Kefir starter

Promoting gut health and boosting the immune system, among other beneficial effects.

Kefir starter

Origins of kefir may be 4000 years old but it’s still a major trend! Well-known as a fermented probiotic milk it contains vitamin B1, B12, calcium, folate and vitamin K2. Do good to your health with 100 billion live and active bacteria per 100 g serving! Once made, homemade kefir keeps for 2 to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.

  • No electrical appliance required
  • Contains probiotics
  • Easy and economical
  • 24 hours incubation at room temperature (23-25°C)
  • No preservatives or coloring agents
  • Gluten free
  • Kosher certified
  • Halal certified

Each 18 g box makes 6 liters of fresh yogurt

Kefir starter

Ingredients

Active bacterial cultures (L. lactis, L. cremoris, L. diacetylactis, L. acidophilus, S. cerevisiae, K. lactis) and maltodextrin.
Contains: Milk

This product is manufactured in a facility that manipulates products containing soy and milk.

Ingredients

Size & weight

Net weight :

18 g (6 sachets of 3g each)

For 6 liters (quarts)

Size:

64.5 x 29.5 x 94.5 mm

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3 Reviews

Very tasty

I bought the kit from iherb. Already used it twice. It produces tasty kefir. My only concern is that I have to boil the milk. Is it crucial? If it is, can i microwave it?

Makes great yogurt

I got the yellow box of this brand and every batch turned out great. Actually buying more as we speak. My family can't even keep enough for a starter batch.

Easy to make

I followed directions, boiled the milk then waited for it to cool down to less than 77 degrees, added 1 package to a quart and let stand sealed overnight (24 hrs). This is great tasting, you can use it over cereal, mix with small yogurt, use in your smoothie, or just drink plain. It is great tasting and handy to have ready in the fridge. Once you've made it you can just boil the milk and add a cup of your ready made Kefir to make more.

NOTE: Before asking a question or if you did nott find your answer here. We invite you to search in the FAQ section of our website.

