How to Make Natural Whey

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Introduction: How to Make Natural Whey

About: Eric J. Wilhelm is the founder of Instructables. He has a Ph.D. from MIT in Mechanical Engineering. Eric believes in making technology accessible through understanding, and strives to inspire others to lear...

Whey is the liquid remaining after milk has been curdled and strained, and is the starter for lacto-fermented fruits, vegetables, and beverages.

This is an adaptation of the whey recipe from Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions. Using this method, you get wonderful cream cheese and whey, which can be used to make sauerkraut, ginger ale, or many other lacto-fermented foods.

It couldn't be easier: Put plain yogurt in a dish towel or cheese cloth and let the whey drip out overnight. I tied my dish towel together with rubber bands, and suspended it from a cabinet knob over a pitcher. Once the cream cheese and whey are separated, just save the whey in a glass mason jar, or similar. Refrigerated whey will last for months. In the images, I used goat milk yogurt. Cow milk yogurt will work fine.

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They whey obtained will be acidic in nature if use this process. Is there any way to neutralise it?

where can i buy it? is it availble in supermarkets?

where can i buy it? is it availble in supermarkets?

Awesome tutorial, and I second hilma.labelle's question about using kefir whey instead.
Off topic... is that a giant beetle in the window (bottom/right). Because Holy Wow!

I use a paper coffee filter in a wire strainer over a large bowl, place another coffee filter on top of yogurt with a small bowl or plate to weight it down. I put the whole thing in the refrigerator for a day. makes great cream cheese too. I use home made yogurt .

1 reply

I thought ferments and cultures didn't like metals (they react with it somehow)? I have a plastic strainer I use. Thanks for the tip about the coffee filter. I may try lining the strainer with one for this. :)

Can you use kefir instead of yoghurt?

I only buy Stoneyfield Greek or regular plain yogurt. I haven't checked the Greek carton, but the regular plain yogurt says on the side alive and active cultures and makes a LOT of whey. :)

is there a whey ! to dry out this whey and use the remainder as a protein source ? ie a powder.

Will femented juice from making saurkraut work instead of yogurt?

I am not sure but I use to make fresh cottage cheese by adding acid to fresh milk and straining after letting it sit for ten minutes. This can also be used to make whey, but the whey has the acid residue in it. Acids include lemon juice and vinegar. The quanties needed depend on the strength of the acid. I believe by letting the milk sit for three days before straining will denature the protein in whey and cottage cheese. Hence the cottage cheese and the whey will have different proteins etc.
I believe by using this method, the cottage cheese will taste better and be better for you. As for the whey, you need to experiment with the correct quantities of acid otherwise there will be too much acid in the whey.
Any comments appreciated.

What do you do with the leftover yogurt?

Does the yogurt need to be special in any way (unpasteurized, etc?)

2 replies

Typically, fresh yogurt is unpasteurized, but to be sure, you'd want to get yogurt that contains live or active cultures. For most uses of whey, you want happy bacteria.

All diary products are pasteurized unless stated otherwise. Likewise for the milk in making Yogurt. Some yogurt are pasteurized again after the culturing process and hence it loses the active cultures.
Most Yogurt  containers don't label that it has been pasteurized after culturing. That's why ewilhelm says to check the "ingredients" for live active cultures.

Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet,
eating her curds and whey;
along came a spider who sat down beside her
and frightened Miss Muffet away

so if i went to a store, and bought a tub of yoplait regular yogurt, i could make this? it doesnt need to be homemade, or goat? like is all yogurt for the most part unpastureized?

1 reply

As long as the yogurt has active cultures, you will be able to make whey.

wait.....I thought of a better pun. me: I tried making whey from soy milk. ewilhelm: no way!!!

make your own?!?!? No way!!!