I need snacks. Some people are not proponents of snacking, but I’m a realist. Having a selection of easy to make snacks helps maintain an “alternative” diet long-term.
I stopped eating yogurt years ago. There are many non-dairy options in the store, but they usually contain too much sugar, a FODMAP or insulin or “gum” which can cause GI issues. Most recently I also eliminated gluten free grains (see Grain Brain) from my diet, which meant I needed a few new snacks. Thus I began my search for the best yogurt recipe.
The search gained further traction on my last trip to Seaside, FL, our home away from home. Seaside boasts a street-side arrangement of food trucks housed in vintage airstream trailers just steps away from the beach. One truck features all vegan foods, and on my last trip in October, I tried their coconut/cashew milk yogurt parfait. Holy crap, it was delicious! And so I thought, “Why not make something similar myself?”
I searched for the best ingredients to use as a base. Feed Me Rachel had a nice recipe, but it resulted in a runny, thin yogurt. I wanted a thick, creamy, greek style texture. Science has shown that texture affects taste perception after all! I like my yogurt piled high in thick peaks with nuts and berries. And you can’t achieve this with runny yogurt. So I added gelatin, resulting in the perfect texture I craved. The flavor of this yogurt is rich with the tangy-ness of Pinkberry. If you haven’t had coconut cream before – you are in for a treat. It is mild – don’t imagine it to have a strong coconut taste like coconut cream pie.
Here is my final recipe with notes. I’ve also included topping ideas for you uncreative types. Hope you enjoy!
Makes around 4.5 cups:
- 1 can of full fat coconut milk
- Coconut cream from 2 cans of full fat coconut milk
- 3-3.5 tbsp Inner-Eco Probiotic or contents of 3 emptied probiotic capsules
- 1 package of powdered gelatin
1. Choose and sterilize a container for your yogurt. I use a one quart glass ball jar. You can sterilize by placing in oven, running under boiling water or cycling through the dishwasher.
2. Place the coconut cream and 1 full can on coconut milk in a sauce pan on low heat. Stir frequently until the cream is melted and incorporated. Note: I have found 365 brand coconut milk is separated at room temperature, but to assure this for other brands, place cans in the fridge overnight.
3. Pull the saucepan off the burner; the milk should be warm but not hot. Add the probiotic of your choice and stir well. Then gradually add the gelatin, while stirring constantly to prevent clumping.
4. Immediately after adding the gelatin, pour the yogurt into your container. To prevent spilling, I use my canning funnel for pouring.
5. Place the jar in an off oven for 24 hours. During this time your oven light or lights should be turned on with your container close to one of the lights. This creates some heat and the optimal environment for your yogurt. If you prefer a stronger yogurt, you can keep it culturing in the oven longer than 24 hours.
6. When complete, pull your yogurt from the oven. Separation from the gelatin may occur; this is fine. Just stir well to incorporate. Then place your yogurt in the fridge for 1 -2 weeks and enjoy!
- Paleo graham crackers (recipe to come)
- Berries or mashed banana
- Orange and kiwi chunks
- Dates and figs and apricots
- Spoonful of honey or maple syrup (not on my diet but maybe yours)
- Nuts – cashews, walnuts, pistachios, pecans, pinenuts
- Seeds – sesame, poppy, pumpkin, sunflower
- Almond or flax meal
- Chocolate shavings
- Spices – cinnamon, cayenne, pumpkin pie
- Cucumber, avocado, dill, mint, olive oil – greek style dip
- Cherries, cocoa powder, cacao nibs
- Shredded coconut and carrots
- Chocolate chips and banana
- Apples, cinnamon and paleo granola
- Pureed berries and lime
- Sweet potato puree