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Pour the coconut milk and maple syrup into the pot of the Instant Pot. Whisk well, then press the “Yogurt” button, and then adjust the setting until you see “boil.” Let the Instant Pot run through the process (it’s getting the milk up to a temperature of around 185°), whisking occasionally. No need to place the lid on the Instant Pot during this stage.
When the Instant Pot beeps that it is finished, allow the milk to cool until it is between 100º and 110º. This can take upwards of an hour.
If using starter yogurt: When the milk is at the correct temperature, ladle out about 1/2 cup of the warm milk into a small bowl, and whisk with the 3 tablespoons plain starter yogurt until smooth. Pour the mixture back into the Instant Pot and whisk well.
If using freeze-dried yogurt culture: When the milk is at the correct temperature, sprinkle on one packet of the starter culture and then whisk very well to combine.
If using a thickener, sprinkle on top of the warm milk, and then whisk very well to combine.
Close the lid of the Instant Pot (no need to seal), and press the “Yogurt” button. Adjust the setting until you see the time display. Set for the desired amount of fermentation time. Eight hours is bare minimum, but I *much* prefer yogurt that has been fermented closer to 24-36 hours. This results in a naturally thick and tangy yogurt—very like regular Greek yogurt. Plus, it has more probiotics!
When the fermenting time is up, transfer the yogurt to a glass storage container (I use a wide mouth quart jar) and keep in the fridge. It will thicken up considerably as it cools.