Yogurt is as delicious as it is healthy. While there certainly isn’t any shortage of options when it comes to buying mass produced, already made yogurt in your local grocery store, if you want a healthier option, you may be interested in making your own at home.
With a yogurt maker, you can easily make your own delicious and nutritious yogurt right at home. You get to choose the ingredients that you use in your yogurt, and you get to make up your very own flavors; two definite advantages of making your own yogurt. While a yogurt maker makes the process of creating your own yogurt at home easier, finding one can be a bit of a challenge. There are a lot of options available, so it can be difficult to determine which type of yogurt maker will best meet your needs. To help you on your quest for finding the best yogurt maker, we have put together this handy buyer’s guide. In it, you will find a wealth of valuable information, including a breakdown of the different types of yogurt makers, the factors to consider when choosing one, the different features that these appliances can offer, and the best brands available. With the information in this guide, you will be well on your way to making healthy and delicious yogurt right at home.
Types of Yogurt Makers
There are three main types of yogurt makers:
- Electric yogurt makers
- Non electric yogurt makers
- Greek yogurt makers
Each of these three types of yogurt makers offers different benefits, which is why it is important to understand the difference between them so that you can choose the best one for your specific needs.
Electric Yogurt Makers
Electric yogurt makers use electricity to heat the machine, which in turn, heats the yogurt. Generally, the process of making yogurt with an electric yogurt maker is faster, as they complete the fermentation time quicker. They also offer more features than other types of yogurt makers, making them more versatile. They also feature a timer, which will notify you when the yogurt is ready, so you don’t have to continuously monitor the yogurt and there is no guessing as to when it will be done. However, the downside of an electric yogurt maker is that they consume electricity, and they can burn off more of the valuable nutrients than other yogurt makers.
Non Electric Yogurt Makers
Instead of using electricity to make the yogurt, non electric yogurt makers utilize a water bath system to create yogurt. Hot water is used to warm the milk that is used during the fermentation process. The result is healthier yogurt, as less nutrients are burned off. However, the downside of a non electric yogurt maker is that they take longer to complete the process. You also need to constantly monitor the yogurt to determine when the process is complete.
Greek Yogurt Makers
If you enjoy the creamier, heartier consistency of Greek yogurt, this is the yogurt maker for you. Greek yogurt makers run on electricity and they feature the specialty strainers that are needed to strain the yogurt during the fermentation process. It is this straining that creates Greek yogurt.
Factors to Consider When Buying a Yogurt Maker
There are a number of factors that you are going to want to take into consideration when choosing a yogurt maker. These factors include the capacity of the yogurt maker, the containers and ease of use, among other things. By considering these factors, you will be able to find the best yogurt maker for your specific needs. To learn more about the factors that we think are the most important to take into consideration when shopping for a yogurt maker, please keep on reading.
One of the most important factors that you are going to want to take into consideration when choosing a yogurt maker is the capacity of the machine. Consider how much yogurt you consume when determine what capacity will best suit you. If you consume a lot of yogurt, look for a yogurt maker that makes large quantities of yogurt at one time. However, if you consume smaller quantities, a smaller capacity yogurt maker is a better choice, as you will be able to make the right amount for you. Yogurt makers generally come in two capacities: Large batch and single serving.
Yogurt makers can come with either glass or plastic containers, which are used to hold the yogurt. Both can be placed directly into the refrigerator after the yogurt is prepared. The major advantage of plastic is that it isn’t breakable, which is something you may want to consider; however, there is the possibility that the plastic used could contain toxic chemicals, such as BPA or phthalates, which is a major downside. Glass is much safer, as it does not contain any toxic chemicals; however, it is breakable, which could be a downside.
Ease of Use
Yogurt makers that are easy to use receive the highest ratings, and it’s easy to understand why: They are straightforward and simple to operate, which makes the process of making yogurt a whole lot easier. Yogurt makers that are complicated to use will make the task of making your own homemade yogurt a lot more frustrating.
Another factor to consider is the size of the yogurt maker. If you are limited on space, you may want to opt for a smaller model, as it will take up less room on your countertop.
Easy to Clean
The containers that come with a yogurt maker are intended to be reused. To make cleaning easier, look for containers that are dishwasher safe, which will save you from the hassle of having to hand wash them. Also, look for a yogurt maker that is easy to take a part and put back together so that you can easily clean the components after each batch of yogurt.
Another important factor to take into consideration is the price of the yogurt maker. These appliances can vary significantly in price. Smaller models with smaller capacity tend to cost less, while larger models with more features tend to have a higher price tag. Make sure that you know how much you want to spend before you start shopping so that you can avoid spending more than you are comfortable with.
Yogurt Maker Features
Yogurt makers can offer a variety of features. These features are intended to make the process of making your own yogurt at home easier, faster and more efficient. However, while these features may make this appliance easier and more efficient, they can also drive up the price tag. It is important to understand what the different features are and how they will benefit you so that you can determine whether or not they are something that you want or need.
Here is a look at some of the top features that yogurt makers can offer.
A yogurt maker that features adjustable controls makes it a lot easier to set the appliance to the perfect fermenting time for each batch of yogurt you will make. This means that you will have better tasting yogurt.
Automatic Shut Off Alarm
This feature is handy if you want to know when the fermentation process is complete. An automatic shut off alarm will automatically shut off the yogurt maker when the process of fermentation is done, and will alert you when the process has completed so that you can take your yogurt and start enjoying it, or place it in the refrigerator.
A yogurt maker that features a time display will allow you to easily see how much time remains in the fermentation process.
Some yogurt makers feature an automatic chilling mode. When the process of fermentation is complete, this feature will automatically kick in, chilling the fermented yogurt. Some automatic chillers have the ability to keep yogurt cool for up to 12 hours, which will allow you to make your own yogurt while you are sleeping.
To protect your investment in a yogurt maker, look for one that comes with a warranty. The best yogurt makers come with warranties. Should anything happen to the appliance during the lifespan of the warranty, you could have it repaired or replaced, or you could have your money refunded. Make sure you read the fine print of the warranty so that you completely understand what it covers.
Best Yogurt Maker Brands
When it comes to yogurt makers, you will find that there are just as many brands to choose from as there are when you are purchasing already made yogurt in the grocery store. With so many options, it can be difficult to determine which brands are the best. We have done some extensive research and have tested out several different brands ourselves. Based on our findings, we have determined that the following yogurt maker brands are the best of the best.
This company specializes in making yogurt makers. They produce some of the highest quality, easy to use yogurt makers on the market. They make different types that offer different features, and they are very easy to use. We liked how quickly they made yogurt, and how easy they were to clean .
Another top yogurt maker brand is Dash. Their Greek Yogurt Maker, in particular, was something that we really liked. It is very easy to use and makes some of the best tasting Greek yogurt we have ever tried.
Cuisinart has long been a highly regarded manufacturer of high quality kitchen appliances. Their yogurt makers stand up to the Cuisinart reputation. They offer a number of features and are extremely easy to use and clean.
Another manufacture of high quality yogurt makers is Yogourmet. Their yogurt makers are straightforward and to the point; they are easy to use, easy to clean and they make absolutely delicious yogurt.
We also really liked the Epica line of yogurt makers. We particularly liked their Homemade Organic Set and Go Electric Yogurt Maker. It features dishwasher safe glass jars and lids and allows you to easily see the fermentation process taking place right before your eyes.