior to anything you can buy at the grocery store.  It is fresher and teaming with probiotics to nourish your gut.  And with this recipe all you need is a bowl!  So give this a try today.  You can do this!


  • 4 cups Whole milk
  • 1/4 cup Plain whole milk yogurt


  • Pour the milk into a pot and place it on the stovetop. Bring it up to a boil over medium heat.  Stir continually to make sure that the milk does not burn on the bottom of the pan.  When it comes to a boil, the milk will be 180°F.  As soon as it boils, remove the pan from the heat.
  • Allow the milk to cool to approximately 110°F.  A candy thermometer is useful to determine this temperature, but if you do not have a thermometer, you can use your CLEAN finger to judge the correct temperature.  The milk will feel comfortably warm to the touch, like a warm bath.  It will not be uncomfortable for you to put your finger into the milk. 
  • While the milk is cooling, place a dish towel over a rimmed baking sheet to cover, and then place a large bowl onto the covered baking sheet.  This larger bowl can be tempered glass, ceramic, earthenware, or stoneware.  DO NOT use plastic.
  • Next, place a medium-sized bowl into the larger bowl. Make sure that the medium-sized bowl is larger enough to hold the 4 cups of milk. This medium-sized bowl can be tempered glass, ceramic, earthenware, or stoneware.  DO NOT use plastic.
  • When the milk has cooled to the correct temperature, transfer the milk to the medium-sized bowl and add the yogurt to the milk. Stir the milk and yogurt together until the yogurt is completely incorporated. 
  • Boil some water in a tea kettle. Once it comes to a boil, allow it to cool for a minute or so and then pour the hot water in between the two bowls.  The water should come to right below the lip of the medium-sized bowl. (See video.)
  • If the bowls have lids, put the lid on the medium-sized bowl and then put the lid on the large bowl.  If your bowls do not have lids, you can cover them with plastic wrap. 
  • Cover the bowls with two dish towels or one large towel and let them stand in a warm place, undisturbed.  An oven that has been turned OFF, but has the light on or a pilot light, is an ideal place.  Other acceptable places include the top of a refrigerator or a pantry. 
  • After 4 hours, check the yogurt.  It should be set firm.  If not, re-cover it and let it continue to culture for another hour.  The longer you allow it to culture, the firmer it will become, but it will also become more tangy or tart tasting.  Also, keep in mind, when you refrigerate the yogurt, it will also become slightly thicker without the addition of tanginess. This is important to note if you are planning on feeding the yogurt to children (or adults for that matter!) who do not like a particularly tart tasting yogurt.
  • When the yogurt has reached the consistency and taste that you like, refrigerate it.  It will stay fresh for up to 1 week, refrigerated.



Save a little from your first batch of yogurt to make your next batch.
Do not discard the whey.  Whey is very nutritious and full of probiotics. You can drink it straight, or mix it with sparkling water and pour over ice for a refreshing beverage.  You can also use whey as a starter to add to the water in which grains are soaked or to add the water used to ferment vegetables.
If you want to flavor your yogurt it's best to do it at the end after the yogurt is ready. Stir in fruit, add vanilla, cinnamon, or other flavors you enjoy.
DO NOT use plastic bowls to make your yogurt. Glass, earthenware, or stoneware works best.
The longer you allow your yogurt to culture the flavor and texture change. It takes on a much firmer texture with a more tangy or tart flavor.
For a less tangy yogurt that works great for kids or adults who don't like the tang, transfer it to the fridge after four hours. It will continue to thicken but won't become any tangier.
Find this recipe and video at
Copyright © 2020 Mary’s Nest, LLC, All Rights Reserved
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Eastern European
Keyword: Cultured Dairy, Homemade Yogurt, Nutrient Dense Foods, Probiotic Rich Foods, Yogurt
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Pyrex Smart Essentials Mixing Bowl Set Including Locking Lids (Clear), 8 piece

I love these bowls. They nest into each other and also have lids, which makes them multipurpose.  You can use them for making yogurt or mixing cake batter, but they are also great for making salads and other recipes that need to be covered and refrigerated.  I use these bowls everyday and find them indispensable in my kitchen.

Pyrex 4-Piece Glass Measuring Cup Set with Large 8 Cup Measuring Cup

These are a staple in my kitchen.  With 4 sizes, I always have the right measuring cup for the job, and you can never go wrong with Pyrex.  The quality is top par.

All-Clad 59917 Stainless Steel Measuring Cups Cookware Set

These are another staple in my kitchen that I use practically every day.  They are heavy weight and well made.

Mini Kitchen Silicone Spatulas – Set of 6

These little gems come in so handy for helping to get into tiny nooks and crannies to get out every little bit of goodness from jars and small measuring cups.

Classic Line Candy/Deep Fry Thermometer

This is an affordable classic thermometer for making yogurt that can also be used for making candy and deep frying.  I’ve had mine for years and it has held up beautifully.

