Rendering Fat into Tallow
Render fat?! If you had told me a few years ago I’d not only not be chopping off every last bit of fat off my meat but actually collecting every last bit of it like precious gold and displaying it on my kitchen counter like a prized possession I’d have laughed you straight out of the room.
Isn’t Saturated Fat something we should avoid?
If there is one thing paleo is not is low fat. The recommendations from government agencies are to avoid fat, especially saturated fat as it is said to raise blood cholesterol. Of course we know from the extensive research of Chris Kresser, Chris Masterjohn and Jimmy Moore that the cholesterol we consume in our diet has very little to do with elevated levels of blood cholesterol but that’s a whole ‘nother post (which I promise to tackle soon).
What’s so great about saturated fat anyway?
In the real food world, we not only fail to avoid saturated fat, but actually make sure to include it in our diet daily since we know from Dr. Weston A Price’s extensive research that saturated fat is crucial for so many functions in our body:
- Saturated fatty acids constitute at least 50% of the cell membranes. They are what gives our cells necessary stiffness and integrity.
- They play a vital role in the health of our bones. For calcium to be effectively incorporated into the skeletal structure, at least 50% of the dietary fats should be saturated.
- They lower proneness to heart disease. That’s right, saturated fat is heart healthy!
- They protect the liver from alcohol and other toxins, such as Tylenol.
- They enhance the immune system.
- They are needed for the proper utilization of essential fatty acids.
- The heart draws on this reserve of fat in times of stress.
- Short- and medium-chain saturated fatty acids have important antimicrobial properties. They protect us against harmful microorganisms in the digestive tract.
On that note, pile on that coconut oil, lard, tallow, butter and any other animal fats you’d like from properly raised animals of course!
We recently bought a whole steer from our local farmer so of course, rendering our own fat into tallow was something we had to do asap! We used this same method for both beef and lamb fat.
Rendering Fat into Tallow
What you will need:
- A large stainless steel pot (we use this stainless steel pot that comes with this set)
- Grass fed beef fat, as much or as little as you’d like
- Food processor (I love this food processor)
- Large canning jars (where to buy canning jars)
- Cut the fat into small chunks, removing any meat that still may be attached.
- Put the small chunks into the food processor and process until they are small and evenly distributed.
- Place in the large pot and heat slowly.
- Cook on the lowest heat setting – roughly one hour per pound of fat.
- The fat will melt and there will be small bits that float to the top.
- Once these bits are golden brown and the fat itself is a beautiful golden color you are ready to strain the mixture.
- Strain out the brown bits and pour into the jars.
- The tallow will be golden and once it cools should be yellow in color – the color is unique to grass fed tallow!
You can store the fat at room temperature (I keep it on the kitchen counter with a lid on) for about a week. In hotter months or if you don’t use it up within the week, keep it in the fridge to keep it from going rancid.
What is your favorite cooking fat?
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14 thoughts on “Rendering Fat Into Tallow”
Can you do this with the fat that is skimmed off of broth? I usually just use that as is from lamb broth, but keep it in the fridge. I’d prefer something I can keep out.
It’s not quite the same thing but you can definitely use that fat also if it’s from good quality bones.
Waving at you from down the road (Abu Dhabi) 😉
I recently reentered some tallow for skin care. Has anyone experimented with essential oils, I don’t want to go around smelling like a steak!
Hi Tami! Yes! Here you go: https://hollywoodhomestead.com/diy-tallow-balm/
Tallow is just animal fat, and we’re animals, so…I can’t see how it could be a problem. Rancid fat would kill the moment, though…
We have used coconut oil for this purpose for years with no problems. Smells lovely, keeps yeast infections away, no chemicals, stays slippery for longer (TMI lol)…great stuff. Commercial products make things burn “down there” for me (in a bad way…yikes), so we had to find an alternative.
Whenever I see any blog posts on “Great Uses for Coconut Oil,” I have to chuckle. Leaving said articles open on the computer is a great way to flirt 🙂
I agree that KY jelly is not something I would like on my intimate areas, but animal fat is hoovering very low on the scale as well. Since converting to a more natural lifestyle I have found glycerin (non-GMO of course) is the best alternative for us. It even has a naturally warming sensation, which is pretty handy 😉 if you get my drift. Coconut oil (unrefined organic) is another that I have used with good results.
“Intimacy lubricant”? Is this safe? I’d rather take my chances with chemicals in my cooch.
I have used lamb fat for years to clean and condition an antique dining room set. It’s a real rich oak and it always looks beautiful.
Another great use is for polishing silver. It’s not abrasive and shines better than other cleaners without the toxic chemicals
Ok, all obvious jokes aside but my husband I use a small amount of beef fat as an intimacy lubricant. We trim fat from only the better quality meats and simmer it on the stove using indirect heat (use the two pot method). It gets strained a couple times before going into a jar by our bed.
It works better than any of that unnatural stuff sold in the stores (have you seen the ingredients in KY or astroglide?).
I haven’t tried it as a facial moisturizer but that sounds like a good use as well. Thanks for the idea tracy
Ha! Great! and yes you certainly don’t want crazy ingredient up in there 😉
I recently started rendering both beef and pork fat. I prefer to cook with lard as I’m not crazy about the taste of tallow. However, I use tallow daily on my skin – it’s a wonderful moisturizer and apparently I don’t mind its aroma. 😉
Yes! Awesome for the skin! love it 🙂