31 Questions:

Ivar, location South Woodstock , United States - 01/09/2016check marc
Can I use goat milk?
Yogourmet replied:
We thank you for your interest in the Yogourmet products. You may use homogenized/pasteurized goat milk to make kefir. The final product will be less firm then if made with cow milk. Back in 2009, we have tested the Meyenberg powdered goat milk that is available in the United States, making kefir with it, and it was a success. Best regards.
Anne, location Union, United States - 18/08/2016check marc
Should kefir be chunky after 24 hours?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Anne, Kefir should have set (lightly firm texture) after the 24 hours incubation at room temperature, however, it needs to go in the fridge at least 8 hours to be firm enough.
Alison, location trinidad and tobago - 06/08/2016check marc
Can I use water or almond milk and how?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Alison, the tests that we have run several years ago have demonstrated that it is not possible to make yogurt and kefir with almond, coco or rice beverages. It is possible though to make yogurt and kefir with certain soy beverages, see soy beverages list for more information. Yogourmet kefir starter doesn't work with water because the strains are lactic based. Kefir strains need milk to grow so that's why it doesn't work with water.
Cathy, location Mt. Airy, United States - 04/08/2016check marc
I bought this kefir starter thinking I would make kefir with almond milk since I cannot digest casein. Your site says you can't make almond milk kefir. Can I make kefir water with this product?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Cathy, unfortunately the Yogourmet kefir starter doesn't work with water because the strains are lactic based. Kefir strains need milk to grow so that's why it doesn't work with water.
Harry, location Pinson, United States - 01/07/2016check marc
I went to the health food store to buy starter for fermented vegetables. They didn't have any. The recipes said I could use kefir whey 1/4 cup for a quart. Can I use the kefir starter in the vegetable ferment.
Yogourmet replied:
Sir : We thank you for your interest in the Yogourmet products, particularly the freeze-dried kefir starter. This particular product is designed for making homemade kefir. Unfortunately we do not know if it can be used for other applications such as fermented vegetables. For your information... The Yogourmet freeze-dried kefir starter contains active bacterial culture (includes lactic yeasts) and skim milk powder. The starter contains > 3 billion active bacterial culture and > 50000 lactic yeasts per gram while the kefir will contain +/- 1 billion active bacterial culture and +/- 10000 lactic yeasts per gram/milliliter. The major strains of active bacterial culture are Lactococcus lactis subspecies lactis, Lactococcus lactis subspecies cremoris, Lactococcus lactis subspecies diacetylactis, Lactobacillus casei and Lactobacillus acidophilus, while the major strains of lactic yeasts are Saccharomyces lactis and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Best regards.
Lois, location New Holland, United States - 25/06/2016check marc
How can something freeze dried have live organisms?
Yogourmet replied:
Sir, we thank you for your interest in the Yogourmet products, particularly the freeze-dried kefir starter. The lyophilization process (freeze-drying) does not affect the viability of bacteria, unlike "regular" drying (high temperature). Please consult the information available on our corporate website, following this link : http://www.lyo-san.ca/en/freeze-drying.php. Best regards.
Suzette, location United States - 2016-06-04 17:16:30check marc
Can I use this product to make coconut water kefir?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Suzette, unfortunately it is not possible to make homemade kefir with our kefir starter and coconut water (or plain water).
Elza, location United States - 17/05/2016check marc
Today at our local health food store I purchased your Yogourmet kefir starter. Does it include Bifidobacterium besides Lactobacillus cultures? How many total numbers of organisms can I expect?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Elza, thank you for your interest in our products. Our kefir starter does not contain Bifidobacterium, it contains L. lactis, L. cremoris, L. diacetylactis, L. acidophilus and lactic yeasts. If you are looking for Bifidobacterium longum strains, our probiotic yogurt starter does contain some. About the bacteria count, our kefir starter contains > 3 billion live and active bacteria and > 50000 lactic yeasts per g while the kefir will contain +/- 1 billion live and active bacteria and +/- 10000 lactic yeasts per g or ml.
Ofelia, location Long Beach, United States - 12/05/2016check marc
Hello, how many days the Kefir last in fridge after is been prepared with the milk, I am making and using fresh fruits to give flavor but it feels that they spoil easier like is only good after mixing for few days.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Ofelia, to flavor your kefir, use honey, maple syrup or fruit puree. You can also enjoy homemade kefir mixed in a smoothie with fresh fruits. It's better to add these ingredients at serving time, adding them before the kefir incubation process would not provide satisfactory results. Once made, homemade kefir (plain) keeps for 2 to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.
Stephanie, location Hernando, United States - 22/03/2016check marc
Can I use coconut milk?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Stephanie, the tests that we have run several years ago have demonstrated that it is not possible to make yogurt and kefir with almond, coco or rice beverages. It is possible though to make yogurt and kefir with certain soy beverages, see soy beverages list for more information.
