Viili Yogurt Starter

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$12.99


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Viili Yogurt Starter

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Our most popular yogurt culture! Originating in Finland, the Viili Yogurt Starter cultures at room temperature into a creamy, mild yogurt with a fairly thick consistency. Our Viili yogurt does not have a ropey texture but rather a more gelatinous texture and is perfect in any yogurt recipe

  • Each box contains 2 packets of yogurt starter
  • Activate 1 packet using 1-2 cups pasteurized milk; store 2nd packet in the freezer as a back-up
  • Reusable heirloom starter recultures from batch to batch indefinitely.
  • Instructions for using this culture may be found here
  • Cultures on the countertop at room temperature (70º-77ºF)
  • This culture is also suitable for use with raw dairy milk or non-dairy milk, with special care.

 

Ingredients: Organic milk, live active bacteria (Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris, L. lactis subsp. lactis biovar. diacetylactis, Leuconostoc mesenteroides subsp. cremoris).

This product contains no GMO ingredients.

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

  • At room temperature (68° to 77°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

 

Due to recent changes in manufacturing processes, the weight of the item that appears in the photo may differ from the actual weight of the item received.

Allergen Information:

Contains dairy. Packaged in a facility that also manufactures products made with wheat, soy, eggs, nuts, and fish.

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  • From kara at 4/12/2012 8:50 AM
    • Hi-
      I didn't have much luck with this. I'm using raw milk and followed the instructions. My first batch never got thick but did get sour (I've been using it as a runny sour cream). I left it out for about 4 days. I thought it was because my house was too cold.

      With the second batch, I placed it in a insulated cooler with some warm water. I watched the temp closely and kept it at 70. It neither got thick or sour.

      With both versions, after I heated the milk, I let it get to room temp before adding the culture.

      Can I salvage either of these to try another batch?
      Thanks-
    • Thin yogurt is a common issue with raw milk and can be resolves by using a thickening agent. This article has information about different thickeners: http://www.culturesforhealth.com/thickening-homemade-yogurt/

      It is also very important to use the freshest raw milk possible, being less than 48 hours old, and chilled immediately. 

      Inconsistent temperatures can cause a lot of problems, so nice job on testing that! Keep in mind that 70° is on the low end, and you might want to bump it up a few degrees.

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  • From Ellie at 4/25/2012 6:25 AM
    • Hello,

      I used to live in Finland and have a brother living there now. He sent me over a dried Viili culture from a normal batch he bought in the supermarket. He used the recommended method to dry it and I reconstituted it as recommended also. The viili was perfect, just the right consistency and left nice long threads. The flavour was also quite normal. I use pasteurized full fat organic milk and always made it is a glass jar which I sterilized in between making, with boiling water and only used a plastic spoon for serving it.

      I made the yoghurt almost every day, so the culture stayed nice and fresh. After a few weeks it began to deteriorate and it then separated. There was no way I could recover it. I was afraid that I had cultured it for too long or in too warm a temperature.

      I had given a bit to a friend who had decided she didn't like it much, but that culture was still good as it had been made less than two weeks before, so I recuperated it and restarted the process. The batch was, once again, perfect. Then I even took some and prepared it as dried to keep aside in case the same thing happened again.

      And it did happen again. After a few weeks the yoghurt deteriorated in the same way. The temperature had been regular as I sat the jar on a UPS which is slightly warm only on the surface.

      Is this result because it came from a store bought food viili rather than a starter, do you think? I am not keen to have this shipped up to Canada (if they even allow it) only to find the same thing happening.

      What are your thoughts on this problem?

