Dairy and Non-Dairy Recipes - The Frugal Homestead

How to Make Sour Cream in a Yogurt Maker

How to Make Sour Cream in a Yogurt Maker
How to Make Sour Cream in a Yogurt Maker

How to Make Sour Cream In a Yogurt Maker

When I first started creating homemade yogurt, cheese, and butter I had no idea how many other dairy products you can make at home. Sour cream is a delicious dairy product you can create with just 2 or 3 ingredients. There are several ways to make your own. If you aren’t concerned about having probiotics in your sour cream, here’s an easy alternative to the real thing.

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Sour cream in a glass with dill leaves

Easy Alternative To Cultured Sour Cream

1 cup heavy cream

1 Tbs lemon juice (or vinegar)

Stir the lemon juice or vinegar into the heavy cream. Cover and allow to sit at room temperature for at least an hour, or overnight if you have time. Stir again and use in place of sour cream in recipes.

sour cream in a bowl

How To Make Real Sour Cream

If you would like to make the real thing, complete with probiotics, here are the super easy instructions I recently came up with.

Note: Store bought has thickening agents, so your homemade sour cream is likely to be a bit thinner. If you’d like to make it thicker, scoop the finished product into a colander lined with cheese cloth and allow some of the liquid to drain off.

Easy Sour Cream in a Yogurt Maker

1 cup heavy cream

1 or 2 Tbs sour cream

Measure sour cream into a bowl. Add a small amount of cream and blend, continue adding cream and stirring until all of the cream has been stirred in. Place bowl in yogurt maker and leave, undisturbed, for 12 to 18 hours.

And For My Next Project – Making Sour Cream With Powdered Culture

Perhaps you don’t want to buy sour cream just to make more. I get it! You can also purchase starter culture and keep it until you’re ready to make a batch.

I’d like to try making my own with the powdered culture also. It’s on my bucket list. I know, I have a weird bucket list!

Here’s Why I Tried This…

Some of our local grocery stores reduce prices on items that will expire in a few days and I often pick up dairy products this way. I use them up quickly and get a deal.

The other day I found sour cream marked down to 60¢ for a 12 oz container, so I bought it and used some to make a new batch. I looked for instructions using a yogurt maker, but didn’t find any and ended up winging it.

Read my post ‘Frugal Milk, Cheese, and Yogurt’ for more ideas using marked down milk. Or check out my instructions for making Queso Fresco – a very easy cheese that only requires milk, salt, and vinegar or lemon juice!

For my first try, I used 3 cups whole milk, 1/4 cup powdered milk, mixed with 1/4 cup sour cream and left this overnight in my yogurt maker. It had separated into a whey-like liquid and thick soured cream on top. I drained off the liquid and used in place of buttermilk in a muffin recipe (came out good) and we used some of the thick sour cream on tacos.

The second time around I used cream and some of the thick sour cream from the first batch… it came out great, although a bit thinner than store bought. Next time I may try using some powdered milk mixed in to thicken it a bit. Now that I know that this works, I have even more reason to pick up the marked down dairy products at the store!

Do you make your own sour cream and other cultured dairy products? Leave a comment!

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4 Comments on “How to Make Sour Cream in a Yogurt Maker

  1. I just recently bought a yogurt maker. I was so excited to use it and reap the benefits 12 hours later, only to find a runny, lumpy mess. I made it again a while later and when it was done setting, I set a thickness of 4 long paper towels on my counter and scooped the yogurt onto the paper towel, in batches of 3, about. I repeated the process 3 more times for a total of 4 strainings and it comes out super thick and incredibly creamy every time. I imagine the same would work for the sour cream. Try it!

    1. Hi Rachel,
      I have also strained my homemade yogurt for a thicker product, more like Greek yogurt. I use a linen dish towel and I’ve even made yogurt ‘cheese’ like this by adding some weight to drain out extra whey. I’m getting a pretty good set now by using Greek yogurt as my starter. If there is extra whey, I pour a little over the pets’ food.

      Thanks for sharing your experience!

  2. Thank you for the encouragement to “wing it” when we can’t find exact directions on doing something new, Lisa! That in itself is a big part of being self-reliant. 🙂

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