When I first moved to France over a decade ago, two things immediately jumped out to me about the yogurt here. First, the sheer selection of French yogurt at the supermarket was a big surprise. There was an entire aisle that had all kinds of yogurt and dairy products in little containers. The second thing was just how tasty it was. The yogurt was thick, creamy and pretty perfect. I couldn’t get enough!
In France, something to note is that the yogurt isn’t called “French-style yogurt” because, well, we’re already in France. It’s just yogurt for the French. And yes, it’s delicious! But not all yogurt in France is this creamy, textured variety. Luckily, the French deliciousness is available outside of France as well, so let’s get into what French-style yogurt is and what makes it so special.
French-style yogurt is a popular type of yogurt that has been gaining popularity in recent years. This type of yogurt stands out from the crowd for its purity of ingredients, richness, and how it’s made. Unlike other types of yogurt, French-style yogurt is made in individual glass pots or jars and with limited, high-quality ingredients — just like it is in France.
In France, not all types of yogurt are created equal, though. To be transparent, there are industrial, mass-produced, low-quality yogurt products in France. But what we’re talking about in this article is the authentic French yogurt style.
What makes French-style yogurt unique is that it is made in small batches and each small serving is cultured separately for eight hours. This method, called pot setting, makes each serving in its own container. The result is a thick and creamy yogurt with a velvety texture and a slightly tangy flavor.
French-style yogurt is also known for its health benefits, as it is high in calcium and free of preservatives. Stick to plain if you’re looking for a low-sugar variety, though. If you’re a yogurt lover, French-style yogurt is definitely worth a try. With its delightful taste, flavor and texture, it’s a delicious and healthy snack or breakfast item that can be enjoyed by the whole family. Whether you make it at home or buy it from your local grocery store, French-style yogurt is sure to become your new favorite yogurt.
What is French-style yogurt?
French-style yogurt is a type of yogurt that is popular in France and is known for its thick and creamy texture, commitment to simple, high-quality ingredients and real fruit. It is similar to Greek yogurt, but the texture and method is a bit different.
Greek yogurt is strained to remove excess liquid, while French yogurt doesn’t get strained but is instead left to set for eight hours and is turned into yogurt via the fermenting/culturing process. This process is what gives the yogurt its thick consistency.
French-style yogurt is often made with whole milk, which gives it a rich and creamy flavor. However, it is also available in non-dairy varieties.
French-style yogurt is a delicious and healthy option for those who love yogurt. It can be enjoyed on its own, or used as a base for dips, dressings, and smoothies. With its thick and creamy texture, it is sure to satisfy even the most discerning yogurt lovers. The glass or ceramic jar it comes in makes it even more special. I have a blog post on how to repurpose glass yogurt jars here.
Origin of French style yogurt
French-style yogurt, also known as “pot-set” yogurt, has been a popular dairy product in France for centuries. It is made by adding live cultures to milk and letting it ferment in small, individual glass containers. This process gives the yogurt a thick, creamy texture and a tangy, slightly sour taste.
The origins of French-style yogurt can be traced back to the rural regions of France where farmers would make yogurt using milk from their own cows. They would heat the milk, add the bacterial cultures, and let it ferment in small pots.
In the early 20th century, commercial yogurt production began in France, with companies like Danone and Yoplait leading the way. These companies used modern manufacturing techniques to produce large quantities of yogurt, but they still maintained the traditional pot-set method of fermentation.
Today, French-style yogurt is enjoyed around the world, and many companies have started producing their own versions of this classic dairy product. Some popular brands on the U.S. market include La Fermière and Oui by Yoplait.
French-style yogurt has also become a popular ingredient in cooking and baking, adding a rich, creamy texture to everything from sauces to cakes.
How is French style yogurt made
French-style yogurt is made using whole milk and yogurt cultures. The milk used in the process is usually pasteurized and homogenized. The yogurt cultures used in the process are usually Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus. The milk and cultures are mixed together and then poured into little glass jars to set.
The process of making French-style yogurt requires you to pour each yogurt into an individual glass or ceramic pot. The small glass pots filled with milk and cultures are then placed in a warm environment, around 110°F, for several hours. During this time, the cultures ferment the milk, thickening it.
The fermentation process takes around eight hours, after which the yogurt is cooled and then packaged. The yogurt is not strained, unlike Greek yogurt, which is why it has a creamier texture and a milder taste.
French-style yogurt can also be made at home using a yogurt maker, Instant Pot, or slow cooker.
Overall, French-style yogurt is a delicious and nutritious alternative to traditional yogurt.
Difference between French style and regular yogurt
French-style yogurt is different from regular yogurt in a few ways. Here are some key differences:
French-style yogurt is thicker and creamier than regular yogurt and has a fresh taste. It has a velvety smooth texture that is similar to Greek yogurt, but without the tangy taste. This is because French-style yogurt is made with whole milk, which gives it a richer flavor and creamier texture.
The culturing process for French-style yogurt is different from regular yogurt. French-style yogurt is made in small batches and is cultured in the container it is sold in. This is in contrast to regular yogurt, which is typically made in large batches and then packaged into individual containers.
French-style yogurt is made with a fewer ingredients than regular yogurt. The simple ingredients are milk, cream, and live active cultures. Regular yogurt, on the other hand, may contain added thickeners, stabilizers, preservatives, and sweeteners.
