by Tom


by Tom


Make Soap from Fireplace Ashes

For centuries humans have been making soap from fireplace ash. If you’re looking for a way to use your fireplace ash and are interested in exploring some homesteading skills, read on and learn how to make soap for your own use.

1. Make lye.

The active ingredient in soap is lye. Lye is an alkaline substance with a very slippery feeling when dissolved in water. The lye dissolves grease and lifts dirt.

For this step it’s wise to wear gloves, long sleeves, and eye protection as lye is caustic and will cause chemical burns.

To make your lye, boil hardwood ashes in rain water for about half an hour. Do NOT use aluminum pans- the lye will eat through them. Use glass or enameled pots instead. Once the fireplace ashes have settled to the bottom of the pot, skim off the liquid lye. Once you have collected enough liquid lye, pour it into a pot and boil until an egg will float in it.

2. Collect and render fats.

Gather leftover meat fats, lard, and vegetable oils. These fats will form the structure of your soap, keeping it solid. Slowly heat the fat and oils in a pan until it becomes liquid. Strain out solid bits and impurities by pouring the hot fat through cheese cloth. Be very careful not to burn yourself.

3. Mix it all together.

Once the fat is filtered, keep it on low heat while you bring your lye to a boil. When the lye is at a rolling boil, slowly add the hot fat while stirring with a wooden spoon. This is the time to add any herbs or essential oils to give your soap scents. Add some salt as the mixture thickens.

Keep boiling and stirring the mixture until it gets the consistency of thick cornmeal mush.

4. Pour your soap.

Pour the hot lye and fat mixture into soap molds lined with parchment paper. You can use all sorts of molds to make soap – be creative.

Soap Molds for Making Soap from Fireplace Ashes

Soap Molds to Make Soap from Fireplace Ashes

Once you’re poured the mixture, allow it to cool and harden to make soap.

You now have homemade soap made from fireplace ash!

Related Posts

View all

Leave A Comment

By submitting your comment, you agree your name and comment may be published. Your email address will never be published. In accordance with our Privacy Policy, it will only be used to notify you when there is a response to your comment. It is never shared with or sold to others..

  • The United States celebrates National Bioenergy Day each October. It recognizes and encourages the use of renewable and sustainable bioenergy sources. In 2021, National Bioenergy Day is October 20. When any organic material with few or no productive applications is used to generate energy, we call it “bioenergy.” The biomass can be any organic low […]

    Continue reading
  • Traditionally, knowledge based on teachings and experiences about selecting and burning firewood was passed along verbally. Often such information was put into a rhyming format to make it easier to remember. Thus were born firewood poems and firewood songs to address the question, “Which Firewood Burns Best?” As with most things passed from generation to generation, […]

    Continue reading
  • Mosquitos are the bane of everyone who wants to relax by a fire pit or fire bowl or campfire. A careful selection of  specific eco-friendly firestarters, logs and other fire fuels can safely repel those flying pests.  Here is a list of what to burn for mosquito free fire pit or other outdoor fires. What […]

    Continue reading
  • We celebrate Arbor Day in the United States on the last Friday of April. The holiday celebrates the joys of trees. Trees provide both people and animals with services as well as goods. Planting trees on Arbor day is a traditional way to honor forest, ornamental and fruit trees. To those with wood-burning fireplaces or […]

    Continue reading