Baby Carrot Soap

baby carrot soap palm free recipe
This baby carrot soap is gentle and mild, making it perfect for those with sensitive skin.

To make this, you’ll need to first prepare a carrot puree. (Alternately, you can use carrot baby food.) To make the puree, slice a large carrot into rounds and simmer in a covered pot of water. When tender, spoon the slices from the water and cool to room temperature. Blend the carrots along with a small amount of the cooking water to form a smooth puree.

slicing carrots

Baby Carrot Soap

All measurements are by weight, not volume.
Liquid & Lye Portion:

  • 4 ounces carrot puree
  • 4 ounces carrot cooking water (or plain water)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (to help with unmolding)
  • 3.9 ounces lye (sodium hydroxide) (you can buy lye HERE)

Oils (28 ounces total):

  • 2 ounces Castor Oil (7%)
  • 7 ounces Coconut Oil (25%)
  • 19 ounces Olive Oil (68%)

Step 1: If you’ve never made soap before, be sure that you’ve fully studied and understand the process. (See my Soap Making 101 tutorial or my Handmade Natural Soaps eBook Collection.) Have all of your ingredients ready to go. Wear proper safety gear (gloves, goggles & long sleeves.)

Step 2: Mix carrot puree, water, and salt in a heat proof plastic or stainless steel container. Slowly add in the lye and stir until completely dissolved. The mixture will get hot! I like to do this step in my kitchen sink to contain any accidental spills and because it has a window I can open for fresh air.

Adding 1 teaspoon of plain table or sea salt to your lye water will help firm the soap up, so you can unmold sooner. This is especially helpful to add to palm free recipes or when using silicone molds.

carrot puree and lye for soap

Step 3: Set the lye mixture aside, in a safe place that pets and children can’t access, and allow it to cool for about an hour.

Step 4: While the lye is cooling, measure out the oils in a heatproof enamel, stainless steel, or heavy duty plastic bowl or pan. (I use an inexpensive enamel stock pot I bought from Wal-Mart or an old stoneware crockpot liner.) If your coconut oil is solid, melt it just enough to be able to stir into the other oils. Set the oils aside until your lye has cooled some. They can be room temperature or a little warmer when you mix them. (Note: Room temperature in my house is around 80 degrees.)

Step 5: Once it has cooled for about an hour (temperature should be somewhere around 90 to 105 degrees Fahrenheit), carefully pour the lye solution into the oils.

Step 6: Using a stick (immersion) blender, stir the lye solution and oils together – alternating stirring by hand 20 to 30 seconds, then pulsing a similar length of time with the stick blender. (Blending continually on high could possibly lead to a false trace and too many air bubbles in your soap.)

Step 7: Stir until trace is reached. “Trace” means that the soap mixture is thickened enough so that it leaves a trail, or “trace”, when you drizzle some of the batter across the surface of itself. (See photo below.) It should only take about four or five minutes to reach this stage, when using a stick blender.

baby carrot soap at trace

Step 8: Pour into a mold that has been lined with parchment paper or freezer paper shiny side up. Don’t have a mold? You can use a parchment paper lined glass bread loaf pan instead. You can also use silicone molds. I used THIS KIND from Bramble Berry for this project. (It fills around 7 or 8 of those cavities.)

Step 9: Unmold and slice into bars. Let cure in the open air for six weeks or longer. Because of the high olive oil in this soap, a longer cure time will make for a harder, yet more gentle soap.

For more in-depth information on making palm-free natural soaps, along with instructions on adding herbs, flowers, and natural colors to your handmade soaps – check out my Handmade Natural Soaps eBook Collection.

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  1. Jan, I’m wondering about the purée. As it is fresh carrots, will this shorten the shelf life? In the past, I’ve used only dehydrated carrot “shavings”, but the soap lacked color and appeal. Your soap is gorgeous! Another question–could carrot juice be used in place of the purée and cooking water? I’m sure that changes the recipe a bit. I didn’t have the questions in soap-making class! Thanks, Jan, and God bless.

