Joyous Blog

How to Make Homemade Coconut Milk Yogurt

In the McJordan household, we eat both coconut and sheep's milk yogurt and sometimes goat too. We don't do cow dairy yogurt because it doesn't agree with me (makes me puffy and constipated) and Walker doesn't really care either way.

Although, truth be told when we first started dating he was all about the Greek yogurt and after hanging out with me most of the time he stopped eating as much dairy and guess what? His digestion dramatically improved (no more farting). In fact, we have a fart-free household, lol. Well, maybe sometimes Vienna toots but it's not because she's eating Greek yogurt or slurping on cow's milk -- those are foods we just don't buy. Once in a while, I do buy grass-fed yogurt but more often than not we have the other options I just mentioned. 

Farting aside, coconut yogurt is not expensive so I often buy it, but lately, I've been making it from scratch because it's a little bit cheaper than buying it every week and it's incredibly delicious.

You'll love how easy coconut yogurt is to make and when you watch my video you'll see exactly what I mean. 

Based on the recent news about coconut oil you may be hesitant to make this yogurt, but rest-assured coconut products are incredibly healthy and can be part of a well-balanced diet.

Even though coconut oil and this yogurt are higher in saturated fat, the large majority of it comes from medium chain fatty acids which are proven to be beneficial for weight management, may reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and boost immunity.

The truth is, we need all types of fat to be healthy (excluding trans fats), even saturated fats. Saturated fat has many important roles:

  • A building block of every cell in your body, part of the cellular membrane, provides structure and support.
  • Supports bone health because saturated fat is needed to direct calcium into bone.
  • Critical for the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A, D, E and K. 
  • Needed for the conversion of beta-carotene to vitamin A. An essential nutrient for cancer prevention, skin and eye health. 
  • Keeps your immune system robust and healthy. In fact, a lack of saturated fatty acids in white blood cells hampers their ability to recognize and destroy foreign invaders, such as bacteria, and viruses.
  • Essential for brain health because it is a fundamental building block in brain health. In fact, a Mayo Clinic study found that those individuals consuming the most saturated fat experienced a 36% reduction in risk for developing dementia. And this comes on the heels of data now indicating that saturated fat consumption has absolutely no relevance in the area of cardiovascular risk as recently described by Dr. Glen Lawrence in the journal, Advances in Nutrition.

And isn't it interesting to note that one of the richest sources of saturated fat in nature is mama milk! Which is why breastfeeding is incredibly important. 

It's a myth that saturated fat causes heart disease and sadly, many conventional medical doctors are still simply not aware. Just google "lipid hypothesis" or check out this PubMed link and do your own reading so that you may come to your own conclusions, please. Then tell everyone you know, including your doctor ;) 

Okay now that we got that out of the way, let's get to this recipe shall we? Then you can make my delicious Coconut Yogurt Parfait recipe from Joyous Detox!

Sweets + Treats
Ingredients
  • 2 x 400mL cans of full fat coconut milk
  • 4 x 15 billion genuine health probiotic capsules
  • Optional: 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp real maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Refrigerate coconut milk cans overnight to allow time for the cream to separate from the coconut water.
  2. Scoop coconut cream from can and place in a clean bowl. Let warm up to room temperature to make it easier to mix in the probiotics.
  3. Crack open each probiotic for a total of 60 billion bacteria into the coconut cream and combine.
  4. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and store overnight or for 12 hours in a warm environment like inside your oven. Remember it's in there and do not use your oven!
  5. The next day, mix the yogurt with a spoon, it should be nice and creamy and smell tangy/sour just like yogurt. If it smells funky or the colour is off, discard the yogurt.
  6. Place in a clean jar and refrigerate for up to 7-10 days.
  7. If using, the vanilla and maple syrup can be added after 12 hours.

Just make sure you use organic canned full-fat coconut milk because this recipe will not work with liquid coconut milk in a carton and might not work with homemade coconut milk either if you don't have enough of the fatty cream.

I LOVE Cha's Organic Coconut Milk because the flavour is incredibly rich and it's free from additives. If you live in the U.S and can't find Cha's, I also like Native Forest. 

Once you've made this coconut yogurt you can enjoy it many different ways:

  • Slurp it with a spoon!
  • Make my Coconut Yogurt Parfait from Joyous Detox on page 10.
  • Toss it in a smoothie. This smoothie would be perfect with the addition of this yogurt.
  • Can't eat avocados? This yogurt is the perfect replacement especially in smoothies for a creamy consistency like this smoothie.
  • If you find it's too sour or tangy for you, just add some raw honey, maple syrup or vanilla before you eat it. 

