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Strawberry Coconut Milk Yogurt & Kefir-Like Drink!

9/19/2016 *Sara-Marie* 3 Comments

I recently purchased the coveted Instant Pot and while I was super excited to see how quickly I could make a ton of food in the 7 function in 1 kitchen appliance, I was most excited about using the yogurt function! Since learning of the paleo lifestyle and completing my first Whole30 4 years ago, we have cutout dairy from our lifestyle almost completely. For me, it causes some tummy troubles and gives me acne. (NO FUN!) We kept Isabelle dairy free from the start, but have tested her dairy tolerances a few times since she's turned 2. We tried high-quality, organic, raw cheeses, yogurts, and kefirs, and while we LOVED them, every time she would develop an eczema-like rash on her thighs and a spot or two on her face. Booo.

So I was determined to make a dairy free version that tasted just as good as the rest. Now, the "instant" part of Instant Pot does not apply to the yogurt function, but it does keep the coconut milk and probiotic concoction at the perfect temperature while it cultures for about 12 hours. I have found that it has been best to make it overnight.
Couple of notes about the yogurt recipe:

1. Since we are working with coconut milk, we do not have to do the pasteurization step that you would normally need to do with cow's milk when making yogurt. We just need to add our coconut milk and probiotics into a clean container and let it get to work.

2. While I loved how easy this was in the Instant Pot, you don't need one to make yogurt. You can also let it culture in an oven with the oven light on, but no additional heat.

3. I used two collagen products in this recipe - gelatin to thicken the yogurt and collagen peptides to add plenty of easily digestible protein.  Plus collagen is AMAZING for your health and we just don't get enough of it in our modern diet. Collagen supports bone and joint health, immune and digestive systems, and improves skin, hair, and nails making them healthier and stronger. Umm, hello?! Get yourself some collagen. You're welcome. :)

4. This recipe makes about 4.5 cups of yogurt packing in about 7grams of protein per 1/2 cup serving, along with a nice punch of carbs and fat to keep little bellies full all morning as a complete meal.  Or it makes a delicious side for an adult sized meal.

5. The amount of probiotic capsules you will need is based on how many active bacteria each of your capsules contain. You are looking for about 50-60 million active bacteria per batch. Since the ones I use have 20 billion each, I used 3 capsules.

After having success with the yogurt, I thought that this recipe would also make a nice kefir-like drink if I just left out the gelatin. And I was right! So whether or not you like to eat your probiotics with a spoon or sip through a straw, this recipe can be adapted to fit either preference. Either variation also works really well in a smoothie or as a frozen Popsicle for an after-dinner treat.

Though I haven't tried it yet, for longer storage, I would guess you could also freeze the yogurt in ice-cube trays to have ready for smoothies in the future! I also plan to make some frozen yogurt in the future in my ice-cream maker...oh the possibilities are endless.
So without any further ado, here is the recipe. If you want a drinkable yogurty drink, just leave out the scoop of gelatin! 
Recipe Ingredients
2 cans coconut milk, full fat 
2-3 probiotic capsules (about 50-60 billion active cultures)
1 scoop gelatin, preferably pasture-raised beef gelatin ***LEAVE OUT FOR THE KEFIR-LIKE DRINK***
2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced 
1 tbsp raw honey (leave out if on Whole30, strawberries may be sweet enough!) 
1 tsp vanilla extract
Recipe Directions (using an Instant Pot)
1. Making sure your Instant Pot stainless steel insert is freshly cleaned, add in the coconut milk, probiotics, gelatin (if using), and the collagen. Whisk or use an immersion blender to combine everything really well - you don't want any gelatin or collagen clumps! 
2. Close the Instant Pot, make sure your vent is closed, press the Yogurt button and increase the time from the 8 hour default to 12 hours. It will automatically begin and the timer will start counting up (instead of the usual countdown). 
3. Go to sleep or go about your day, letting the coconut milk culture for 12 hours. 
4. Once the 12 hours are up, the Instant Pot will read "Yogt." Open up the Instant Pot, give it a mix, and do a little taste test. If the yogurt is as tangy as you like it, proceed with the next step. If not, turn the Instant Pot back on and let culture for another 2-4 hours. 12 hours has been perfect for us. NOTE: Even with the gelatin, the yogurt will still be runny at this point but it will firm up once it's cooled. 
5. Add the sliced strawberries, raw honey, and vanilla extract directly into the Instant Pot and get out that immersion blender again. Blend until smooth. 
6. Transfer the yogurt into glass jars or bottles and refrigerate for 2-4 hours to allow the yogurt to firm up and cool down. 
7. Once ready to eat, top your yogurt with more fruit, nuts, or grain-free granola, sip on your yogurt drink, or add into your favorite smoothie recipe. 

*Some product links throughout this blog are affiliate links. If through these links, you end up purchasing an item I recommend, I may receive a small commission. Please know that I would never personally recommend any product or service that I do not currently use or would consider using on my own family. I simply want you to know exactly what I use, so you can have the same results when making my recipes. Thank you for your support!*

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