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regular vs greek yogurt $$$

KaimukiMan Jul 7, 2011 03:30 PM

At the market today the regular yogurt was on sale at $2.49 for a 2 pound container (normally $3.19). A similar size tub of Greek yogurt was $7.56. I know many of you are greek yogurt fans, but is it really worth three times the price?

  1. menton1 Aug 1, 2011 07:36 AM

    Brown Cow lowfat Greek style is awesome, unctuous without fat content! Good pricing, too, a little over a buck for an individual-sized container. Brown Cow Greek rocks!

    1. HillJ Jul 30, 2011 11:57 AM

      Just returned from Costco. Fage was reduced to $4.99 a 35 oz. tub and the Kirkland 2-32 oz. pack Greek Yogurt was $6.49. Virtually the same Greek yogurt..okay not identical, but darn close. Interesting price war tho.

      11 Replies
      1. re: HillJ
        Chemicalkinetics Jul 30, 2011 12:14 PM

        You must be very happy to see this war.

        1. re: Chemicalkinetics
          HillJ Jul 30, 2011 12:22 PM

          You could say that! Btwn my family and baking job consumption I could use a price break!
          First time I saw the Fage tub come down in price, under $5.00...unheard of.

          1. re: HillJ
            Chemicalkinetics Jul 30, 2011 12:59 PM

            :) I wish I could pay so little for Fage yogurt. It is my favorite brand and I like the full fat version (not the 2% or the 0%)

            1. re: Chemicalkinetics
              HillJ Jul 30, 2011 01:06 PM

              I made a lemon cheese cake with the full fat Fage about a month ago. Completely swapped out the cream cheese for full fat, drained overnight, Fage and it was so incredibly delicious I started featuring it as a small breakfast item with fresh fruit. This coming week with apricots. Have you ever tried sub'ing the full fat in recipes calling for cream cheese?

              1. re: HillJ
                Chemicalkinetics Jul 30, 2011 01:31 PM

                "I made a lemon cheese cake with the full fat Fage about a month ago."

                That actually sounds awesome.

                "Have you ever tried sub'ing the full fat in recipes calling for cream cheese?"

                No, I don't think so. I have, however, substituted sour cream with regular yogurt (not Greek) for a beef stroganoff recipe. I think it was ok, but probably not as good as cream cheese.

        2. re: HillJ
          happybaker Jul 30, 2011 02:21 PM

          Which Costco?

          I would be interesting to see if this price war is happening across the country...

          1. re: happybaker
            HillJ Jul 30, 2011 03:17 PM

            I'm in NJ happybaker; either Edison or Hazlet, NJ has both brands in the frig section.

            1. re: HillJ
              happybaker Jul 30, 2011 07:50 PM

              Drat! I'm in California, which I think is an issue.

              When I visit my family in Ohio, their dairy prices are lower...

              But I need to hit Costco this week, so I'll be able to truly compare then. Thank you!

            2. re: happybaker
              Rella Jul 30, 2011 04:06 PM

              I posted re purchasing this and liking it on July 14 above - they had it then and still do - Winchester, VA.

              1. re: Rella
                HillJ Jul 30, 2011 04:21 PM

                So true Rella, I saw your post. The new wrinkle around my area is that Fage dropped it's price from $6.59 to $4.99 to compete with the Kirkland brand as of this week. And when I was in Costco earlier today an attendant was scooping out samples of plain 0% Fage for customers....why? Just the yogurt nothing more. Now, Fage's been in the Costco stores for quite some time....it's the Kirkland double pack for $6.49...causing a "stir."

                1. re: HillJ
                  Rella Jul 30, 2011 04:26 PM

                  Ahh, competition! Gotta love it.

          2. menton1 Jul 25, 2011 12:49 PM

            What a success story-- Greek yogurt. About 8 years ago it was virtually non-existent, save for Greek ethnic stores. Now, it is ubiquitous! The Fage people must've bought several new yachts!

