The 7 Healthiest Yogurt Brands You Can Buy, According to an RD
We’ll help you with healthy yoghurt brands to go for. You never fully understand the concept of decision parallax until you scan the yogurt section in your local supermarket. Trying to decipher whether it’s better to buy a caramel-flavored yogurt that comes with a sidecar of chocolate sprinkles or just spring for a pint of rocky road is enough to scare you away. And what even is a probiotic?
No longer. We asked a registered dietitian to help us figure out how to choose a healthy yogurt and, better yet, which yogurt brands specifically we should seek out on our next trip down the yogurt aisle.
Is Yogurt Actually Healthy?
In some cases, yes. And in some cases, no. According to Amy Shapiro, MS, RD, CDN, and founder of Real Nutrition, choosing yogurt that is actually delicious and good for you is pretty simple. “When looking at yogurts, you want to avoid added sugars, which are usually added to balance out the tartness of the natural yogurt flavor,” she says. Read: none of the options should include a pod of grape jelly (whomp).
So how does one choose a healthy yogurt aside from checking for added sugar? Below are the best healthy yogurt brands—both dairy and non-dairy options included—according to Shapiro. “I also included brands that contain probiotic strains, as eating and consuming probiotics is healthy for the microbiome,” she says.
The list includes mostly unflavored yogurts, which means you can add all of the fun flavors on your own, like fresh fruit, spices, and granola.
Healthiest Dairy Yogurts
Wallaby Organic No Sugar Added Greek Yogurt
“Many yogurts on the market are not organic—I like Wallaby because they provide organic dairy which many of my clients prefer,” explains Shapiro. This line packs delicious flavor without added sugar, and they use whole food ingredients and spices to sweeten the yogurt. Wallaby also contains fat and protein, which both give the yogurt a delicious mouthfeel and helps keep you satisfied.
Fage Total 2% Greek Yogurt
This widely available, mega popular brand is non-GMO, contains no growth hormones, and does not contain any artificial flavors or preservatives. “I recommend going with the unsweetened varieties of Fage to avoid added sugars,” Shapiro says.
According to Shapiro, “this great product is sweetened with monk fruit and/or stevia, two calorie-free sweeteners that I approve of.” It also contains lactase—which makes it more easily digestible—and it has some fiber to help promote a healthy environment for the probiotic cultures within the yogurt. “Low in sugar but high in protein, this is a great option for yogurt lovers who crave a sweeter variety without negative side effects.”
Siggi’s provides creamy skyr—an Icelandic cultured dairy product that’s very similar to Greek yogurt—with minimal added sugars (4 grams per container) and 12 grams of protein, few ingredients, growth hormone-free, and flavors for everyone to enjoy. It also has sidecar options that are low in sugar but rich in nutrients, like almond butter instead of fruit/jelly.
Healthiest Non-Dairy Yogurt Brands
According to Shapiro, when looking at non-dairy options, the most important thing is to look out for additives and sugar used to make yogurts taste good and comparable to regular yogurt.
Coconut Cult Probiotic Coconut Yogurt
Delicious, tangy and full of probiotics. “This one is all whole-food ingredients based on coconut with a custom probiotic blend,” Shapiro says. The serving size is only 3 grams of sugar per serving. “Coconut Cult is a bit pricey but it is delicious—a jar can last four days, so use it as a garnish or a breakfast. It’s very versatile.”
Lavva Dairy Free Yogurt
This yogurt is made from the Pili Nut which creates a creamy texture without fillers or emulsifiers. According to Shapiro, it’s loaded with vitamin E, magnesium, and heart-healthy fats, and uses whole fruits as a sweetener. The custom blend of probiotics in Lavva provides 50 billion CFU per serving!
Siggi’s Plant-Based Yogurt
Pea protein is added to this coconut milk plant-based yogurt, giving it 10 grams of protein per serving, which is unique to this blend. “Most plant-based yogurts do not contain significant amounts of protein,” Shapiro explains. “Siggi’s is low in sugar, free of added sugar, and does not use any preservatives in the recipe. It will keep you full and satisfied, while still coming in at under 200 calories per serving, which is rare for a plant-based yogurt.”
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes a yogurt considered healthy?
Yogurt contains many healthy nutrients, including calcium, phosphorus, a number of B vitamins, zinc, potassium, and vitamin D. But what makes yogurt uniquely healthy is that it contains probiotics (the live bacteria that are good for your gut). Medical experts believe that these bacterial cultures could help minimize the risk of certain disease conditions including obesity, type 2 diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome, and chronic inflammatory diseases such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
What is the healthiest type of yogurt?
That depends on which health benefits are most important to you. Both Greek yogurt and regular yogurt contain probiotics. Greek yogurt has twice as much protein as traditional yogurt but less calcium. And since there is less lactose in Greek yogurt, it might be a healthier choice for those with lactose sensitivity.
What is the healthiest brand of yogurt for gut health?
There are so many brands of yogurt on the market—each offering so many kinds of yogurt—that it’s difficult to name one brand that is definitively the healthiest. The best way to know if a yogurt is good for gut health is to look on the label for phrases like “live active cultures” or “L. acidophilus.”
Which yogurt has the most probiotics?
Health experts debate whether Greek or traditional yogurt contains more probiotics. The good news is that the FDA requires all yogurt manufacturers to ensure that at least 10 million bacteria are still present and alive at the end of the product’s shelf life. So whether you’re eating Greek yogurt or traditional, you are receiving health benefits.