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Bulgarian Yogurt Starter

Availability: In stock

SKU: 5205
$12.99


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Bulgarian Yogurt Starter

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Our Bulgarian Yogurt Starter Culture is the creamiest of the thermophilic heirloom yogurts. It can be re-cultured indefinitely. Thick, rich, and mild, this is the closest to commercial “European Style” yogurt. 

  • Each box contains 2 packets of yogurt starter
  • Activate 1 packet using 1 quart pasteurized milk; store 2nd packet in the freezer as a back-up
  • Cultures at 110ºF using a yogurt maker or other appliance
  • This culture is also suitable for use with raw dairy milk or non-dairy milk, with special care.
  • The mild flavor of Bulgarian Yogurt makes it a great base for dips, dressings, or other recipes using yogurt.  


Bulgarian Yogurt Starter Instructions and Troubleshooting: 


Ingredients: Organic milk, live active bacteria (L. BulgaricusS. Thermophilus).

This product contains no GMO ingredients.


Shipping Information and Shelf-life: Our Bulgarian starter culture is shipped in a barrier-sealed packet as a freeze-dried yogurt culture. The starter keeps 

  • At room temperature (68° to 78°F): 3 to 4 months
  • In the refrigerator (40° to 45°F): 9 months unopened
  • In the freezer (0° to 25°F): 12 months unopened

 

Allergen Information:

Manufactured in a facility that also produces products made with gluten and dairy.


Actual product may differ from image shown above.


Questions on Bulgarian Yogurt Starter

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  • From Martha at 3/8/2011 11:42 AM
    • Hi, I cultured the starter and it came out very thick. I did my first batch of yogurt and I really liked it. Then I did my second batch and it was pretty thin - kind of like a yogurt drink. So, I threw out that starter and cultured a new starter and it is still thin. What could I be doing wrong? Also, I am not using the raw milk method. Thanks, Martha
    • Thin yogurt can be caused by multiple variables, but here are a few ways to thicken it up.

      1. When you heat up the milk, bring it to 160ºF and hold it there for about 20 minutes before letting it cool down.
      2. Add some cream or half-and-half to the milk to increase the fat content.
      3. Use a little LESS starter yogurt. If you use too much culture, it can run out of food before it finishes culturing.
      4. Check the culturing temperature. Too warm or too cool can affect the thickness of the finished project.
      5. Whisk some milk powder into the heated milk to provide more milk solids.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Marisa at 5/17/2011 7:03 AM
    • In the description it says that goat's milk can be used but the product will be very thin because of the lower fat content. Will the results be similar if I use fat free milk?
    • Yes, a higher fat content will produce a thicker yogurt, and a lower fat content tends to produce a thinner yogurt.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From BIll at 5/25/2011 10:45 AM
    • I want to make Bulgarian yogurt from raw milk, but I have a question about the instructions. When it says that you must use a starter from the mother batch does that mean the first batch of yogurt that you make with your starter? I need to know the answer before I order. Thank You
    • Yes, to activate the culture you must make a pasteurized dairy mother culture, where the milk is heated to 160ºF and cooled to 110ºF, using the freeze dried starter we send you.

      Once this is done, use the mother culture to inoculate the unheated raw milk for a batch of raw milk yogurt.

      To maintain the pasteurized dairy mother culture, use a portion of the previous mother culture (7 days old or less) added to milk that has been heated to 160ºF and cooled to 110ºF. That mother culture is then used to make the next batch of raw milk yogurt, while any remaining "old" mother culture can be discarded.

      See here for more information: http://www.culturesforhealth.com/make-thermophilic-raw-milk-yogurt/
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Andrew at 6/22/2011 12:46 AM
    • How many batches do you find it's OK to make - taking some from one batch and using it to culture the next?

