Easy Coconut Milk Yogurt – “Hacker Version” (Paleo, AIP, Whole30, Vegan)
Posted on November 26 2019
Easy Coconut Milk Yogurt - "Hacker Version" (Paleo, AIP, Whole30, Vegan)
This “hacker version” coconut milk yogurt recipe is a game changer! It takes 5 minutes active prep time, requires zero fancy equipment, and contains only two ingredients. The result is a beautiful, thick and creamy homemade coconut yogurt!
I wish I knew about this simple and delicious recipe five years ago when I dove into the world of fermentation. I was on an elimination diet (AIP) and all of the coconut yogurts available on the market are loaded with thickeners and preservatives that I could not eat. So I decided to make my own and purchased a fancy yogurt maker!
The fancy yogurt maker arrived, and I excitedly got to work making my yogurt. Sadly, my excitement quickly transformed into discouragement. My yogurt kept turning out runny and sour and not the delicious, creamy goodness I had my heart set on!
A year later, while my fancy yogurt maker sat in a cupboard collecting dust, I took a fermentation course and learned a variation of the coconut milk recipe that I am sharing today. I was skeptical at first by the simplicity and stunned after tasting the result!
Fermentation doesn’t have to be overly complicated. The first time you try to ferment something new, it will take a bit more time to perfect for your specific conditions and ingredients, but once you get into a rhythm it becomes a simple process. Enjoy 😊
2x 400mL cans of full-fat coconut milk
Approx. 30 billion IU of probiotic capsules
One day (or more) before you prepare the yogurt:
- Place 1 or 2 cans of coconut milk in the fridge and leave overnight (12 hours or longer). Refrigeration separates the coconut cream from the coconut water.
- Choose a glass container (mason jars or glass Tupperware work beautifully and are easy to reseal) and something to cover it with during the fermentation such as a thin dish towel or cheesecloth, (the netting around a bag of avocados or oranges works well!) Any breathable material will do, it just needs to allow the yoghurt to breath during the fermentation process.
Preparing the yogurt (Looks like a lot of instructions but I promise this only takes 5 minutes of active prep time!):
- Sterilize your container, the covering material for the top, and a wooden or plastic spoon (don’t use a metal spoon as metal can disrupt the probiotics and fermentation). ‘Sterilization’ sounds more complicated than it is – take a deep breath – you got this! Simply wash the container with hot, soapy water and then fill with boiling water, let sit for a minute and then pour out. If the container is put through a dishwasher, it is technically sterilized, but I like to keep the boiling water step just to be sure!
- Scoop out coconut cream and a bit of coconut water from the cans and place into the container. If you want the consistency of Greek yogurt, add 1-2 tbsp per can. For the consistency of a more traditional yogurt, add 3 tbsp or more of the coconut water per can.
- Crack open each probiotic capsule into the coconut cream and combine.
- Cover the container with the breathable material you selected and place a rubber band securely around the bowl to keep the cloth in place.
- Let the mixture sit for 12-24 hours in a warm place, inside the oven is a great spot (remember not to turn it on!) or inside a kitchen cabinet. Your climate and your taste preference will affect how long it needs to ferment. If it is very warm, 12 hours may be enough, if you are in a colder climate or if you like a tangier yogurt you will want to leave it for longer. * Note that the consistency of the yogurt will thicken quite a bit after it is refrigerated, so do not despair if it is runnier at this stage than you would like!
- When your desired level of ‘tang’ has been reached, its done! Cover with a lid or cling wrap and transfer it to the fridge. After a couple of hours in the fridge, the yogurt will have thickened quite a bit. It will be good for seven days.
- Make sure the probiotic capsule you are using does not contain anything except probiotics! Many products also contain a prebiotic like FOS which will disrupt the fermentation process.
- When purchasing coconut yogurt, it is crucial to purchase full fat (the ‘light’ varieties add more coconut water and less coconut cream. The coconut cream is what you are after here!
- Look for coconut milk that contains only two ingredients – coconut and guar gum. I recommend Native Forest, they use just a minimal amount of guar gum.
- The first time you make it, test it around 12 hours and then every couple of hours afterward until you reach the amount of tanginess you like! After the first time, you will know how long it takes, and you can time it, so you put it in the afternoon or evening and pop it out in the morning. My yogurt is good at 12 hours so and my day begins at 7am so I prepare mine at 7pm and simply pop it in the fridge before rushing out the door the next morning!
Ways to enjoy coconut yogurt:
- Eat it as is with a spoon!
- If you are after a sweeter yogurt, add some raw honey or maple syrup before eating. This is also a fix if you let it ferment a bit too long and it's too sour or tangy for you.
- Make an AIP friendly yogurt parfait by adding berries or sliced banana and top with sliced tiger nuts.
- Use in a smoothie. This yogurt would be an excellent substitute for avocado in my gut healing smoothie recipe.