goat milk soap

My favorite goat milk soap recipe- simple and perfect every time!

I love making goat milk soap, but I don’t always have time to make it. So I slip in small batches here and there to not get overwhelmed. I also love to make my own recipes based on what oils or additives that I have on hand. This cold-process soap recipe that I will give you is one of my favorites. It uses  4 different oils and if you like, you can substitute one of the oils with something similar.  Just make sure that you run your oils through a soap calculator to get the proper amount of lye.

My mold for goat milk soap

Since the first year I started making soap, I have been using the same cardboard mold which makes bars shaped and sized like a lot of commercial bar soaps. When I cut the bars from this mold, I get 8 bars that weigh about 3.5-4 ounces each after drying. I have decided to make the bars slightly bigger for selling so I needed to modify my mold. This was easily done by creating a cardboard insert to place in the mold and make it slightly smaller. I now get 7 bars that are over 4 ounces each. This new size seems much more substantial and looks good in the packaging.

goat milk soap
Some of my soap bars ready for sale.

My favorite soap recipe simplified

Now for the recipe. Here are the ingredients first, then we will talk technique.

9.1 ounces goat milk
3.5 ounces lye
10 ounces palm oil
8 ounces coconut oil
4 ounces sunflower oil
2 ounces castor oil
essential oils as desired.

As with all goat milk soap recipes, your milk should be in a very slushy or partially frozen state to keep it from burning. A kitchen scale must be used for very accurate measurements and separate utensils should be used to keep your lye solution away from your food. Line your mold with parchment paper, or if you have cardboard like I do and you worry a bit too much, line it first with a plastic grocery bag and then parchment paper.

Carefully measure your oils and place them in a double boiler on the stove to liquefy them together. I use a large glass measuring cup inside my pot. Meanwhile, place your slushy/frozen milk in a batter bowl in the sink. Carefully measure your lye and gradually add it to the milk, stirring constantly. The milk will melt as you add the lye; make sure to keep stirring to avoid burning the sugars in the milk.

Melting the oils together on the stovetop.

Slowly mix your hot oils and milk/lye together. This is literally mixing oil and water together so it won’t stay mixed on its own. Use a stick blender to pulse the solution until its fully blended, and starts to thicken (or trace back on itself). It will look similar to thin pudding. At this time add any essential oils that you want and mix well. Pour into your mold!

Pulsing the mixture until trace.

Normally I stick the soap directly into the freezer to cool it down. I haven’t had a real problem with the soap overheating because I keep the temperature as low as possible when making this recipe. Usually the soap can be pulled out of the mold within 12 hours, then cut between 24 and 36 hours. Allow to dry/cure for 4-6 weeks.

Soap from the mold that has just been cut and waiting to cure.

I would love to share recipes and tips with you, please let me know what you have!

You might also want to view:

Chocomint Goat Milk Soap Recipe and Technique

Simple Liquid Goat Milk Soap Recipe

59 thoughts on “My favorite goat milk soap recipe- simple and perfect every time!

  1. PLEASE stop using palm oil!!! Do the research – The industry is linked to major issues such as deforestation, habitat degradation, climate change, animal cruelty and indigenous rights abuses in the countries where it is produced, as the land and forests must be cleared for the development of the oil palm plantations.

    1. I agree with what you are saying, that is why I only use sustainable palm oil in my recipes. I have a responsible buyer that makes sure all oils they purchase are sustainable and organic. Thank you for your comment.

      1. thank you for standing strong on your rights. I have heard this hearsay for ages & yet never from the countries involved, just ‘doo-gooders’ with an ax to grind..

        1. I am fortunate to be within close proximity to a buying group that buys responsibly. Sometimes it costs more money, but it is worth it. I think the modern homesteading movement is becoming more aware of reusable resources as I know I try to be.
          Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Most people will not share their soap recipes, so I thank you for doing so. I’ve never made goat milk soap and always wanted to try it but I have a fear of getting it too hot. So do you get your oils just hot enough to melt before adding the lye/ goat milk, because you didn’t five a temperature? Thank you so much for posting this, Melody

    1. Melody,

      I only get them warm enough to melt all oils together. Depending on what oils are used, this temperature may be different with each recipe. I always freeze my milk before starting to make sure it doesn’t burn. This method will normally keep the temperature of your mixture very low. I have occasionally put the mixing bowl into ice water to keep it from getting any warmer. Hope this helps. Good luck!