      Ellie
    • It sounds like your brother purchased a yogurt that had been made with a "direct set" starter which will begin to weaken after a few batches. An heirloom culture can be reused, and with good care the culture can be kept going indefinitely. With an heirloom culture, it is important to make a new batch of yogurt every 5-7 days to keep the good bacteria viable.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Laura at 4/27/2012 3:47 PM
    • Could this starter be used with goat milk to make yogurt? I love the idea of it working at room temp. Thanks!
    • Absolutely. It's one of the many delicious things you can make with goat milk.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Miriam at 5/7/2012 8:46 PM
    • I'm interested in making villi yogurt with skim milk. I've bought skim milk skyr in the grocery store under the brand name Siggi's and it was very good. Can I make villi yogurt with skim milk using your starter? Thanks.
    • Many customers make Viili with skim milk. If you find you prefer a little thicker consistency, please see the following article for suggestions for a thickening agent: http://www.culturesforhealth.com/thickening-homemade-yogurt/
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Jess at 5/15/2012 1:38 PM
    • This is concerning storage of the villi after making a quart batch. After you have made a batch of villi yogurt on the video it says to take a scoop out. I understand that part, from there is it stored in the refrigerator? Are you able to freeze the starter if you are going on vacation? Thank you for your time.
    • Yes, the yogurt should be stored in the refrigerator once it's done culturing, both the mother culture and the yogurt to be consumed.

      A small amount of yogurt or buttermilk can be frozen for up to a few weeks. Because the bacteria will degrade over time, we recommend freezing 3-4 times the amount you will require to make a new batch and limiting freezing to no more than a few weeks.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From maggie at 7/23/2012 6:09 PM
    • Ok the Villi starter instructions for pasteurized milk state that you use a portion of the "mother" batch for your next fermentation. Do I keep the "mother" batch, eat it, toss it, use it to start another batch? What do I do with it? Thanks!
    • The mother culture is used to culture another batch, or can be consumed if you have successfully made a new mother. Be sure to always save enough of "her" to make a new mother culture. It must be done within 7 days for maximum viability.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Sarah at 8/2/2012 8:21 AM
    • I started my culture in reduced fat milk last night to make the activation batch. It's been 15 hours but looks like milk still. The temperature is around 76 or 77. When I was stirring it up, some of the starter was getting stuck on the sides of the glass jar and wooden spoon. I didn't try to remove that with my finger for fear of compromising the culture. Should I just keep waiting? Or does it sound like I didn't mix it properly?
    • It can take up to 48 hours to activate the culture, so keep checking every hour or so. Also, know that the lower the fat content of your milk, the thinner your end product will be. If you have any problems, please contact us, and we would be happy to assist you.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From grant at 9/5/2012 6:06 AM
    • Could you tell me which bacteria create viili's gelatinous texture?
    • The bacteria in viili are:

      Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris
      L. lactis subsp. lactis biovar. diacetylactis
      Leuconostoc mesenteroides subsp. cremoris

      Unfortunately, we do not have information on which bacteria lends itself to which characteristics of the Viili.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Jennifer at 9/6/2012 10:00 AM
    • Can viili yogurt be used to make frozen yogurt? I saw you recommend the matsoni culture for this but I actually want more of a mild taste than a strong one and viili seems like it might be a good candidate. I don't like to have to deal with direct-set.
    • Absolutely! Viili would make a lovely mild frozen yogurt.
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No
  • From Psmokey at 9/7/2012 3:03 PM
    • Will this work for non dairy milks like coconut, soy or almond milk? If so, any special procedures needed? Thanks!
    • You can use viili starter with non-dairy milks, but it is unlikely to reculture as the non-dairy milks will not nourish the bacteria.

      Each week, you will need to make a pasteurized dairy mother culture from which to make non-dairy milk yogurts. See here for detailed information, specifically the mesophilic culture section: http://www.culturesforhealth.com/making-dairy-mother-culture-non-dairy-yogurt/
    • Do you find this question helpful?  Yes   No

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Customer Reviews

Awesome, easy product! Review by ANC
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I tried making yogurt in the crock pot once, then I heard about these cultures! So easy, works great! The culturing time is a little longer than expected in my house with the slightly cooler temps, but I enjoy the yogurt very much. I always like to see a bargain, but this culture pays for itself pretty quickly!

