Dairy-free yogurt is easy to make. You can use a variety of nuts or seeds, depending on what you like. Cashews tend to be the creamiest, but I enjoy almonds as well. In this recipe, I used soaked almonds or cashews, water and yogurt from my last batch. I let the probiotics do the rest. To make yogurt from plant milk, go to this recipe.
It’s important to keep everything clean while making yogurt to not contaminate the milk during the process.
2 cup raw almonds or cashews
4-5 cups water
4 tablespoons non dairy unsweetened yogurt or probiotic powder from about 3-6 capsules
Soak nuts for 8 hours or more in water. I put the nuts in a jar soaking in about 2 times its volume in water and put it in the refrigerator. If I leave them for 24 hours or more, I will change the water.
Prepare the container or containers you want to keep your yogurt in. I wash four ball jars with their stainless steel covers and put them in a pot of water and let it boil to sterilize. Then I carefully remove them with stainless steel tongs to dry on a clean cotton towel.
Preheat oven on dehydrator setting of 110oF (if you have this option). You may also use an Instantpot.
Drain and rinse nuts and place in a bowl. If using almonds, with your hands, slip off the brown skins from each almond. This may seem tedious, but it doesn’t take long and I think it is worth the time. Blanched almonds may be used instead which already have the skins removed.
Rinse and drain the nuts again and then process by pulsing in a blender. Add about 2 cups of the water and continue to process until smooth and creamy. Then add another cup of water and blend well. Add the remaining water and process until very smooth. Pour the thick milk into a pot.
Cook over medium heat, covered. Using a food thermometer, cook the nondairy milk until it reaches 165-170oF. Once the milk starts to heat up you will need to stir it regularly to prevent it from sticking and to make sure it doesn’t boil over. I cook it at this temperature, stirring regularly for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool to 110-115oF. This can take about an hour.
Once at 110-115oF, add in the yogurt and mix well.
Transfer milk to the clean, glass bowl or jars and covers. Place in oven at 110oF. Let sit for 8 hours or more. If using an Instantpot, place the four jars on the trivet inside the pot. I set in on the yogurt option for ten hours since the temperature is at about 100oF. Or – if you do not have a dehydrator option on your oven, place the yogurt in a warm place. You can heat the oven to 200oF and set the yogurt on the stove top which will be warm or just wrap it in a towel and keep away from drafty spaces. The longer you leave it, the tangier it will get.
Store yogurt in the refrigerator.
REMEMBER to save 4 tablespoons to start your next batch.