      As you do this, doesn't the bacteria content drift? That is..won't it contain more and more of the bacteria native to the milk? (I'm using raw milk, so there are live bacteria in it, naturally).
    • If you are heating the raw milk to 160ºF and then cooling it, you are effectively pasteurizing it, so the yogurt culture is the dominant (if not only) bacteria, and you can re-culture indefinitely.

      You cannot reculture from a previous batch if you are only heating the raw milk to 110ºF (culturing temperature). Instead, you keep a pasteurized dairy mother culture going, which you make by sterilizing milk so the ambient bacteria in the raw milk does not interfere with the yogurt culture.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Gerd A Zimmermann at 8/7/2011 8:03 PM
    • The starter you sell is good for how many batches to start? Normally I use the culture bacteria each time fresh.
    • To make the Bulgarian yogurt, you will start by using the culture we send you to make a small amount as a "starter" (about a cupful) then use some of that starter to make up to two quarts of yogurt. You can then use some of that yogurt to make a new batch of yogurt, and so on, for as many batches as you want.

      If you want to start fresh each time with a new culture, you might want to consider the direct-set style of starter: Traditional Flavor or Mild Flavor. Those are meant to be used fresh each time.

      *Note: There was a packaging change for all orders shipped beginning September 1, 2013. New packaging contains enough starter culture to activate 1 quart of milk.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Kathy at 10/27/2011 1:49 PM
    • Not a question but mostly a comment.
      For those that are ending up with a thin yogurt, My first batch I used cheesecloth and drained half of the whey. Put it back in a bowl and use a hand mixer to make it smooth. The second batch I made I heated to 160, but set over night at 100 more than 8 hours. It was very good.
      The other day about 3 pm I heated a gallon and half of lightly pasturized whole milk to 170 degrees. I let it cool to 110. I used about 1 cup of tempered yogurt from the previous batch mixed it in very well and let it sit in a covered stainless steel pan overnight in the set at 100 degrees. The next morning about 8 am I turned off the heat. about noon,when it was cooled. I drained probably a quart of whey from the yogurt. Since it was lumpy I used the hand blender to make it smooth and pourable but thick. Put up 5 quarts in sterilized jars. Set them in the fridge. It is not sour, not runny, not like thick pudding the way my yogurt maker does, just the way I like.
    • Kathy, thanks so much for sharing your experience with making bulgarian yogurt. I'm glad you found a method that works for you.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Catherine at 11/9/2011 4:25 PM
    • All the cream I find has "carrageenan" in it. Can I still use this to make my yogurt?
    • Carageenan should be fine, as it is just a seaweed thickener. However, do not use ultra-pastuerized cream or milk. Also, if you are trying to perpetuate the culture, use more milk because the culture needs the lactose in order to continue growth. Half-and-half is an excellent choice.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From marcia at 12/5/2011 8:45 AM
    • When ready to add the starter yogurt to the heated and somewhat cooled down milk...what is the ideal temperature of the yogurt starter to be added? Is it room temp. or directly from the refrigerator into the cooled down milk? Thank you so much. Marcia
    • Let the yogurt sit at room temperature while you are preparing the milk. This allows the yogurt starter to warm up, making it easier to thoroughly incorporate into the milk.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From George at 2/9/2012 3:49 PM
    • How is this product different from the "Greek Yogurt Starter"? Looks like they contain the same bacteria.
    • While the Bulgarian and Greek Yogurt Starters do contain the same bacteria strains, the strains are in different ratios, giving each yogurt its own unique flavor.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Milena at 5/16/2012 8:14 PM
    • This is more of a comment, really. For those of you who like a tangier yogurt -- I know I do -- leave it incubating longer than the recommended 6-7 hours (as per the instructions available on this website). I personally leave it for 12: it gets as tangy as the homemade yogurt my grandma used to make, back in Buglaria. Now, you might not like as tangy as I do, so you might to try the yogurt periodically until it reaches the level of tanginess you prefer.