French-style yogurt is higher in fat than regular yogurt, but it also contains protein and fewer carbohydrates. It is a good source of calcium, vitamin D, and probiotics, which are beneficial for gut health.
Health benefits of French style yogurt
French style yogurt is a creamy and delicious dairy product that offers several health benefits. Here are some of the most significant advantages of consuming French style yogurt:
- Probiotics: French style yogurt is rich in probiotics, which are live microorganisms that provide numerous health benefits. These probiotics help to maintain a healthy balance of bacteria in the gut, which can improve digestion, boost the immune system, and reduce the risk of certain diseases.
- Calcium: French style yogurt is an excellent source of calcium, a mineral that is essential for strong bones and teeth. Consuming calcium-rich foods like French style yogurt can help to prevent osteoporosis and other bone-related conditions.
- Protein: French style yogurt is also a decent source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. Protein can also help to keep you feeling full and satisfied, which can aid in weight loss and weight management.
- Vitamins and minerals: French style yogurt contains several essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12, potassium, and magnesium. These nutrients are important for maintaining overall health and vitality.
Is French-style yogurt healthy?
Overall, French style yogurt is a nutritious and delicious food that can provide numerous health benefits. Incorporating French style yogurt into your diet can help to improve digestion, boost the immune system, and support overall health and wellness.
That said, it’s definitely a treat. French-style yogurt is generally made with whole milk and is not a low-calorie food. Most individual servings are about 180-200 calories each.
In addition, fruit flavored yogurts have a significant amount of sugar, at least 16 grams of sugar per serving. French yogurt has about 4-5 grams of protein per serving, which is a lot less protein than Greek yogurt. If you’re watching your calorie or sugar intake, you may want to opt for another type of yogurt like Greek or Skyr yogurt.
Popular French style yogurt brands
French style yogurt has gained popularity in recent years, with many brands offering their own unique take on this creamy treat. Here are some of the most popular French style yogurt brands:
1. Oui by Yoplait
Oui by Yoplait — under the General Mills umbrella — is a leader in the U.S. French-style yogurt space. Sold in individual glass jars with a foil lid, the whole milk product line launched in 2017 and is inspired by a traditional French recipe.
Oui by Yoplait is made with real fruit and has traditional flavors like vanilla, strawberry, black cherry, and peach as well as maple and coffee if you want to switch it up. The brand has since gone on to launch a dairy-free line of yogurt with a coconut-based dairy alternative that’s perfect for those who follow a vegan diet. Oui by Yoplait is mainstream and sold at most large grocery retailers.
2. La Fermière
La Fermière means a female farmer in French and is a family-owned French yogurt and desserts company. They are based in Provence and have been around since 1952. The brand is also sold in France. They offer a range of yogurt flavors, including plain yogurt, vanilla, and fruit-on-the-bottom varieties.
Their yogurt is made with whole milk (rbGH free) and is slow-baked for a creamy texture. No artificial flavors or preservatives either! My pick is the lavender floral flavor, which has 4 grams of protein and 190 calories. With 17 gram of sugar, it’s quite sweet and is Provence in a jar! La Fermière is available at most Whole Foods and The Fresh Market locations.
Danone is a major player in the French yogurt market, with a wide range of yogurt products available. They offer both plain and flavored yogurts, with options for low-fat, organic, and Greek-style varieties. Danone has been making yogurt since 1929 and is known for its commitment to quality. The brand is called Dannon in the U.S.
4. Yeo Valley
Yeo Valley is a British company that offers a range of organic dairy products, including French-style yogurt that’s low in fat and sugar. Their yogurt is made with organic milk and contains no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. Yeo Valley offers a variety of flavors, including raspberry, lemon curd, and honey.
How to enjoy French-style yogurt
French-style yogurt is a versatile and delicious treat that can be enjoyed in many ways. Here are a few ideas for how to savor this creamy delight:
For breakfast, dessert or as a snack
French-style yogurt is a great option any time of day. The French love it in the morning or as a dessert. But feel free to have one as a snack. To give it more of a punch, simply spoon it into a bowl and add your favorite toppings, such as fresh fruit, nuts, or granola. You can also mix in some honey or jam for added sweetness.
French-style yogurt can add a creamy texture to your morning smoothie. Combine it with your favorite fruits, such as berries or bananas, lots of ice, and blend until smooth. You can also add some spinach or kale for added nutrients.
French-style yogurt can be used as a substitute for sour cream or buttermilk in both sweet and savory baking recipes. It can also be used as a creamy filling for pies or tarts. Try using it in a lemon tart or cheesecake for a tangy twist.
In savory dishes
French-style yogurt can add delicious flavor to savory dishes, such as soups or stews. The plain variety can also be used as a topping for baked potatoes or tacos. Try mixing it with some herbs and spices for a flavorful dip or spread.
French-style yogurt is a versatile and delicious treat that can be enjoyed in many ways. Experiment with different flavors and combinations to find your favorite way to enjoy this creamy delight.
French-style yogurt is a delicious and healthy option for those who enjoy yogurt. It embodies the French way of life which is all about enjoying life’s simple pleasures, so definitely try this new treat to see what you’re missing.
It is a great option for those looking for a delicious snack or breakfast choice accompanied by a moment of pure enjoyment. Why not give French style yogurt a try? It is sure to become a fast favorite!