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Instant Pot Yogurt {Full Guide}

5 from 23 reviews

Instant Pot Yogurt with 2 ingredients. Also how to make yogurt without a yogurt button, Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and what to do with leftover whey.

Instant Pot Yogurt

Instant Pot Yogurt Recipe

Homemade Instant Pot yogurt comes out just as store bought.  You can strain it further into a super creamy and thick Greek yogurt. Then you can turn some of Greek yogurt into a cream cheese (yes!). And then make the tallest and fluffiest pancakes with leftover whey.

Don’t have a yogurt function on your pressure cooker? No worries, you can make Instant Pot yogurt without a yogurt button. Also turn some into vanilla yogurt. We’ve got it all figured out for you!

Looking for more ideas? Check out my most popular collection of 30 healthy Instant Pot recipes.

Ingredients for Instant Pot Yogurt

  • 1 gallon of milk.
  • 1/4 cup store bought plain yogurt with active bacterial cultures.

Instant Pot, a jug of milk, tub of yogurt and food thermometer on a counter

How to Make Yogurt in Instant Pot

If you are new to the whole Instant Pot game, check out my Instant Pot guide. If you don’t own one yet but are thinking about buying one, I explain which Instant Pot to buy in my humble opinion.

1. Heat the Milk to 180 degrees F

  • Pour milk into the inner pot of your electric pressure cooker.
  • Close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  • Press Yogurt button until display reads Boil.
  • Milk will take about an hour to heat up and when it’s finished, Instant Pot will beep, turn off and display will say Yogurt.
  • Open the lid and using a food thermometer check milk’s temperature. It should be 180 degrees F and higher.
  • If it’s not, press Saute button and give the pressure cooker 5-10 minutes to heat the milk further. Check again.

Instant Pot and measuring milk temperature with food thermometer

2. Cool the Milk to 110 degrees F

  • Remove inner pot with milk and let it cool down either on a counter (3-4 hours) or in a sink filled with cold water (15 minutes) until food thermometer reads 110 degrees F and lower.
  • Remove the milk skin on top.

hand holding internal read thermometer and milk skin

3. Add Store Bought Yogurt

  • Add 1/4 cup plain store bought yogurt with active bacterial culture.
  • Whisk yogurt milk mixture without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).

how to make yogurt in instant pot step by step

4. Let Yogurt Incubate

  • Close the lid and leave pressure release valve in any position.
  • Press Yogurt button until time counter is displayed and adjust time to 10 hours with + or – buttons.
  • After 10 hours, Instant Pot will shut off.
  • Insert a spoon in the yogurt and if it’s standing, your yogurt is almost ready.

5. Chill Yogurt and Enjoy!

  • Remove only inner pot with a batch of yogurt.
  • Chill in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.
  • To make yogurt completely smooth, whisk it without touching the bottom.
  • Divide between glass jars or make Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and yogurt whey pancakes (see below).

instant pot and green spoon inserted in a pot with yogurt

FAQs and Troubleshooting

  • Can I cut recipe in half? Sure, same instructions.
  • Can I use almond, coconut, soy etc. milk? No.
  • Can I use skim milk? Technically, yes. You will need twice amount of yogurt starter. I personally do not enjoy taste of skim milk.
  • Do I have to sanitize the pot and utensils? No, I never did just like with kombucha recipe. Never had an issue.
  • How much yogurt yields 1 gallon of milk? 8 cups or 64 oz.
  • My pressure cooker lid smells. Will it affect the yogurt taste? It won’t but for a peace of mind remove the silicone ring when making yogurt. You need it only for pressure cooking and yogurt is made not using this method.
  • My yogurt didn’t set. What did I do wrong? If you follow the recipe to a T, it shouldn’t happen. Most important points are:
    • Yogurt starter with live and active cultures.
    • Boil milk to 180 F and higher.
    • Cool to 110 F and lower and ONLY THEN add yogurt starter.
  • I have heard about cold start method. Why you don’t do that? OK, for cold start method you should use Fairlife ultra pasteurized milk only. After a thorough research, I came to a conclusion it is unhealthy because it contains additives with many nutrients destroyed during extremely high temperatures. You can read more.
  • Is making homemade yogurt in pressure cooker worth it? Yes and no. Depends how much that jug of milk and the type of yogurt you make cost in your area. For example, in Canada 1 gallon of organic milk costs $9, which yields 8 cups (64 oz) of Greek yogurt, that costs $24 to buy. Plus organic cream cheese I can make which is not sold in Canada, not to mention all that whey you can use instead of buttermilk when making pancakes.

Tips

  • Do not use any kind of flavored yogurt. Recipe will not work.
  • Freeze 1/4 cup freshly made yogurt as a starter for next time. In case you are not planning to make yogurt again soon.
  • Freeze leftovers. Readers have reported successfully freezing and thawing yogurt. It will look lumpy but once you stir it, it will become smooth.

How to Make Yogurt without Yogurt Button

yellow towel wrapped around instant pot

Timing is everything with this method.

  • In an Instant Pot without yogurt button, add milk, close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  • Press Saute and heat up milk to 180 degrees F or higher. Open the lid and check with a food thermometer periodically.
  • In the meanwhile, fill up sink with cold water enough to reach almost the top of the Instant Pot insert.
  • Remove inner stainless steel pot with milk and place in a sink and let milk cool until food thermometer reads 110 F and lower. Takes about 15 minutes. Don’t walk away.
  • In the meanwhile, press Cancel on Instant Pot and keep lid on to keep it warm. It will become an incubator for yogurt.
  • Move pot from the sink to the counter.
  • Remove milk skin on top and add store-bought yogurt. Whisk to combine without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).
  • Place inner pot inside the Instant Pot, close with the lid, wrap it in large beach towel and leave on a counter overnight.