      This is an excellent culture, by the way; the best I have tried so far, and the one I am sticking with.
    • Thank you for your wonderful comments and tips :)
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No

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Customer Reviews

Great Product - Made Best Homemade yogurt! Review by EMCD
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I made yogurt the old school Persian way with temperature testing with my finger :-) Use Organic Whole Milk and it was so rich & creamy!

I am trying it now with Organic 2% to see if there is a big difference.

Will definitely buy this again if I forget to save some yogurt for a starter.

(Posted on 8/27/2015)

Great product. It worked out really nice. Review by Al
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Fist time i made yogurt. It worked out great since the first time following the instructions. It has been a month and even though I am using non fat goat milk it is still going strong and getting thicker when I make it every seven days. Great product.

Thank you for your support

(Posted on 8/24/2015)

Works with Lactose-free Milk! Review by Tamara
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I've been using this culture for awhile (my favorite) and recently was told I had to go lactose-free for medical reasons. I'm very pleased to report that my culture made the transition to lactose-free milk without a hitch.

(Posted on 8/24/2015)

Delicious and Cultures in 4 hours Review by cinbun911
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I've been making my own yogurt for about 8 months, using store brand yogurt with good results. But, this heirloom starter is amazing. I've used it for over a month and it seems to get stronger with each use. I use it in my Euro Cuisine yogurt maker and it cultures in only 4-5 hours max. It's delicious and easy.

Definitely recommend.

(Posted on 8/22/2015)

Excellent yogurt culture after some experimentation Review by sarinne
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I had purchased both the bulgarian yogurt and the direct set yogurt. I started out with the direct set yogurt. It was really good and easy to make. I followed the instructions it turned out great! I tried the same method with the bulgarian yogurt and it did not turn out so well. I experimented for a month and I can finally churn it out consistently. The direct set is definitely easier to start out with.

The first time I made this yogurt, I followed the instructions for activating the yogurt and waited 12 hours and the yogurt was still runny. (My dog ate all the experimental batches)
The culture was fine so I followed the instructions for making yogurt for the second batch and waited 8 hours. It fermented much too long. Again I saved the cultured.

I did more experiments, but I won't bore you with that.

Here's what worked for me:
1. Take mother culture out of refrigerator.
2. Slowly heat 1 to 1.5 qt of pasteurized milk to 170 degrees F. Hold the milk around 170 degrees F for 10 minutes. The total time it takes me to heat the milk is 1/2 hr.
2. Cool to 110-115 degrees.
3. Add 1 tablespoon of mother culture to the milk. Stir.
4. Pour in yogurt maker. Wait 6 hours.
5. Chill in refrigerator.

Note: I am using the cusinart yogurt maker cym-100

This process produces very smooth and thick yogurt (not as thick as straining out the whey to make greek yogurt, but still thick). I hope my instructions help those who have problems making this yogurt.

(Posted on 8/21/2015)

If you only make one kind of yogurt, this should be the one! Review by KL Adams
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I first tried this Bulgarian yogurt in a microbiology class at Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA. A series of lectures were on the various microbes that make bread, wine, beer, cheese and yogurt, and our professor brought Bulgarian yogurt samples to class. (She is a big fan of Cultures for Health, btw.) I have been making Bulgarian yogurt by the gallon since then.

It's incredibly versatile and easy to make. This yogurt can be eaten plain with some fruit and granola, whizzed up in a smoothie, used in place of sour cream, or as part of marinades and dressings.

I love it, and look forward to enjoying it for years to come.

(Posted on 8/16/2015)

The best tasting yogurt we've had Review by Horsegeek
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We absolutely adore this yogurt. Thick enough to make my husband happy and with a wonderful sweet and smooth taste.