  3. Do you use granulated lye crystals? And when you mix the lye with the milk does it put off any harmful fumes? I’ve read some people saying you have to wear goggles, masks and lab coats to handle the lye mixtures. I really want to make some soap with milk from my Nigerian Dwarf goats, but I have 2 kids under four and am wondering if it is something I can do with them in the same room (obviously they can’t help me since the lye solution gets so hot).

    1. Yes, the lye is granulated. When mixed with liquid, the lye does create fumes. It is recommended to wear eye protection and avoid the fumes. Since I mix frozen or mostly frozen milk with the lye, the mixture does not get as hot and the fumes are not as prevalent. I always make my soap by placing the batter bowl in the sink, not holding my head over the bowl when mixing in lye, and pointing the blender away from my body. The fumes are gone once the lye is totally dissolved, normally in less than 5 minutes.
      If you have small children, you might want to wait until they are asleep at night or at a sitters. Please be careful!

  4. Hello! Thank you for your recipe! I have made goat milk soap in the past. With your recipe, could I use olive oil in place of the palm oil and sunflower oil? Also, I can’t seem to get the soap to have a strong enough scent. I use high quality essential oils. How many ounces or drops would you recommend for this recipe. Thanks! ?

    1. Steph,
      If you wanted to use olive oil, you would need to create the recipe in a soap calculator. Each oil has a different lye value and it is not safe to just substitute one oil for another. I always use soapcalc.net. I know what you mean about essential oils and scent! The saponification process takes a lot of the scent away (in my opionion). I also think it is difficult to get milk soap to have a strong scent. Brambleberry has a fragrance calculator that you can use to determine how much to use. I have found that it is MUCH more than what I use right now. Many essential/fragrance oils require different amounts, and for this recipe if you were using Lavender oil, for example, Brambleberry says you need to use .9 ounces. That’s a lot! And it can get very expensive. I only use about .4 ounces. My soap are very natural and subtlety fragranced. Hope this helps?

  5. I don’t have a place to get fresh goats milk. If I used canned from super market would I need to dilute it or use it as it comes out of the can?

    1. Sandrea,

      I have never used canned milk before, but if I were to use it, I would just use it right out of the can. It needs to be liquid enough to dissolve the Lye crystals.

      Good luck!

    2. I have used the goat milk from the can, yes you want to follow what the can says & add your water, shake well to mix it together and then freeze in ice cubes before making your soap.
      Yes, I make goat milk soap.

  6. Hi the first time I used goats milk, it was from a can. The color is very tan, so the soap is tan. I was able to find Meyenberg fresh goats milk in the dairy case at Walmart, but apparently they stopped selling it. I think Target sells it too. I would use the powdered goats milk and reconstitute it according to the directions then use the correct amount needed for your recipe. I have seen some soap makers mix their key water as they normally would, then add the powdered goats milk directly into the oils. Stick blend until its all incorporated, then add the lye, mix and stick blend until emulsified and trace is achieved.

    1. Thanks for the advice! I have had some of my soap recipes turn out a tan color due to the sugars in the milk.
      I have seen fresh goats milk in several dairy cases at my local stores. Boy, it’s expensive!

  7. Hello, I like your recipe, I have made few goat milk soaps recipe and allways using frozen milk.
    I made them with honey since I am a beekeeper I just need to put honey in all my soaps and I m wondering if you have any advice because I want to make swirls in honey soap but I allways get very thick trace.

    1. I know what you mean about a thick trace. I make a honey soap (I call it Milk n Honey) and also a honey oatmeal. I have found that only a small amount of honey is necessary. For this recipe, I would use about 2 teaspoons of honey and stir it in before a trace is reached. It will begin to trace as soon as your honey is added, so work quickly to get it into your mold and do swirls before it sets up.