    1. Hi M! I’ve not noticed a shortened shelf life. In the past, I added rosemary antioxidants as a just-in-case type deal to try to head off any potential spoilage, but forgot many times and still found the soap lasted well. From what I understand, the alkalinity of the soap and the saponification process itself, keeps food ingredients from spoiling. (This is for cold process soap – not sure about the other types.) You could try carrot juice too – I would keep it around the same amount of 8 ounces (weight) and you should be good to go!

      1. Jan, thanks for this answer. Woo-hoo! I know what kind of soap I’ll be making next here! And thank you for the lovely recipe. God bless.

      2. If you use puree only in the lye water, there won’t be any spoilage. However, make sure it’s a puree, not too much and there are no chunky carrots or there will be spoilage.

        1. Hi Elma!
          To figure out how many pounds of soap that a recipe will make, you add up the total weight of the oils, water and lye.
          In this recipe it would be about 40 oz. Since 16 oz are in a pound, then you would divide 40 by 16 and get
          2 1/2 pounds. So to make it a 5 pound recipe, you would just double it.
          I hope that helped! :)

          1. Thanks so much Jan.
            Someone has mentioned that you can’t double the measurements. Gotta use lye cal/soap calc.

            1. Hi Elma!

              I learned that way as well, but one day a more experienced soap maker pointed out to me that if it takes “X” amount of lye to saponify “Y” amount of oil, then mathematically speaking, it should take exactly “2X” of lye to saponify “2Y” of oil or it would not be correctly saponified.

              You can run that through a lye calculator to see what she meant:
              7 oz coconut oil at 6% superfat = 1.21 oz lye needed
              14 oz (doubled) coconut oil at 6% superfat = 2.42 oz lye needed
              21 oz (tripled) coconut oil at 6% superfat = 3.63 oz lye needed
              and so forth.

              However, there could be half numbers and rounding going on (which I did on this recipe in fact – rounded from 3.91 oz, an exact 5% superfat, to 3.9 oz so it would fall between 5 and 6% superfat), so it’s definitely good to double check by running a new recipe through a lye calculator every time and then again if you make any change. It only takes a few minutes and might save a lot of problems in the long run!

              Even knowing it would be the same, I did run the recipe through the lye calculator to make sure before answering that it could be doubled:
              (I use the calculator at majestic mountain sage most often, so numbers are given using that one)

              Doubling the recipe using the lye calculator (or just doubling the numbers as written) equals:
              – 38 oz olive oil (no variation)
              – 14 oz coconut oil (no variation)
              – 4 oz castor oil (no variation)
              – 14 to 21 oz range, (16 oz total – you want the low end for palm-free soap)
              – 7.82 oz lye
              (or if doubling exactly as I had written, it would be 7.8 oz which still falls between 5 and 6% superfat)

              I hope that helps! If you find any information that contradicts the
              “x” lye + “y” oil = “2x” lye + “2y” oil
              math, then please let me know! I always enjoy improving my information base! :)

  2. Thanks for sharing this formula. I love using carrot juice in facial tonics, so this sounds lovely. I even have baby carrots in the garden needing harvesting, so I hope to whip some up this weekend. I have made several of your soap recipes and I have not had a single problem and have loved them all. Have a lovely day!

    1. I’m so happy to hear that you’re having success with the recipes! I think you’ll really like this soap – it has become my new favorite! I hope you have a lovely day too! :)

  3. Hello Jan

    I think this is a great recipe! I have not made soap yet. But I am researching and preparing for it. I know once I make the first batch my fears will fade… I am learning about the hot process soap making method. Mainly because I live in an apartment and don’t have a place to let the bars cure where the cats can’t get into them, not to mention the fur… lol I was curious if this recipe would work in hot process soap, but I think you answered my question in response to the shelf life question above. You’re not sure about other soap processes..? I guess I’ll have to try this myself after I’ve got a few basic recipes under my belt. :)

    1. Hi Angelique! Yep, I’m just not sure about carrot soaps & hot process. I suspect it would work out fine, but having never tried it, can’t be 100% positive. Good luck with your soap making ventures! :)

  4. Jan, can the castor oil be substituted for some other oil? I have sweet almond, jojoba or avocado oil. would I be able to use any of those instead? Thanks for sharing your recipe :-)

  5. Oh I love baby bastille soap (that’s the silly name I call it). It is so luxurious and gentle on skin.

    1. That’s a great name! I believe I remember pinning a lovely looking buttermilk bastille soap from your site too. With a new nephew on the horizon, I’ve got baby soaps on the brain! :)

  6. Hi Jan,

    I have been following your blogs on and off for some time now, and I am looking for some advice regarding sustainability resources.

