How to Make Beef Tallow: 7 Easy Steps

Jun 17, 2024by Christina Stefani
beef tallow in a bowl on a wood board

How to Make Beef Tallow in a Pot or Slow Cooker

Wondering how to make beef tallow? I’ve got you covered, and it's surprisingly easy!

1. Find the best beef fat you can.

If possible, look for beef fat from grass-fed cows, as it will be your healthiest option. Ask your local butcher to sell you discarded beef trimmings. I buy it from The Better Beef Company.

2. Cut beef fat into small pieces.

Freeze it for about an hour (frozen fat is easier to cut), then cut it into small cubes. Use a sharp knife or food processor to cut your beef fat into small chunks. If you’re purchasing fat trimmings from your butcher, you’ll need to remove any meat still fixed to the fat.

3. Place fat chunks into a large stockpot or slow cooker.

Use a slow cooker or a cast-iron Dutch oven if you don't have a large pot.

4. Render the beef fat.

Cook the fat in a pot over low heat for four hours. Stir every thirty to forty minutes. Occasionally check on it.

Small bubbles will form as the fat renders, but it should not boil. If it does boil, reduce the heat. Also, remember to scrape your spatula or spoon on the bottom of the pan to prevent stuck chunks of fat from burning.

5. Remove from the stovetop.

Ensure the rendering process is complete before removing your fat from the heat. When all the white fat has melted, and only liquid and crispy brown cracklings are left, your rendered tallow is ready. Remember, this can take up to four hours, so patience is a virtue here. But it's worth it.

6. Strain the liquid.

Allow your tallow to cool for about five minutes, then strain the rendered beef fat into a bowl using a fine-mesh strainer. To remove even smaller pieces, use a coffee filter or cheesecloth to strain the tallow a second time.

7. Store in a Mason jar or airtight glass container.

Pour it into a Mason jar or an airtight glass container for storage. Tallow will typically keep at room temperature for a few months before it turns rancid. Store it in the refrigerator for up to a year, or longer if frozen.

That's all! Not too difficult, correct? Scroll down for a handy recipe card. 

beef tallow

Bonus: Making Beef Cracklins

Crackins are sort of like bacon bits but not as salty. To make cracklins from the leftover solids, fry them in a pan until they release all their fat and become crispy.

Next, separate the liquids from the solids. You can keep this beef tallow if you'd like. However, it will have a stronger beef taste and smell than regular tallow, so I store it in a separate container.

Store beef cracklins in the fridge for a few months or in the freezer indefinitely. Use them anywhere you want some extra crunch and nutrition. 

❤️ Christina