Palm Free Beer Soap

My first batch of beer soap was a success!! This was also my boyfriend’s first time making a batch of soap, so it was a joint effort. I created the recipe and he did the dirty work 🙂 I’m still trying to get him to write out the instructions for his handmade soap dishes (pictured below).

Cold Process IPA Beer Soap--Palm Free

So far, this is my favorite bar of soap. It’s oh so creamy and the citrus sent is just the right level of invigorating. In the words of my boyfriend, “it’s like bathing yourself with an orange creamsicle.” He couldn’t be any more accurate.

Beer Soap

This recipe will make about 3 1/2-4 pounds of soap. This is not a one-day soap, as you have to let the beer go flat before using it. As with any recipe you find for soaps, run this through a lye calculator for accuracy. I like the one on Bramble Berry. If you’ve never made soap before, STOP and do your research! Soapmaking is a fun and rewarding craft, but it requires some background knowledge before diving in. I recommend Anne Watson’s “Simple Soapmaking” or watching Soap Queen’s video tutorials. Here’s the first one about lye safety.

The Recipe


  • 11.25 oz coconut oil
  • 28.13 oz corn oil (for a bit of that Hoosier spirit)
  • 5.63 oz olive oil
  • 6.12 oz lye
  • 14.85 oz. beer of choice (we used an IPA from a local brewery)

Fragrance (added at light trace)

  • 2oz of lemon essential oil
  • 2oz of orange essential oil


1. Weigh out your beer and simmer it on the stovetop for 5-10 minutes to cook off some of the alcohol. Let it cool.

2. Pour your beer into a container that has a loose fitting lid. I used a mason jar that I covered with plastic wrap (with a few holes poked in it) before screwing on the lid (not the part with the rubber seal). Refrigerate for 2-3 days, stirring it once in a while, or until the beer is COMPLETELY flat. If there is ANY carbonation left, you could end up with a terrible volcanic eruption when you mix your lye into the beer. Once the beer is flat, you’re ready to make your soap.

3. Melt your coconut oil into your corn and olive oils. Let cool as you prepare your beer and lye mixture. Try to keep the oils around 110-115 degrees Fahrenheit.

4. Pour your beer into a large heat-proof container (glass or stainless steel). Add the lye to the beer slowly, stirring as your pour. I recommend doing the mixing of the lye in the sink, just in case there is an unexpected eruption. If you feel any crystals of lye on the bottom of your container, stop adding the lye and gently scrape/stir at the bottom with your spoon until they lye has dissolved. Don’t breathe in the fumes.

5. Once you’re done dissolving the lye, move your container to an ice bath to cool it down to about 110-115 degrees. Your oils should be around this temp too, they don’t have to be exactly the same temperature, but they should be within 10 degrees of each other.

6. Pour the beer and lye mixture into the oils and stick blend until you’ve reached light trace. Add your essential oils and blend until you reach a medium trace.

7. Once you’ve reached medium trace, pour your soap into your mold. Cover the with plastic wrap, pressing it directly on the soap to prevent soda ash. Cover with a towel and let the oils saponify for 24 hours before cutting.

I gave this soap a 4 week cure before using. Head over to my Soap Tracker post to download a spreadsheet (with formulas!) to track curing dates for your cold process soaps.

Cold Process IPA Beer Soap--Palm Free



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