Homemade yogurt that has been fermented for 24-hours is an important part of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), Gut and Psychology Syndrome, (GAPS Diet) and many other gut healing diets. 24-hour yogurt is a well-tolerated fermented food that aids in gut healing by providing the digestive system with all sorts of good bacteria. It is pure yogurt, free from added thickeners, preservatives, artificial colours, flavours, and of course, sugar.
Sugar is not permitted on GAPS & SCD. The bacteria in yogurt starter culture consume and thrive on lactose, the sugar in milk. Homemade 24-hour yogurt is fermented at a low temperature for a long time to allow the bacteria to consume all the sugar present in the milk and create billions of beneficial bacteria. You end up with a gentle food that can be tolerated even by people who are lactose intolerant.
No commercial yogurt compares. Store-bought yogurts are fermented for a short time (4-6 hours), at a higher temperature and many are flash pasteurized to make them shelf stable, which means they contain almost no active cultures by the time they make it to you.
If cow’s milk however, is a concern, homemade 24-hour goat milk yogurt is a very gentle dairy option. Alternatively, our yogurt recipe blog has many dairy-free, plant-based milk yogurt options to experiment with.
At first, the idea of making yogurt at home and fermenting for 24-hours might seem intimidating, but, we promise, with a Luvele yogurt maker it’s easier than you think. If you follow this step-by-step homemade yogurt recipe you will produce yogurt with more probiotics than anything you can get at the store. See the end of the post for using the Pure Yogurt Maker with 4 x ceramic jars.
SCD yogurt – fermentation time and temperature
24-hour yogurt verses a probiotic pill
Everything you need to know about yogurt starter culture
Yogurt starter cultures recommended for SCD & GAPS
Guide to choosing the best milk for making yogurt
Feel the benefits – make real yogurt at home
How to thicken yogurt
Raw milk yogurt recipe
Before you begin it is important to sterilise the Luvele yogurt making glass jar, lid and any utensils you use, in hot water. The danger of not sterilising is that other bacteria may overpower your starter culture and affect the quality of your yogurt.
1. Measure Quantity
Measure the appropriate quantity of milk to fill your Luvele yogurt maker and pour into a large, clean saucepan.
2. Heat and hold the milk at 82° C (180° F)
Use a thermometer. Note, as you become more confident with heating milk to make yogurt you will be able to judge when the milk is nearing 82° C (180° F) because it will begin to swell and rise in the pot (just before it simmers). Hold the heat at this temperature for anywhere between 2 - 10 minutes. The longer the better. Holding the milk at this high temperature allows the milk proteins to denature which thickens the yogurt.
Tip: It can be a challenge to hold the milk at a high temperature for so long. Don’t get too caught up on the precise temperature. If the milk accidently simmers briefly, don’t panic – reduce the heat and continue. Use a wok ring (or something similar) to create a distance between the flame and pot or use a double boiler pot filled with boiling water.
3. Cover the milk & let cool to below 42° C (107° F)
It is fine if the milk cools down well below 42° or even goes cold, it just mustn't be too hot. Temperatures above 43° C will kill the starter culture. The perfect temperature range for making SCD diet yogurt is between 36° C (97° F) and 42° C (107° F). Tip: You can actively cool it by filling a sink, or bowl with cold water and setting the pot of heated milk in the cold water.
As the milk cools a layer of skin will form on the yogurt. Some SCD yoghurt recipes recommend taking this off. There is no harm leaving it in though. It does not produce lumpy yoghurt. NOTE: If you are using unhomogenised milk, the skin will include the cream, which is divine. You don't want to miss out on this!
4. Add the starter cultureand gently whisk it in.
Each yogurt starter culture will come with different instructions. Please follow the instructions unique to your starter culture and use the amount specified. OR whisk in a quarter of a cup of homemade yogurt from a previous batch per 1 litre of milk.
5. Pour the milk into the yogurt making glass jar and put the lid firmly on.
Place the glass yogurt jar into your yogurt maker.
6. Pour water slowly into the base.
The water must not be filled over the ‘tall line’ indicated on the inside wall of the maker.
7. Place the cover lid on top.
The milk is now ready to begin fermentation.
8. Set the time & temperature.
Use the digital control panel to set the temperature to 38° C (100° F), the time to 24-hours and then press ‘confirm’ to begin incubation.
9. After 24 hours the fermentation is complete.
Condensation will have collected under the cover lid. Please take care removing it and allow the water to drip into the water bath, instead of your bench!
10. Switch the yogurt maker off and remove the yogurt jar.
Straight from the maker the yogurt will be runny and warm.
NOTE: Depending on the milk you used, there may be a layer of yellow cream on top of the yogurt.
11. Place the jar in the fridge for at least 6 hours to chill and set.
Be gentle with the warm yogurt and don’t stir it or else it won’t set in a perfect white mass.
You can set the yoghurt maker to ferment for a further 5 hours if you want your yoghurt to have even less lactose. See the post Fermentation time & temperature makes all the difference for more information.