Difference between Buttermilk and Yogurt

Key Difference: Buttermilk refers to two different forms of beverages: traditional and cultured. Traditional buttermilk is the substance that is leftover substance after butter is churned out of cream. The cultured buttermilk is artificial fermenting of milk causing it to thicken. Yogurt is a diary product that is created by fermenting milk using bacteria. The bacteria that is used to ferment milk is known as ‘yogurt cultures’.

Buttermilk and yogurt are two different types of dairy products. These two are two different forms of milk that are created by fermenting milk in some way. Buttermilk and yogurt play an important part in cooking and diet in many different cultures around the world. These are completely different from each other in almost every aspect.

Buttermilk refers to two different forms of beverages: traditional and cultured. Traditional buttermilk is the substance that is leftover substance after butter is churned out of cream. The cultured buttermilk is artificial fermenting of milk causing it to thicken. More commonly buttermilk is now used to refer to these fermented beverages. These beverages are commonly found in warm climates, such as Middle East, Pakistan, India and in cold climates such as Germany, Poland, Scandinavia and the Netherlands.

This drink is created from cow’s milk and is fermented with lactic acid bacteria, which causes the milk to thicken and acquire a sour, acidic taste. Two types of bacteria that are used for fermentation include Streptococcus lactis or Lactobacillus bulgaricus. The bacteria ferments the lactose in the milk, producing lactic acid. The traditional buttermilk has a less acidic and tangy taste compared to the cultured buttermilk. In India, the term buttermilk refers to the liquid that is left over after extracting butter from churned yogurt. In addition to being consumed raw, buttermilk is also used in various recipes for biscuits, pancakes and cornbread. It can also be used as a substitute for milk and yogurt.

Buttermilk offers various health benefits such as it is high in probiotics (also known as good bacteria). The probiotics help strengthen the immune system, as well as break down the lactose into lactic acid. Buttermilk is good for the gastrointestinal system. It is also known to prevent vaginal and urinary tract infections. Buttermilk, similar to milk has offers a dose of calcium, along with iboflavin, vitamin B12, zinc and protein. Buttermilk is also advisable for consumption by lactose intolerant people, as the beverage is low in lactose due to the bacteria that turns lactose into lactic acid. Buttermilk is also advisable when dieting as it has lower calories compared to milk, but offers almost the same health benefits.

Yogurt is a diary product that is created by fermenting milk using bacteria. The bacteria that is used to ferment milk is known as ‘yogurt cultures’. The bacteria ferment the lactose in the milk causing it to produce lactic acid, which gives yogurt is tangy and acidic taste. Yogurt has been dated back to India and Iran circa 500 B.C. In India, yogurt and honey are known as "the food of the gods" and are a part of festivals and offerings. The word ‘yogurt’ is derived from the Turkish word, ‘yoğurt’, which means “to curdle or coagulated; to thicken” Yogurt is also spelled in various other ways such as yoghurt, yoghourt, yogourt, yaghourt, yahourth, yoghurd, joghourt, and jogourt.

Yogurt is most commonly created using cow’s milk; however it can also be created using water buffalo, goats, ewes, mares, camels, and yaks. In order to curdle the milk and create yogurt, bacteria such as Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus and Streptococcus salivarius subsp. thermophilus bacteria culture are used. In order to create yogurt, the milk is first heated to about 80 °C in order to kill any additional bacteria that may be present and to denature milk proteins. The milk is then left to cool to around 45 °C, the bacteria is then added (when bacteria is not present, a spoonful of yogurt will also do the trick), the milk is then left to ferment at room temperature. The yogurt can be consumed raw, or flavored with sugar, salt, spices and any other flavors.

Yogurt is also very healthy as a part of daily diet. It is a good source of calcium, phosphorus, riboflavin-vitamin B2, iodine, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid-vitamin B5, zinc, potassium, protein and molybdenum. Yogurt is also high in probiotics that can help a person live longer. The bacteria can also help boost the immune system. People who have allergies to dairy products are advised to consume yogurt as it does not produce the allergy that is caused by lactose. Yogurt is also a good option for people who suffer from stomach ailments, such as diarrhea. Consumption of low-fat yogurt can also aid in weight loss.

 

Buttermilk

Yogurt

Definition

Buttermilk is the substance that is left over after butter is churned out of the milk. This is known as traditional buttermilk. Buttermilk also refers to fermented drinks.

Yogurt is a dairy product that is created by bacterial fermentation of milk using ‘yogurt cultures’. The bacteria causes fermentation of lactose and produce lactic acid.

Origin

Traditional buttermilk has originated from Southern Asia.

 

Produced from which milk

Cow

Cow, water buffalo, goats, ewes, mares, camels, and yaks.

Making process

Starting with fresh milk, it is then churned until it separates into butter and a watery substance. This watery substance is known as the traditional buttermilk. Artificial buttermilk is cow’s milk that is fermented using lactic acid bacteria, which makes the milk thicker.

The oldest dated records show yogurt being used in the ancient culture of India and Iran as far as 500 B.C.

Health benefits

High in probiotics (also known as good bacteria). The probiotics help strengthen the immune system, as well as break down the lactose into lactic acid. Buttermilk is good for the gastrointestinal system. It is also known to prevent vaginal and urinary tract infections. Buttermilk, similar to milk has offers a dose of calcium, along with iboflavin, vitamin B12, zinc and protein.

Yogurt is a good source of calcium, phosphorus, riboflavin-vitamin B2, iodine, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid-vitamin B5, zinc, potassium, protein and molybdenum. Yogurt is also high in probiotics that can help a person live longer. The bacteria can also help boost the immune system.

Taste

Buttermilk has a slight tangy and bitter taste caused by the acid producing bacteria.

The lactic acid produced by the ‘yogurt cultures’ bacteria causes a tangy, acidic taste to the yogurt.

Other uses

In addition to being used as a beverage, it can also be used in recipes for biscuits, pancakes and cornbread. It can also be used as a substitute for milk and yogurt.

Yogurt can be eaten just like that or it can be salted or sweetened. Additional flavors can also be added to the yogurt. Yogurt is also used as a replacement for heavy cream in many recipes. It is also useful in creating other beverages such as the Indian lassi or chaas.

Image Courtesy: beveragesandhealth.com, vivonet.com

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Comments

This doesn't really explain the diffence between cultured buttermilk and yogurt: it simply provides definitions of each. The definitions are worded differently but essentially are the same: Both are defined as milk that has been fermented with lactic acid bacteria. I still don't know what the difference is.

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