by Olena

Instant Pot Yogurt (Video)

by Olena

5 from 8 reviews

Instant Pot Yogurt with 2 ingredients. Also how to make yogurt without a yogurt button, Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and what to do with leftover whey.

Need more ideas for your pressure cooker? Browse all healthy Instant Pot recipes.

Instant Pot Yogurt

Instant Pot Yogurt Recipe

Over the past few months, I have made yogurt in Instant Pot at least 10 times. Homemade Instant Pot yogurt comes out just as store bought.

You can strain it further into a super creamy and thick Greek yogurt. Then you can turn some of Greek yogurt into a cream cheese (yes!). And then make the tallest and fluffiest pancakes with leftover whey.

Don’t have a yogurt function on your pressure cooker? No worries, you can make Instant Pot yogurt without a yogurt button. Also turn some into vanilla yogurt. We’ve got it all figured out for you!

Looking for more ideas? Check out my most popular collection of 30 healthy Instant Pot recipes.

Ingredients You Will Need

You need only 2 ingredients:

  1. 1 gallon of 2% or 3.25% milk.
  2. 1/4 cup store bought plain yogurt with active bacterial cultures.

Instant Pot, a jug of milk, tub of yogurt and food thermometer on a counter

How to Make Yogurt in Instant Pot

If you are new to the whole Instant Pot game, check out my Instant Pot guide. If you don’t own one yet but are thinking about buying one, I explain which Instant Pot to buy in my humble opinion.

1. Heat the Milk to 180 degrees F

  • Pour milk into the inner pot of your electric pressure cooker.
  • Close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  • Press Yogurt button until display reads Boil.
  • Milk will take about an hour to heat up and when it’s finished, Instant Pot will beep, turn off and display will say Yogurt.
  • Open the lid and using a food thermometer check milk’s temperature. It should be 180 degrees F and higher.
  • If it’s not, press Saute button and give the pressure cooker 5-10 minutes to heat the milk further. Check again.

Instant Pot and measuring milk temperature with food thermometer

2. Cool the Milk to 110 degrees F

  1. Remove inner pot with milk and let it cool down either on a counter (3-4 hours) or in a sink filled with cold water (15 minutes) until food thermometer reads 110 degrees F and lower.
  2. Remove the milk skin on top.

hand holding internal read thermometer and milk skin

3. Add Store Bought Yogurt

  • Add 1/4 cup plain store bought yogurt with active bacterial culture.
  • Whisk yogurt milk mixture without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).

how to make yogurt in instant pot step by step

4. Let Yogurt Incubate

  • Close the lid and leave pressure release valve in any position.
  • Press Yogurt button until time counter is displayed and adjust time to 10 hours with + or – buttons.
  • After 10 hours, Instant Pot will shut off.
  • Insert a spoon in the yogurt and if it’s standing, your yogurt is almost ready.

5. Chill Yogurt and Enjoy!

  • Remove only inner pot with a batch of yogurt.
  • Chill in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.
  • To make yogurt completely smooth, whisk it without touching the bottom.
  • Divide between glass jars or make Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and yogurt whey pancakes (see below).

instant pot and green spoon inserted in a pot with yogurt

FAQs and Tips

Can I cut recipe in half? Sure, same instructions.

Can I use almond, coconut, soy etc. milk? No.

Can I use skim milk? No. That will be one untasty yogurt. I have also heard it doesn’t set as well because there is no fat.

Do I have to sanitize the pot and utensils? No, I never did just like with kombucha recipe. Never had an issue.

How much yogurt yields 1 gallon of milk? 8 cups or 64 oz.

My pressure cooker lid smells. Will it affect the yogurt taste?

It won’t but for a peace of mind remove the silicone ring when making yogurt. You need it only for pressure cooking and yogurt is made not using this method.

Do not use any kind of flavored yogurt. Recipe will not work.

Freeze 1/4 cup freshly made yogurt as a starter for next time. In case you are not planning to make yogurt again soon.

My yogurt didn’t set. What did I do wrong?

If you follow the recipe to a T, it shouldn’t happen. Most important points are:

  1. Yogurt starter with live and active cultures.
  2. Boil milk to 180 F and higher.
  3. Cool to 110 F and lower and ONLY THEN add yogurt starter.

I have heard about cold start method. Why you don’t do that?