            1 Reply
            1. re: menton1
              jman1 Jul 25, 2011 12:57 PM

              Noticed that Cooks Illustrated recently rated Olympus highly. That company seems to be pushing the fact that it's imported from Greece as opposed to being locally made in the US.



            2. c
              Chi_Guy Jul 20, 2011 09:57 AM

              Try Middle Eastern yogurts as an alternative to Greek yogurt. They are also quite thick and I prefer the taste of some brands over Fage. Buy it from an ethnic store if you can. It's much cheaper than the supermarkets. I usually get a 32 oz tub for around $2.50 or $2.99.

              4 Replies
              1. re: Chi_Guy
                Rella Jul 20, 2011 10:13 AM

                Just an aside. A couple of years ago I had occasion to shop at a few middle eastern grocery stores. One think I recall was the butter that was so strong, it almost stunk like a bad cheese. I tried a couple of different brands of the 'middle eastern' butter and alas it was all the same taste to me.

                If I ever get back to the area, I'll try some 'middle eastern' yogurt with caution ;-))

                1. re: Rella
                  Chi_Guy Jul 25, 2011 07:13 AM

                  Try Ziyad Old Country style yogurt if you can find it. It's the best of the ones I've tasted. There are a few Lebanese-style yogurts that are quite good too...Zdan is another good one although a bit on the tart side.

                  1. re: Chi_Guy
                    Rella Jul 25, 2011 12:12 PM

                    Thanks so much. I've put it on my "go-to-the-big-city" shopping list..

                2. re: Chi_Guy
                  happybaker Jul 20, 2011 10:14 AM

                  The taste of Middle eastern yogurt IS great and they are quite thick and yummy - problem is, they are lower in protein and higher in calories. So for some, it's not a perfect trade.

                3. j
                  jman1 Jul 18, 2011 12:27 PM

                  At the risk of learning more about other people's breakfast habits, I'll post once more.

                  I had assumed that Fage was produced in Greece. But, after seeing a comment here, I have read their website. I see that it's been made in the USA since 2005 (about the time that I first became aware of the brand). Oh well, not from Greece after all.


                  4 Replies
                  1. re: jman1
                    Val Jul 18, 2011 03:58 PM

                    jman1, lots of us CHer's are aware that Fage is made here...but it is Greek yogurt done right...more protein, less sugars and no additives than most major US brands, probably more live cultures too...Stonyfield is another that has lots of live cultures too but I think theirs is not Greek-style.

                    1. re: Val
                      Rella Jul 19, 2011 06:34 AM

                      I believe Stonyfield changed their ownership a couple of years ago. After that the taste was not to my liking, although I like the concept and their philosophy.

                      I have to remind myself that I cannot always use greek yogurt 'in place of' as yesterday I made a tahini sauce using greek yogurt instead of regular yogurt; the consistency was completely wrong. I realized this as the recipe called for yogurt or WATER - should've figured it out....

                      1. re: Val
                        Chemicalkinetics Jul 25, 2011 07:16 AM

                        Agree, agree. As long as the Greek yogurt is done properly, then it does not matter where it is made. I mean we can get good traditional Chinese foods in the US too. Same idea.

                      2. re: jman1
                        goodhealthgourmet Jul 18, 2011 09:08 PM

                        i like the way they spun the bit about seeing an "opportunity" to build the US production facility...they didn't have much of a choice if they wanted to maintain their place in the US market, because there were major problems with shipping the product overseas and keeping it fresh. stores were constantly receiving spoiled/moldy shipments, and actually Trader Joe's got so fed up with the situation that they stopped carrying it for quite a while. i personally had to return far too many bad containers in those days.

                        and it took them a while to work out the kinks at the US facility - for about the first year, the yogurt coming out of that place was awful.

                      3. j
                        Jeebs Jul 14, 2011 12:38 PM

                        A tub of Greek yogurt is $3.85 at our grocery store. It's one of those deals that is always around, like bunches of organic kale for $1.99 and organic red peppers for $1.29.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Jeebs
                          KaimukiMan Jul 14, 2011 06:23 PM

                          humm... red or yellow or orange bell peppers here go for about $7/pound.

