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Ever since I published my keto yogurt recipe, people have been asking me for a high protein dairy free yogurt version. Well, here it is, and it’s super easy to do. This creamy coconut yogurt recipe has everything you love about the regular kind, without the dairy! Using coconut milk, the process is very similar to the regular kind. Let me show you how to make coconut yogurt below, plus get delicious topping ideas, and learn tips to make sure your coconut milk yogurt turns out perfectly every time.
What Is Coconut Yogurt?
Coconut milk yogurt is just what it sounds like: it’s yogurt made with coconut milk instead of dairy.
What does coconut milk yogurt taste like?
Like regular yogurts, coconut milk yogurt has a thick, creamy texture and slight tanginess from the probiotics. It will also usually have a slight coconut flavor, depending on which coconut milk you use and whether you add any toppings to it.
Ingredients in Coconut Yogurt
- Coconut milk – You must use full-fat coconut milk to get the thickest, creamiest, and overall best dairy free yogurt. Get the kind from a can, not the liquid coconut milk beverage from the dairy case.
- Gelatin powder – Creates a thick texture without fake stabilizers or starches. I prefer grass-fed gelatin, but conventional powders will work too. Make sure it’s unflavored.
- Probiotic capsules – Adds the tangy taste of traditional yogurts and creates a dairy free probiotic yogurt that supports a healthy gut. Avoid probiotics that have added prebiotics or additional enzymes, as it won’t create the same results. Also, make sure your probiotic is fresh, or it won’t work correctly.
The ingredient amounts are on the recipe card below.
How To Make Coconut Yogurt
- Sterilize jars. You can do so by running them through the dishwasher with hot, soapy water. Make sure they are completely dry afterward.
- Heat. Add coconut milk to a saucepan and heat gently until bubbling at the edges. (Do not boil!) Sprinkle gelatin over the milk and whisk to incorporate.
- Jar. Pour the homemade coconut yogurt base into sterilized jars. Allow to cool until its internal temperature is between 100-110 degrees F.
TIP: Keep close track of temperature – I use a meat thermometer. The temperature range between 100 and 110 degrees F is warm enough to activate the cultures, but not so hot that it will kill them.
- Add probiotics. Cut or open a probiotic capsule over each jar and dump the contents inside to create coconut probiotic yogurt. Stir, then cover.
- Incubate. With your oven light on (not the oven itself), place jars on a sheet pan and put in the oven. Leave the door closed for 12-24 hours (longer time will make a tangier coconut milk yogurt recipe). Stir, refrigerate to set, then stir again before serving.
Troubleshooting Dairy Free Yogurt
Why is my coconut yogurt runny?
A runny coconut milk yogurt recipe can happen for several reasons:
- Drastic temperature: The yogurt base may have been too warm or cold for the probiotics to activate. Use a thermometer to make sure the temperature is correct.
- Short refrigeration time: This dairy free sugar free yogurt needs at least 24 hours in the fridge to thicken.
- Thin coconut milk: This dairy free coconut yogurt needs full-fat coconut milk for optimal thickness. Light coconut milks are more likely to produce a runny consistency.
If you end up with runny coconut yogurt, it’s still safe to eat — and makes a great milk substitute for a protein smoothie!
Why does my dairy free yogurt look or smell bad?
Making coconut yogurt at home can cause some smelly results. If your dairy free yogurt recipe looks or smells bad, it may have happened because of poor sterilization, incubation at too high a temperature, a particularly smelly strain of bacteria, or leaving the yogurt to ferment for too long.
If your yogurt smells bad and has a gray or pink film on top, you should discard it. If your yogurt tastes tangy and has a little foam on top (with no color change), these are normal signs of fermentation.
Coconut Milk Yogurt FAQs
Does coconut yogurt have probiotics?
Does dairy free yogurt have probiotics? It does! This recipe includes probiotics to create the tangy flavor of conventional yogurt.
Can you make coconut yogurt without probiotics?
