Looking for an easy DIY way to make a versatile homemade cooking fat? Then, my friend, you need beef tallow in your life! Rendering your own grass-fed beef fat into creamy white tallow opens up a world of possibilities.
I’ll walk you through exactly how to make tallow step-by-step with any tool and fat source you have handy. Read on for everything you need to make, use, and love this powerful traditional fat!
What Is Beef Tallow?
Beef tallow is a rendered form of beef fat that has many uses. Beef fat is gently heated to separate and clarify the fat from the meat and membranes to make tallow. The resulting product is a versatile cooking fat that is highly stable for frying and cooking at high heat.
How To Make Beef Tallow: Recipe For Success
Making beef tallow is a simple process of slowly rendering to separate fat from connective tissues. We will provide you with a detailed instruction as follows:
- Slow cooker, instant pot, or oven-safe dish
- Cheesecloth, fine mesh strainer
- Jar or container for finished tallow
- Beef fat/suet – use high-quality grass-fed if possible
- Cut beef fat into small pieces.
- Add salt and water until the water barely covers the beef fat.
- Cook on low heat, around 200°F for several hours.
- Drain through cheesecloth or strainer.
- Let tallow cool and check for impurities.
- Keep refrigerated for up to a year.
- Low and slow is key to avoiding burning fat.
- Impurities will sink to the bottom, as the tallow clarifies.
- It can take multiple renderings with water + salt to remove all impurities.
- Add water to help render fat from tissues.
- Make sure to cook thoroughly for food safety.
Now let’s dive into the specific method for rendering your own high-quality beef tallow with your available tools and beef fat sources!
How to make beef tallow in the oven
Rendering animal fat in the oven gives you precise temperature control for safety. As a bonus, you can also save time since you will not actively monitor the process!
To render tallow in your oven, you must cube beef fat and place it in an oven-safe dish with water and salt. Bake at 200°F for 4-6 hours until rendered. All that’s left is to strain all the rendered fat and cool off your tallow cake!
How to make beef tallow in a crock pot
A crock pot or slow cooker renders tallow perfectly and hand-free!
Start by cutting up 3-5 pounds of beef fat into 1-inch cubes. Pop those cubes into your trusty slow cooker and add about a cup of water too.
Put the lid on and cook everything on low for 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally. You’ll know it’s done when the solid fat melts and sinks to the bottom of the pot.
Then simply drain the liquid gold through cheesecloth into a glass jar. Let it chill in the fridge until it hardens into white tallow.
There you have it! A beautiful tallow jar with multiple purposes waiting for you to explore!
How to make beef tallow on a smoker
Infusing your beef tallow with a smoky flavor is easy to do on a smoker! First, you need to break your beef fat into smaller pieces for easy rendering. Then, put them in a pan with a saltwater mixture covering the fat.
Put the pan in your smoker and set it at a low temperature of 200°F. Let it slowly render for 4-6 hours, filling the fat with delicious smoky essence.
When it’s finished cooking, simply drain the liquid fat through a cheesecloth into a jar and chill until solid. You’ll now have the most flavorful smoked grease for cooking, cosmetics, leather care – you name it! The smoker gives it that sweet kiss of smoke that other methods can’t match.
How to make beef tallow in an instant pot
This is the quickest way to make tallow! The preparation for the fat remains the same: break it down and put it in the pot with salt water.
Lock the lid, press the Manual button, and cook on high pressure for 1 hour. Once it finishes, let the pressure release naturally.
Then simply open the pot, drain the liquid gold through a cheesecloth into a jar, and stash it in the fridge to harden. In no time, you’ll have creamy white tallow ready for cooking, DIY projects, and more. The Instant Pot speeds up rendering while still giving great results. Tallow in a flash!
How to make beef tallow from brisket
The brisket is full of fat, and you will often have to trim down the fat to prepare your brisket anyway. Then, you can use those trimmed-off pieces to turn them into liquid gold! You will need 3-5 lbs of brisket trimmings or excess fat, then put them on low heat for 4-6 hours.
Cooking the brisket trimmings low and slow extracts all the flavorful tallow. This brisket tallow is great for cooking or making candles, soap, and cosmetics.
How to make beef tallow from suet (fat)
Suet is a type of hard beef or mutton fat found around the loins and kidneys of cattle and sheep. Specifically, suet refers to the raw, unrendered fat. Similarly, you will cut them into smaller pieces and put them on low heat for hours to liquefy all the fat!
