The types of yogurt available today are numerous as you will see below. You probably have already realized this if you have recently visited your grocery dairy section and glanced at the quantity yogurt products available. It is quite an amazing site if you’re a yogurt lover. While variety is a good thing because it fills the needs of many consumers, it also creates confusion. We wrote this article to help clarify the different types of yogurt and to assist readers in finding the best yogurt to fit their needs.
Types of Yogurt
Full-fat or Whole Milk Yogurt – This type of yogurt has recently caught fire in terms of sales. This is partly due to studies that have shown that full-fat yogurt may help assist in weight loss better than the lower fat varieties. Why? Because it keeps you full for a longer time. Full-fat yogurt is made from whole milk with some companies using a combination of milk and cream.
Low-fat Yogurt – In order for yogurt to be considered low-fat, it must contain between 0.5 and 2 percent milkfat. These are U.S. FDA rules and may vary from other definitions of low-fat outside the U.S.
Light – It contains 33 percent fewer calories or half the fat of full-fat yogurt.
Non-Fat Yogurt – Non-fat yogurt does not have to be 100 percent free of fat. The FDA only requires 0.5 percent milkfat or less. Be aware that it isn’t uncommon for manufacturers to use artificial sweeteners, additives, and thickeners in non-fat yogurt to make up for the loss of fat. Also, note that non-fat does not mean sugar-free or calorie-free. Be sure to review the ingredients and nutrition to ensure non-fat yogurt is for you.
Cream Top – This yogurt is non-homogenized so the cream rises to the top. It can be stirred into the yogurt for a creamier product or skimmed from the top to reduce the fat and calories.
Fruit on the Bottom & Blended – The fruit on the bottom means, well, the fruit is on the bottom. Blended means the fruit is mixed into the yogurt.
Whipped – Whipped yogurt has had extra air add to it to create a fluffy and light texture. Although you receive an almost dessert-like texture with whipped yogurt, you also will be consuming less yogurt per serving compared to regular yogurt of the same size. Essentially, more air means less yogurt per container.
Greek Yogurt – The difference between regular yogurt and Greek yogurt boils down to how it is strained. Greek yogurt has more of its whey (watery portion) removed, which leaves a thicker texture. Greek yogurt has about double the protein, half the carbs, and approximately half the sodium of regular yogurt. It also makes a good substitute for high fat/calorie foods like sour cream and mayo.
Icelandic Yogurt – Also known as skyr, it is a very thick yogurt due to its extensive straining process. It is often thicker than Greek yogurt if you can believe that! To give you an idea of its thickness, it usually takes 4 cups of milk that is strained to make 1 cup of Icelandic yogurt. It is traditionally made from non-fat milk but the major manufacturers make whole milk varieties. The major brands in the U.S. are Smari, Skyr, and Siggi’s.
Australian -style Yogurt – According to Wallaby, the makers of Australian-style yogurt sold in the U.S., the cooking process of their yogurt is slow. It takes double the time to create Aussie-style yogurt compared to regular yogurt. An Australian-style yogurt like Noosa is not strained and is made from whole milk, sweet honey, and real fruit.
Goat Milk Yogurt – This type of yogurt is typically made from whole goat milk. The benefit to consuming goat milk instead of cow milk is that it can often be tolerated better in terms of digestion. In fact, there are people who are lactose intolerant who cannot stomach cow milk yogurt but can easily digest goat milk yogurt.
Drinkable Yogurt – This is basically liquefied yogurt with a texture thin enough to drink. These are great for people on-the-go who want the convenience of a drink without having to worry about a spoon. In this category of types of yogurt, we would place products like kefir, smoothies, and any other drinkable yogurt products.