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Yoghurt: what’s in it and how do you make it yourself? | > – Guide

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Yoghurt: what’s in it and how do you make it yourself?  |  > – Guide

As of: February 2nd, 2024 5:20 p.m

Yogurt is considered a healthy product. But additives are often used; fruit yoghurts in particular often contain a lot of sugar. There are also big differences in taste and consistency.

Lactic acid bacteria are necessary to make yogurt. If you add them to milk and keep it sufficiently warm, the bacteria convert the milk sugar (lactose) into lactic acid (lactate). This causes the protein to coagulate and yoghurt is created. Which lactic acid bacteria are used influences the taste of the yogurt. You decide whether it tastes mild or sour.

Greek yogurt: This is what’s special

The different types of yogurt differ in fat content. Greek yogurt also contains a lot of protein.

Original Greek yogurt differs in its production in that the whey drains longer. This means that more milk is required during preparation; the finished yoghurt has a higher protein content and is relatively firm and creamy. The fat content is up to 10 percent. Products made using the same method but not in Greece are called “Greek-style yogurt”. These products often use less milk than the original, so they don’t contain as much protein. Their fat content is between 7 and 10 percent.

Fat content varies between types of yogurt

Natural yogurt has a fat content of at least 3.5 percent, cream yogurt at least 10 percent. Low-fat yogurt contains between 1.5 and 1.8 percent fat, while skimmed milk yogurt contains a maximum of 0.5 percent. How creamy a yogurt is does not just depend on the fat content. Manufacturers also achieve a creamy consistency by stirring, removing water (ultrafiltration) or by adding milk powder.

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Recognizing milk powder in natural yogurt

People with lactose intolerance are sensitive to milk sugar (lactose). They can often tolerate yogurt because the lactic acid bacteria almost completely break down the lactose. However, if milk powder is added, the milk sugar content in the yogurt increases. Manufacturers do not have to declare the addition in the ingredient list. However, the nutritional table can provide an indication of added milk powder, because the information on the sugar content consists of both natural and possibly added sugar. If the sugar content according to the table is significantly higher than 4.8 grams per 100 milliliters – this is the typical lactose content of milk – milk powder was probably added. Some manufacturers also voluntarily provide information about this on the label.

Fruit yogurt often contains a lot of sugar

Yoghurt not only tastes particularly good with fresh fruit, it is also healthier than ready-made fruit yoghurt.

The sugar content is often particularly high in fruit yoghurts. The added sugar is not listed separately from milk sugar, i.e. lactose, in the nutritional tables. Some fruit yoghurts contain up to 12 grams of sugar per 100 grams – for a 250 gram yoghurt cup that’s 30 grams of sugar per cup. This is more than half of the maximum daily amount of sugar recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) for adults of around 50 grams. For children this value is significantly lower.

Fructose increases the risk of illness

Some manufacturers advertise that their product is produced “without added granulated sugar” or “without added sugar”. But fruit sugar (fructose) is often used instead. This is no healthier than conventional household sugar: fructose is significantly sweeter, stimulates the appetite for sweets and makes you less full. It causes obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases more quickly. The body does not store it like normal sugar. The fructose molecules travel from the small intestine directly to the liver, where they increase fat storage and promote inflammation. The more fructose you consume, the greater the risk of fatty liver disease.

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Prepare yogurt with fresh fruit

If you want to enjoy fruit yogurt with little sugar, you can prepare it yourself using natural yogurt and seasonal fruit. The taste is less sweet than industrially produced products. You get used to it quickly.

Further information

A delicious and healthy breakfast without any sugar. Cinnamon, turmeric and roasted seeds provide bite and taste. Recipe

Ayran, dressings, dips: savory dishes with yogurt

Yoghurt is not only a popular dessert, but also an ideal base for dressings and dips. To make a dressing, mix natural yogurt with olive oil or another good oil and a little lemon juice or vinegar. Then refine the dressing with fresh herbs such as chives, dill or parsley. Yoghurt dip tastes good with raw vegetables, jacket potatoes or grilled meat. Refine the yoghurt to taste with salt and pepper, finely chopped garlic and fresh herbs, such as mint.

Further information

Two simple and fresh salad dressings for summer cooking. Orange and strawberry provide a fruity note. Recipe

A perfect, light lunch: the dish is quick to prepare and tasty, and the ingredients are cheap. Recipe

Instead of mayonnaise, the classic salad is prepared with a light dressing made from yogurt and cucumber water. Recipe

Ayran is a great refreshing drink, especially for hot days: mix cold water and yoghurt – cream yoghurt is suitable – in roughly equal proportions and season with a little salt. Serve with ice cubes if desired.

Make your own yogurt

Making natural yogurt is easy: Heat a liter of fresh milk and keep it warm at 90 degrees for about five minutes. Then cool to 45 to 50 degrees. Add two tablespoons of yogurt and keep warm at a constant temperature for about eight hours, for example on the radiator, in the oven or in an insulated box. After another two to four hours it will be even firmer. If a little more yogurt is added, the time may be shortened. Instead of cow’s milk you can also use goat’s milk or soy milk. Pour the finished yoghurt into glasses and chill in the fridge. When it has cooled, it can be eaten.

Further information

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