What is tallow?
Tallow comes from rendering down beef suet, which is beef fat. It is super easy to make, it just takes time.
Since switching to focusing on a prometabolic diet tallow has become one of my favorite fats to cook with. It has a high smoke point, which makes it really versatile. It also stores for basically forever without needing to be frozen or canned.
- a saturated fat (yes this is good!)
- rich in fat soluble vitamins
- high smoke point
- much less prone to oxidation
You can read more about the benefits of saturated fats here.
- baking in place of lard or shortening
Where to find beef suet
Local butchers and local farms are a good starting point for looking for beef suet. You want to find beef suet that is nongmo grassfed preferably. Second best would be nongmo grain fed. If you or someone you know orders a butchered cow you can always ask for the suet on the cuttings sheet as well.
Ways to render the fat
There are several different ways you can render the beef suet. I personally prefer using the oven to do so as it is the most hands off.
However, you can also render the fat on the stove on very low heat, you just have to babysit it more to make sure it doesn’t get too hot too fast.
Another option is using a crockpot. I personally do not like this option because of how many crockpots have tested positive for high levels of lead. If I am going to spend the time making something I want it to be as clean as possible.
Make sure your storage containers are dry. If there is any water in them when you transfer the tallow over, you can end up with mold.
If you are going to transfer the tallow over while hot (this is what I do) make sure to use a heat safe container such as canning jars to reduce the chances of shattering.
The amount of time it takes to render the fat is going to depend on how much you are rendering as well as how small the fat is cut up. The smaller it is cut up the faster it is going to go.
This really is one the easiest things to do. It just takes time.
Are you going to try your hand at making tallow? Let me know how it goes and your favorite way to use tallow in the comments.
- beef suet
1. cut up the beef suet into 1 inch chunks
2. put in a dutch oven or other oven safe pan
3. put the beef suet in the oven before preheating
4. heat the oven to 225F
5. check on the fat every once in awhile
6. over time the fat will liquify and there will be crispy pieces, called crackling left.
7. strain the liquid through a fine mesh strainer or through a normal strainer and then coffee filter into your heat safe storage container
8. let it cool and store it or use it
The amount of time this takes is really going to depend on the amount of fat you are rendering. About 4 pounds took me 6 hours.
It is always a good idea to stir the pot every hour or so, so that none of the crackling gets burnt to the pan. Other than that this is a pretty hands off and easy process.