Goat tallow and goat milk

Soapmaking Forum

Help Support Soapmaking Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.
Joined
Jan 8, 2024
Messages
61
Reaction score
156
Location
Montana
This is experimental batch number two. My mom was looking for a bar of chocolate peppermint soap, so after a relatively successful first attempt at making cold process soap, I decided to tweak a recipe and make goat tallow milk chocolate peppermint soap for her. I read that you can substitute tallow for palm oil, so I did, using lye and fragrance calculators.

My recipe ended up being:
32% olive oil (10.2 oz)
32% coconut oil (10.2 oz)
32% got tallow (10.2 oz)
4% castor oil (1.3 oz)
Lye, 4.6 oz
Liquid, 10.3 oz
I further divided the liquid into 7.3 oz distilled water which I dissolved the lye into, and 3 oz of fresh goat milk that I added to the oils.
Peppermint essential oil, 1 oz
Cocoa powder, 2 tsp

My difficulties started well before I began blending the batter. Everything I had learned about goat milk soap stressed that keeping the temperature very low is crucial to keeping the milk from scorching. I aimed to cool the lye and oils to under 80°F before mixing them. The tallow started to solidify around 115° and by 110° the whole bowl of oils got thick as pudding. I finally decided I'd have to go with it, added the 3 oz of cold liquid goat milk, stick blended it into the quickly solidifying oils and poured in the lye water. By the time the lye went in, the oils were already like a thick pudding and I had to use a spatula to scrape bits of solid tallow off the sides of the bowl. I stirred and blended it in, added the peppermint EO, mixed that in and spooned a little of the white batter into a separate container. Then I mixed in the 2 tsp of cocoa powder (which I had blended into about 1 oz of the olive oil from my recipe) into the big portion of batter. Talk about THICK! It was so thick that when I tried pulsing the stick blender it didn't slurp the batter into the blades. So I just stirred it in with the blender turned off and glopped it into the mold. Then I spooned the reserved white batter down the middle and scoop/swirled it with the spoon like I had seen on YouTube, mounded it up and stuck it outside the back door under the patio roof in the western Montana winter temperature.

I was so sure that batch would be a big old flop that I didn't even step outside to look at it every half hour for the next two days! I brought it inside for a day to stabilize the temperature before unmolding and cutting it. Imagine my surprise when I found that not only did it appear to be soap, but that it also smelled good, had very few air pockets in the loaf. It even looked pretty close to what I was aiming for! I did get a partial gel phase, and the outside of the bars are much lighter in color than the inside. Is that just what cocoa powder does, or is there a way to prevent that? I think it looks neat, but I don't know if it's supposed to do that.

I mainly want to know if anyone has experience making goat milk and goat tallow soap? How do I keep the temperatures low enough to not scorch the milk and high enough to keep the tallow from solidifying?

When I rinsed my gloves after cutting I couldn't believe how much lather there was and how creamy it felt, even through the gloves! I feel like the goat tallow probably contributed to that more than the goat milk did, but whatever it was, I like it!

First picture was when I cut it on day 3, next two pictures were just taken today, almost 2 weeks into the cure.
 

Attachments

  • 20240101_120319.jpg
    20240101_120319.jpg
    1.5 MB · Views: 0
  • 20240111_114026.jpg
    20240111_114026.jpg
    1.7 MB · Views: 0
  • 20240111_113950.jpg
    20240111_113950.jpg
    1.6 MB · Views: 0
Last edited:
They look gorgeous! Well done! That's not a partial gel you have there - it's what's known as a 'rind' and it will eventually even out in colour. I suspect it's actually fully gelled if you have that.
I would say you were quite lucky to have this turn out so well - I'm not a user of animal fats, but I would never attempt to soap so cool that my solid fats start re-solidifying. maybe ask another tallow user.
I was also worried about my goat milk soap overheating initially, but I think the main thing is that the lye added to the milk doesn't overheat. Once it's mixed into soap batter I actually purposefully gel (CPOP) mine and it's fine.
 
They look gorgeous! Well done! That's not a partial gel you have there - it's what's known as a 'rind' and it will eventually even out in colour. I suspect it's actually fully gelled if you have that.
I would say you were quite lucky to have this turn out so well - I'm not a user of animal fats, but I would never attempt to soap so cool that my solid fats start re-solidifying. maybe ask another tallow user.
I was also worried about my goat milk soap overheating initially, but I think the main thing is that the lye added to the milk doesn't overheat. Once it's mixed into soap batter I actually purposefully gel (CPOP) mine and it's fine.
Thank you so kindly! So that darker center isn't partial gel phase? Maybe it's a fluke from not mixing the cocoa in completely? I was in such a hurry! I had no idea the tallow would solidify at such a high temperature.

If I keep my lye/milk solution cool (under 85°F) to prevent the milk from scorching and have to keep my oils hot (over 115°F) so they don't solidify, can I even mix the two together with such a vast temperature difference?

It was definitely beginner's luck that I didn't have to throw it all out!
 