How to make beef tallow from ground beef
You might think you’ve lost the chance to extract tallow once it’s grounded. Don’t worry, you still can!
When browning ground beef, drain the hot fat into a heat-safe bowl and stash it in the fridge until solid. Then pop the hardened fat out and chop it up into small chunks.
Toss them in a slow cooker with some water and cook on low for 2-3 hours until melted down. Drain the liquid tallow through cheesecloth into a jar and chill until firm.
You’ve turned leftover ground beef fat into usable tallow with just a few easy steps! Keeping it simple makes homemade tallow so approachable.
Tips To Make Beautiful Pure White Tallow Cake
Here are some golden tips on how to make your tallow come out as pretty as it could be!
Only choose quality grass-fed beef fat & slow heat
The key to making beef tallow with a nice white color and clean flavor at home is using high-quality suet or fat trimmings and simmering it. I recommend finding grass-fed beef whether it oxtail or fat from a butcher you trust. Render the chopped fat in a slow cooker or oven at around 200°F for 4-6 hours – a low temp prevents smoking and imparts no burnt flavors.
Add salt and water
Courtesy of HomesteadDonegal on Tiktok! Adding salt to the mixture will help your tallow cake come out more clean.
The salt bonds to the impurities, pulling them out of your pure white gold. You can then easily scrape them off the bottom.
How to make beef tallow not smell
No worries, we can make nearly odorless tallow with the right techniques!
Choose the highest quality beef suet or fat from a reputable source. Gently cook the fat on low heat at 200°F to prevent burning and rancid odors. Adding a few tablespoons of water can also help block smells. Strain the liquid tallow through a cheesecloth, then immediately transfer it to an airtight glass jar and refrigerate.
Exposure to light and air causes smells, so minimize contact. Mix in essential oils like lemon or lavender for an extra fresh scent.
Cook and store your tallow at low temperatures. Lastly, render outdoors on a smoker or grill if possible. Follow these tips, and there will be no aroma during the process. You’ll have fresh, clean-smelling tallow for all your cooking and crafting needs!
What Can You Make With Tallow?
Now that you’ve made your own beef tallow at home, I bet you’re wondering – what can I do with this stuff? Loads of things! For starters, tallow is great for cooking and frying due to its high smoke point. Use it for searing steaks, frying eggs, roasting vegetables, or adding fat to lean ground meat.
You can also make gentle tallow soaps and lotions on the skin. For another idea, when rubbed into the material, tallow works wonderfully for waterproofing leather boots and gloves. Or get crafty and make some tallow candles – simply add wicks to pour tallow in a mold.
Tallow makes a soothing chest rub or furniture polish for household use when mixed with oils. As you can see, the possibilities are endless once you have this powerhouse fat on hand! Homemade tallow removes the need for refined oils in cooking, skincare, and more. So put your grass-fed beef tallow to work in whatever way inspires you!
How can I make my own tallow?
Render beef fat trimmings or suet in a slow cooker or oven at around 200°F for several hours.
Can you make beef tallow from any beef fat?
You can render tallow from suet, brisket/trimmings, ground beef, etc. Suet is considered best.
How to make wagyu beef tallow?
Render the fat from high-grade Wagyu beef using the slow cooking method until you get pure, flavorful tallow.
How to make wagyu beef tallow?
Tallow is rendered and clarified beef or mutton fat, while lard is made from pig fat. Tallow has a higher melting point and more saturated fats like stearic acid than lard. Lard is softer and more unsaturated. Both can be used for cooking, but tallow has a higher smoke point, making it better for frying and high heat. Tallow also works well in cosmetics.
How to store tallow?
Pop your beautiful homemade tallow in an airtight glass jar and stash it in the fridge for up to a year of freshness. Keeping it cold prevents rancidity. For an even longer shelf life, tallow can be frozen for 2 years. Limit light exposure by storing in a dark spot. When ready to use frozen tallow, gently reheat to liquefy it again. Proper storage keeps your tallow usable for any recipe!
Making your own beef fat at home is a satisfying DIY project that results in versatile and nourishing cooking fat. With just a few simple tools and ingredients, you can render high-quality tallow from beef suet or trimmings. The finished product lasts for up to a year and can be used for cooking, skincare, leather care, candles, and more. Beef tallow is a traditional food that provides a healthy alternative to processed oils. Give tallow-making a try and explore all the ways to use this nourishing fat in your home!
- Tallow: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tallow
- Tallow’s nutrient data: https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171400/nutrients
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