In recent years, frozen yogurt has become extremely popular. Frozen yogurt is a frozen dessert that is made from yogurt and predominantly uses dairy products as its ingredients. Frozen yogurt differs from ice cream because of its more tart and tangy taste and it also has a lower fat content because frozen yogurt is made from milk and not cream.
So, how is frozen yogurt made? In this article, we will discuss the often-asked question and also take a peek into some of the world’s most famous frozen yogurt brands.
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How Is Frozen Yogurt Made?
Frozen yogurt is made from milk and it contains milk solids, milk fat and yogurt culture — which are essentially live bacteria like Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus — along with some sweeteners, flavorings and natural/artificial coloring.
The milk fat in the frozen yogurt constitutes around 0.5% to 6% of the yogurt and this makes the frozen yogurt rich and creamy. Milk solids comprise around 8% to 14% of the volume of the yogurt and are made up of protein which makes the yogurt smooth and also prevents it from melting and lactose that makes the frozen yogurt sweet.
Beet or cane sugar is added to the frozen yogurt for added sweetness, which constitutes around 15% to 17% of the ingredients and it also helps to add volume, improve the body and texture of the product. Vegetable additive or gelatin is added to reduce the crystallization and stabilize the frozen yogurt. This also helps to maintain the smooth consistency of the froyo despite any change in temperature or handling.
Large frozen yogurt manufacturers use assembly lines to produce frozen yogurt. The process of making frozen yogurt starts by combining the milk products and the stabilizing agent and homogenizing them. The yogurt culture is then added when the mixture is at around 32°C.
The mixture is then left to set and is ready for cooling. The mixture is then cooled at a temperature between 0°C to 4°C and once it reaches the desired temperature and thickness, the mixture is put into aging tanks, where it rests for around 4 hours.
Then, sweeteners, colorings and flavorings are added to the mixture and it is further cooled to -6°C to -2°C. Air is then incorporated into the frozen yogurt mixture by agitating it to add extra volume and also make the consistency smooth. The mixture is then frozen rapidly so that large ice crystal formation is prevented and the final product is then stored in a cold place, ready to be shipped.
A Look at Some Popular Frozen Yogurt Brands
The Country’s Best Yogurt (formerly called This Can’t Be Yogurt), popularly known as TCBY is an American frozen yogurt chain and is among the largest soft-serve frozen yogurt retailers in the United States.
TCBY opened the first frozen yogurt shop in the U.S. in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1981. They realized that they had a unique product and began to offer franchising opportunities in 1982. Today, TCBY has around 360 stores across the country. In 1995, TCBY started co-branding along with brands like McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Burger King and Subway.
In the early 200s, TCBY was acquired by Mrs. Fields and it became Mrs. Fields Famous Brands. In 2010, a self-serve prototype store was opened by the company in Salt Lake City, Utah, where customers could serve themselves and choose from a combination of flavors, choose their toppings and pay according to the weight.
The product offering of TCBY includes frozen yogurt that is available in a wide assortment of flavors and the chain offers both soft-serve, as well as hard-scooped frozen yogurt; however, only soft-serve frozen yogurt is offered at the newer stores, which follow the self-service model and the customers are charged by the weight.
The soft-serve frozen yogurt is available in various flavors such as Golden Vanilla, White Chocolate Mousse and Chocolate and there are additional rotating flavors. There are also beverages like Frappe Chillers and Berriyo yogurt smoothies offered by TCBY. TCBY launched its reformulated new version of the frozen yogurt, “Super Fro-Yo” that offers a richer nutrient profile in 2011. It then launched Greek frozen yogurt in 2012.
Today, TCBY has products suitable for people following gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, protein-rich and GMO-free diets. Their frozen yogurt contains protein, calcium, fiber, vitamin D and 7 types of live and active probiotic cultures in their yogurt blends.
Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt was started in 2007. It offers soft-serve frozen yogurt in different flavors and toppings.
Menchie’s opened its first store in Valley Village in Los Angeles, California in 2007. It was started by the couple Adam and Danna Caldwell and the name “Menchie” was Adam’s nickname for Danna and it is also the name of the company’s mascot. In 2010, Menchie’s was recognized as the “No. 1 fastest growing food franchise” in the U.S.
Today, Menchie’s is present in over 540 countries across the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, England, Japan, The Bahamas, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, India, China, Bangladesh, and Guatemala.
Menchie’s offers frozen yogurt flavors that are made using their own proprietary recipes. The frozen yogurt is made from fresh milk, is a great source of calcium and offers the benefits of live and active cultures. The frozen yogurt does not contain artificial colors, artificial flavors, fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, and frozen yogurts are certified Kosher by the KSA.
Menchie’s offers non-fat, dairy-free, gluten-free and sugar-free options and vegan frozen yogurt flavors including Cookie Sandwich that is made using almond butter, Chocolate Hazelnut which is made from cashew milk and Dark Chocolate Mousse that is made from almond milk. Menchie’s also offers frozen yogurt cakes.
With its headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona, Pinkberry is a franchise of frozen dessert restaurants.
Pinkberry was started by Young Lee and Hye Kyung Hwang in 2005. Pinkberry frozen yogurt became so popular that the duo opened their 2nd store in 2006 and then started opening stores across New York and Southern California and then it opened its first overseas store in Kuwait and then across 10 countries in North Africa, Middle East, and Turkey.
Today, Pinkberry has over 300 stores in 20 countries worldwide. In 2015, Pinkberry was acquired by Kayla Foods Intl.
Pinkberry’s distinctive frozen yogurt is made from the freshest ingredients, real milk, and real yogurt and is served with fresh fruit that is cut by hand. Pinkberry offers a wide range of frozen yogurt products and flavors. It offers tart and sweet frozen yogurts in a huge variety of flavors such as cherry, green tea, coconut, blood orange, pina colada, watermelon, wild berry, chocolate, cookies and cream, mint chocolate and salted caramel, to name a few.
It offers dairy-free frozen yogurt in peach passion and tropical mango flavors and a whole lot of fresh fruit, liquid and gourmet toppings. Pinkberry also offers other products like bubble waffles, parfait and pops, and smoothies in various flavors.
So, now that you have understood how is frozen yogurt made, we are sure that you’re quite tempted to head out to your closest froyo store and enjoy this cold and delicious creation as an indulgent treat.