Barb Hodgens
Barb Hodgens

Barb Hodgens loves to cook with alternative, healthy whole food ingredients, with a focus on gut health. Barb has overcome her own gut health issues through healthy eating. Share your ideas, comments and photos at the end of this post :)

Vanilla almond yogurt

Thick and creamy dairy-free yogurt.

This homemade vanilla almond yogurt is smooth, thick, and tangy with just the right amount of sweetness. It’s everything you want from a yogurt, only 100% plant based. It’s a lusciously creamy yogurt alternative that’s perfect if you are lactose intolerant, vegan, or paleo. It’s made completely from scratch and isn’t at all difficult.

Vanilla almond yogurt is based on our original almond yogurt recipe. We experimented with the method, adding vanilla before fermentation and after and found that stirring in vanilla bean paste and a little sweetener at the end, after the almond yogurt had chilled produced the most flavoursome and delicious vanilla experience. 

vanilla almond yogurt recipe

First, you need to make almond milk. We describe in detail how to make almond milk here. If you’ve sampled homemade nut milk, you’re sure to agree that nothing compares. Commercial almond milk might be convenient but additives and preservatives interfere with the fermentation process.

Our homemade almond milk method recommends starting with whole almonds (with skins on), but we found that blanched almonds produce a more subtle (less earthy tasting) nut milk. Experiment and discover which you prefer. Furthermore, don’t add sweetener or vanilla to your nut milk while blending. In this method we add these after fermentation. 

Homemade vanilla almond yogurt

THICKENING DAIRY-FREE YOGURT

Almond milk yogurt will not naturally thicken up while fermenting like traditional dairy yogurt. A premium powdered gelatin or agar agar are our preferred thickening options. Use the amount specified in the recipe as a guide only. Add slightly more or less on your next batch to achieve the yogurt texture you enjoy most. Learn more about thickening plant-based yogurt here. 

A LITTLE BIT OF SUGAR PROMOTES GOOD BACTERIA

Plant based milks require a little bit of sugar. Unlike animal milk, nut milk doesn’t naturally contain sugar. The Yogurt starter culture need sugar to feed on to allow the culturing process to take place. One teaspoon of sugar or one tablespoon of pasteurised honey is enough to kick start fermentation. Raw honey may have an antibiotic effect and is therefore not suitable for making yogurt. 

STARTER CULTURE

You will need a dairy-free yogurt starter culture or probiotic to introduce the fermentation of bacteria to your nut milk. Use the amount of starter culture indicated on the packet or one dose of probiotic. A comprehensive list of starter cultures is available here. We used Cutting Edge Culture's, Yogurt Plus, dairy free probiotic starter culture. 

homemade vanilla almond yogurt

Homemade vanilla almond yogurt

Homemade vanilla almond yogurt

Homemade vanilla almond yogurt
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vanilla almond yogurt