Jeff , location United States - 01/03/2016check marc
According to your directions on the box, at the end of the process nothing is mentioned how to strain the kefir grains for the second batch/future use. At the end of fermentation process, I did not see any kefir grains.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Jeff, the Yogourmet kefir starter does not contain kefir grains so you can't keep and grow grains like people usually do to make another batch of kefir. We use kefir grains at our factory to make the starter but we take them out once the product is inoculated with the kefir bacteria. You can use a small quantity of homemade kefir to make 2 or 3 other batches. We do not recommend that practice because the texture and taste might change in the next batches. In order to proceed, use 60 ml (1/4 cup) of kefir from a previous batch to start a new batch of 1 litre, or 120 ml (1/2 cup) for 2 litres.
Kristen, location Richland, United States - 19/02/2016check marc
Can I use freeze-dried kefir when making yogurt in a yogurt maker? It states that you don't need a maker, but I have one.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Kristen, to make kefir you don't need a machine because the incubation process is done at room temperature (73-77°F). Heat one litre of milk to 180°F or bring to a boil. Then let cool down to 73-77°F. Dissolve 5 g of starter with a small quantity of lukewarm milk in a cup, then pour back into the litre of milk. Mix well. Pour the inoculated milk into a clean airtight container. Close the lid and let stand at room temperature until firm (about 24 hours). Refrigerate about 8 hours to stop the incubation process. Stir to liquefy and enjoy. Always store kefir in the refrigerator.
Cindy, location United States - 12/02/2016check marc
I started making kefir and my husband refrigerated the kefir after only two hours of fermentation. Do I need to start over and reheat and add more powder?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Cindy, you don't need to reheat the milk to 180°F then cool to 73-77°F. Just reheat the milk to 73-77°F (room temperature) and add another packet of kefir starter. 5 g for 1 litre or 10 g (full packet) for 2 litres.
Beverly, location Vero Beach, United States - 11/02/2016check marc
Sorry, my first question was redundant; everyone has asked the same one. I am very disappointed as I thought I was buying grains. Need to be able to make coconut & water kefir as I cannot tolerate milk.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Beverly, I am sorry to hear that you are disappointed because you bought our product thinking it was kefir grains, in fact we use kefir grains at our factory to make the kefir starter culture but there are actually no grains in it. On our packaging there is no mention of kefir grains and the picture is clearly some milk based kefir, we even mention in the directions that you need to use milk. Coconut, soy and rice beverages are not considered as milk products and they are not compatible with our kefir starter. Water either.
Jan, location Kalamazoo, United States - 29/01/2016check marc
Does this contain any GMOs (genetically modified organisms)? Is an official organic version available?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Jan, yes, our yogurt and kefir starters are GMO-free but they are not organic.
Stephanie, location Camas, United States - 09/01/2016check marc
Can the kefir grains be used again or do you have to start with a new packet with each batch?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Stephanie, you may start a new batch of kefir from a part of a previous one made with the Yogourmet kefir starter. We do not recommend that practice because the texture and taste might change in the next batches. In order to proceed, use 60 ml (1/4 cup) of kefir from a previous batch to start a new batch of 1 litre, or 120 ml (1/2 cup) for 2 litres. To avoid possibilities of contamination, we suggest to reserve the portion of kefir that will be used as a starter before you start taking some kefir to eat.
Marilla, location Geneva, United States - 31/12/2015check marc
Is this Kefir starter considered Kefir "Grains"? If not, what is the difference? Thank you!
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Marilla, the Yogourmet kefir starter does not contain kefir grains (seeds) so you can't keep grains like people usually do to make another batch of kefir. We use kefir grains at our factory to make the starter but we take them out once the product is inoculated with the kefir bacteria. You can use a small quantity of homemade kefir to make 2 or 3 other batches. We do not recommend that practice because the texture and taste might change in the next batches. In order to proceed, use 60 ml (1/4 cup) of kefir from a previous batch to start a new batch of 1 litre, or 120 ml (1/2 cup) for 2 litres.
JT, location United States - 19/12/2015check marc
If the ambient temperature of the household is less than the package suggests (about 60 degrees for us) does it take longer for a proper curd to form? Is this acceptable?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi JT, kefir needs to incubate at 73-77°F because the bacteria will grow properly at that specific temperature. If your household temperature is at 60 I think you will have trouble making kefir over 24 hours or even over a longer period of time. I suggest you to put the kefir container near a heat source during the incubation, like beside a baseboard or over the refrigerator. You can also try putting the kefir container in an insulated bag or blanket to minimize the temperature loss from 73-77°F to 60°F. I hope this answers your question :)
Karen, location Saratoga Springs, United States - 28/11/2015check marc
