Our Favorite Ingredients: Greek-Style Yogurt

Ah, yogurt, blessed yogurt. How can we begin to extol its virtues?

And how is it so incredibly adaptable?

Yogurt is an ideal snack, a good base for a variety of delicious dips, a quality leavener, and a sour cream substitute.

It’s goodness truly knows no bounds.

We appreciate yogurt and its awesome capabilities a lot. Especially Greek-style yogurt, which is like having eight different ingredients in one.

What we use yogurt in: Baked goods, dips, sauces, smoothies, Mexican food, bowls, cups, spoons, happy mouths

Favorite yogurt pairings: Fruit, vinegar, flour, cumin or honey

Yogurt form(s): Its usual form, thick and luscious (fat-free plain)

Yogurt health benefits: Good gut health, that’s yogurt’s major claim to fame. Mainly because the active probiotics found in yogurt aren’t common throughout the food world (unless you just love fermented foods).

But yogurt isn’t solely a gut health booster. It’s also an excellent source of protein and nutrients, including calcium and Vitamin B12.

The yogurt caveat: Heating yogurt (even at super lower temperatures) destroys its good bacteria. So when you use yogurt in recipes that require cooking, it loses its probiotic properties. (A bit of a bummer, to be honest.)

Yogurt also curdles super easily (especially non- and low-fat yogurt), so you have to be careful when cooking with it.

The good news is, yogurt’s tendency to curdle has no effect on its actual edibility. (Though, some people will find the appearance and texture a bit gross.) Curdled yogurt is still good yogurt. It’s safe to eat.

And in baked goods, you won’t even notice.

Why we love it: Cooking with yogurt was a serious game-changer for us. Foods we wouldn’t dare eat as part of our regular low-fat, heart healthy diet suddenly became routine fare. And in primo form!

Yogurt adds protein to foods that often lack it (essential when you eat little to no meat), and that versatility is something to be reckoned with. You really can make plain yogurt taste any kind of way.

Plus, getting those probiotics in is important. So, though we do a lot of cooking with yogurt, we also do a fair amount of snacking. Fruits and vegetables are crazy for the stuff.

Our hard sell: Greek-style yogurt can replace a lot of things in your kitchen that aren’t nearly as healthful and greatly reduce your fat and calorie consumption if you opt for fat-free.

(We know there’ve been a lot of studies lately proclaiming full-fat dairy is also good for your heart – and it does contain more nutrients – but heart associations and foundations still recommend low-fat or fat-free. Plus, saving on fat and calories in your yogurt leaves wiggle room for ice cream.)

You can make yogurt sweet, you can make it savory, you can make the fat-free variety taste like it has more satisfying fat than it actually does.

Yogurt’s true hidden talent, though, is in baking. That’s where we’ve really put this whipped power protein to the test.

As lovers of good southern cooking, perfecting our You’ll Think They’re Buttermilk Biscuits changed our world.

About Our Favorite Ingredients

You’ll find many ingredients in our recipes again and again. These are our favorite ingredients, the ingredients we always have on hand, the disks in the backbone of our daily diet.