(Posted on 8/10/2015)

great flavor Review by Pamela
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Great flavor and excellent customer service

(Posted on 8/7/2015)

Terrible return on investment of time and money Review by CK1
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I've been making my own yogurt for a few years & was curious to try the "heirloom" starter. Read the online instructions and the instructions that came with the packet. Got special milk. Used digital thermometer. After 12 hours in the yogurt maker, I had some really nasty whey and the yogurt was like runny cottage cheese. I tried to eat it but both the flavor and texture were so "off" that I tossed it. It was SO bad that I thought my yogurt maker had died. Made another batch (small container of organic yogurt as start; grasped organic pasteurized low fat milk) the way I usually do and it was superb.

Verdict: something that has always felt easy peasy became a major project and then I threw it away.

Note from CFH: Please contact Customer Support for troubleshooting assistance before discarding any cultures. Many cultures can be saved with minor adjustments.

(Posted on 7/12/2015)

good yogurt easy to get going Review by bob
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great flavor, gets plenty sour without getting "nasty" even when letting it go 10 hrs +.
6-8hrs is a nice mellow taste.
first batch was good, I've made over a dozen since; all good, different milk defiantly changes the consistency of the finished product; non-fat was a bit runny, but still fine flavor.

(Posted on 7/10/2015)

I have made yougurt for many years - this is the best I have ever made and share , I use raw milk and make a new starter batch each time - tedious but worth it Review by cal
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1 gallon of raw milk delivered every week, I make as directed with new starter each week. I have made yogurt for 40-45 years, but this is the best. I make "green juicies" and put in yogurt and fermented veggies 3-4 times week or more if I have time before work, or a snack with banana or raisins and a few drops of stevia or some of the many berries I grow.
I have a small plumbing company and at 73 I work many hours a week

(Posted on 7/4/2015)

Very tastey Review by James
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I use this starter to make Indian Shri Khand, it is absolutely delicious.

(Posted on 6/24/2015)

Trial and Error Review by Steve
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It took several batches before I was able to get the perfect batch of yogurt. The key for me was heating the milk to between 195 and 210 degrees and keeping it there for at least ten minutes before letting it cool down to 110 degrees. I had to visit with customer support two times, but in both cases I found the reps helpful and very knowledgeable.

(Posted on 6/4/2015)

Fantastic Review by DeAnna
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Love the taste of this yogurt, and love the fact it is heirloom. My kids eat it like crazy and think it tastes better then store bought! Winner all around!

(Posted on 5/4/2015)

Love this yogurt!!! Review by GardenGirl
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This is by far my favorite yogurt. Tangy, yet mild, thick and creamy. I eat it every day with honey. I do keep my milk a 170* for about 20-30 minutes to help thicken the final product...I found it was not thick enough for me without this step. Such a great company...I love all of their products!!

(Posted on 4/25/2015)

Good Cultures Review by Reed
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I had been making mine with store cultures, but I didn't like how they wore out over time. I've enjoyed the Bulgarian cultures, the thickness and taste. I've found I don't need to add anything to it to enjoy the taste. I've personally found that adding about a cup of powdered milk for 2 quarters and culturing for about 4 hours turns out a good batch.

(Posted on 4/23/2015)

Delicious, creamy & thick. Review by Sharon
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We love this yogurt! It tastes great and has a thick & creamy consistency.

(Posted on 4/18/2015)

Best tasting yogurt! Review by Esther
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I've made my first quart of Bulgarian yogurt. I love the taste - creamy and mild. I hope it makes many more quarts!

(Posted on 4/18/2015)

Delicious, only slightly sour Review by Justin R
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So far my favorite yogurt! Sets rather fast, and I love the taste! I use 1% milk and add non fat dry milk to thicken it.

(Posted on 4/17/2015)

It doesn't get better than this! Review by Elly
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I am making awesome raw yogurt with my Bulgarian Yogurt Starter from Cultures for Health. I thought it would be cumbersome to use raw milk, but it turned out to be easy, once I had the routine down. And the directions on this site are spot on and easy to follow. I do use 1 tsp. of Great Lakes Gelatin per 4 cups of milk, to enhance the thickness. This is the best!

(Posted on 4/1/2015)



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