The probiotics I used to make this coconut yogurt are Genuine Health's Advanced Gut Health probiotic. As I mentioned in my video, it's a multi-strain probiotic which mimics the gut flora -- you don't have just one type of bacteria living in your gut. You have hundreds of species! But you already know all about that right? You can read more about this probiotic plus the difference between prebiotics and probiotics and why we need both. 

Genuine Health's probiotic can be found at health food stores across Canada, on Amazon and even at some grocery stores. 

And finally, the benefits of this homemade yogurt are impressive. Just like all fermented foods, this yogurt supports gut health, which is essential for:

I'm excited to hear what you think of this wonderful recipe! Be sure to share in the comments section below.

Have a joyous day!

Joy

71 Comments
Laur   •   June 29, 2017

Can you make this in a yogurt maker too?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Laur, Yes you definitely can! :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Erica G   •   June 29, 2017

The first ingredient says "full fat coconut yogurt" ...do you mean coconut milk?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Erica, Yup - you're right! Our bad :) We've updated that on our end. Thanks for catching that! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Jen   •   June 29, 2017

Hi Joy, I have been buying coconut milk kefir (it's rather costly) - I was on antibiotics recently and am working on rebuilding my gut flora. Your recipe sounds so easy and I'm going to try it. Question; do I still need to take my daily probiotic if I am eating this yogourt daily?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Jen, That's great! Fermented foods are a great way to proliferate good bacteria in the gut. You don't have to necessarily take your probiotic if you are eating this daily – although it doesn't hurt either :) We typically recommend people to get in 1 source of probiotics of fermented foods daily. Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Jennifer   •   June 29, 2017

Hi Joy - Can you use any probiotic? I have some capsules in the fridge at home already that I take daily. Thanks!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Jennifer, Yup that should be okay providing they are a clean high-quality sourced probiotic :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Sina   •   June 29, 2017

I think it's supposed to say 4 cans of milk not yogurt ;-) on the ingredients list.

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Sina, Yup - you're right! Our bad :) We've updated that on our end. Thanks for catching that! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Andrea   •   June 29, 2017

Looks and sounds delicious! What can you do with the coconut water that you separate from the cream? Thanks!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Andrea! It certainly is :) It's great to throw in a smoothie - super hydrating due to its electrolyte content! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Renée   •   June 29, 2017

I think that there might be a typo in your recipe.You have 2 cans of coconut yogurt but in the video you have two cans of coconut milk.

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Renee! Yup, you are most definitely right - there was (haha!) We've fixed that now but thanks so much for catching that :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Ghada   •   June 29, 2017

Thank you for the yummy recipe :). I have another brand of probiotic capsules, can I use them? Or does it have to be the one you mentioned? Can't wait to try this!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Ghada, Glad you enjoyed it! Yes that should be okay providing its a high-quality clean probiotic with multiple strains of bacteria :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Laura   •   June 29, 2017

Can you use full fat coconut cream instead of coconut milk and get the same result?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Laura, You could but I'm not sure if the consistency will be the same. I would recommend sticking with the cans and using the full fat in the coconut milk after it's refrigerated :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Gessica   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Joy, just wanted to confirm that any other probiotics are OK to use correct? For example Genestra HMF?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 29, 2017

Hey Gessica, Yup those would work too! We would just advise anyone to use a high-quality clean probiotic :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Tricia   •   June 30, 2017

Joy I love your videos and all your lovely knowledge you pass on to us. I have a question as to how I can take off the bottom bar of your site where it has the pinterest, facebook and twitter icons. I can only see about 3 inches of your video because the top bar and bottom bars take up to much screen. Is there some way to do this.

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 30, 2017

Hey Tricia, Thanks so much! We're so glad to hear you're enjoying all things Joyous Health :) Hmm, that's odd. I wonder why that might be happening. Do you mind sharing what browser and device you are using when browsing Joyous Health? This will help us to troubleshoot the issue for you. Thanks! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Carol Mair   •   June 30, 2017

As I am only 1 person, how long does the yogurt stay good in the refrigerator?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   June 30, 2017

Hey Carol, We would advise you to use it within 3-4 days to make sure it's super fresh! Rachel - Joyous Health Team

Joy McCarthy   •   July 3, 2017

Hey ladies! Just chiming in here, it is good for 7-10 days in the fridge.


