Homemade low-FODMAP vegan yogurt is easy to make and inexpensive. Once you make your own, you may never buy commercial yogurt again!
While more and more low-FODMAP vegan yogurts are appearing in the marketplace (such as those based on almond milk or coconut milk), they aren't readily available everywhere yet. Making your own homemade yogurt allows you to create a version that suits your tastes and health needs without having to go out of your way to find a commercial variety.
This recipe and information is brought to you courtesy of my friend Mimi Clark, who is a natural foods consultant and cooking instructor extraordinaire. I must admit that I haven't tried this myself yet, so I'm curious to know how it goes for you. Note that the recipe is totally Mimi's, but any mistakes in this write-up are mine.
Yogurt makers are available online starting at around $30 USD. Some people make their own incubator using a cardboard box or a cooler with a heating pad, or they just use the oven light. But DIY incubators are risky because the temperature can't be controlled. However, a non-contact infrared laser thermometer will help you manage the temperature without contaminating the milk. This is essential with homemade incubators, because the key to perfect yogurt every time is a consistent temperature. (This isn't necessary with yogurt makers or Instant Pots because they have built-in temperature controls.)
Nondairy Low-FODMAP Milk
Mimi tested only unsweetened plain organic soy milk (with whole soybeans), which can trigger symptoms for some people with IBS because it's high in FODMAPs. If you can't tolerate soy products or have problems with this type of soy milk, you will need to experiment with suitable low-FODMAP alternatives, such as unsweetened almond milk, and try various brands to find the ones that work best in your homemade yogurt. Please be aware that some additives in commercial nondairy milks may inhibit the starter from coagulating the yogurt, so homemade nondairy milk might work better. That said, I would recommend trying full-fat coconut milk (not coconut milk beverage) for starters, as it should create a rich, creamy yogurt (without any additives).
Nondairy yogurt cultures are available online. Alternatively, you can use a probiotic capsule that you open and pour into the heated milk. Look for a probiotic that contains Lactobacillus acillusacidophilus, Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus bulgaricus, with 4 to 8 billion CFUs (colony forming units, a.k.a. "good bacteria"). Similarly, you can use 1/4 cup of store-bought low-FODMAP unsweetened yogurt as a starter instead of a store-bought nondairy culture or probiotic capsule.
When you give this recipe a try, please let me know how it turns out for you!
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