Homemade coconut milk yogurt is a rich and creamy dairy-free yogurt. It is a delicious way to get a dose of probiotics!
Unlike other vegan yogurts (soy milk or almond milk) coconut milk yogurt can be as thick as you want without any additives. Just use a good quality preservative-free coconut milk that contains some coconut cream.
The thickness of the coconut milk will determine how thick the yogurt is. Personally, I like to use coconut cream or a blend of coconut milk and coconut cream for thickest and creamiest vegan yogurt.
Culturing coconut milk
Choosing a culture for coconut yogurt isn’t easy. The issue is that the type of fat in coconut oil is antimicrobial. Which means that it naturally prevents bacterial growth. However, I have successfully cultured coconut cream many times. The only trick is that you should start with fresh culture each time you make yogurt. Reusing your homemade coconut milk yogurt will result in a poor culture.
What is the best culture for coconut yogurt?
Here are a few options for culturing coconut milk, including some advice for each type of culture.
- Store-bought vegan yogurt: I have tried several different vegan yogurt brands, and they all made delicious coconut yogurt. In fact, I find that vegan yogurt brands work better than dairy yogurt for culturing coconut milk. Vegan yogurts tend to contain thermophilic cultures and will need to be heated to 110 F (40 C) for culturing. If you want to use vegan yogurt, then I recommend dividing the tub of yogurt into small containers and freezing it so you can make lots of batches of yogurt from a single tub of yogurt.
- Powdered vegan yogurt culture: Buying a vegan yogurt culture is the best way to get a really active lactic bacterial culture. If probiotics are your main goal, then I recommend this option. And considering the price of vegan yogurt, it’s actually quite affordable.
- Dairy yogurt culture: I have found that it takes longer for dairy yogurt to culture coconut milk, however, it will eventually sour. Just like regular yogurt, coconut milk will need to be kept at 110F (40C) for culturing.
- Milk kefir: Coconut milk kefir is really easy to make. I don’t recommend it for your main kefir grains, but if you want to make cultured coconut milk with a kefir baby, you should be able to get a few batches. This is my main way of making homemade coconut milk yogurt because I always have extra kefir grains.
- Probiotic supplement: Unfortunately most probiotic supplements aren’t full of vigorous strains of lactic bacteria. I’ve tried to culture several expensive brands without much success. Unless you want to test the efficacy of a probiotic supplement, then I don’t recommend using it to make yogurt.
- Kombucha and other SCOBYs: I haven’t personally tried to use kombucha to make coconut milk yogurt, however, there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be able to culture coconut milk. Expect the resulting yogurt to be sparkling and acidic!
10 Ways To Serve Coconut Yogurt
If you’re interested in making coconut milk yogurt, then it’s probably because you already love it! But coconut milk yogurt is not just a delicious vegan alternative, it’s also a great way to get more probiotics into your diet.
- Stir in some fresh berries for a delicious snack.
- Mix it into smoothies or popsicles.
- Have it for breakfast with granola.
- Whip it up for serving on waffles!
- Serve it with Thai pumpkin curry soup or an Indian Mung bean curry. If you add it after serving, then you won’t accidentally kill the probiotics.
- I’ve used it in a lot of desserts including a peanut butter pudding, quinoa pudding, and ice cream.
Homemade Coconut Yogurt
Coconut yogurt is the easiest dairy-free and vegan yogurt option. It can be made from several different types of culture, including grocery-store vegan yogurt. See the section above for more details.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 5 minutes
- Yield: 2 cups 1x
- Category: Snack
- Method: Fermented
- Diet: Vegan
- 1 can of coconut milk (preservative-free)
- 2 Tbsp of culture (see the section above for options)
- Mix the coconut milk with the culture in a glass jar. The section above provides details on six different types of cultures that can be used for making coconut milk yogurt.
- Mesophilic cultures (milk kefir, water kefir, or kombucha) will ferment at room temperature. When using a mesophilic culture, leave the coconut milk out on the counter for 24 hours.
- Thermophilic cultures (vegan yogurt, dairy yogurt, or a probiotic supplement), need to culture at 108-110 F (40 C). When using a thermophilic culture, heat the coconut milk to 110 F (40C). Stir in the culture and maintain the temperature for 10 hours. See notes for more information.
- Canned coconut milk often contains sulfites to keep it bright white. Look for cans that are labeled preservative-free or use an organic brand. Otherwise, added sulfites will slow down or stop the fermentation.
- There are many ways to keep coconut milk warm for culturing. I have always found placing jars above my hot water tank to be quite effective. However, here’s a post on how to make yogurt without a yogurt maker.
- Nutrition information is approximate. The exact amount of sugar will depend on how long it was cultured.
- Serving Size: 1/4 cup
- Calories: 87
- Sugar: 2.1g
- Sodium: 24mg
- Fat: 7.5g
- Saturated Fat: 6.8g
- Carbohydrates: 2.1g
- Fiber: 0g
- Protein: 1.3g
- Cholesterol: 1mg