Ball 252 Wide Mouth Quart Jar – Set Of 12

These are a workhorse in the kitchen.  From canning to fermenting to making yogurt, they do the job.  They even make great drinking glasses for a large lemonade!

Ball Wide-Mouth Jar Plastic Storage Caps, 8-Count

Perfect for using on wide mouth canning jars.

Ball Jelly Elite Collection Jam Jar – Set of 4

Perfect for culturing yogurt in individual serving sizes.

Ball Regular Mouth Jar Plastic Storage Caps, 8-Count

Perfect for using on regular mouth jelly canning jars.

Le Creuset Enamel-on-Steel 16-Quart Covered Stockpot

A multi-use pot for everything from boiling pasta to making bone broth. As I show in my homemade yogurt video, you can also use he pot to culture yogurt in wide-mouth canning jars.

Le Creuset Enamel-on-Steel 10-Quart Covered Stockpot

As with the 16-Quart stockpot, shown above, this 10-Quart stockpot is also a multi-use pot for everything from boiling past to making bone broth. You can also use it to culture yogurt in the smaller regular mouth jelly canning jars, as demonstrated in my homemade yogurt video.

Affiliates note: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. My content may contain affiliate links to products and services. If you click through and make a purchase, I’ll receive a small commission. It does not affect the price you pay.

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. Hi Mary,
    I made you recipe for homemade yogurt yesterday. I made 1/2 a quart as I only had 1/8 of a cup of yogurt to use as a starter. I followed your instructions and left it for 7 hours. It set with a lovely creamy texture with a moderate tang. Just how I like it. My husband who loves natural set yogurt is also a fan. I love your videos and look forward to adding a new skill of dehydrating next. Cheers from Melbourne, Australia. Lock down has given me time to learn new cooking skills

    1. Hi Jane,

      Thanks for your comment. I’m so glad to hear that your yogurt turned out wonderfully! I look forward to hearing about your experiences dehydrating too.

      Thanks also for your kind words and for being a sweet friend!

      Love and God bless,

  2. 5 stars
    Hi Mary … love the video!! I use the same process but put into a prewarmed unplugged crockpot. I have one crock pot that fits 3 pint jars…. towel is put in crock and over crock. Works great 8-10 hours in crockpot unplugged then in fridge . I save 1/2 of last pint for next batch love it 😍

  3. 5 stars
    Making this now for my pregnant wife! Mrs. Mary, your channel epitomizes the healthy living we are striving to have with our daughter. Thank you for all of your videos and recipes. Keep them coming!

    *Adding some strawberry banana syrup to make strawberry banana yogurt!

    1. Hi Timothy, Thank you so much for your comment filled with kind words!! Glad you are enjoying making the yogurt. Do you enjoy making other traditional foods? If so, I have a playlist of some of my videos titled “Mastering the Basics of Traditional Nutrient Dense Foods Cooking”. It’s a series of 15 detailed videos that covers How to Make Bone Broth, Cultured Dairy, Ferments, Sourdough Starter (my foolproof stater), Sourdough Bread, Soaked and Sprouted Nuts and Beans, and How to Soak and Sprout Grains to Make your own Sprouted Flour at Home. You can watch it here: And please share the playlist with any other folks you think might be interested in learning about these types of things. I’m passionate about the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon (of the Weston A Price Foundation) and want to help as many people as I can learn how to make Traditional “Nutrient Dense” Foods.

      Please let me know if you have any questions. I’m so happy to help! And I’m SO glad you’re here!! Love and God Bless, Mary❤️😘❤️

      PS – Do you know about our FB group? It’s called Mary’s Nest Modern Pioneers. Come join us! We have a lot of fun chatting about Traditional Foods:

    1. Hi Jackie, Thanks so much for visiting. That is a great question. You simply warm the milk to 110F and add your starter yogurt and proceed as outlined in the video. Please let me know if you have anymore questions. Love, Mary

  4. Sorry I commented on youur FB page, I could not find this page. Posey Mom says to strain the milk kefir thru cheese cloth for 12 hrs. to drain whey and the resulting produt is the same as yogurt, no heating required. Sounds great and so much easier. Thanks. Mary E. Denton

    1. Hi Mary, Yes, I love kefir. It’s so much easier to make than yogurt. Plus it has a much more varied good bacteria profile that is wonderful for boosting out T-cell function to fight infection. And yes, you can strain it to make it nice and thick and looks like yogurt if you want a product like that. But have you tried just drinking it? I love it that way. Have you seen my video on making milk kefir – and my second one on making water kefir? You can watch them here: and here: Hope this helps. Thanks so much for visiting!! So glad you’re here!! Love, Mary

  5. That is almost the same way I make my yogurt! Except I don’t pour hot water between the bowls. I add a couple teaspoons in 2 cups of warm milk, warm up my oven to 115 degrees, shut it off, switch on the pilot light and put my bowl covered with plastic wrap and it turns out good every time! If it gets tart, I add some milk before serving to the family!


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