Strained yogurt – simple, versatile, delicious

Strained yogurt – simple, versatile, delicious

Did you know that strained yogurt is a staple foodstuff in dozens of countries and cultures all around the world? Known as 'ymer' in Denmark, 'chakka' in India and 'süzme yogurt' in Turkey, strained yogurt is a versatile ingredient that can be enjoyed in huge variety of ways from savoury to sweet. Best of all, it’s super easy to make (and you know how we love all things easy)!

Here’s how to make it, plus answers to some common questions about this underrated yogurty gem.


What is strained yogurt?

Strained yogurt is exactly what it says – regular yogurt that has had the liquid (known as “whey”) strained out of it. Strained yogurt is thicker and creamier than ‘normal’ yogurt. It’s also a little more tangy and tart because some of the natural lactose sugars get strained out in the whey.


Why strain yogurt?

Learning how to strain yogurt will open up a whole world of new recipes and food experiences right from your own kitchen! And of course, when you make it yourself you know it’s as fresh as can be.

Here’s a small sampling of ideas to whet your appetite…

  • Dip! The thick, creamy consistency of strained yogurt makes it an ideal starter for all sorts of dip. Here’s one to try.
  • This Middle Eastern spread is a common breakfast food and is usually eaten in a fashion similar to hummus. Check out our Labneh recipe here!
  • Strained yogurt topped with muesli and maple syrup is often served at brunch in cafés in Denmark.
  • For those with a sweet tooth, strained yogurt can be transformed into thick and creamy ice-cream style desserts, like this salted caramel frozen yogurt.

Oh and here’s another motivator: strained yogurt can be used as a lower-calorie, lower-fat substitute for sour cream or crème fraîche. So you can have your treat and eat it too!


How to make strained yogurt

  1. Line a strainer or colander with cheesecloth (muslin), a coffee filter or a thin, clean dishcloth.
  2. Put this over a bowl deep enough to hold the liquid whey (so the whey doesn’t touch the yogurt).
  3. Scoop some fresh homemade EasiYo yogurt into your prepared strainer and cover tightly with plastic wrap or a plastic bag.
  4. Put this in the fridge and leave it until it thickens to the texture of sour cream or cream cheese, depending on your need. This can take anywhere from 2-3 hours up to 2 days.
  5. Once ready, transfer the strained yogurt into a clean container and dispose of the whey (or try one of our suggested uses below).

Here’s an even easier idea – simply cover the top of your freshly made, full-of-yogurt EasiYo container with a cheesecloth or filter, flip it upside down and let the liquid drain out into a bowl below. You’ll still need to refrigerate it while it’s draining of course.


What EasiYo yogurt should I use?

That depends on what you’re planning to do with it. We recommend one of our Unsweetened varieties as they’re so versatile, but if you’re making something sweet try one of our delicious flavours.


How long will strained yogurt keep for?

Strained yogurt will keep for about 1 week, tightly covered and in your fridge.


Whey to go… what can I do with all this extra whey?

When you strain yogurt you’ll be left with a fair bit of liquid. This is called "acid whey" and it’s made up of water, yogurt cultures, protein, lactose and lactic acid. It also contains calcium. You can simply pour this down the sink, or for those of you who hate waste (like us!) here are a number of uses you can try. Experiment, get creative, and let us know which ideas worked for you!

  • Add it to your smoothies or protein shakes
  • Use whey instead of milk or buttermilk in baking
  • Use it to thin your homemade hummus or pesto
  • Use it for boiling quinoa or oats
  • Feed it to outdoor plants like tomatoes who benefit from the calcium