Mckenzie   •   July 1, 2017

I love your video of making yogurt

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 3, 2017

Hey Mckenzie! So happy to hear you enjoyed it :) Let us know if you end up trying it! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Jenise   •   July 1, 2017

After making the coconut yogurt, can I use it as a starter and just add more milk to it to make more? And if so, how long should I wait for that process?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   July 3, 2017

Hey Jenise! I haven't personally done this yet but I'm confident that will work. However, I don't know how long you need to wait for that process because I gobble it all up before making it again :)


Jody   •   July 3, 2017

I tried this last night but it was a total flop! :( The mixture was completely liquid after 12 hours. What could have gone wrong? I put it in the oven but turned the light on. Could the environment been too warm? I used 1 can full fat coconut milk

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   July 3, 2017

Sorry to hear it was a flop. That's super strange because the full fat cream of the coconut milk is super thick so it should maintain some of it's consistency and then will get thicker in the fridge. I would suggest just using it for a smoothie and trying again another day! Also, use the brands I suggested, that might make a difference too!

Shawn   •   July 16, 2017

You should use 2 cans instead of 1. Recipe states to use 2 cans.

Rachel Molenda   •   July 17, 2017

Yes, good point Shawn :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Genevieve   •   July 3, 2017

Did it last night, I did refrigerate my can before but did not get much solid in the end... Decided to give it a try (1 can and 2 capsules), put it on the top of my fridge but this morning it was super runny! Maybe it's the brand I used... Yours looks so much better than mine! I put it in the fridge so Îll check how it looks when I come back home tonight! Hope it got a littlebit more creamy then... Oh well!

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   July 3, 2017

It will likely get thicker once you put it in the fridge because of the good fat in the coconut milk. Either way, I hope it tastes wonderful!


Cori   •   July 3, 2017

How would we track this in my fitness pal? Since the water is drained I'm thinking it changes fat grams etc... I made it and LOVE it. I'm trying to eliminate dairy and this can be my go to breakfast with fruit instead of Greek cow's milk yogurt but I don't want to increase my fat grams too much. Thanks

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 4, 2017

Hey Cori, Not entirely sure about that one as we typically like to evaluate food from more of a qualitative perspective :) However if you wanted to find out the fat grams, it would likely be what it says on the can as there wouldn't be much fat left in the coconut water. I'm so happy you loved the recipe though :) There's no need to fear the fat either - it comes with a wealth of health benefits which you can find here: https://www.joyoushealth.com/25062-blog-the-benefits-of-fat-and-healthy-sources Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Leanne   •   July 4, 2017

I made this last night and put it in the fridge in the morning. I am home from work and wanted to have some but it is really hard. It is not smooth like yogurt. Any thoughts on what I did wrong?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   July 4, 2017

Take it out of the fridge and let it thaw for a little bit. The coconut fat has probably just gotten too cold.


Spagirlmindy   •   July 4, 2017

Love this! I made it today with fresh, local strawberries and my own granola! BLISS!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 5, 2017

Mmm! That sounds awesome, Mindy! :) So glad you enjoyed it! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Nicols   •   July 5, 2017

Ahh total and I walked my mom through this recipe hers turned out perfectly ugh!! I think my coconut was to cold from the start so was hard to get out of the cans and then hard to mix it all togwtbe- was piecey and watery this morning - totally needed to let it come to room temp more I think before mixing it all- tastes good just looks nasty ha

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 5, 2017

Hey Nicols, Oh no! It can be a finicky process, but we promise, the results are very much worth it :) Did you use the same brand of coconut milk Joy used? That might help bring more consistency to your results as well! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Jackie   •   July 7, 2017

Hello, I tried making this and followed directions but I cut the recipe in half. I left it in the oven overnight and it came out looking oily and soupy. What did I do wrong?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   July 9, 2017

I would suggest adding some more of the coconut cream to thicken it up a bit. That might help. Also, when you put it in the fridge it should thicken a bit too.


Ana   •   July 8, 2017

Thank you for a such easy coconut yougurt I have come upon so many but your was most easy of them all quick and easy thank I really do love all of you recipes

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   July 9, 2017

You're so welcome! Glad you enjoyed it!


