Barb Hodgens
Barb Hodgens

Barb Hodgens loves to cook with alternative, healthy whole food ingredients, with a focus on gut health. Barb has overcome her own gut health issues through healthy eating. Share your ideas, comments and photos at the end of this post :)

Greek Yogurt

How to strain traditional yogurt.

Yogurt is one of the most universally loved fermented foods and was invented (or discovered) independently in many different parts of the world. You might not guess that if you looked in our supermarkets though. Have you ever wondered why, our supermarkets only ever sell Greek yogurt?

‘Greek’ yogurt, as in yogurt that is made and eaten by people in Greece, can be thick or thin and can be made from cows, sheep, or goats. Depending on the temperature, the strains of bacteria, or the type of animal milk used, the final yogurt could vary in texture. Goat milk yogurt, for example, contains much more whey than cow’s milk yogurt and remains thin, like drinking yogurt. Because the outcome of fermenting dairy was not predictable, straining yogurt curds was a step employed to improve the consistency.

Straining yogurt to remove the liquid whey was known to many cultures and is not uniquely Greek. It was actually an American yogurt company that first began straining yogurt for commercial sale – they coined the term ‘Greek Yogurt’ and others were quick to follow.

Attaching a location onto a type of yogurt proved to be smart marketing and drove a positive health trend away from sweet, dessert-style yogurt production. An appreciation for unsweetened, natural tasting, ‘tangy’ yogurt was born.

Greek Yogurt

Homemade Greek style yogurt

If you love thick, creamy and slightly tart-tasting yogurt – then you’ll be blown away with it homemade. Making it at home means you:

Store-bought ‘Greek yogurt’ (not yogurt from Greece) is made from cow’s milk and is initially made the same way as other dairy yogurts, with the same strains of bacteria. The commercial method takes approximately 6 hours maximum.

At Luvele we recommend up to 24-hours. We outline the benefits of a longer fermentation here. To make it ‘Greek style’ the yogurt is then strained for a time to remove some of the liquid whey. Besides improving the consistency, straining also increases the protein and removes some of the lactose sugars which helps to lower the amount of carbohydrate in the yogurt.

Greek Yogurt

We often get customers asking us about making ‘Greek yogurt’ in the Luvele yogurt makers. The stable fermentation condition created by our unique water-bath technology have guaranteed such impressive results with our cow’s milk 24-hour yogurt and probiotic yogurt methods that straining, to improve the texture, is not generally necessary.

For especially thick and creamy homemade yogurt, we recommend this method which includes dry milk powder and an extended heating time. We also explore the process of dripping homemade yogurt to make yogurt cheese here. Rather than send our customers skipping from pillar to post to learn how to make Greek yogurt at home, we have finally created this step by step post. We hope you enjoy the difference.

Greek Yogurt StepsGreek yogurt steps



Greek yogurtGreek yogurt steps


Left over whey

The straining process will leave you around half a litre of left-over whey. Many people regard whey as something to throw out, when in reality it is an ingredient (or food) in its own right. It is low in calories, packed full of protein, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and active bacteria that shouldn’t be wasted. Here are some tips on how to use excess whey.


Greek Yogurt


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