OK, for cold start method you should use Fairlife ultra pasteurized milk only. After a thorough research, I came to a conclusion it is unhealthy because it contains additives with many nutrients destroyed during extremely high temperatures. Not to mention it’s not available organic and is produced by Coca-Cola company. Got it? It just can’t be good. You can read more.

Is making homemade yogurt in pressure cooker worth it?

Yes and no. Depends how much that jug of milk and the type of yogurt you make cost in your area. For example, in Canada 1 gallon of organic milk costs $9, which yields 8 cups (64 oz) of Greek yogurt, that costs $24 to buy. Plus organic cream cheese I can make which is not sold in Canada, not to mention all that whey you can use instead of buttermilk when making pancakes.

Instant Pot Yogurt without Yogurt Button

yellow towel wrapped around instant pot

Timing is everything with this method.

  • In an Instant Pot without yogurt button, add milk, close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  • Press Saute and heat up milk to 180 degrees F or higher. Open the lid and check with a food thermometer periodically.
  • In the meanwhile, fill up sink with cold water enough to reach almost the top of the Instant Pot insert.
  • Remove inner stainless steel pot with milk and place in a sink and let milk cool until food thermometer reads 110 F and lower. Takes about 15 minutes. Don’t walk away.
  • In the meanwhile, press Cancel on Instant Pot and keep lid on to keep it warm. It will become an incubator for yogurt.
  • Move pot from the sink to the counter.
  • Remove milk skin on top and add store-bought yogurt. Whisk to combine without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).
  • Place inner pot inside the Instant Pot, close with the lid, wrap it in large beach towel and leave on a counter overnight.

Tip: Instant Pot should be off and milk still lukewarm, that will ensure proper incubation and favourable environment for live cultures to grow.

How to Make Greek Yogurt

mesh strainer lined with coffee filter and yogurt inside

  1. Line large mesh strainer with cheesecloth folded 4 times or single layer of coffee filters.
  2. Place on top of a bowl making sure there is enough space for draining the whey.
  3. Add desired amount of yogurt.
  4. Strain for 4 hours.
  5. Greek style yogurt will be thicker along the walls.
  6. Just stir after adding to a jar.

Tip: Don’t know what to do with all that whey liquid? How about the world’s fluffiest healthy pancakes?!

How to Make Cream Cheese

glass bowl with cream cheese, knife and strawberries on a cutting board

Cream cheese is longer strained Greek yogurt.

Follow instructions for Instant Pot Greek yogurt and strain desired amount overnight. Then transfer to a glass container and mix with a pinch of salt. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

How to Make Vanilla Yogurt

2 glass jars with white lids and vanilla yogurt inside

Whisk 1 cup of finished yogurt with 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey and 1 tsp pure vanilla extract. Adjust to taste and store like other yogurt.

Use Instant Pot Yogurt in These Recipes

Did you know we have entire Youtube channel dedicated to healthy Instant Pot recipes and tips? My goal is to help you become confident with your Instant Pot by demonstrating each delicious foolproof recipe in step-by-step videos.

Make sure to subscribe and hit the Bell icon not to miss new videos.

Print

Instant Pot Yogurt

5 from 8 reviews

Instant Pot Yogurt with 2 ingredients. Also how to make yogurt without a yogurt button, Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and what to do with leftover whey.

  • Author: Olena of ifoodreal.com
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 hours
  • Total Time: 10 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 16 cups 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: North American
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon milk*
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt**

Instructions

How to Make Instant Pot Yogurt

  1. In Instant Pot with a yogurt function, add milk, close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  2. Press Yogurt button until display reads Boil.
  3. Milk will take about an hour to heat up and when it’s finished, Instant Pot will beep, turn off and display will say Yogurt.
  4. Open the lid and using a food thermometer check milk’s temperature. It should be 180 F and higher. If it’s not, press Saute button and give the pressure cooker 5-10 minutes to heat the milk further. Check again.
  5. Remove inner pot with milk and let it cool down either on a counter (3-4 hours) or in a sink filled with cold water (15 minutes) until food thermometer reads 110 F and lower. Remove the milk skin on top.
  6. Add yogurt and whisk to combine without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).
  7. Close the lid and leave pressure release valve in either position.
  8. Press Yogurt button until time counter is displayed and adjust time to 10 hours with + or – buttons.
  9. After 10 hours, Instant Pot will shut off.
  10. Insert a spoon in the yogurt and if it’s standing, your yogurt is ready.
  11. Remove the inner pot and chill in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.
  12. To make yogurt completely smooth, whisk it without touching the bottom.
  13. Divide between glass jars or make Greek yogurt, vanilla yogurt, cream cheese and yogurt whey pancakes.

