Trying Out Hot Process Soap Making

I love making soap, I haven’t been doing it long so haven’t tried many different ways or scents. Today I am trying out making hot process soap for the first time. My Mother-in-law is coming down tomorrow and most of this batch is for her, I am going to pull out a little to make some vanilla scented soap for myself. I ordered some vanilla soap scent but haven’t made soap since it arrived. I did turn some of my previous soap into liquid soap for hand washing and added the vanilla to it. I will probably try a different kind next time, this is not quite the vanilla scent that I am looking for, but it isn’t bad either. My Mother-in-law requested clove scented, so I am excited to see how that turns out. She is vegetarian so I do not use any animal oils in soaps for her, castille soap can be pricey to make (not nearly as pricey as it is to buy) and I do make that sometimes too. But for an everyday soap and one that you can make laundry soap out of, price is a factor as well. So I have made lard soap for us, and it works great and is super inexpensive to make, but the idea of rubbing the fat of a pig all over my skin….well it grosses me out. So I was thinking one day, vegetable shortening is about the same consistency as lard and about the same price, why not try that?  It works great! But hey I don’t really care what color it is. This will make a pretty big batch for me, I usually keep mine pretty small since I still have to store them, and cold process had to cure for 6 weeks. I am using my silicone loaf pan for some of it and the rest I will make in Pringles cans. My poor children, the things I make them eat for my love of soap making. Plus I love the little circle shaped soap they make. 

 Vegetable Shortening Soap

3 lbs Vegetable Shortening

1 lb Coconut Oil

7 3/4 oz lye

18 oz water

Melt Shortening and oil in crock pot. Once it is melted add lye to water ( please use extreme caution, if you have never made soap before please use a complete tutorial of how to make  soap and use lye safely, this is a recipe only) Add mixture to crock pot, blend with stick blender until trace. Cook until non – caustic, I will be using the tongue test. Then add scents or extras, put into molds.

You can make this without the coconut oil just use a lye calculator to adjust oil to lye ratio. I just liked the idea of adding some in this time, last time I did straight shortening.

The biggest problem I have run into is my crock pot runs to high of temperature even on low, once I put it on keep warm it seems to be working much better, so hopefully I haven’t ruined this batch. On low it just kept bubbling and expanding and I was constantly having to stir it, which none of the sites I saw really talked about, one said you might have to stir but it sounded like maybe once or twice, not all the time, and it was making a big mess.


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