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Oct 29, 2008 08:17 AM

Homemade Yogurt using Lactaid Milk?

I have been doing a lot of reading about making yogurt at home - posts here and also elswhere online. One question I have that I have not found an answer to is: Can you make yogurt at home with Lactaid (lactose reduced) milk? I enjoy eating yogurt and it is so good for you, but DH and I are lactose intolerant.

Any info is much appreciated.

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  1. Most of the lactose should be broken down during the yogurt fermentation, so you should be able to use real milk. If you don't want to risk it go ahead and use the Lactaid. The bacteria usually breakdown the lactose into a glucose and a galactose before fermenting them, but it's already done in Lactaid milk so the bacteria just have to work less.

    1. If you ferment your yogurt for 24 hours, all the lactose will be eaten by the good bacteria. I have followed a strict sugar, lactose, and grain-free diet for 3 years (well, until now b/c I'm pregnant) and homemade yogurt was a big part of it. Here are the instructions for making the 24 hour yogurt:

      In addition to being unnecessary, I don't think it's a good idea to use Lactaid milk in your yogurt because it has extra sugar added to it and that could alter the yogurt-making process.

      5 Replies
      1. re: butterfat

        Thank you! I can't wait to try this.

        My only question is, doesn't fermenting for 24 hrs cause the yogurt to be quite sour? I have read that the longer the fermentation the more sour the yogurt becomes.

        1. re: DMW

          You know, it is tart, but in a good way as far as I'm concerned. I like Fage Greek yogurt which is pretty tart, and I think my homemade yogurt is comparable. I should say that I usually drain my yogurt to make it thicker (more like Greek yogurt) and I think that makes it less tart (the liquid that drains away has a lot of the tartness).

          As long as you are fermenting the yogurt at the right temperature, it shouldn't get unpalatably sour even after 24 hours. It's nice and tangy and flavorful in my opinion. But I add some honey or fruit when I eat a bowl of it. It's great for using in dips and sauces without any sweetening.

          My favorite is to eat it with warm homemade applesauce--like apple pie and ice cream. Yum!

          1. re: butterfat

            Thank you to everyone for their replies. I am going to try making my first batch this weekend :-)

        2. re: butterfat

          Lactaid doesn't have extra sugar added to it. It's sweet because lactose is 20% the sweetness of sucrose, so when they use enzymes to breakdown the lactose it goes to the glucose and galactose which are preceived as much much sweeter than the lactose.

          1. re: butterfat

            A long fermented kefir should also work for you. No extra lactose there and you don't need to keep it warm. It ferments at room temp.

          2. After several weeks Lactaid turned into a lassi-like drink in my fridge all by itself!

            4 Replies
            1. re: leoj

              Hmmm..... Butterfat indicates that you can use normal milk, and if you ferment for 24 hours all of the lactose will be gone. I was really wondering if making yogurt in this was causes it to be very tart, and if it does, how do you counteract this? By adding sweetner before eating?

              Regarding making yogurt with Lactaid milk, I have heard mixed results - yes it works, no it does not work.

              Bryn -- have you made yogurt with Lactaid milk before?

              1. re: DMW

                No I'm a food scientist, so I know what happens in a yogurt fermentation. I was just reading a scientific paper after posting on this topic and it said that about 9.6% of people still have reactions to lactose after eating normal milk yogurt with live cultures in it. So I'd be wary with normal milk. But lactaid should work perfectly.

                1. re: Bryn

                  It is true that most commercially available yogurt still has lactose in it, because it is only fermented for 4-6 hours. I have heard that many commercial yogurts also have extra milk solids added to them to make them thicker, and presumably that would up the amount of lactose as well. But the 24-hour yogurt that I linked to above is virtually lactose-free.

                  1. re: butterfat

                    Just chiming in with butterfat. I am guessing she is on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, as I am, and the whole point of the 24-hour yogurt is that it is lactose-free. So many of our recipes are based on it, and our diet will simply not work if we ingest lactose (ie, we get sick).
                    The SCD diet is used to treat Crohn's disease, celiac disease damage, Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), ulcerative colitis, and autism. It even being used to treat mental health issues since the revelation of the head-gut connection just coming apparent in medicine.