Bacon Soap

Every­thing is bet­ter with bacon—even soap! No; it’s not soap that looks like bacon. It’s not bacon-scent­ed soap. Look, you’re over­think­ing this: It’s soap made of bacon. Hence the name: BACON. SOAP. Clear?

  • Ingre­di­ents:
  • 16 oz. ren­dered bacon drippings
  • 9.14 oz. coconut oil
  • 6.87 oz. cas­tor oil
  • 13.71 oz. olive oil
  • 15.09 oz. dis­tilled water
  • 6.14 oz. lye
  • 3 slices of thick-cut bacon, cooked crisp


If you’ve nev­er made soap before, don’t start here. Go learn the basics first from sites like Mak­ing your own soap is a lot of fun, but you have to know how to han­dle lye and hot oils safe­ly and with prop­er tools and ventilation. 

I make my own soap, but I haven’t post­ed any soap recipes here before. That’s most­ly because I use DoTer­ra essen­tial oils in my soap, which makes it pret­ty expen­sive, but also because oth­er than using DoTer­ra oils I’m just using recipes I’ve col­lect­ed online.

Until this recipe. Since the first time I tried it I dis­cov­ered lots of oth­er folks thought of mak­ing bacon soap before I did, but I did­n’t know that. I had fun exper­i­ment­ing with this until I was sat­is­fied with the results, so here goes!

I was mak­ing bacon-wrapped dates a few months ago, a recipe that involves slic­ing thick-cut bacon in half, wrap­ping a half slice around each date, and stick­ing a skew­er through it. When I was done I washed all the raw bacon fat off my hands, then noticed my hands were soft and smooth and mois­tur­ized, and best of all: They smelled like bacon!

It got me to won­der­ing if I could make soap with bacon fat. Like all God-fearin’ right-thinkin’ Murkins, I save bacon drip­pings and keep a con­tain­er of it in the fridge. After adding the drip­pings from the bacon-wrapped dates, I had about 1 12 pounds of drip­pings, so I start­ed with a basic soap recipe that includ­ed a pound of lard, and replaced the lard with bacon drippings.

Bacon drip­pings have lots of impu­ri­ties, though: lit­tle flecks of meat, burned fat, salt, caramelized sug­ars and so on. This stuff is what makes bacon drip­pings so deli­cious if you’re mak­ing pie crust or gravy or what­ev­er, but I’m pret­ty sure it would cause a lot of trou­ble in a soap recipe. Adding salt to soap bat­ter makes it cure faster, for instance, but too much makes the soap harsh and crumbly. I don’t know how the oth­er impu­ri­ties would affect to the soap bat­ter, but I guess they would prob­a­bly inter­fere to some extent with saponi­fi­ca­tion, mak­ing the soap too soft, liable to get ran­cid or oth­er­wise unusable.

From here the recipe took some experimenting:

  • I had to ren­der the drip­pings to remove impu­ri­ties that would ruin the recipe, but…
  • I did­n’t want to ren­der all the impu­ri­ties until it was basi­cal­ly just lard again, mean­ing I had to find a work­able bal­ance between lard and drip­pings, and…
  • I want­ed to see if I could use bacon bits as an exfoliant.

Ren­der­ing any fat is pret­ty sim­ple, if not speedy:

  • Melt the fat
  • Pour it through a fine-mesh strain­er to fil­ter out the lit­tle crumbs of meat and burned fat and oth­er detritus
  • Add water, bring to a boil, reduce heat and let it sim­mer for about half an hour
  • Cool it in the fridge overnight, scoop off the fat, pour off the nasty, salty brown water left behind, then
  • Add more water and do it again.

I fol­lowed this process three times until the water came out (most­ly!) clear.

No essen­tial or fra­grance oils for this soap, but I did want a lit­tle bit of exfo­liant, tex­ture, and fra­grance from the bacon itself. I took three cooked pieces of thick-cut bacon and chopped it up into bacon bits.

I didn’t want the bacon bits to get ran­cid either, so I baked them in a strain­er at 180° until no more fat came out, then lined a cook­ie sheet with parch­ment paper and baked them some more.

Once the bacon bits were dried out, I used a cof­fee grinder to pul­ver­ize half of it it down to the con­sis­ten­cy of kosher salt.

From here, I melt­ed the ren­dered bacon drip­pings, mixed in the oth­er oils (coconut oil, olive oil and cas­tor oil), added my water/lye mix­ture, whipped up it with a stick blender, stirred in the bacon bits/exfoliant, then poured it into my soap molds (these steps are where you need to know soap­mak­ing basics, so once again, try a batch or two with instruc­tions from before you try this recipe.)

Leave the soap in your molds for a few days to cure; put it in a cov­ered con­tain­er or box in a cool, dry area. Demold and cut the soap into bars; store in a closed con­tain­er again for more cur­ing. It will be usable in a cou­ple weeks, but if you let it cure for six weeks to two months you’ll be glad you did: You’ll have firm bars that don’t crum­ble, deform or dis­solve too fast.

The soap smells won­der­ful and the bacon bits are a great exfoliant!