Ana   •   July 8, 2017

Thank you Joy for such an easy and quick recipe I have to say all of your recipes are simple quick and easy love them all

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 17, 2017

Hey Ana, So glad you loved it :) We really loved quick, simple but especially delicious around here so we're happy to hear you're loving it too! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Hilary   •   July 12, 2017

Made this and it was amazing - thank you! Sweetened it with vanilla. Might add a pinch of salt next time to bring out the sweetness. Wondering what the recommended serving size for this would be? Roughly? It is quite a bit richer than normal / greek yogurt (e.g. one cup serving size), so just wondering what you would recommend. Thank you!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 13, 2017

Hey Hilary, So happy you enjoyed it! You're right - it's hard to say, but I would recommend starting with 1/4-1/2 cup and seeing how you feel after you add all of the toppings and what not which will be filling as well! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Pati Clark   •   July 17, 2017

Don't you have to cook the milk to 180 degrees then cool down to 100 degrees then add in probiotics with some kind of sugar so the probiotics feed on the sugar ?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 18, 2017

Hey Pati, Not with this recipe at least. Perhaps with some other recipes? Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Nicole   •   July 19, 2017

Hey Joy- is the coconut yogurt fine for babies to eat even though I am using an adult strain probiotic? Thanks

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 21, 2017

Hey Nicole, Yes, for sure! The amount leftover in the yogurt won't be enough to cause any digestive upset for the babe :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


kristina   •   July 21, 2017

Can you use cans of organic coconut cream instead of the full fat coconut milk?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 21, 2017

Hey Kristina! I suppose you could, but it may throw off the ratios since Joy made this recipe with the coconut cream from the coconut milk can. If you end up giving it a try, let us know how it goes! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Jessica   •   July 23, 2017

This is awesome! Thanks Joy!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 24, 2017

Hey Jessica! Glad you enjoyed it :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Lindsay   •   July 26, 2017

I'm on batch number two

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   July 27, 2017

Hey Lindsay! Sounds like you're enjoying it! Woohoo :) That makes us very happy to hear! Hope it goes well! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Rebecca   •   August 14, 2017

I saw the video, and I really enjoyed it. I can't wait to try it! I was wondering if the granola recipe is somewhere I can find it? I definitely want to make my own, but I'm concerned about the cost of the ingredients.

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   August 15, 2017

Hey Rebecca, Awesome! So glad you enjoyed it :) We have a number of granola recipes on the blog that you could try, like the Chocolate Chia Granola. It seems expensive up front but you can be confident that you're getting a really pure and low sugar product :) https://www.joyoushealth.com/149-recipe-chocolate-chia-granola Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Alexandra   •   August 18, 2017

Hi there, Do you know the tsp equivalent of the capsules? I have probiotic powder at home that I'd like to use - I'm just not sure how much to put in! Thanks!

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   August 21, 2017

Hey Alexandra, Each capsule contains 15 billion CFU of probiotics. I imagine your probiotic powder's suggested serving size is in "billion CFU" so I would look at what the serving size is and match it to the amount of probiotics in the capsules, if that makes sense :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Monica   •   August 19, 2017

Which recipe do u prefer? This one or the one you make on the instant pot?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   August 21, 2017

Hey Monica, Joy has only ever made it this way so we can't vouch for the instant pot, however I've heard of a lot of people having great success with it :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Michelle   •   August 26, 2017

Hello, I left the cans of coconut milk in the fridge for several days and when I opened the first can, the milk was hard as a rock. Could I have left it in the fridge too long before trying to make it?

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   August 28, 2017

Hey Michelle, Perhaps! It depends on the temperature of your fridge. But in that case, you could just leave it on the counter to come closer to room temperature (while ensuring the coconut cream still says separate). That should do the trick! :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Michele crump   •   September 2, 2017

Hi joy, love your blog so informative! I am in the process of making this yogurt I am using native Forrest brand simple no guar gum I left it in the fridge over night but it's still a little runny not quite as thick as yours if I put it in the freezer for a bit would that help to thicking it up? Also after you add probiotics and mix it can you eat it right away or do you have to let it sit? Just wondering the reason for it having to sit for 12 hours. Thanks, Michele

Reply
Rachel Molenda   •   September 5, 2017

Hey Michele, Thanks so much for your kind words! So glad you're enjoying all things Joyous Health :) Keeping it on the counter for 12 hours allows the coconut yogurt to ferment and proliferate with beneficial probiotic bacteria. Putting it in the freezer might help a bit but shouldn't need too long! This recipe is sensitive to temperature (i.e. Joy's fridge might be slightly colder than yours) so it may take some time to finesse it :) Hope that helps! Rachel - Joyous Health Team


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