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Make Coconut Yogurt In Your Electric Pressure Cooker - Nondairy Recipe

So you've mastered sourdough and canned your own jam, have you? It's time to make coconut yogurt! Or maybe you've been making yogurt for years and want to try an easier way. I prefer making yogurt in my electric pressure cooker because it's all in one big container making it easier to drain the whole thing for a super thick, delicious product. Draining is not necessary if you like yogurt thinner or if it will be a base for a dressing, marinade, or sauce.  It's so simple to make coconut yogurt that it may become a weekly ritual. Just make sure you will not need your pressure cooker for something else while the yogurt is incubating.

I love to eat coconut yogurt plain or with fresh fruit but you may flavor it with anything that sounds good. Honey, jam, and vanilla are popular additions. Add some salt and chives for a bagel or cracker spread. Tell me in the comments what you like to add to your coconut yogurt.

The difference between making coconut and dairy yogurt besides the ingredients is coconut yogurt has a longer incubation time and dairy yogurt has an extra step of first boiling and cooling the dairy milk. (See my notes on dairy yogurt below. There are "cold start" methods.)

The first time you make yogurt you need a little plain yogurt with active cultures to inoculate the milk. Save some homemade yogurt or the drained off whey to make subsequent batches. I freeze whey in ice cube trays and store the cubes in a labeled bag in the freezer. Take the needed number of frozen whey cubes out to thaw at room temperature while you gather your other ingredients and equipment. One frozen whey cube is about equivalent to a tablespoon of store bought yogurt and will inoculate a can of coconut milk. 

Ingredients For Coconut Yogurt:

Ingredients for coconut yogurt

1 Can Coconut Milk (not coconut milk beverage)

1 Can Coconut Cream (or another can of coconut milk)

2 Tablespoons Plain Coconut Yogurt With Active Cultures, From a Fresh, Unopened Container  -or- 2 frozen whey cubes from a previous yogurt batch, defrosted at room temperature

The yogurt is your Starter. It will inoculate the milk with live active cultures. I like Culina Brand Coconut Yogurt for its simple ingredients and delicious taste and texture. Coyo and Cocoyo are also great coconut yogurts/starters. Let me know in the comments which you used, if you used another brand, or if you tried it with another nondairy yogurt. This recipe can easily be doubled.

Directions For Making Coconut Yogurt:

Pour a can of coconut milk and a can of coconut cream, or two cans of coconut milk into the electric pressure cooker. Stir to break up chunks. Whisk in two tablespoons of plain coconut yogurt. Put the lid on with the valve set to "vent" or use a glass lid. If you are using a glass lid it fits with your Rim-O rim cover in place so you don't have to remove it. 

Patrick Salsbury's photo of the Instant Pot glass lid fitting on Rim-O While slow cooking apple sauce.

If you accidentally boil your starter it will no longer work. Cool your milk to at least 110 degrees F and add more starter (yogurt).

For Instant Pot Duo: Press the "Yogurt" button. Press "Adjust" until it is set to "Normal". Increase time to "24:00". Do not use the less setting. The temperature is too low for yogurt.

For Instant Pot Duo Plus: Select "Yogurt Normal" and set to 24 hours.

For Instant Pot Ultra: Turn dial to "Yogurt" select and press again to set time to 24 hours. Press the dial then turn to "Temp" (110 degrees) or "Medium". Press "Start". 

No Yogurt Button: If you do not have a "Yogurt" button on your electric pressure cooker you can still make coconut yogurt! You will need a candy or instant read thermometer. Use the saute function to carefully bring only the coconut milk / coconut cream up to about 110 degrees F / 43 degrees C. if it gets hotter than 110F/43C let it cool to that temperature before adding the yogurt /starter. Whisk in the coconut yogurt / starter. Close the lid and seal. Wrap the pressure cooker in towels and leave undisturbed in a warm place for 24 hours.

Next: It's okay to open your pressure cooker to look at your yogurt's progress and gently take a scoop out. Do not stir it before it is finished incubating.

Coconut yogurt made in an electric pressure cooker
See how the whey is separated from the yogurt when the spoon pulls the finished yogurt away from the edge?


Unstrained coconut yogurt

Once it is finished incubating for 24 hours, chill it as is and enjoy or strain it for a thicker yogurt. To strain pour over a sieve or colander lined with a flour sack towel and placed over a bowl. Doubled cheesecloth, cloth napkins, or coffee filters work in place of the towel, too. 

I like to put the whole set up in the refrigerator to drain. It gets super thick if I leave it draining for a day. It's thick enough to use like a spreadable cheese.

If you don't want it too thick and there's no room in the fridge just drain it to your desired consistency on the counter. Add whey back in if it's too thick. Refrigerate in an airtight container. The whey is delicious to drink and works in place of milk in many baking recipes (though not where milk is the main component). Don't forget to save some whey or yogurt for your next batches!


About Making Dairy Yogurt: You can make dairy yogurt the same way I show how to make coconut yogurt if you use Ultra Pasteurized milk such as Fairlife. You may choose to incubate it for less time, though. 24 hours will give you a more tart yogurt. Try it at 8 hours to see if you like the taste and leave it longer if you want it more tart. For more information on making dairy yogurt in your electric pressure cooker search for "Frieda Loves Bread Yogurt" or "Frieda Loves Bread Cold Start Yogurt".

To make traditional dairy yogurt using regular milk: pour two quarts of milk into the electric pressure cooker. If you have a "Yogurt" button push it. It should say "Boil". If it doesn't then push "Adjust" until it says "Boil" and the "More" light is on. If you do not have a "Yogurt" button, use "Saute" and heat to about 180 degrees F / 82 degrees C. After the boil cycle has completed, carefully take the insert out of the pot and place the bottom of your insert in a sink or large bowl of ice water. Whisk the milk to cool it to about 110 degees F / 43 degrees C. Warmer temperatures will kill your starter. Cooler than 90F / 32C is too cool for incubation. Completely dry the outside and bottom of your insert and place back into your pressure cooker housing. Whisk in two tablespoons / 30 ml fresh, plain yogurt with active cultures or two defrosted whey ice cubes. Close the lid and leave the vent open. Press "Yogurt" until it says "Normal" and set for 6 to 24 hours as desired. If you do not have a "Yogurt" button wrap the pressure cooker in towels and leave in a warm part of your house for 6 to 24 hours. Strain as shown above, if desired. Freeze some whey in ice cube trays to use for your next batch!

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