For those who make their own yogurt, here is a pretty handy tip that I just learned about that I think makes my final product much better:

When you are ready to add the yogurt to the milk, rather than adding it to the saucepan and trying to “gently combine” as all instruction manuals seem to say, place the yogurt into a measuring cup (easier to measure out 1/2 cup that way) and then ladle a scoop of milk in. Mix until smooth and add a little more milk. Keep mixing until measuring cup is almost full and yogurt is very thin. Add back to saucepan and mix.

This has helped prevent lumps in my yogurt because, without fail, every time I thought I’d finished with my “gentle combine,” I’d pour it into my yogurt machine and it would be lumpy like coal.

Perhaps everyone else also knew this secret but I did not and thought I’d share!