What you had when the tallow solidified was an actual false trace and you poured your batter too soon. You are fortunate it gelled thus saving your soap and it did not separate. I soap with high tallow and lard at low temps so my go-to recipe always false traces and thickens fast, I just hand stir until it starts to heat (saponify) and thin out on its own then I proceed to pour off for coloring, and add in my fragrance. It is a problem with using tallow or most hard oils and low temps.
 
What you had when the tallow solidified was an actual false trace and you poured your batter too soon. You are fortunate it gelled thus saving your soap and it did not separate. I soap with high tallow and lard at low temps so my go-to recipe always false traces and thickens fast, I just hand stir until it starts to heat (saponify) and thin out on its own then I proceed to pour off for coloring, and add in my fragrance. It is a problem with using tallow or most hard oils and low temps.
THANK YOU! That's exactly what I needed to know! I knew for sure that it was the oils solidifying and not actual trace, but I had no idea what to do about it, so I plowed ahead as best I could. I was sure it would separate.

So, do you stick blend your tallow soaps at all? About how long does it take to stir it back into liquid?
 
THANK YOU! That's exactly what I needed to know! I knew for sure that it was the oils solidifying and not actual trace, but I had no idea what to do about it, so I plowed ahead as best I could. I was sure it would separate.

So, do you stick blend your tallow soaps at all? About how long does it take to stir it back into liquid?
Stir time varies, but usually just a few minutes. Yes I do use the SB in very short bursts. I do not SB long because I like to pour just when emulsion is reached.
 
Thank you so kindly! So that darker center isn't partial gel phase? Maybe it's a fluke from not mixing the cocoa in completely? I was in such a hurry! I had no idea the tallow would solidify at such a high temperature.

If I keep my lye/milk solution cool (under 85°F) to prevent the milk from scorching and have to keep my oils hot (over 115°F) so they don't solidify, can I even mix the two together with such a vast temperature difference?

It was definitely beginner's luck that I didn't have to throw it all out!
It doesn't matter the difference between the lye solution and the fats/oils when mixing. I know they say to keep in within 10 degrees ( Celsius or Fahrenheit I don't know) but apparently this is a myth. mine are always naturally within 10 degrees anyway so it's never a concern for me. The lye solution (with goat milk) tends to be around 36 degrees (96 f) and the oils about 45 (113f) . I will say that I've never measured temp of my goat milk and lye solution at it's hottest point (after milk ice cubes are melted down by the lye and just before I put it into the cold water bath to cool down) but I would estimate it gets to about 113-120 degrees fahrenheit.
 
It doesn't matter the difference between the lye solution and the fats/oils when mixing. I know they say to keep in within 10 degrees ( Celsius or Fahrenheit I don't know) but apparently this is a myth. mine are always naturally within 10 degrees anyway so it's never a concern for me. The lye solution (with goat milk) tends to be around 36 degrees (96 f) and the oils about 45 (113f) . I will say that I've never measured temp of my goat milk and lye solution at it's hottest point (after milk ice cubes are melted down by the lye and just before I put it into the cold water bath to cool down) but I would estimate it gets to about 113-120 degrees fahrenheit.
Oh boy, now I can't wait for my 4" mold to come so I can make another little batch of soap! You are all so kind. I know it takes a long time to formulate and type out all these detailed answers, tips and advice. I just can't thank you all enough!
 
I mainly want to know if anyone has experience making goat milk and goat tallow soap? How do I keep the temperatures low enough to not scorch the milk and high enough to keep the tallow from solidifying?
Hi there! I do most of my soaps with goat tallow and goat milk. I'm really glad to hear your experience, because I have experienced the same thing with massive acceleration/false trace. I'm currently trying to perfect my tallow recipe so it's not perfect, but if you'd like me to share what I like the most so far, I'd be willing. In my experience you just have to soap a little hotter to keep it the the thickening down. I just don't worry too much about the milk temperatures and I still get nice pretty colors that aren't noticeably tinted by the orange of the over heated goat milk.

You're soap turned out quite beautiful!
 
Hi there! I do most of my soaps with goat tallow and goat milk. I'm really glad to hear your experience, because I have experienced the same thing with massive acceleration/false trace. I'm currently trying to perfect my tallow recipe so it's not perfect, but if you'd like me to share what I like the most so far, I'd be willing. In my experience you just have to soap a little hotter to keep it the the thickening down. I just don't worry too much about the milk temperatures and I still get nice pretty colors that aren't noticeably tinted by the orange of the over heated goat milk.

You're soap turned out quite beautiful!
Thank you! I am happy to know there's another goat tallow/goat milk person out there to share experiences with! As soon as my smaller mold comes I'm going to make more practice goat tallow/milk recipes. I'm sure I'll be back regularly with more questions!
 
Beautiful soap! 😍 I soap with GM as 50% of my liquid all the time. I use it straight out of the fridge and even when the oils are hotter I rarely have a problem. I do usually soap at about 90-100* but I also don’t use tallow, yet….
 

Latest posts

Back
Top