                        2. j
                          jman1 Jul 14, 2011 12:27 PM

                          I assume that most of the cost difference is water (since much of the water is removed from the "Greek" style).

                          Also, the Fage is less expensive (by a couple of dollars at Safeway).

                          Some of the other, US produced, Greek yogurt is also cheaper. I believe that Trader Joe's has their own brand.

                          1. c
                            CanadaGirl Jul 8, 2011 05:19 PM

                            I must agree with other posters about value for money. If I have a bowl of Greek yogurt and fruit for breakfast I am satisfied all morning. With regular yogurt I'm hungry by 10:00. I buy President's Choice ( it's a Canadian store brand) that is amazing and quite inexpensive.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: CanadaGirl
                              jman1 Jul 14, 2011 12:28 PM

                              Lots of calories in Greek yogurt. I usually eat less of it as compared to the watery style (less by volume).

                              1. re: jman1
                                CanadaGirl Jul 14, 2011 03:13 PM

                                Absolutely; but the brand I buy is fat-free so there are fewer calories. If I didn't see the label I would never believe it was fat free. I generally have about 3/4 cup
                                yogurt with about the same amount of fruit or berries for breakfast and am totally satisfied until lunchtime.

                            2. a
                              AdamD Jul 8, 2011 04:35 PM

                              My kids like the greek stuff so I buy it for them. Usually Chobani.
                              I find that it is too rich for breakfast.

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: AdamD
                                goodhealthgourmet Jul 8, 2011 04:38 PM

                                I find that it is too rich for breakfast.
                                interesting - i'd be curious to know what you mean by that.

                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                  HillJ Jul 8, 2011 05:26 PM

                                  I don't care for the Chobani with fruit; like to add my own or go it with some honey and lemon zest but I think some folks equate Greek yogurt with sour cream and find it too rich.
                                  My family goes thru a 2 lb Fage a week for breakfast w/fruit, smoothies, baking recipes, marinades, dips...you name it. But we would never go thru that much sour cream in a week. Funny.

                                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                    AdamD Jul 9, 2011 05:13 AM

                                    it feels like I am eating heavy cream-too cloying

                                    1. re: AdamD
                                      goodhealthgourmet Jul 9, 2011 09:39 AM

                                      gotcha. as someone who grew up eating sour cream on bananas or strawberries for breakfast i guess that doesn't turn me off ;)

                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                        happybaker Jul 11, 2011 08:30 PM

                                        Love that stuff. With brown sugar?

                                        I just picked up a container of Fage at Costco - I'll have to try it that way!

                                        1. re: happybaker
                                          goodhealthgourmet Jul 11, 2011 08:35 PM

                                          Love that stuff. With brown sugar?
                                          you know it! one of the *many* wonderful things my maternal grandfather taught me :)

                                2. KaimukiMan Jul 8, 2011 12:56 PM

                                  thanks for all the comments and advice. i usually do strain my yogurt, and a good portion of it goes into food rather than eaten by itself. And not being as careful as I should be, usually the last of it ends up sitting in the back of the fridge for a while until I have one of those... "now where did the yogurt go" moments, and i toss it. I know, terrible.

                                  it wasn't Fage, I don't think I've ever seen Fage sold anywhere here. I don't remember the brand name, but i think it started with an O... but I could be wrong.

                                  Thanks again

                                  6 Replies
                                  1. re: KaimukiMan
                                    HillJ Jul 8, 2011 01:15 PM

                                    Was it Oikos Greek yogurt made by Stonyfield?

                                    1. re: HillJ
                                      KaimukiMan Jul 8, 2011 01:17 PM

                                      I'll try to check in the next couple of days. Thanks Hill

                                    2. re: KaimukiMan
                                      goodhealthgourmet Jul 8, 2011 04:03 PM

                                      great call by J - if it starts with an O i'm sure it was Oikos. in that case the premium price is sort of a tradeoff - you're getting an organic product if that's important to you (vs conventional with Fage, Chobani or TJ's), but the consistency isn't quite as thick and the flavor is milder.