  8. I made this and love it. Recipe worked perfect. My question is that when I go to make a larger batch and run the ingredients thru a lye calculator the liquid content is not much different.
    Currently it says 9.1 oz of goat milk with 3.5 oz of lye. but if I increase the total batch yield to 48 oz it only asks for 10.67 oz of goat milk with 4.77 oz of lye. I am new to making soap so sorry if this is a stupid question.

  9. Where I live I can’t easily get my hands on sustainable palm oil. Is there something else I can substitute it with for this recipe?

    1. Anstice,

      The properties of Palm Oil are similar to Lard (manteca) and most butters (shea, cocoa, mango). I don’t like to use a lot of butters in my soaps as they seem to get too hot for the goat milk, but I do use a lot of lard from pigs that we raise. If I were going to substitute the palm oil in this recipe, I would use lard, but I would also run the amounts through a lye calculator to make sure the lye and liquid are correct. If I were not going to use palm oil, I would most likely use one of my other recipes which uses a combination of olive, coconut, avocado, castor, and possibly a little bit of shea butter. I am going to be putting more of my recipes on line very soon, so check back for exact recipes!

  10. So anxious to try this recipe, is this a bubbly soap or more creamy. My hubby thinks the have to be bubbly to get him clean. I have really dry skin and heard goats milk soap is more moisturizing. So is this soap a good mixture for both of us?

    1. Hi Sandrea! This soap is very gentle and moisturizing – we use it for shaving and I use it on my face. I use Castor Oil to get the bubbles going so this soap has plenty of bubbles. Let me know how yours turns out!

  11. Hello! Thank you for sharing your recipe for goat’s milk soap. If I were to add honey to this, is there an amount you suggest and when (which step) should I be mixing the honey in? Thank you for your time 🙂

    1. Hi Tina! If I were to add honey to this recipe, I would do 2 Tablespoons at light trace. Make sure you mix in the honey very well and bring to a full trace. Honey will give it a little more deeper color and add a small amount of scent along with its wonderful properties added to the soap.

  12. Thank you for putting this recipe out, I just made goats milk soap and pour last evening, super easy.
    But for a more natural soap, I would love to try to make your recipe.
    I love the idea of milk and honey, have you added dried oats to your mold and or mixed in with the soap before you pour? thanks for your time and expertise. Mary

    1. Mary,
      I do make a honey and oatmeal soap, also just a milk and honey. For this sized batch, I typically put 2 T of honey in just before trace. Make sure it’s mixed real well. When adding oatmeal, make sure it’s ground up, and again stir very well when adding just before trace. I usually just eyeball an amount and go by looks, but I would say about 2-3 T of ground oatmeal.
      Hope you have fun with your soap making!

  13. Thank you for sharing your recipe! I have a stupid question, are the ounces in weight or liquid measurement?

  14. When you stick it in the freezer when your done, how lo gbdo you leave it in their. I just nade a batch. Excited to see how it turns out.

    1. Palm oil is in the same category as Lard (manteca), Beef Tallow, and butters such as cocoa and shea. If you want to exchange Palm, I would play around with Soapcalc.net’s recipe calculator with some of these replacements.

  15. Is this considered a cold process soap? Also, does the oil need to be at a certain temp before adding the lye mixture? Looks like a good recipe- can’t wait to try!

    1. Yes, this is cold process. You want the oils to be cool so the milk and lye mixture does not get too hot and scorch your milk. I aim for 90 to 95 degrees (but I’m impatient, so a lot of times it’s closer to 100 and that’s ok!)
      Good luck!

  16. My 6 kids and I want to try this with our raw goat milk, but I don’t want to use lye. Can you use soap flakes with raw milk? I can’t find any recipes at all 🙁

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Polly!
      Real soap is made with lye. The flakes of soap and melt & pour bars are already made into soap and can be heated up with colors and fragrances added to them. It would not be a good idea to add raw milk as it would just spoil. When recipes such as mine use milk, raw ingredients are combined to create something new when a chemical reaction takes place. It’s similar to making cookies- raw ingredients combine to make something you can eat. And once cooked, raw ingredients cannot be added again to the cookies. Hope this makes sense!

