another soap question : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Happy Halloween All, Last weekend I bought a lot of lard at an auction. I would like to make soap with it. Because I am very, very new to soapmaking, I need a simple recipe with common ingredients. I have only found one using lard and it included some oils I can't find, and I hate to order expensive stuff until I am more experienced. Thanks for the help, Joanie in sunny NW Ohio

-- Joanie (, October 31, 2001


I have never used lard in my soap receipe. Have a goat receipe that works great using oatmeal and glycern and lye and of course goats milk. Got it from JD Belangers Dairy Goat book. It's very easy. Good Luck !!

-- Helena (, October 31, 2001.

OOPS!!!! Just remembered !!! I do use suet from the butcher shop for this...but still not lard..or is it all the same.. ?? totally confused now.

-- Helena (, October 31, 2001.

32 ounces lard, 22 ounces coconut oil, 22 ounces olive, 9 castor oil - 11/2 ounces lye 32 ounces water. If you can't find some of these ingredients and look further for you. Debbie

-- Debbie (, October 31, 2001.

I make soap with what I have available---mostly tallow or lard. The basic recipe is 86 oz of fat, 11 or 12 oz of lye, 32 oz of water. Add lye to water and allow to return to room temp. (Use a non-metal or non-blemished granite ware container. Glass is wonderful. You can do this the day before, if you want). Then, heat your fat to 80 to 85 degrees. The trick here is to have the two solutions about the same temp--within 10 degrees or so. Very slowly, add the fat to the lye solution or, better yet, the other way around. Stir constantly. It will turn brownish but keep stirring. When it is white, pour into plastic-lined mold (a cardboard box is wonderful. Cover, then put blankets to insulate until it cools completely. In 24 hours you can remove from mold and cut. Let it be for at least 2 weeks but longer is better, to harden and ripen. Enjoy.

-- Rosalie (, October 31, 2001.

Oops, Stir with a wooden spoon---no metal. Other fats will work, even clarified bacon grease, but you will have a bit of odor there. Olive oil is good.

-- Rosalie (, October 31, 2001.

Here is a basic soap recipe that works great.

3 LB. Lard (48 oz.)

6 1/2 oz. lye

1 1/2 pints water (3 cups)

Melt lard and cool to 95-98 degrees. Feel the lard, should be the same temperature as your body. Put water into a glass jar, add lye slowly, stir with a wooden spoon to mix well. Place jar of lye-water into a bowl of cool water. This will cool the lye-water down to the same temperature as the lard. Test temperature by feeling the steam over the jar, should be same as body temperature. Takes about 30 minutes. Pour lye water into lard, stir slowly until thickened. Pour into molds. Let it sit for three weeks. This recipe has been in my family for years. It must have come from a time when people did not keep thermometers around. You can change the basic recipe by exchanging some of the lard for fancier oils -just so they add up to the 48 oz., I have also found that a couple of capsules of vitamin E in the water help get rid of smells in the lard. Hope this helps!

-- cowgirlone (, October 31, 2001.

A friend of mine made soap out of lard and when it cured it had a clean fresh smell without any fragrance. Do not limit yourself to oils. Dry spices do not have the intense smell of oils but their properties are better. Ones to use are ground thyme,cinnamon,chamomile tea,mints,etc.You can usually find small bottles of oils at the drug store that are resonable also.There are also many sites on the Web devoted to making homemade soap.Good luck- Terry

-- Terry Lipe (, October 31, 2001.

Thanks for all the help. I will try it this weekend, if nothing else happens - you know kids and animals. Can some of you direct me to a good place to buy some of my oils, like coconut. I have seen web sites for several but don't know who to buy from. Is there different quality oils, what is a good price? Thanks again - you all are great! Joanie

-- Joanie (, October 31, 2001.

These are a couple of sites that seem to have reasonable prices on soapmaking ingredients:

And this is a page of other soapmaking links:

-- Laura Jensen (, October 31, 2001.

A receipe with lard or tallow alone is good for clothes and hand washing but if you can add a little veg soap with it. Olive oil is nice on the skin and maybe hard to get but coconut oil will help give a nice lather. Like someone mentioned add spices or instead of water use milk ---of course if you haven't had much experience with soapmaking don't start out with milk---it can be a disaster to you if you don't know how to handle it--

-- Debbie (, October 31, 2001.

I just had to toss in the friendly reminder about lye - alone or in water. When you add the lye to the water, the vapors will take your breath away, so hold your breathe while you add it. Also, since you have children and pets, keep the lye high and away from all hands. It (lye water) looks just like plain water, but VERY CAUSTIC!!! I know of Amish children who have drank it and have burned their throats, esphogus, etc..... I always wear rubber gloves, because I had a piece (tiny) of dry lye land on my skin and baking soda is a must near by to help with that!! Soap making, as those of us who do it, is truly a wonderful thing.... but please be cautious..... it's worth the extra effort. Good luck and enjoy!!!

-- Jackie in Northern New York (, October 31, 2001.

Check and for cheap oil supplies.

Any soap made with lard retains a 'lard smell' in soap to those of us that are sensitive to it. Do not expect a gentle mild soap that olive oil or other vegetable oils may give you.

-- Anne (, October 31, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