Sign up now to take our TODAY Food baking class with Gesine Bullock-Prado!

Food

What's that mystery liquid in your yogurt? We've got the answer

Peeling open a container of yogurt can be a traumatic experience: Once in a while, that mysterious liquid will be sitting there under the lid.

Getty Images
WHAT ARE YOU??!?!?

Recently, the internet has been aflutter with this age-old question: What the heck is that watery stuff on top of your yogurt anyway, and what do we do with it?

RELATED: Yogurt is not just for breakfast! 53 ways to use this magical ingredient

"There is actually a cool scientific answer to this mystery," Sheryl Kesey Thompson, a manager at Nancy’s, a family-owned and -operated yogurt creamery in Eugene, Ore., tells TODAY.

Whey — that liquid stuff — is the nutrient-dense water naturally present in milk, she says.

Closed Captioning
apply | reset x
font
size
T
T
T
T
color

Salmon, Greek yogurt, more: 5 foods to blast dangerous belly fat

Play Video - 3:32

Salmon, Greek yogurt, more: 5 foods to blast dangerous belly fat

Play Video - 3:32

Ready for a science lesson? Basically, when the milk is cultured to make your yogurt nice and thick, the whey is held in suspension, within the cell walls of the milk. But when the yogurt is jostled in transport, or when you dip your spoon in that container, you break those cell walls and the whey (a.k.a. liquid stuff) is released, she explains: That’s why you see the whey on the top of your yogurt.

RELATED: From yogurt to kombucha, fermented foods benefit your overall health

But wait! Don’t ditch it.

"Our whey is rich in calcium, probiotics and protein, so we recommend you stir it back into your yogurt or pour it off and save it for a smoothie, soup, or even add it to your lucky dog’s dish," Kesey Thompson says.

Or do as this intrepid tea drinker does:

TOP