                                      i prefer thicker, more sour yogurt, which unfortunately doesn't come in larger containers from any organic brands besides Oikos...but on the rare occasion that i grab a small/single-serve cup - usually it's when i'm on the road - it's going to be Brown Cow Organic if i can find it.

                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                        HillJ Jul 8, 2011 05:23 PM

                                        ghg, I believe you were the CH that shared that Oikos WAS TJ's brand. Have I got that right?

                                        1. re: HillJ
                                          goodhealthgourmet Jul 8, 2011 05:50 PM

                                          yes ma'am! at least the *organic* is...but i haven't been able to figure out their non-organic - the nutrition info doesn't match up with any of the major labels.

                                      2. re: KaimukiMan
                                        Debbie M Jul 8, 2011 07:08 PM

                                        KMan, this past winter they had Fage at the Ala Moana Foodland, but it wasn't in the dairy section with the other yogurts; it was on the opposite wall of the store in a refrigerated case in what looked to be the organic/health food section. I was hoping to find some to keep in the hotel room refrigerator for breakfast (can't have spam and eggs or macadamia pancakes everyday, after all!), but at over $3 for a small container, I couldn't do it. I did find another "Greek" yogurt in the dairy section by one of the big brands -- Dannon or Yoplait -- which was more reasonably priced, but it wasn't as good.

                                        Here in the SF Bay Area, the difference in price isn't quite as pronounced between regular and Greek, especially since they started carrying it in Safeway and Target, where they often have it on sale, but I am happy to pay the difference because the quality, taste, texture, really is that much more satisfying.

                                      3. thew Jul 8, 2011 07:47 AM

                                        if the cost is an issue - strain your regular yogurt. put it in a coffee filter in a strainer over a bowl and stick in in the fridge overnight.

                                        you will end up with a bowl of whey and a filter full of greek yogurt

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: thew
                                          travelmad478 Jul 8, 2011 08:44 AM

                                          This is what I do. But I think the cost works out pretty much the same in the end, because you have to buy about 2.5x the quantity of regular yogurt to end up with a similar volume of strained. I just strain my own because I am in love with the taste of my local organic dairy farm's yogurt, and it is on the runny side. When I strain it, it comes out like extra-thick sour cream, which is the consistency I like.

                                          1. re: thew
                                            Rella Jul 14, 2011 01:30 PM

                                            Filter it a little longer, thew, and you will have a spreadable cheese - not bad.

                                          2. Chemicalkinetics Jul 8, 2011 07:41 AM


                                            I do find it worth the price, but I think this is also a very personal choice question too. As others have pointed out, Greek yogurt is much richer because it is a stained yogurt. As such, the yield is lower than regular yogurt. If you want to think of it the other way around, you can think of the regular yougurt is the diluted version of a greek yogurt. At the end of the day, you just have to try the Greek yogurt once or twice, and then make your own judgement on this.

                                            1. s
                                              sparrowgrass Jul 8, 2011 07:21 AM

                                              The reason it costs more is because the yield from a gallon of milk is much less. I make my own--I use a gallon of whole milk . The milk is heated to 180, and then cooled to about 100, which is when I whisk in a small carton of plain Dannon yogurt. I put the milk into big glass jars in a cooler filled with warm water and leave it over night. I end up with a bit more than a gallon of regular yogurt, which I then put into a colander lined with a clean tea towel (not terry!), and I let it drain in the fridge overnight.

