When our kitchen was being remodeled early last fall, we stayed at a hotel for 6+ weeks. We ate out almost every meal. (I won’t lie, I did not hate it.) I did become accustomed to an almost daily serving of Chick-fil-a Yogurt. It was my go to takeout breakfast and it was divine. When we went back to home-living and home-cooking, I missed my daily yogurt! I’d find an excuse to go get some many days, which always ended with me getting a lemonade too and a breakfast burrito for Matt.
I don’t want the health consequences or budget consequences of daily Chick-fil-a. First, I tried to figure out if you could just buy the same kind of yogurt in the store. After much googling, I’ve learned a comparable yogurt doesn’t exist at the grocery store. I realized the only way forward was to figure out how to make it at home.
If you’re new to making yogurt, let me clear some things up. First, it’s not hard, but there are a lot of steps that span a lot of time. It will be helpful to understand up front that there are basically 3 phases of yogurt creating. It all may seem like a lot, but each individual task is not hard and it’s all spread out, so it just seems like a few minutes here and a few minutes there until it’s done.
Phase 1 (Making): You mix the ingredients together as directed in the recipe, put them in your Instant Pot (set to Venting), and press the yogurt button. Your instant pot will alert you when it’s done, which takes 8 hours.
Phase 2 (Cooling): As soon as the yogurt’s done, take off the lid. You DO NOT MIX the yogurt yet. When I started making yogurt, I’d stick a spoon in to see if the yogurt set (like in the picture). But don’t mix! Take out the inner pot, and put a plate on top with a few layers of paper towel underneath to help absorb moisture. Put down a hot pad on your fridge shelf, then set the yogurt in the fridge to cool down completely. This phase can take as long as you need it, the exact time doesn’t matter as much. I let cool 4-6 hours, or even overnight, depending on when Phase 1 finishes.
Phase 3 (Straining): Now you can MIX the cooled yogurt. The vanilla bean usually sinks to the bottom, so as you stir, you’ll see it get the beautiful vanilla bean spots spread throughout. It’s really gorgeous. Now, put it in a yogurt strainer until satisfied. The longer you strain it, the thicker it will be. I strain about 4 hours, maybe longer sometimes.
What to do with WHEY: The liquid you strain away is called whey. After much googling, I’ve determined it’s very healthy, so I pour a little in a bowl for my dog and pour the rest over my garden soil. I read that some people add to smoothies, etc.
What You’ll Need
I think the rest of the ingredients you can easily get at the grocery store. The Fairlife Ultra Purified Milk is sold near regular milk. Sometimes I can find the vanilla paste at the grocery store, but a lot of times it’s not in stock.
Copycat Chick-fil-a Yogurt
- 52 oz Fairlife Ultra Filtered Milk, divided
- 2 tbsp Oui Vanilla Yogurt, heaping
- 14 oz Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 1 cup Heavy Cream
- 3 tsp Rodelle Vanilla Paste
- 1/3 cup Powder Sugar
- Pour about 1/4 of the Fairlife Milk into the Instant Pot.
- One at a time, whisk in Oui yogurt, sweetened condensed milk, heavy cream, vanilla paste, and powder sugar. Then whisk in the rest of the Fairlife Milk.
- Place the lid on top, set to venting. Press the yogurt button and double-check default incubation time is set for 8 hours.
- When the 8 hours finishes, remove the inner pot. The yogurt becomes more tart the longer you leave it past 8 hours, so try to remove as soon as possible once it's finished. DO NOT STIR THE YOGURT YET. Cover the pot with a few layers of folded paper towel, then place a plate on top. Place the pot in your fridge for 4-6 hours, or overnight.
- When the yogurt is thoroughly cooled, you can now mix it. The vanilla bean usually sinks to the bottom, mix until it is thoroughly blended.
- Pour the yogurt into a yogurt strainer. Strain for 4-6 hours, the longer you strain then the thicker the yogurt will become.
- You're done. Divide the yogurt into individual size containers for easy portion control.
- Top with fresh berries and granola for the full Chick-fil-a experience.
I had to tell my kids they could only have one yogurt a day or they’d go through it all at once! They love love love it. In full disclosure, my husband doesn’t think it tastes exactly like CFA yogurt, but says he likes this yogurt better. 🤷♀️