Cooking for the Sensitive Gut

Co Yo – coconut yogurt

I have been scouting around looking for plain lactose free yoghurt to use in the recipes for the book I am working on but can I find one I like? The soya based ‘yoghurts’ are nice but they do not have the sharp slightly acidic taste of plain yoghurt. Also if you want to use plain yoghurt in Middle Eastern style cooking it needs to be as close to authentic cow, sheep or goat’s milk yoghurt as possible.

Just for the record I did write to Lactofree, a UK based company that makes a range of lactose free products and they told me they stopped making plain lactose free yoghurt because there was not a demand for it.

I have devised a low lactose yoghurt made from lactose free milk and it is wonderful if you have the time to make it. If you haven’t I have another idea.

An interesting ‘yoghurt’ based on coconut milk to which probiotic bacteria are added could be an answer. It is called Co Yo and is thickened with tapioca starch which as far as I can ascertain is not high in fructans and should not upset a sensitive gut. Co Yo has received many accolades and has been short listed at the Free From Awards 2014.

The flavour is decidedly coconut. And the texture is very smooth and it has a wonderful mouth feel. It is naturally a little sweet but contains no added sugar. As well as plain Co Yo there is a vanilla flavoured option. I like both but there is a caveat.

Co Yo contains about four times as much fat as a plain yoghurt. Nineteen grams of fat per hundred grams of product compared to four grams of fat per hundred grams of regular plain cows milk yoghurt. So it is rich to taste and high in calories so portion sizes need to be smaller otherwise Co Yo lays heavy on the sensitive gut. So eat a spoonful rather than a pot.

The higher fat content made me think about trying to make a frozen yoghurt/ice cream and I was delighted with the results. It tasted wonderful. In this case compared to ice cream my Co Yo frozen yoghurt is much lower in both fat and sugar and is ideal for serving with a crumble as I have here. Incidentally the crumble topping is made from oats, buckwheat flour with a little sugar and coconut oil added.

Co Yo was originally an Australian product but it is now made in the UK. It can be bought in the UK Ocado or Waitrose.  It’s worth a try.

Also if any of you know where to get plain lactose free yoghurt in the UK please let me know.



Rhubarb crumble with co yo ice cream-3

Coconut and banana ice cream

Serves 4


  • 200 g/ 7 oz coconut yogurt
  • 200 ml/ 7 fl oz coconut milk
  • ½ tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 large banana
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or golden syrup


Place the coconut yogurt, coconut milk, vanilla essence, banana and syrup in a liquidiser and process for a minute.

Pour the mixture in a container with a lid and place in a freezer. After an hour take the ice cream from the freezer and mix vigorously with a fork to break up the ice crystals. Replace the ice cream back in the freezer and continue to freeze for another hour. If you have time stir the ice cream with a fork every 15 minutes.

If you have stored the ice cream in the freezer. Remember to remove it from the freezer about 30 minutes before serving.

Rhubarb crumble with co yo ice cream Rhubarb crumble with co yo ice cream-2

If you would like more information about IBS or how to look after a sensitive gut follow this link to the IBS Network

IBSLogowithstrap March 2011

This entry was written by Joan Ransley and published on January 24, 2015 at 6:37 pm. It’s filed under Pudding, Snack and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

2 thoughts on “Co Yo – coconut yogurt

  1. It is worth noting that this product is not a really a yoghurt alternative, it does not contain any added calcium.

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