How to Thicken Your Yogurt Sauce in 6 Different Ways
Have you ever made a plain yogurt sauce only to find that it’s too thin? Or maybe you tried using your yogurt maker to make homemade yogurt sauce as a sour cream substitute, but you’re unsure how to start.
Either way, don’t worry—thickening a creamy yogurt sauce is easy! With some know-how, you can thicken your yogurt sauce in no time. Other ways to thicken sauce without flour are explained here.
Here are six different ways to do it:
Adjust Your Milk
If you’re using skim milk, whole milk, or anything in between, the fat content will affect how thick your yogurt sauce turns out. The higher the fat content, the thicker the sauce will be. So, if you want a thick yogurt sauce, use whole milk. If you want a thinner sauce, use skim milk. It’s as simple as that!
Strain the Yogurt
Straining the yogurt is easy to remove excess water and make your sauce thicker. All you need is some cheesecloth or a coffee filter. Line a strainer with your chosen material, set it over a bowl, and pour in the yogurt. Allow it to sit for about an hour so that all the liquid can drain. Then, transfer the strained yogurt to a new bowl and discard the excess liquid. Viola! You now have thicker yogurt sauce.
Increase the Fat Content
If you want to thicken your yogurt sauce without changing the flavor, try increasing the fat content. This can be done by adding heavy cream, half-and-half, or even mayonnaise! Just mix in a little bit at a time until you reach the desired consistency. Remember that this method will also make your sauce richer and more flavorful, so use it sparingly if you want those things to stay the same.
Add a Thickener
Many different types of thickeners can be used to make a firmer yogurt sauce. Some common ones are flour, arrowroot powder, gelatin, xanthan gum and tapioca starch.
Just mix in a little bit with cold water until your desired consistency is reached—be careful not to add too much, or you’ll have a gloopy and an overly thickened yogurt. Start with just 1/4 teaspoon and go from there!
Heat the Milk Longer
If making your yogurt from scratch, try heating the milk for longer before adding the culture to prevent a grainy texture.
The longer you heat it, the more water will evaporate and the thicker your resulting yogurt will be. Just be careful not to heat it for too long or at too high a temperature—you don’t want to scald the milk! Aim for around 185 degrees Fahrenheit (85 degrees Celsius).
If needed, you can also boil the water off after culturing for thickness adjustments. Boil in a pot on the stove while occasionally whisking until reduced by ⅓, then let cool slightly before whisking into the rest of the mixture. Yes, boiling off excess water is an effective way to thicken, but I wouldn’t recommend starting with this method as it’s difficult to control the amount being removed.
Chill It in The Freezer
Freezing is another excellent way to remove excess water and thicken your yogurt sauce simultaneously! Just pour your sauce into an ice cube tray and freeze it until solidified—this usually takes about four hours, depending on how cold your freezer is. Once frozen solid, pop out cubes, place them in a plastic baggie & return to the freezer.
When ready to serve, let the baggie of cubes sit out long enough for them to dissolve slightly & whisk them into a chilled dish.
Freezing completely & then breaking up the frozen solid mass isn’t recommended, as large pieces could remain.
As you can see, there are many different ways and a list of ingredients to thicken your runny yogurt sauce. Experiment with different methods until you find one that works best for you! And don’t forget —have fun in the kitchen!