Coconut yogurt is paleo, but this isn't necessarily always the case, particularly when it comes to commercial yogurt brands.
My clients are constantly coming to me with questions about various diets and paleo is one of the ones that I get asked about a lot. Now, when on the paleo diet, you can’t consume any dairy, which is why many people want to know is coconut yogurt paleo. After all, coconut milk is considered paleo.
However, many commercial coconut yogurt brands simply aren't paleo. If you want to discover why this is and how you can enjoy pure paleo coconut yogurt, keep reading below!
Technically, coconut yogurt is only meant to contain coconut milk and probiotics. As mentioned, coconut milk does belong on the paleo diet and so does probiotics.
Nevertheless, if you have ever looked at the label on a container of coconut yogurt, you know that many brands add far more ingredients. These are artificial flavorings, sweeteners, and preservatives. Needless to say, those components aren't really apart of the paleo diet.
This doesn’t mean that you have to skip this snack, though. Instead, all that you have to do is to make your own paleo-friendly coconut yogurt at home. This way, you have control over all the ingredients. The process is also a lot easier than you might think!
Here is a great recipe for homemade, paleo-friendly coconut yogurt.
It is important to sterilize everything that you will be using to make the yogurt. It is always possible that trace amounts of bacteria will exist on surfaces. While these aren't harmful, they can disrupt the balance of the probiotics.
In turn, this can ruin your efforts and cause the yogurt recipe to fail. To do this, simply boil the utensils and wash the bowls in hot water – make sure you don’t burn yourself! Then, dry them with a clean towel.
You should also only use glass, plastic, or wooden utensils. Don’t use metal or steel as this can affect the recipe and cause unwanted results.
Shake the can thoroughly before pouring the milk into a glass bowl. The milk tends to separate into solid and liquid layers – you need these to be combined. Once you add the milk to the bowl, it is a good idea to give it a good stir just to make sure that everything is well mixed.
Break open the capsules and pour in the powder – you can throw away the capsule coverings. Combine the mix really well so that the probiotics are completely immersed in the coconut milk. Add the honey and then mix once more.
Cover the bowl with a thin, clean dishcloth and secure it with a rubber band. Place the bowl in your oven with the light on, but don’t turn the heat on. Leave the yogurt in the oven for 24 to 48 hours. Once it is ready, it can be refrigerated.
Here are a few guidelines for making coconut yogurt to fit with a paleo diet:
When buying probiotic capsules, make sure that they contain probiotics. There should be nothing else – no prebiotics, enzymes, or any other ingredients. If your capsules contain any other ingredients, your coconut yogurt isn't going to ferment properly and you will probably end up with some rather unpleasant or inedible results.
If you are really serious about your paleo diet, then you may want to steer clear of traditional probiotics. These are typically sourced from dairy. However, unless you have a severe milk allergy or are vegan, the content of dairy isn't likely to have a negative impact on your diet or health.
If this does bother you, though, you can find vegan yogurt starter cultures online. In case you are using these, make sure to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer when making your coconut yogurt.
You can add as little or as much sweetener as you want to the yogurt. Naturally, if you are concerned about calories or do want your yogurt as sweet, then you can skip the sweetener or use less of it. Technically, you can use any sweetener that you want. However, raw honey or raw maple syrup is your best bet.
Vanilla and coconut work really well together, so you may want a vanilla-flavored yogurt. As you are aware, you can’t use essence or extract – you need to use vanilla bean for paleo. Scrape the content of one pod and add it to the yogurt.
This can be added at the same time that you add the sweetener. Make sure to mix thoroughly so that the flavor is evenly spread out throughout the coconut milk.
If you wish to add fruit, you can do this after the yogurt has set. Simply stir in your preferred fruit and enjoyed. In case you want a truly fruity yogurt, make a paleo fruit compote – this has more syrup to it. Stir this into the yogurt and place in the refrigerator. This will allow the flavors to truly permeate throughout the yogurt.
It is clear that coconut yogurt should be paleo, but this isn't always the case. If you can’t find a yogurt that meets your dietary needs, then it is just a matter of whipping up your own batch. You can use the recipe and guidelines mentioned here to make the perfect paleo-friendly yogurt.
Did you enjoy this post? Then make sure to check out our Pinterest page. We have tons of other coconut related recipes – you should be able to find one that is just right for your paleo diet!