      1. I’m sorry but what do you mean by raw milk? We have goats and I’ve been wanting to make soaps with goat milk but I’m unsure of what I would need to do with the milk. Can you please help?

        1. Maribel,
          Raw milk is not pasteurized. It is not necessary to pasteurize milk that will be used for soap, as the chemical reaction with the lye creates a new product and kills the bacteria that may exist in the milk.
          I milk, then strain to get out particles that may be in it (such as hay or hair), then I freeze in the amount I need for my soap. I also use any leftover milk in my fridge that we don’t use that may be getting older.
          I make lotion also, but that needs to be pasteurized. Lotion is a liquid suspension and can carry bacteria so everything is sterilized and the milk pasteurized.
          Hope that helps!

  17. Hi! Don’t think this posted the first time… So here goes again… I’m new to soap making and very excited to give this recipe a try! I have a question (just one for now)…. I downloaded 2 soap calculators… and neither offer goat milk. The closest thing there is “buttermilk, goat”… Do i not need to add the milk into the calculator? Just the oils? Thank you!

    1. Hi Amber!
      Any soap recipe can have milk substituted for the liquid in the recipe. So when I am formulating in soapcalc, I just use the amount they have listed for “water” as my goat milk. Just make sure you use it as frozen as possible so it doesn’t overheat and scorch when you add your lye.

  18. I have been making soap for few years I am an avad hunter and wanted to do more with my animals I harvest. I use the fat and render it down to deer tallow. I find recipes that have palm oil and substitute deer tallow for palm. It works quite well. I saw some comments asking for substitute for palm oil so gave my two cents. If you know any hunters they would probably give you the fat for couple bars of soap. My question is about honey do you heat honey up before adding it the the soap so it’s not so thick or does it still mix easily thick..

    1. Great idea with the deer tallow. That’s a good way to make use of the whole animal.
      I don’t normally heat up my honey. However I do tend to use older honey that no one wants to use on their toast, so that needs to be melted a bit to liquefy. I normal put the honey container in warm water to make it come out better. Using honey may heat up your soap and cause it to trace quick, so watch carefully. My biggest problem is making sure it is fully blended in to the soap.
      Thank you!

  19. Question…..do you weigh your solid oils (ie coconut) as a solid or as a melted liquid? I did it by melted weight and it turned out fine. Just started second guessing myself.

    1. Faith,

      I’ve not noticed a different in my oils, especially coconut, whether as a solid or liquid. I know that occasionally when I’m making soap during hot weather and the coconut oil is almost liquid, my soap turns out just fine.

      Have fun creating!

  20. Hi,

    Have you superfatted the soap?

    Any idea how long it should be in the mould?

    Also, can I convert oz measurement to gram and then use?

    1. I have only superfatted to 8% which is a default on the lye calculator. You can superfat more if desired or change to grams, but I would still run it though a lye calculator just to be sure. You don’t want to have issues with too much or too little lye. I like to use SoapCalc. Have fun!

  21. Please tell me about your soap mold, I need to make one, I like the size of your bars.

  22. Hi! Your recipe was my first time making soap! How long does your lye and oils normally take to come to trace? I used my stick blender and pulsed it for about 15 min before it was thick enough to fold over on itself. Is this normal? I just want to check before I make my next batch. Everything else on the internet seems like it comes to trace really fast, I don’t know if thats normal for goats milk soap or I did something wrong.

    1. There are many factors involved. The exact temp of oils and lye mixture, the types of oils, and the additives. I will sometimes pulse for a couple minutes. Then walk away. Then come back. It’s like a watched pot! It has taken 15 minutes for me occasionally too.

  23. In another recipe, the instructions say to put lie into water and add the goats milk separately, can I replace all the water with goats milk and not change any of the other ingredients?

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