I had never rendered tallow before this so, Welcome to my tallow rendering experiment. Rendering tallow was much easier than I had expected it to be, and really it is the least expensive way to get good organic unprocessed beef fat for cooking, bath, skin care or cosmetic purposes.
How about you, have you rendered tallow, if so let me know how I did in the comments below.
What I Did
I started with frozen beef fat, and added it to a large stainless pot, and covered it with a lid.
Not knowing exactly how hot to set the oven temperature I went back and forth between 200, 175, 225 & 275.
Chopping Up The Beef Fat
When I realized that the beef fat was not melting very fast, I thought it would be a good idea to chop it up, not wanting to make a mess, I chopped it in the pot, then put the pot back into the oven.
Checked The Pot Every Two Hours
I wanted to keep a close watch on what was happening, I checked every two hours. If you ask me how long it took I could not tell you because I forgot to write it down… But It took a long time.
When The Fat Started Melting
When there was a significant amount of melted beef fat, I drained the hot oil out into a pyrex bowl that I had heated over a pot of boiling water. I did not want to break a cold bowl with hot oil.
After removing the melted oil, I put the un-render beef fat, back in the pot and the pot back in the oven to continue rendering for a second round of melted fat.
Straining The Oil
While the oil was still hot, I strained it first through a metal kitchen strainer to remove the large debris, then through a paper filter for straining fryer fat. The paper filter is similar to a coffee filter, in one of the tutorials I found they used several coffee filters to strain the rendered tallow.
Letting The Oil Harden
After straining the rendered tallow, I just let it harden. You can use any container that you like, but plastic will be the easiest to remove, you could also use plastic ice cube trays that would make using small amounts at a time easier.
What I Learned
- Thaw the tallow, if frozen before rendering
- Chop the tallow in small pieces before putting in the pot
- Set the oven 275 or 300 degrees, and keep it there
- After draining the rendered fat, put the remaining matter back in the pot & render again
- Rendering tallow is easy to do and does not have to take as long as it took me
What I Used The Tallow For
It was my intention to use the tallow to make, lip balms, lotion bars, and salve for my husband’s eczema. But so far I have only made the lotion bars with Shea butter, it did not go as well as planned, they are grainy and fall apart. I thought I would use them to make soap, but they are still on my soap shelf. Hoping to get back to them soon.