You can still make a dairy free yogurt recipe without probiotics, but you’ll either need to substitute with a yogurt starter or a few tablespoons of store-bought plain coconut yogurt.
Is coconut yogurt healthy?
Absolutely. This yogurt is rich in healthy plant fats, contains no dairy, and (if you do it at home) you can make coconut based yogurt without added sugar, colors, or harsh stabilizers.
Can you eat coconut yogurt on keto?
Not all conventional coconut yogurt brands are keto friendly. Many contain added sugar and starches that bump up the carb count.
It’s best to make unsweetened coconut yogurt at home to stick to your macros, since you know exactly what goes in it.
Can you make it without gelatin?
You could substitute agar agar powder to make this a vegan coconut yogurt, but it would require different amounts and increase the carb count.
Can you make different flavors?
Yes! Instead of enjoying just plain coconut yogurt, it’s easy to add flavors — but do it after making the full recipe first. Create vanilla coconut yogurt with 1-2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, or stir in 1-2 tablespoons of sugar-free maple syrup for natural sweetness.
How long does dairy free yogurt last?
This dairy free yogurt recipe will last 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator. Store in tightly covered jars or containers.
Can coconut yogurt be frozen?
Avoid freezing your dairy free yogurt recipe, as it won’t have the best consistency after thawing.
Dairy Free Yogurt Toppings
With lots of probiotics, this yogurt would be a nutritious component to a detox smoothie, fruity acai smoothie, or any smoothie for that matter, but I like to eat it with simple toppings. Here are some delicious ideas:
- Nuts & seeds – Try with hemp hearts, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, or your favorite nuts!
- Berries – Sprinkle on some fresh strawberries or blueberries, or even unsweetened dried cranberries.
- Coconut chips – Unsweetened coconut chips or toasted vanilla coconut chips (from The Easy Keto Cookbook) add delicious crunch.
- Jam – Strawberry jam or blackberry jelly would both taste delicious with this coconut milk yogurt.
- Granola – Homemade grain-free granola adds classic crunch!
- Chocolate – Add chocolate chips (or sugar-free chocolate chips) or for a chocolatey twist, mix in some chocolate hummus.
Tools To Make Homemade Coconut Yogurt Recipes
Tap the links below to see the items used to make this recipe.
- Wide mouth mason jars – These jars are easy to store, and 2 jars are the perfect size to hold this recipe.
- Cast iron saucepan – This pan ensures even heating and makes the process super fast.
- Thermometer – This is crucial to make sure that you add the probiotics at the right time, when the yogurt is not too hot or too cold.
How To Make Coconut Milk Yogurt
Coconut Yogurt (So Easy!)
This homemade coconut yogurt recipe is so easy! Learn how to make coconut milk yogurt (aka dairy free yogurt) that turns out rich and creamy.
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Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Sterilize 2 12-oz or 16-oz jars in the dishwasher or with hot, soapy water. Dry and set aside.
Pour the coconut milk in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat gently, stirring occasionally, for 5-7 minutes, until bubbles form around the edges. (Time can vary significantly depending on your pan material - mine was a cast iron saucepan like this.) Do not simmer or boil.
Sprinkle (don’t dump) the gelatin over the saucepan and whisk until dissolved.
Pour the cream mixture into the sterilized jars. Let the jars sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes, until the mixture is below 110 degrees F (43 degrees C), but still above 100 degrees F (37 degrees C). This is critical - a temperature that is too high will kill the probiotic cultures, but one that’s too low won’t activate them.
Open or cut one probiotic capsule over each jar and stir in the powder. Cover with lids.
To incubate your yogurt, turn on your oven light (not the oven). Place the jars on a sheet pan and place in the oven, with the door closed and light on, for 12-24 hours, depending on how sour you want your yogurt to be. (Alternatively, you can wrap the jars in a warm blanket to keep them warm.)
When the yogurt is done, it will be liquid. Stir, then refrigerate for 24 hours to set the texture. Stir well again before serving (some lumps are normal, but they will disappear after stirring).
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Serving size: 1/2 cup
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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