Is Yogurt Good in Coffee?
Only one way to find out
Over the past year or so, I’ve put a lot of weird substances in my coffee in an attempt to expand my idea of how the drink can be consumed, but I hadn't yet put yogurt in coffee. There was the time I cracked an egg into my coffee after reading that it’s a not-uncommon practice among some Scandinavians. (I liked it; a cowboy’s energy drink.) Then there was the time I added a spoonful of salt to my coffee, which is said to reduces bitterness. (I didn’t like it; too salty.) Soaking my coffee beans in wine overnight and then grinding and brewing them was exactly as disgusting as it sounds. Less disgusting—delicious, actually—was adding a spoonful of condensed milk, that sweet and gloppy and underappreciated dairy product, to my morning cup.
With that in mind, I figured a dollop of yogurt in my coffee would be a safe thing to try—and I have to say that it was quite an agreeable combination. I experimented with a few kinds, including Fage Greek yogurt, Chobani coconut-blended Greek yogurt and Siggi’s vanilla-flavored yogurt. I didn’t use any fruit-flavored yogurts because this is coffee we’re dealing with and semi-regular yogurt is already out-there enough, for me at least.
All three yogurts mixed in relatively well—while the yogurt didn’t curdle in the hot coffee I brewed up, some particles did remain suspended in the admixture, giving the drink an unfiltered look and texture. Which didn’t bother me, since almond milk occasionally does that too, albeit less extremely.
Surprisingly, what the yogurt did—in every case, by varying degrees—was make the coffee more acidic, at least as far as my taste buds were concerned. I’m guessing that’s because the yogurts’ tanginess accentuated the coffee’s bitterness rather than muting it, as the addition of milk does. (Perhaps I didn’t use enough yogurt, though.) In each case—I tested three different cups—I added a small spoonful of yogurt. My favorite addition was the coconut-blended yogurt, whose distinct taste created a milder flavor of coffee than the other yogurts could.
Adding yogurt to coffee isn’t entirely unusual. The Vietnamese do it, and it’s been attempted by some enterprising coffee drinkers outside Southeast Asia. I’ll need to try it a few more times to work out how best to make it. For instance, I’ve heard you shouldn’t add yogurt when the coffee is really hot because it’ll kill the live bacteria in the yogurt. Next time I’ll add more yogurt to the mix to see how that turns out. But the point is that I’d try it again, unlike wine-coffee and salt-coffee.