Store: Refrigerate for up to 10 days. Don’t forget to reserve 1/4 cup yogurt starter for next batch (freeze in ice cubes).

How to Make Instant Pot Yogurt without Yogurt Button

Timing is everything with this method.

  1. In an Instant Pot without yogurt button, add milk, close the lid and set pressure release valve to Venting.
  2. Press Saute and heat up milk to 180 degrees F or higher. Open the lid and check with a food thermometer periodically.
  3. In the meanwhile, fill up sink with cold water enough to reach almost the top of the Instant Pot insert.
  4. Remove inner stainless steel pot with milk and place in a sink and let milk cool until food thermometer reads 110 F and lower. Takes about 15 minutes. Don’t walk away.
  5. In the meanwhile, press Cancel on Instant Pot and keep lid on to keep it warm. It will become an incubator for yogurt.
  6. Move pot from the sink to the counter.
  7. Remove milk skin on top and add store-bought yogurt. Whisk to combine without touching the bottom (disturbing sticky milk).
  8. Place inner pot inside the Instant Pot, close with the lid, wrap it in large beach towel and leave on a counter overnight. Instant Pot should be off and milk still lukewarm, that will ensure proper incubation and favourable environment for live cultures to grow.
  9. In the morning, insert spoon in the yogurt. If it’s standing, your yogurt is ready.
  10. Remove the inner pot and chill in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.
  11. To make yogurt completely smooth, whisk it without touching the bottom.

How to Make Instant Pot Greek Yogurt

  1. Line large mesh strainer with cheesecloth folded 4 times or single layer of coffee filters, place on top of a bowl making sure there is enough space for draining the whey and add desired amount of yogurt.
  2. Strain for 4 hours or until desired consistency.

How to Make Cream Cheese

  1. Cream cheese is longer strained Greek yogurt. Follow instructions for Instant Pot Greek yogurt and strain desired amount overnight.
  2. Transfer to a glass container and mix with a pinch of salt. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

How to Make Instant Pot Vanilla Yogurt

Whisk 1 cup of regular or Greek yogurt with 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey and 1 tsp pure vanilla extract. Adjust to taste and store like other yogurt.

How to Make Whey Yogurt Pancakes

Don’t know what to do with all that whey? Make my healthy pancakes.

Notes

*You can use any refrigerated cow’s milk. I used 3.25% organic because it yields creamy yogurt and is organic.:)

**Use ONLY yogurt with live and active bacterial cultures. They might have a different name. No dairy-free yogurt alternatives.

 Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating in the comments.

olena osipov in the studio

Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys and a wife to Alex. And this is our healthy family recipes blog. I grew up in Ukraine on real food. As an adult, I tried many diets without results. Now for over 10 years, I cook quick and easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

What You Will Find Here

Healthy family recipes with simple ingredients. Many are inspired by my Ukrainian heritage. I share mostly dinner recipes because it just never ends... I’m obsessed with healthy freezer meals. And more than in love with my Instant Pot.

A Little More About Me

Originally from Ukraine, I now reside on magic Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada with my family. I started this blog in 2012 when I ended up at home with 2 small kids unemployed and a wee bit chubby.

28 comments on “Instant Pot Yogurt (Video)

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  1. I do not understand your recipe for making yogurt without yogurt button. You say use steps 1-6 as in the recipe with the yogurt button. That is ghe whole recipe. You mention to follow step 7 with a towell. In the previous recipe there is no step 7. Someghing is not right.

  2. I made the yogurt yesterday but it only needed 8 hours! Turned out fantastic!! Now about that cream cheese recipe! How much of my just made Greek yogurt do I need to make 16 ozs? Approximately

  3. Hi Olena,

    You say to use plain yogurt. Is Greek yogurt ok to use? It has live and active cultures.
    Also, you mention using a food thermometer. Does meat thermometer qualify? It’s the only one I have.

  4. My first few batches I always used the saute setting to heat the milk. I didn’t know you could set the yogurt button to boil. I used whole milk and mine turned out fine.
    Love this recipe.

