How long before yogurt goes bad?

I bought a single-serving Stonyfield French Vanilla low fat yogurt at lunch, but didn’t have time to eat it. I left it on my desk for about 3 hours, and then ate it. It was a bit warm. Now my stomach kind of hurts. Could it be from the yogurt?

Only 3 hours? I’ve left yogurt out all night, and there was no problem.

You make yogurt by leaving it out.

Hours? Pshaw. I bring my week’s supply of yoghurt into work on Mondays and eat it throughout the week. I keep it in my office desk, which is typically about 70F. I have no problems at all. Sometimes I finish last week’s yoghurt on the following Monday.

If refrigerated, yoghurt lasts until, well, I haven’t seen it ever go bad. At least a month past the sell-by date.

Thanks. I guess it was all psychological.

Wait, so can I create an infinite supply?

In theory, yes. Just keep adding milk. :slight_smile:

In practice, the live culture may change to one that doesn’t taste good, so there’s a long list of sanitation and cultivation procedures you may have to do to get what you want. Google “yoghurt recipe” if you want more info.

I was a little nervous some time back when I noticed I’d eaten a year-old yogurt, but nothing happened. Tasted fine, too.

Had it been refrigerated all that time or sitting out?

Yep. Yogurt has ALREADY gone bad. I don’t think it gets much worse.

No, I’m not a fan of yogurt.

Moving thread from IMHO to Cafe Society.

I wouldn’t suggest doing it like pepperpot stew, but you can certainly use this batch of yogurt as a seed for your next batch. Keep in mind, you want everything here to be clean, because you only want the bacteria from your current yogurt, not some random-ass not good tasting bacteria. In other words, if you’re using a mason jar to store it in, just out of the dishwasher is a good idea (but not absolutely necessary, it probably will not kill you otherwise.)

Take some milk (whole is best, too little fat and it doesn’t seem to want to thicken right) and heat it until it starts to boil. You’ll want to keep an eye on it and stir. Take the heat off and let it cool down to about 110, either by leaving it out for a bit or in a water bath. Stir in a couple tablespoons of your current live culture yogurt and pour it into whatever container you’re using (I like mason jars, you can use old yogurt containers or whatever you like.) Put it somewhere nice and warm overnight - I put it in the oven with the oven light on. In the morning put it in the fridge - don’t go disturbing it until it’s been in the fridge for a while, because it needs to finish setting up. Then it’s yogurt. You can add anything you like to it.

My boyfriend gets kind of wigged out about it, but I keep telling him that if it was colonized by not-yogurt, it wouldn’t look, smell, and taste like yogurt.

Yogurt was invented as a way to keep milk around unrefrigerated without it going bad. That’s one reason why India takes to it so well- they have a hot climate and lots of milk. Three hours is nothing. In any case, you’d know by the taste if it was bad- it’d go sour and gross long before it got dangerous.

Yeah, making yogurt is one of the easiest things in the world. You can even do it with powdered milk. Clean is good, but you don’t need to get crazy- if things are too bad it just won’t set. Some days your yogurt will firm right up, some days it will be runny. The big trick is don’t use too much to start it- just a teaspoon is fine, too much messes things up for some reason- and don’t disturb it while it is setting. I used to make the stuff by the giant tubfull.

Yes. Yes, it can. Don’t ever mistake furry yogurt for safe yogurt. That is, of course, how you make penicillin, though. :smiley:

There was a woman on Hoarders who didn’t think food was dangerous unless it was “puffy”. There was a lot of very old yogurt in a very gross refrigerator. That yogurt, I would not eat.

Really, I don’t even buy yogurt anymore unless I don’t have any around to seed a batch with. The stuff you make yourself is cheaper, and you know exactly what’s in it. No thickeners, no corn syrup, no stabilizers and stuff. Just milk and bacteria. Just a few minutes of active effort time, too.

Timely thread, I’m eating homemade yogurt right now!

Sometimes I make it, and sometimes I buy it, but this batch was because I had a half-gallon of milk that would’ve gone bad while I was out of town for Thanksgiving, so I made yogurt before I left, instead.

I use 2% milk. It really is the simplest stuff on earth to make, I don’t even use a thermometer to measure the temperature anymore. When it’s cool enough that I can stick my finger in it and leave it there*, it’s ready to add the culture.

I keep it warm by putting it in my gas oven, the pilot light keeps it at the perfect temperature for making the yogurt.

*I’m the only one that it’s it, anyway!

This seems like an opportune time to ask those who make their own yogurt, do you and/or can you flavor it. We eat a lot of yogurt in our house; non-fat, because I get plenty of good fat elsewhere. Our favorite is Stoneyfield Farms Banilla, which, if you are unfamiliar with it, is a delicious blend of banana and vanilla flavors. I have a hard time finding it in stores. It’s not cloyingly sweet, but has a very mild flavor.

Can I make a reasonably good facsimile that is also non-fat? I would imagine that banana and vanilla extracts would be the way to do it, but I’m not certain. Any help and advice would be appreciated.

I had a yogurt maker and it’s very easy to make. You have to experiment with the various recipes to find the one you like. For instance, when I used skim milk, in addition to the skim milk, I would put in powdered skim milk as well, that made it much better.

You would eventually be able to get it right, but I’d take some experimenting