When I opened my jar of Kefir after storing it in the refrigerator for a week, gas was released. Is this normal?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Karen, when kefir bacteria grows in the milk it triggers a fermentation process, moreover, our kefir starter also contains lactic yeasts that keeps fermenting even after the 24 hours incubation. When you opened the jar, the gas produced from the fermentation was released, so yes it is normal.
Richard, location United States - 23/10/2015check marc
Can soy or coconut milk be used with the freeze-dried kefir starter?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Richard, the tests that we have run several years ago have demonstrated that it is not possible to make yogurt and kefir with almond, coco or rice beverages. It is possible though to make yogurt and kefir with certain soy beverages, see soy beverages list for more information.
Steve, location United States - 19/10/2015check marc
Why doesn't the kefir starter say probiotics on the package or show a list of bacteria present like the yogurt starter does?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Steve, kefir is considered a probiotic but we didn't write it down on the packaging (box) or on the packets, on the other hand the list of bacteria and yeasts is on the back of the box. Ingredients: Active bacterial culture (L. lactis, L. cremoris, L. diacetylactis, L. acidophilus), lactic yeasts, skim milk powder. Different from the yogurt starters packets, the kefir starter packets are blank but I cannot give you an explanation why.
Lewis, location Plattsburgh, United States - 04/10/2015check marc
Once the Kefir is made how do I identify the seeds and how do I save them to use to make more kefir? Thank you.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Lewis, there is no kefir seeds/grains in our kefir starter, however we use grains in our laboratory to make the different bacteria that are found in the starter. If you want to make another batch of kefir with a previous one, use 60 ml (1/4 cup) from a previous batch to start a new batch of 1 litre, or 120 ml (1/2 cup) for 2 litres. We do not recommend that practice because the texture and taste might change in the next batches.
Daniela, location Miami, United States - 03/10/2015check marc
Can I use water instead of milk?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Daniela, unfortunately our kefir starter is not compatible with water, the bacteria absolutely needs milk or soy beverage to grow.
Joe, location Pueblo, United States - 30/09/2015check marc
Is it sustainable?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Joe, if by sustainable you mean if you can make a new batch of kefir from a previous one the answer is yes. We do not recommend that practice because the texture and taste might change in the next batches. In order to proceed, use 60 ml (1/4 cup) of kefir from a previous batch to start a new batch of 1 litre, or 120 ml (1/2 cup) for 2 litres.
Patsy An, location Santa Barbara, United States - 18/09/2015check marc
Hello, I have used your kefir starter many times. Most recently I made a batch with soy milk that was bubbly and after being in the refrigerator separated. Is this normal? Is it safe to drink? Thank you for your help.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Patsy An, unfortunately not all soy beverages brands are working well, only the following brands are working: soy beverages list. For you other question maybe it is best not to drink it since the kefir bacteria didn't grow as planned. Best regards.
John, location Dania Beach, United States - 30/08/2015check marc
Could you tell me where to find Kefir starter in Hollywood or around in Florida?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi John, Yogourmet products are available in your local health food stores, larger chain stores like Whole Foods, Sprouts, Earth Fare, Mother Earth and Wegman's. You could also contact our official USA distributor: VMC Products for Health, 92-96 Maple Street, Weehawken NJ 07086, 1-800-863-5606 (toll free), www.vmc-health.com, sales@vmc-health.com.
Scott, location Boise, United States - 28/08/2015check marc
If the starter is biologically the same as its parent in your factory (which is produced from grains), why do grains not develop from it?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Scott, kefir grains cannot be made, they grow in size while they are being cultured in milk over a certain period of time. These grains could then be transferred or sold to other people. Since kefir grains are removed from our freeze-dried starter, the production of kefir at home with our starter will never produce kefir grains.
Sugeet, location Ashland, United States - 08/06/2015check marc
Apparently your product is not Kiefer crystals. I understand if I had crystals I could strain them out of the resulting Kiefer and use them to start again. Is this true or not true? And what is your starter?
Yogourmet replied:
Hi Sugeet, our kefir starter contain freeze-dried active bacterial culture and lactic yeasts coming from kefir grains we have in our laboratory. Since there is no kefir grains in the starter you can't obtain grains but you can make another batch of kefir from a previous one. Please see FAQ section.
David, location Berkeley, United States - 23/04/2015check marc
Health wise how does kefir differ from the probiotic products? Thanks, David.
Yogourmet replied:
Hi David, kefir is good as probiotic yogurt for your health. In fact kefir is a renown probiotic and some people say it's even better than probiotics coming from yogurt. The big difference is that kefir contains more types of bacteria (15 to 20 species) than probiotic yogurt (between 3 and 5).
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