(Posted on 11/19/2014)

works well Review by ely
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I'm using raw milk which I first sterilize. This culture is easier to use than warmer cultures. I only have to sterilize and then cool back down to 70 degrees not "catch" the milk on its way back down from 160. I was worried about the taste when it was just activated starter but having made a full batch it's tasty, different flavor but good. My house is cooler than 70 so I have been putting the culture in a wonderbag with a heated flax seed pillow in the warmest spot in my home, worked well. Probably wouldn't be an issue if my house wasn't always so cold.

(Posted on 11/15/2014)

Good Taste, Could Be Thicker Review by daisy
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Being new to making yogurt, I chose the easiest of the cultures and it worked well. The taste is wonderful and it took hardly any time and very little effort. It's more the consistency of a drinkable yogurt though, so I may have to try another type to get that thickness that I am desiring. Customer service in this company has thus far been outstanding. I will definitely order from them again. Bon apetit!

CFH Response: Viili should have a fairly thick consistency. Please contact Customer Support for assistance with very thin yogurt.

(Posted on 11/11/2014)

Terrific taste! Review by rhodesaz
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I've been making yogurt for years from a start a girlfriend gave me. But, I decided I'd like to try a starter of a different taste, so ordered the Villi.
It was a bit tough to get the starter to mix in with the cold milk, but I persevered. The first culturing took over 24 hours, but it turned out terrific. Love the taste!

(Posted on 10/30/2014)

Excellent Review by Amy
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Worked very well. I love it, very nice flavor and texture. I'm making raw milk Viili

(Posted on 10/30/2014)

IT WORKED!!! Review by Emily
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After trying this and it not working I was contacted by the company. See, I had written a review about not being successful and they wanted to MAKE SURE that all of their customers are satisfied so they helped me through doing it again. We figured out that I was not keeping the temperature stable enough. (I live in the Arizona "high desert"- 70's during the day and 40's at night this time of year.) I tried it again and IT WORKED! I am now making DELICIOUS yogurt! I will definitely be ordering from this company again.

(Posted on 10/30/2014)

i love my culture Review by jim
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i love it , don't neglect to get a strainer, it really made it real.

(Posted on 10/17/2014)

Finland Review by Patrick
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As a child, my grandmother used to take me to the big department store in Helsinki(Stockmans) where we would order viili. It was served in a bowl with cinnamon and sugar and corn flakes on the side. You would put these on the top, eat off the top layer and repeat. Never forgot how delicious this was. This brings back those memories.

(Posted on 10/16/2014)

Easy, tasty, and fast! Review by Hummermum
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I love this yogurt! It takes so little time to prepare... and that's important to this busy mum. The kids and I love it plain... but it is also amazing poured over frozen berries as it becomes a little icy. It is a little runny... but I plan on straining it on my next batch.

(Posted on 10/16/2014)

Good product Review by Annell
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Arrived quickly, have made 5 or 6 batches since, all pretty firm and tasty! Love that I can just leave it on the counter to culture. Has a nice mild taste. Of course it isn't as firm as store bought but fairly firm, definitely not as runny as I feared. Been using it to make refrigerator oatmeal. Doubling the yogurt amount and leaving the milk out.

(Posted on 10/8/2014)

not sure at first but turned out awesome! Review by Erin
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I prepared the starter when it was cooler and was concerned about keeping it warm enough. I even put it in the oven with the light on for a while. It ended up separated which indicated overculturing or overheating. I thought it was a loss but tried to make fresh batches of yogurt from the starter anyway as directed. It worked beautifully! I like it thicker so I have been straining the yogurt in the fridge before eating and it is wonderful. To me the flavor is like the best sour cream ever. With a little maple syrup or honey, fruit, and nuts it makes great parfaits in mason jars for snacks. I look forward to using it for cooking too!

(Posted on 10/7/2014)

I think it was my fault... Review by emily0116
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It didn't turn out very good the first time I made it. I'm thinking it was something I did wrong, though, so I'm going to start a new batch (using the spare pouch they provide- THANK YOU!) tonight.

Response from CFH: Feel free to contact Customer Support for troubleshooting assistance.