  5. I’ve made yogurt with skim milk plenty of times using a food dehydrator.
    I see no reason why you can’t make non-fat yogurt in an instant pot.

  6. Thank you SO much for sharing this recipe! My daughters thought plain was too tangy but we added some pure maple syrup and vanilla extract and IT’S PERFECT!! I can’t wait to make cream cheese and frozen yogurt!

  7. I just bought a 8 qt. Instant Pot, it’s a 6 in 1 so it doesn’t have a yogurt function. I felt it was a good price at $69.99, but am wondering if I should upgrade to get the yogurt function and any other functions that might be worth the extra money (I haven’t even opened the box) I saw you have the recipe for one that doesn’t have a yogurt function, but am wondering what function you would put it on to bring the milk up to 180 degrees. As you can see I am really new at this and any suggestions would be helpful.
    Malina

    1. Hi Malina. To be honest, I use only one button Pressure Cook and sometime Saute. All other button are just pre-programmed with timer and cook the same way.
      As for yogurt, it’s simple. You heat the milk with Saute button. Covered or uncovered which is slower.

  8. Great detailed recipe, Thank you. can I boil the milk outside and then pour it into glass container and put that container inside instant pot? Follow the procedure to incubate for 10 hours. Will that work? the reason for this is, I only want less quantity. thank you

    1. Hi Cindy. Yes, for sure. But why don’t you do the same just like I do in the pot with lesser quantity?! It’s OK to cook less in the pressure cooker – same cooking time and results.

  9. I just made my second 1 gallon batch of organic whole milk Greek yogurt and it is the best yogurt I’ve ever eaten. Thank you for the detailed easy to follow instructions. I purchased a Greek yogurt strainer pouch by “Kleynhuis” on Amazon, before I made the first batch and it works very well so I wanted to pass that on.

  10. Thank you for the recipe! I’ve just gotten on the instant pot yogurt bandwagon and made a batch yesterday with the ULtra filtered milk…not super crazy about it (and frankly not that much cheaper than buying the Greek yogurt!) so I’ve just started a batch with your recipe. Thanks for the detailed instructions!

  11. Made this recipe twice now. The second time with the first batch of yoghurt I made and it was thicker and creamer. Absolutely delicious and so easy. Will never buy store bought again.
    Was confused about the measurements at first as there are two variations of what is a gallon and it seemed like a gallon was too much for the instant pot so I did 1/2 gallon of milk (8 cups)and two tablespoons yoghurt first time and I think about 1/4 cup yoghurt second time. Not sure if it was the increased amount of yoghurt or the fact it was from the first batch that made it more creamy and thicker.
    I also made some Greek yoghurt from first batch. Fantastic recipe..thankyou! ☺

    1. Awesome! I think more yogurt makes it more creamy. And also maybe you did different time?! Idk it’s real food so sometimes things turn out not exactly the same each time. 🙂 Enjoy!

  12. Cold Start is not just Fairlife. Fairlife is a brand of ultra filtered UHT milk, but ANY UHT milk can be used for the cold start method. It’s the UHT that makes the milk sterile and shelf stable.

    All the Organic milk at my store is UHT, which is why I don’t buy it. It affects the taste. But I may try it for cold start yogurt. Even the non-homgonized grassmilk is UHT pasteurized.

  13. Hiya,
    I tried your recipe last night, my instant pot has been acting a bit weird lately, so not sure if its the pot or me. When i go to the step where i set it for 10 hours, i have 2 options, the first one the pressure is set to less, but if you hit the yogurt button again it is set at normal. What is yours set to?
    thanks for the recipe and the help.

    1. Hi Diana. I’m sorry my reply is so late but I needed a vacation.:) For the future, my IP does the same. I use it with Less and the 1st push of the button. It doesn’t really matter because it is not going to build pressure but rather keep yogurt at a low T for 10 hours.

  14. Turned out perfectly and really appreciate the FAQ section- I had been worried about the smell from sealing ring affecting flavor. I can’t wait to try the pancakes with yogurt whey!

    1. Yay! I put FAQ section together because let’s face making yogurt isn’t like cooking a pot of soup. However, after 1-2 times it’s so straightforward, you will remember the recipe. Yes, despite all the “scaries” online I haven’t found my sweeter food having savoury taste. It’s not that bad!

  15. Made instant pot yogurt last night following the recipe. Then strained into a Greek yogurt. The best yogurt ever!!! Thank you!!!!

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