Simple Liquid Goat Milk Soap Recipe

I hesitate to even call this recipe “simple” because liquid soap is a bit more complicated to make than bar soap. Simple instructions and few ingredients make this recipe a winner; but those instructions don’t involve grating a bar of soap and adding water. About 2 years into my bar soap making I came across this recipe. I have made it several times and *most* times it has come out perfectly. A couple of times I had difficulties with it separating, although it seemed to still work like soap. I have never found another recipe like this one before so I wanted to share it with you.

Some basics of Liquid Soap making

There are a couple of differences between liquid and bar soaps. Potassium Hydroxide (potash or KOH) is used for making Liquid soaps while Sodium Hydroxide (lye) is used for bar soap. The process for making liquid soap is more like a hot-process bar soap. It is cooked for a long period of time, going through several different phases. When complete, a translucent gel is the final product. The gel is then reconstituted to the desired consistency. A translucent soap is what most people are looking for in a liquid and it is almost impossible to get a milk soap to be translucent. It is also almost impossible to cook a milk soap for an extended period of time without it burning and having a scorched odor. At the very least, the soap will be an unpleasing brown color and may have “floaties” in it due to the sugars and proteins in the milk.

Liquid goat milk soap paste ready to cure for a couple of weeks.

There are a couple of differences between liquid and bar soaps. Liquid soaps are made using Potassium Hydroxide (potash or KOH) instead of Sodium Hydroxide (lye) which is used for bar soap. The process for making liquid soap is more like a hot-process bar soap being cooked for a long period of time and going through several different phases. When complete, a translucent gel is the final product. The gel is then reconstituted to the desired consistency. A translucent soap is what most people are looking for in a liquid and it is almost impossible to get a milk soap to be translucent. It is also almost impossible to cook a milk soap for an extended period of time without it burning and having a scorched odor. At the very least, the soap will be an unpleasing brown color and may have “floaties” in it due to the sugars and proteins in the milk.

potassium hydroxide is in flakes, not granuals like sodium hydroxide.

I don’t care if my liquid soap is translucent or not, but I do like the properties of goat milk soap and this recipe is made like a cold-process bar soap and mixes up easily. You will use the same tools as you would for bar soap making including a stick blender and your designated utensils and bowls. I had to order my KOH, as I could not find a local outlet for it. You can find it at many online soap making sites, and even Amazon.

My liquid goat milk soap recipe

I have run the following ingredients through a lye calculator to make sure they are correct. If you are looking to create your own recipe, make sure you select the correct lye on this calculator.
In a double boiler, melt together:
7.2 oz. coconut oil
3.6 oz. sustainable palm oil
1.2 oz. grapeseed oil
While your oils are melting, mix 4.6 oz. of very cold to slightly slushy goat milk with 2.6 oz. of KOH.
When the KOH is dissolved into your milk, very slowly and carefully combine your oils and your milk.
Stir to combine. Use your stick blender to pulse the mixture in quick bursts to combine the oil and milk. If you are familiar with bar soap making, you will notice that it will take a bit longer for this soap to come to trace. Keep pulsing your stick blender until the soap traces back on itself like a thin pudding. Pour the mixture into a lidded container to cure for about 2 weeks. I usually use a mason jar and leave it on top of my fridge.

Thin your paste with water, stirring carefully.

After 2 weeks, thin your soap with distilled water to the desired consistency. The instructions that came with the recipe said that a stick blender can be used for this step, but I felt that it bubbled too much and made a mess. I have found it’s best to add some water, stir a bit, then let it set before mixing some more. If you want to add essential or fragrance oils, do so at this time now.

Finished liquid goat milk soap

I would love to see your liquid soap, so if you make some, drop me a line!


22 thoughts on “Simple Liquid Goat Milk Soap Recipe

  1. After 2 weeks my soap separated & the darker bottom half was solid. I mixed the soap & added water until it was smooth and pourable. It is in pump bottles and solid again!

    1. Sometimes I have issues with this soap separating after a few weeks. Normally it never actually gets solid though. I wonder what it could be? Did you use the oils exactly as stated?

    1. I have never used this as a shampoo, it doesn’t have quite the same consistency as I would like. Shampoo is not something that I have experimented with yet – maybe soon!

  2. Made liquid goat milk soap today. Followed the process that I used for CP goat milk soap (slushy, combined with lye with pot in ice). Was taking a horrific long time to trace. I left it alone for a few minutes, found it had separated, SB again – several times over the next half hour. Then it became like a dough. I am familiar with making liquid soap, but the nagging question was do I do the 1-3 hour cook or not. I followed this recipe and did not. Anyway as I kept SBing, I noticed that the pot was getting warmer, then it finally stopped separating. I put the pot cover on with weight, hoping that all will be ok when I check on it tomorrow. My recipe was also different (coconut, castor, olive)

  3. So you did not cook the base as you normally do for liquid soap? And because of not reaching the high heat the goat milk base didn’t turn the brown gravy color?

    1. Good question! I use non-pasteurized for making soap. Between the chemical reaction that the lye creates, and the fact that the final product is dried and cured, I don’t believe it is necessary. I do however use pasteurized milk when making lotion, since this product is liquid and kept at room temperature.

    1. No preservatives are needed for soap! I actually have some liquid soap from this exact batch that i saved for an experiment. It has been in a lidded container for a year and is just fine!

      1. So this is totally self stable- Dumb question- Why is lotion not shelf stable- is it because doesnt go thru the chemical reactions soap does?

        1. Hi Candy! Anything that has water in it (or in this case milk), can grow bacteria if left at room temperature without a preservative. You can make milk lotion without the preservative, but you would need to keep it in the refrigerator and use it within a couple weeks. Just like milk. The preservative keeps the bacteria from growing. In bar soap, the lye kills any bacteria and any residual liquid is evaporated out when it’s cured. With liquid soap, again the lye kills the bacteria. I have kept liquid soap on my shelf for a year as an experiment. It was perfectly fine.

  4. Just tried your recipe, I’m at the two week waiting period. Do you have a picture of it sitting in a jar on your fridge? Also how much water do you need to add to it?
    Thanks for the recipe.

    1. I don’t actually have a picture of it. It basically looks like the creamy soap in my pictures on here, sometimes with a little separation. It seems to go through periods of separation and creamy, but normally turns out all together in a few weeks.

    1. The recipe does not call for glycerin- I’ve actually never used glycerin in my soap recipes as that is the basic end result when you mix lye with fat. If there is a reason to add it to this recipe, I’d like to know! Or if someone has added it, please comment here.

  5. I made once the dark brown liquid soap, nothing like this and did not smell like milk soap. Would you be kind to let me know what the pH is for this liquid soap?
    Thank you for sharing your experience.

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