The Real Deal on Greek Yogurt

Where to buy Greek yogurt — and how to use it

If you’ve picked up a cookbook lately — or even just read a few magazine recipes — you’ve probably stumbled across Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt is the newest craze in cookery, and many people rave over its nutritious properties. So what exactly is Greek yogurt, what makes it different, and is it really as great as people think?

What is Greek yogurt?

Greek yogurt is a much thicker version of regular yogurt with much of the whey, or liquidy part, removed. In fact, you can actually make your own Greek yogurt by straining regular plain yogurt through a cheesecloth or coffee filter for a few hours (much longer than that and you get yogurt cheese!).

The result is a very thick, creamy yogurt with comparable calories to other yogurts.

What does it taste like?

Plain Greek yogurt is basically pretty similar to sour cream (and you can use it as a replacement, too). Many people buy Greek yogurt because they like the thicker, creamier texture. You can get it fat free, sugar free, and in a variety of different flavors, just like any other yogurt. People who find regular low fat yogurt watery often appreciate Greek yogurt’s creamy texture.

What’s the big deal?

There’s more to Greek yogurt than texture: it also contains much higher protein counts than many traditional yogurts. This, combined with its creaminess, makes it an ideal replacement for creams in a wide variety of recipes. There are many Greek yogurt recipes out there, and many new cookbooks call for Greek yogurt in low fat versions of old favorites.

If you want to buy Greek yogurt, you won’t have to look far — there are many Greek yogurt brands available, with more appearing everyday. You can get traditional Greek yogurt brands from companies like Fage or Trader Joe’s, but many common supermarket brands, such as Yoplait, are also becoming Greek yogurt brands.