(Posted on 10/3/2014)

better Review by regus
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I tried the first pouch, followed the instruction, did not do anything. I tried the second pouch, it worked. I am pleased and satisfied with the product.

(Posted on 9/12/2014)

works but texture is not my favorite Review by roanna
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The counter top yogurt truly works and is great for not having to boil, cool, etc. The end result is fine I just prefer the more standard texture of yogurt. I had no idea it would bother me. Just going to use it in smoothies.
I also have a sourdough starter and placed them more than 4ft away from each other but somehow they cross contaminated one time and I got stinky sock yogurt! I have a devoted jar to the yogurt now and put the sourdough starter in the fridge when doing my yogurt.

Response from CFH: Some cultures need to culture a couple of batches to fully awaken from hibernation and have a balanced smell, texture, and flavor. Please contact Customer Support for troubleshooting before discarding any cultures.

(Posted on 9/9/2014)

Taste? Review by Amy
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Maybe I'm spoiled by Bulgarian yogurt, but this stuff doesn't seem to have much taste. I mean, it seems ridiculously mild, almost like milk.

Response from CFH: Please contact customer support for troubleshooting advice before discarding product. Many cultures can be saved with minor adjustments. Heirloom yogurts can experience an activation period before the flavor is fully developed.

(Posted on 8/14/2014)

Viili Review by Kenya
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It did arrive safely and my first batch, 8oz came out well, so I did a qt and I am working off of that now. I am still trying to find things to do with it other than eating it plain. I used some in a white bean cake instead of using buttermilk. It was delish! I have used it in place of sour cream on potatoes or Mexican food as well. I also use it in my post workout protein smoothies. Will try it next with the overnight oatmeal. I’m loving that it is much thicker than the Matsoni, but I do see that it produces a lot of whey. I guess I will add that to my smoothies as well. Life is great now. Thank you so much!!!!

(Posted on 7/31/2014)

villi Review by debbie
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it was very thin, more like a kefer or liquid. i am not sure if i did something wrong or what, but i did follow instructions. then, when i placed the container into the fridge, the consistency resembled that of milk. generally when i think of yogurt, i think of a much thicker, more creamy texture. the taste was good, buttery is my description and very pleasant. i am hoping to find a way to improve my recent results though, if anyone could assist me i would be grateful

CFH response: An activation batch can be a little thinner than your yogurt will be and will also take longer to culture. If this was not an activation batch, you will want to check the expiration date of your milk and make sure that you are making new yogurt every 5 to 7 days to ensure the viability of the culture. If you have any further problems, please contact us at customersupport@culturesforhealth.com

(Posted on 7/24/2014)

Simple and delish! Review by Rach
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I've had my cultures for one month. It is mild and yummy and is well loved by my family. Sometimes I strain the yogurt for a thicker consistency. Sometimes I blend the thinner yogurt with fruit for a drinkable concoction. I find it cultures much more dependably than heat-cultured yogurt.

(Posted on 7/16/2014)

Hasn't worked for me Review by Reese
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I bought this along with the heirloom buttermilk starter and so far only the buttermilk starter has really worked for me, it has set well and made great tasting buttermilk; however the viili starter has not. Maybe my house has been to hot, but the buttermilk stater and viili starter require the same temps and only one has worked really well for me. The viili starter hasn't really set well and I have already gone through both packets in an attempt to see if maybe I did something wrong with the first packet, but so far I have gotten the same results.

Response from CFH: Each culture can perform differently. Maintaining proper culturing temperature is important. We ask that customers contact Customer Support before discarding any product, as many cultures can be saved with minor adjustments.

(Posted on 7/5/2014)

great product, read revies and question and answers Review by Karl
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Great product, The reviews and questions and answers very helpful. Currently I start by Heating the milk to 180-185, stirring frequently to prevent skim forming created a creamier yogurt. Then place in a glass jar with active cultures after the milk has cooled to room temperature and let it sit in a closet for at least 24 hours. I would recommend follow the instructions incluted with the culture and modify as needed.

(Posted on 7/5/2014)



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