How to Render Tallow in 7 Simple Steps
Rendering tallow is easy, but it requires a little bit of time and patience. And the wait is entirely worth it. Tallow is a healthy, heat-resistant fat to cook with, and the perfect ingredient for making all-natural homemade soap bars and freshly whipped body butter. And if you’re curious about why it’s worth keeping tallow in your kitchen, we’ve got you covered with these health benefits and uses of tallow.
A few days prior to rendering tallow, you’ll need to request ½ pound of grass-fed cattle suet from your local butcher. Suet is the fat that surrounds an animal’s kidneys and other organs. We recommend using suet from grass-fed cows, although you can use fat from other grass-fed animals such as sheep and lamb. However, pork suet is rendered to lard, so it can’t be used to make tallow.
To render tallow, you will need:
- ½ pound grass-fed beef fat (also known as suet)
- A slow cooker or a large pot
- A cheesecloth or a metal strainer
- A large silicone mold
- A sterilized 12-ounce mason jar for storage
How to Render Tallow (Step-by-Step Instructions)
Step One: Refrigerate the fat for about an hour, or until the fat is firm.
Step Two: Using a sharp knife, trim any meat off of the fat. Chop the fat into small chunks. (This is easier to do when the fat is cold.)
Step Three: Add to a high powdered blender or food processor and blend on medium-to-high speed for 2 minutes, or until fat is is in ¼ inch pieces and begins to form a thick paste.
Step Four: In a slow cooker or large pot on low heat, render the fat for 5 hours, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t burn. Once the consistency of the fat has mostly turned to liquid, you have tallow.
Step Five: Strain the tallow over a cheesecloth to remove all of the impurities. At this stage, the tallow should be golden brown in color with a soft texture.
Step Six: Pour the tallow into a large silicone mold and allow it to cool in the refrigerator until it’s fully solid, about 3 hours.
Step Seven: Once the tallow is solidified, remove from the silicon mode and cut into small portions for easy use. Store the tallow pieces in a mason jar and keep refrigerated.
As you can see, rendering tallow may sound intimidating at first, but it’s a very simple and inexpensive way to stock your pantry with a high-quality fat to cook with, eat, and apply to your skin.