    I am a middle school humanities teacher, and our next unit of study is called Healthy Body, Healthy World. I would like to incorporate into the curriculum globalization, sustainability and eating locally. Any suggestions or sites you can send my way would be greatly appreciated.

    In good health,

    1. Hi TBui! One of the pages on Facebook I like to follow is Attainable Sustainable. She rounds up all sorts of interesting information. A scroll through her page might give you some resources, articles, and sites to get you going.

  7. thanks so much for sharing this. Just scored a ton of pureed carrots (only) baby food jars at local outlet for pennies. Will be making soap shortly(or as soon as I can get all my soap gear cleaned up from last cook)thanks!

  8. Thank you for sharing your soap recipes. I made the baby carrot soap and added orange EO. It turned out great! Cant wait to try the soap.

  9. I wanted to use this recipe vs. your carrot honey recipe because there is no palm oil in this one. Can I still put in honey at trace? Thanks!

    1. Hi Kellie! A lot of it depends on the freshness of oils that you start with, how much superfat is in the recipe (moisturizing soaps high in extra oils will spoil faster) & how the bars are stored (direct sun, high heat or humidity will shorten life) – but I think a ballpark guideline is usually a year. Some soaps, especially castile (pure or high olive oil) type ones, last much longer. I have some here that are several years old and still in great condition. Essential oils used to scent the soap will fade over time, but as long as the bar looks and smells good, with no odor of old oil or DOS (“dreaded orange spots” that indicate rancidity) on them – it should be good to use!

    1. Hi Zoe, You sure can use a spoon, but it will take hours of hand stirring to reach trace instead of the few minutes a stick blender takes. It just speeds up the process and increases your chance for success, but many people have made soap perfectly well over the years without one!

    1. Hi Zoe! Castor oil is included to help boost lather. Another that does that is meadowfoam oil. If you don’t have either though, you can always just use more olive oil. (That applies to any soap recipe that you’re not sure of a substitution for. If in doubt, you can’t go wrong with more olive oil!) :)

  10. When I mixed the lye with the carrot water and puree it bubbled over the sides of my container.So I mixed a little lye in before it traced and seems to be getting pretty solid now.

    1. Yikes! I’ve had that happen once, with an herbal tea – I didn’t let it cool down enough. Fortunately, I had the container situated in the sink. I hope you were able to save your soap and it turns out well for you!

  11. Hi there firstly thank you for all your lovely recipes.

    I was just wondering do all soaps eventually go hard.
    I made some hot process soap but I think I put too much essential oil and oatmeal so 1 week on its quite squidgy – help.

    1. Hi Angela! Some soaps do take longer to cure, a lot of it depends on the amount of water that you start with. For hot process soaps, I like to use a full amount so it’s not all clumpy and hard to stir at the end, but that means it takes a little longer to firm up. Conversely, for cold process soaps, I drop the water amount some, so they’ll firm up faster. Palm free soaps and/or those with a lot of olive oil tend to take longer to set up too. One final cause would be not enough lye, lye that wasn’t measured accurately with a digital scale, or perhaps the lye had gone off (if you shake it and hear clumps, it’s not going to measure or act correctly.) Are you sure you reached trace before cook time too? Lots of factors could be the cause, but I would give it a little more time though and see what it does!

  12. Hi there, I ran this through SoapCalc and noticed that the lye amount you have listed is much below even a 0% superfat (0% = 1.76oz. lye). Is this big amount of lye needed because of the carrot puree? Is it drying? … Thanks!