                                              In the morning, I have about 2 quarts of thick, creamy, sweet yogurt, for the cost of a gallon of milk and a little carton of yogurt. The dogs get the whey.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: sparrowgrass
                                                tonifi Jul 11, 2011 08:22 PM

                                                Hey sparrowgrass...me, too. But I've found the whey is fantastic as a liquid substitute in white sauces, baking, gravy, anywhere you want a little tang. It is acidic, so it can cause your dairy to separate, so I usually whisk they whey in at the end of cooking, once my sauce is stabilized & cooled a little. It also makes a great replacement for water in baked goods. Of course, now I'm going to go pour some in a bowl for the dog and see if it likes it...(I've got a bowl of yogurt just about firmed up in the oven right now...) I strain he heck out of ours, we like it so thick we have to practically chip it out of the container.

                                              2. scubadoo97 Jul 8, 2011 05:04 AM

                                                Water is cheap. Not that $7.56 is a bargain for the Greek yogurt, but in that two pound container there nearly a pound of water.

                                                1. pdxgastro Jul 7, 2011 10:47 PM

                                                  I eat yogurt every day for health so I buy the regular (read:cheap) stuff. I love Greek yogurt but I consider it a treat.

                                                  1. s
                                                    shoes Jul 7, 2011 05:45 PM

                                                    I agree it's worth it. I buy Fage and pay a premium. I have tried the cheaper Greek-style yogurts, and none of them compare. The Cabot brand is particularly nasty.

                                                    It does seem like your shop had a really drastic markup for what I assume was Fage. (It's always the most expensive.) Buy a smaller cup and try it. You'll see why it's worth it. And shop around for a better price.

                                                    8 Replies
                                                    1. re: shoes
                                                      HillJ Jul 7, 2011 06:11 PM

                                                      Oh I learned that hard way that Cabot brand was just vile. Kirkland brand (Costco) has come out with a 2 lb tub of Greek yogurt that is nearly identifical to Fage for a $1.10 less.

                                                      1. re: HillJ
                                                        AnneMarieDear Jul 7, 2011 06:22 PM

                                                        Oh! I was just there today....next time I'll try it. Thanks for the info.

                                                      2. re: shoes
                                                        gfr1111 Jul 11, 2011 04:32 PM

                                                        Let me put in a good word for Cabot. It was the first commercial Greek yogurt I ever had and I like it a lot. It is delicious.

                                                        1. re: gfr1111
                                                          goodhealthgourmet Jul 11, 2011 07:10 PM

                                                          i imagine it would be good, as their cheeses usually are! i didn't even know they offered one - never seen it out here in CA.

                                                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                            HillJ Jul 11, 2011 07:21 PM

                                                            Sorry, Cabot was sour and not in a good way (& I love sour). It has a funky smell too. Not a fan. But to each their own :)

                                                            1. re: HillJ
                                                              goodhealthgourmet Jul 11, 2011 07:27 PM

                                                              "bad" sour *and* funky smell? sounds like it was spoiled.

                                                              one of these days i need to try the Kirkland.

                                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                HillJ Jul 12, 2011 04:17 AM

                                                                Must be my tastebuds. The Cabot Greek yogurt was a fresh tub; I just didn't care for it at all. Kirkland Greek is just the right tang and thickness I like; a nice sub to Fage.

                                                          2. re: gfr1111
                                                            beachmouse Jul 12, 2011 06:21 AM

                                                            Cabot used to have a chocolate-raspberry greek style yogurt that really was nice and tasty for dessert. Haven't tried their plain since I'm very happy with Fage if I'm going to be adding my own jam or honey to it.

                                                        2. a
                                                          AnneMarieDear Jul 7, 2011 05:43 PM

                                                          For me it is worth it, though I don't spend 7.56 for mine. I get it at Costco for under $6. I love it and I don't love, not sure I even like, the other stuff. It's a texture and taste thing for me and I'm cheap in enough areas that I feel I can pop for the Fage. I eat it for breakfast, even dessert. Love it.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: AnneMarieDear
                                                            bobcam90 Jul 8, 2011 07:30 AM

                                                            Greek yogurt (I've only bought TJs for ages now) is one of my favorite desserts at dinner parties. With a little honey drizzled on top, it's always a hit. I find "regular" yogurt and Greek yogurt, taste and texture-wise, not even in the same family.

