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Traditional Bulgarian Coconut Yogurt (Lactose Free Coconut Sour Cream)
Today’s very simple recipe is for those who want to reap all the benefits of the probiotic yogurt but for some reason cannot (or shouldn’t). I am talking about lactose intolerant folks, people on the vegan diet, those who are on a religious fast and cannot consume animal products, asthmatics (dairy could increase the mucus secretion for some people), or every other person who wishes to take a break from the dairy products for a while! But if you are a very strict vegan, keep in min the following: the yogurt starter I am using contains a little bit of skim milk powder which activates the fermentation, the growth and development of the probiotic culture. In this process the beneficial bacteria consumes all of the lactose and the end product you get is completely dairy-free and vegan, but the starter itself is not 100% vegan (in the sachet).
So, here we go! My suggestion for all those folks is my variation (actually two variations) of the popular homemade coconut yogurt with probiotics or in my case – Bulgarian coconut yogurt! If you wish to take a look at the process of making your own dairy Bulgarian yogurt, here is the recipe and the detailed instructions!
And now, before we continue to my technology for making homemade coconut milk yogurt, let’s discuss a few frequently asked questions you may have as well!
What is coconut yogurt?
Coconut yogurt is the dairy free substitute for regular yogurt made of cow milk (or any other dairy – buffalo, sheep, goat, etc.). This natural vegan food still supplies the beneficial bacteria for our guts (the probiotics) but without the animal factor. Keep in mind that homemade coconut yogurt without any artificial emulsifiers is much thinner and watery than regular yogurt. But you will find out why a bit down this article in the section about my technology for making this lactose free food!
Does coconut yogurt have probiotics?
Yes, at least in my recipe suggestions! Well, the probiotics are exactly what separates coconut yogurt from any regular dairy-free milk! The yogurt starter is actually comprised of millions of beneficial colon bacteria also known as probiotics.
Is coconut yogurt good for you?
Absolutely (well, in my humble opinion)!
My keto coconut milk yogurt recipe is natural and does not contain any artificial stuff our bodies do not need!
It supplies us with healthy fats which are crucial for the absorption of the essential fat-soluble vitamins (K, A, D, E).
Also, we have the beneficial colon bacteria which boost our gut health and build our natural immune system. I like to use my favorite yogurt starter from Bacillus Bulgaricus. They have amazing collections of probiotics and yogurt starting cultures – not just Bulgarian yogurt, but also Greek yogurt, Bulgarian feta cheese starters, kefir cultures, Bulgarian yellow chees starter (aka kashkaval), etc.
And as I mentioned before, coconut yogurt is more suitable for people with lactose intolerance, all kinds of gut health issues, respiratory system problems, and even ladies with cellulite ( I have heard many women report that dairy increases their cellulite. Yikes!)
One more important thingy, coconut milk (and coconut yogurt) contains a substance called lauric acid which may have potential antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. It increases the “good” HDL cholesterol and it is a vital component of human breastmilk along with cow and goat milk but without the animal factor.
Is coconut yogurt keto friendly?
Well, to be completely honest, I consider the traditional dairy version of Bulgarian yogurt to be keto friendly as well since the Bulgarian probiotics LOVE lactose and they consume pretty much all of it. Also, the end product contains about 2.6 grams of net carbs per one 100-gram serving.
But, if you are still worried about the amount of lactose you consume, or maybe you wish to take the dairy-free approach to the keto diet, or you are concerned about the presence of hormones in animal milk, this recipe for coconut yogurt is just for you!
But since I mentioned the HFLC diet plan, I am happy to announce that my new book on healthy weight-loss using the low carb diet plan for women is up for pre-orders on Amazon! I also have a special celebration gift for you – a FREE COOKBOOK “10 Quick and Easy Meatless Keto Recipes“! Subscribe to my newsletter and get access to your cool freebies and special surprises! ==>
Is coconut yogurt low FODMAP?
Yes! Coconut milk, coconut cream, the yogurt starter, agar-agar, and gelatin are all compliant with the low FODMAP elimination diet plan! Actually, the probiotics in the starting culture are recommended for IBS sufferers! Also, the healthy fats in coconut and the gut restoring agents in gelatin are perfect for our colon health and healing flatulence!
How to make keto coconut yogurt?
Or in my case, “how to make homemade dairy free sour cream?” because today I will show you two variations of the keto coconut yogurt recipe – one with coconut milk and one with coconut cream!
For the amount of 4 cups of coconut milk, you will need 1 tsp. agar-agar powder, and ¼ tsp. yogurt starter.
The process is very simple – first you need to heat the coconut milk to about 45°C/110°F . If you are using freshly made vegan milk straight from a coconut, it is best to disinfect the milk by bringing it to boil for a few seconds, and then, let it cool down to the recommended temperature. Pour the milk in a clean sterilized glass jar and slowly add the agar powder, and blend fully.
Repeat the same with the yogurt starter. Now, seal the jar loosely and wrap it in a thick blanket, and keep it in a warm room for at least 12 hours. Alternatively, you can use a yogurt making machine and save yourself the hassle.
Why are we using agar-agar (or gelatin)?
The answer lies within the technology of making traditional dairy yogurt.
When heated to the optimal temperature, the yogurt starter causes the lactose in milk to ferment producing lactic acid. Consecutively, lactic acid changes the structure of the dairy protein giving the yogurt its distinctive texture and flavor.
As you can see, in our case with the homemade coconut yogurt recipe, we lack two main components – lactose and the dairy protein. So, the yogurt culture does not have much to work with, and the end product is naturally pretty thin. That is why we add a bit of agar to make it thicker and improve its texture. But remember, the dairy free yogurt will still separate, so you can give it a strong stir or blend with a hand blender.
You can still skip the gelatin if you wish to have just a cup of plain liquid probiotic coconut drink. And that’s totally fine!
Note: If you have managed to make a creamy and thick vegan yogurt without agar powder or gelatin, please, please, please, let me know in the comment section below! I am eager to find out how you did it!
Now here is my second suggestion – Bulgarian coconut yogurt without agar-agar or something that is more like homemade coconut milk sour cream!
For this DIY dairy free sour cream variation, you will need merely two ingredients – coconut cream and the yogurt starter! Coconut cream has less liquid and more healthy fats, so the texture of our yogurt slash homemade lactose free sour cream will be way thicker! Plus, by using the good ol’ whisk, you can make your coconut yogurt smoother, fluffier, and way creamier! I personally use an attachment to my hand blender which saves me a lot of effort and wrist pain!
Check the detailed instructions in the recipe card below!
Nutritional stats from my favorite FREE online calculator Cronometer:
Want more low carb recipe ideas? Here are some suggestions! ↓↓↓
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Stay tuned for more healthy recipes and articles!
‘Till next time!
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