Tip: Instant Pot should be off and milk still lukewarm, that will ensure proper incubation and favourable environment for live cultures to grow.

How to Make Greek Yogurt

mesh strainer lined with coffee filter and yogurt inside

  • Line large mesh strainer with cheesecloth folded 4 times or single layer of coffee filters.
  • Place on top of a bowl making sure there is enough space for draining the whey.
  • Add desired amount of yogurt and strain for 4 hours.
  • Greek style yogurt will be thicker along the walls. Just stir after adding to a jar.

How to Make Cream Cheese

glass bowl with cream cheese, knife and strawberries on a cutting board

Cream cheese is longer strained Greek yogurt.

  • Follow instructions for Instant Pot Greek yogurt and strain desired amount overnight.
  • Then transfer to a glass container and mix with a pinch of salt.
  • Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

How to Make Vanilla Yogurt

2 glass jars with white lids and vanilla yogurt inside

Whisk 1 cup of finished yogurt with 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey and 1 tsp pure vanilla extract. Adjust to taste and store like other yogurt.

Use Instant Pot Yogurt in These Recipes

More Instant Pot Recipes

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Print

instant pot yogurt

5 from 23 reviews

Instant Pot Yogurt with 2 ingredients. Also how to make yogurt without a yogurt button, Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and what to do with leftover whey.

  • Author: Olena of ifoodreal.com
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 hours
  • Total Time: 10 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 16 cups 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: North American


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon milk*
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt**

Instructions

How to Make Instant Pot Yogurt

  1. In Instant Pot with a yogurt function, add milk, close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  2. Press Yogurt button until display reads Boil.
  3. Milk will take about an hour to heat up and when it’s finished, Instant Pot will beep, turn off and display will say Yogurt.
  4. Open the lid and using a food thermometer check milk’s temperature. It should be 180 F and higher. If it’s not, press Saute button and give the pressure cooker 5-10 minutes to heat the milk further. Check again.
  5. Remove inner pot with milk and let it cool down either on a counter (3-4 hours) or in a sink filled with cold water (15 minutes) until food thermometer reads 110 F and lower. Remove the milk skin on top.
  6. Add yogurt and whisk to combine without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).
  7. Close the lid and leave pressure release valve in either position.
  8. Press Yogurt button until time counter is displayed and adjust time to 10 hours with + or – buttons.
  9. After 10 hours, Instant Pot will shut off.
  10. Insert a spoon in the yogurt and if it’s standing, your yogurt is ready.
  11. Remove the inner pot and chill in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.
  12. To make yogurt completely smooth, whisk it without touching the bottom.
  13. Divide between glass jars or make Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and yogurt whey pancakes.

Store: Refrigerate for up to 10 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Don’t forget to reserve 1/4 cup yogurt starter for next batch (freeze in ice cubes).

How to Make Instant Pot Yogurt without Yogurt Button

Timing is everything with this method.

  1. In an Instant Pot without yogurt button, add milk, close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  2. Press Saute and heat up milk to 180 degrees F or higher. Open the lid and check with a food thermometer periodically.
  3. In the meanwhile, fill up sink with cold water enough to reach almost the top of the Instant Pot insert.
  4. Remove inner stainless steel pot with milk and place in a sink and let milk cool until food thermometer reads 110 F and lower. Takes about 15 minutes. Don’t walk away.
  5. In the meanwhile, press Cancel on Instant Pot and keep lid on to keep it warm. It will become an incubator for yogurt.
  6. Move pot from the sink to the counter.
  7. Remove milk skin on top and add store-bought yogurt. Whisk to combine without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).
  8. Place inner pot inside the Instant Pot, close with the lid, wrap it in large beach towel and leave on a counter overnight. Instant Pot should be off and milk still lukewarm, that will ensure proper incubation and favourable environment for live cultures to grow.
  9. In the morning, insert spoon in the yogurt. If it’s standing, your yogurt is ready.
  10. Remove the inner pot and chill in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.
  11. To make yogurt completely smooth, whisk it without touching the bottom.

How to Make Instant Pot Greek Yogurt

  1. Line large mesh strainer with cheesecloth folded 4 times or single layer of coffee filters, place on top of a bowl making sure there is enough space for draining the whey and add desired amount of yogurt.
  2. Strain for 4 hours or until desired consistency.

How to Make Cream Cheese

  1. Cream cheese is longer strained Greek yogurt. Follow instructions for Instant Pot Greek yogurt and strain desired amount overnight.
  2. Transfer to a glass container and mix with a pinch of salt. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

How to Make Instant Pot Vanilla Yogurt

Whisk 1 cup of regular or Greek yogurt with 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey and 1 tsp pure vanilla extract. Adjust to taste and store like other yogurt.

How to Make Whey Yogurt Pancakes

Don’t know what to do with all that whey? Make my healthy pancakes.

Notes

*You can use any refrigerated cow’s milk. I used 3.25% organic because it yields creamy yogurt and is organic.:)

**Use ONLY yogurt with live and active bacterial cultures. They might have a different name. No dairy-free yogurt alternatives.

 Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating in the comments.

1 cup14912.3 g104.9 mg8 g4.6 g11.7 g0 g7.7 g24.4 mg