7 Things You Didn’t Know You Could Do With Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt is something I eat pretty much every single day. I love how nutritious and filling it is. It is a very quick convenient meal that is packed with protein and comes in full-fat, low-fat, and no-fat varieties. What differentiates Greek yogurt from traditional yogurt is that Greek yogurt has been strained to remove the whey. As a result, Greek yogurt has a creamier, thicker texture and rich flavor. In addition, the removal of whey results in a healthier yogurt with 40 percent less sugar, 38 percent less sodium and more than twice the amount of protein than traditional yogurt. Each spoonful is also packed with nutrients and provides numerous health benefits.

Those facts are just incredible to me, so it seems like no surprise that Greek yogurt has pretty much taken over the whole yogurt section at the store. It seems like every yogurt brand like Yoplait and Dannon have jumped on the Greek yogurt band wagon. This is definitely true since retail dollar sales of Greek yogurt in the U.S. market increased more than 50 percent in 2012 to reach $1.6 billion, according to a report released by Packaged Facts.

While I would love to go on and on about the many health benefits of Greek yogurt, I will spare you and just share with you seven ways to use this fantastic food, other than just eating it plain. I would love to hear if you have tried any of these and if they have worked well for you. Please share in the comments below.

Make Cheese

Place 3-4 layers of cheesecloth in the bottom of a colander set over a large bowl. Put the Greek yogurt in the cheesecloth (feel free to add salt, herbs, or spices to the yogurt first for flavored cheese) and put the bowl in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning you’ll have soft, spreadable yogurt cheese.

Replace Mayonnaise or Sour Cream

Just about any recipe that calls for mayonnaise or sour cream can use plain Greek yogurt instead. Try it in mayonnaise-based salads and sour cream-based dips for an extra punch of protein.

Deep Condition Your Hair

The fat in Greek yogurt makes a great moisturizer. Use it as a deep-conditioning treatment by applying plain Greek directly to your hair. Cover your head with a shower cap and let the Greek yogurt soak into your hair for 30 minutes. Then, wash your hair as you regularly would.

Replace Some Butter in Baking

If you’re looking for ways to reduce fat in homemade baked goods, try swapping some of the butter for low-fat or non-fat Greek yogurt. As an added bonus, Greek yogurt will also make your baked goods incredibly tender and moist.

Moisturize Your Skin

Greek yogurt is also a great moisturizer for your skin. You can buy a number of beauty products with Greek yogurt in them or make your own moisturizing mask by combining plain Greek yogurt with a little bit of honey. Leave the mixture on your face for 15 minutes before rinsing it off with warm water and a washcloth.

Fight Acne

More research is needed but preliminary studies suggest that, when applied topically, the probiotics in Greek yogurt can help heal acne and may also create a barrier that prevents new acne-causing bacteria from reaching the skin.

Relieve a Sunburn

Even though more research is needed to confirm the restorative effects of topically-applied probiotics I guarantee you that creamy, cold Greek yogurt will feel great when applied to sun-burned skin.

  •    www.thedailymeal.com
  •    health.usnews.com

    Mary Richardson
    Weekly Newsletter Contributor since 2014
    Email the author! mary@dvo.com

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