                                                          2. mamachef Jul 7, 2011 05:26 PM

                                                            IMO, absolutely, especially if you take into account that it has a much much higher protein content and better food value. Edit: I really, really am going to learn to read threads through before I open my yap. :)

                                                            1. goodhealthgourmet Jul 7, 2011 04:00 PM

                                                              but is it really worth three times the price?
                                                              not quite, but i assume the one you saw was Fage, which is the brand that started the Greek-style yogurt craze in the US, and it tends to be one of the most expensive....but you can get that same 2-lb container of Fage at Costco for $5.49, or a 2-lb of Trader Joe's excellent house brand for $4.99. and yes, i personally think that good Greek-style yogurt is worth twice the price of regular yogurt if i'm not making my own.

                                                              for the record, the price discrepancy has a lot to do with the fact that Greek-style yogurt has a much higher protein and lower water content that regular yogurt. plus, the manufacturing process is more labor-intensive.

                                                              6 Replies
                                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                LorenM Jul 7, 2011 05:20 PM

                                                                +1. I am not well-to-do by any means but am a Greek yogurt convert. It's much richer so I find the the same amount of yogurt to be much more filling and satisfying and like GHG said, it has twice the protein and less water. I sacrifice price for something I find to be better so it is definitely worth it to me personally. For you, I guess I would say it would be your preference. If you aren't really that familiar with Greek yogurt, I would suggest maybe buying some smaller containers and try it for a bit. I know my Mother, for one doesn't care for the tanginess of it, though I enjoy it. You can put your own value on it and decide if it's worth it.

                                                                1. re: LorenM
                                                                  Val Jul 7, 2011 06:16 PM

                                                                  I also agree...I only buy the smaller containers...okay...about 3 a week BUT if I buy Kefir then I don't buy Greek yogurt...I switch back and forth from time to time...KaimukiMan probably eats and needs to eat way more Greek yogurt than I do so there's some factoring right there...Chobani plain works for me most of the time...if Fage is on sale, I buy 2 or 3. *Now, what if KaimukiMan bought regular yogurt and drained it off to make his own Greek yogurt?* Might work out for him?

                                                                2. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                  Rella Jul 14, 2011 01:27 PM

                                                                  I checked my Costco receipt and see that their Kirkland brand of Greek Yogurt is two 2# containers for $6.49. [$3.25 each ;-))

                                                                  I've been buying Fage at Costco for as long as they've carried it, and I can tell no difference between the Fage and the Kirkland brands. Others may.

                                                                  1. re: Rella
                                                                    goodhealthgourmet Jul 14, 2011 04:25 PM

                                                                    whoa, that's some bargain!! other CHers (and my parents) have said that the Kirkland is thicker and more sour than the Fage, which sounds right up my alley. unfortunately 4 lbs is an awful lot of yogurt for lil ol' me, particularly since my dairy intake these days is extremely minimal...but i'll try it at some point. thanks for the info :)

                                                                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                      Rella Jul 14, 2011 07:17 PM

                                                                      I'm the only one in this household that eats it. I don't usually do anything else with it, as far as baking or smoothies. I look at the dates and get the farthest away, and it seems to work out that I don't waste any.

                                                                      My usual breakfast (with a few minor exceptions) is throwing a dab of the yogurt in a bowl, adding a teaspoon or so of black cherry concentrate, ground flax, honey, and some sort of oatmeal, such as scottish oats, oak flates, oat groats (or not), and honey. Sometimes I will add a little seeds or nuts.

                                                                      Think about it.

                                                                    2. re: Rella
                                                                      happybaker Jul 14, 2011 05:27 PM

                                                                      That is SUCH a deal! (almost half price.) Now I have to try Kirkland...

                                                                  2. e
                                                                    escondido123 Jul 7, 2011 03:48 PM

                                                                    At my local Trader joe's there is not such a huge price difference because they have a TJ's Greek yogurt. I buy the 0% fat and use it for everything where I would use yogurt or sour cream as a topping or part of a smoothie.

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