  13. Oops.. the difference in lye amount is because I entered less oils. Sorry about that! Looks like 3.9oz. lye for 28oz. oils is a 5% SF.

    1. Hi Kirstin, Yep, you’re right – this recipe is about a 5% superfat. :) I usually like 6% (since my skin is slightly dry) and still do for most soaps, but this one did turn out nicely at 5.

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  15. Good morning. I am very excited to make your Baby Carrot Soap and would like to double the recipe. When placing the doubled oil amounts into the lye chart with 5% SF I get 6.49 lye and 15.2 water. Does this look correct to you and do I still divide the water and carrot purée half and half?thank you for your time and recipe.

    1. Hi Robin!
      Which lye calculator are you using?
      I think though that when you went to double the 19 oz of olive oil, you forgot to carry the 1 and got 28 instead of 38?

      When I double the recipe, it shows me this:
      4 oz castor oil
      14 oz coconut oil
      38 oz olive oil
      5% superfat = 7.82 oz lye
      14 to 21 oz water
      I try to use a range in the middle or low end of the suggested water amount, so would probably go with 16 oz. I’d still use half carrot puree and half water. However, having said that, I’ve also made really nice soaps using 100% carrot juice (fresh pressed at home or the bottled kind from the grocery store both work well.) So, that’s another option!

      Good luck with your soap making and I hope you like the recipe!

  16. Thank you so much for your speedy reply. You are right, about my math error, thank you for catching it. We are making the soap tomorrow and are so excited to see our results. Thank you again for your time and recipe. Much appreciated.

  17. Hi Jan! I plan to make your wonderful sounding soap tomorrow (June 16, 2015). Could you please tell me what you cover your soap with or how you insulate it with after putting the soap in the cavaties. I have this same mold! Thanks!

    1. Hi Jan! I can’t wait to make your baby carrot recipe! How do you insulate the soap in the mold you use? Also, can you tell me how to formulate this recipe to fill a five pound wooden mold. Thanks so much!

      1. Hi Jewel! I believe I answered the insulating question already (sorry again about the delay!)
        Now, to resize a recipe for a 5 pound mold, here’s how you’d do it:
        The current recipe is:
        4 ounces carrot puree + 4 oz carrot water + 3.9 ounces lye + 28 oz oil
        That all added together equals:
        40 oz (rounding a bit for simplicity)
        40 oz divided by 16 oz in a pound means that this soap is a 2.5 lbs soap recipe.
        Normally, you’d plug the oils into a lye calculator and then there’s usually a resize batch button at the bottom where you can put in the amount you want to increase it.
        However, with this batch being 2.5 lbs then all you have to do is exactly double everything and you’re good to go!
        7.8 oz lye
        8 oz carrot puree
        8 oz carrot water
        2 tsp salt
        4 oz castor oil
        14 oz coconut oil
        38 oz olive oil

        1. Jan, thanks so much for your reply to my questions. I’ve been making so much other soap that I haven’t made the carrot soap yet. It’s next on my list!! You are so giving in your help and I so appreciate it. I love your website! Thanks for all the wonderful recipes!!

    2. Hi Jewel, I’m so sorry I didn’t get to this comment in time! Life gets really busy sometimes at the farm and I get a little behind on emails and comments! When I use that mold, I usually throw a sheet of wax paper over the top and then insulate with a towel or small/baby quilt. I hope your soap turned out well for you!

  18. I infused rose pedals into the oil, then strained to mix sodium hydroxide and added pedals back in at thin trace with rose and rosewood EOs. Added to cute molds, insulated and placed in a cool oven for set up.

    Hope it turns out
    Soap and lotion learner,

    1. Hi Janetkay, That sounds so pretty! I’d love to know how your rose petals do in the soap. I’ve heard they can discolor, but I don’t believe I’ve actually tried it to know for sure if that’s true or not!

  19. Hi Jan. Just for information on doubling your recipe to fill a five pound mold: on Bramble Berry lye calculator, the lye recommend is 8.124 oz. and liquid recommend is 18.48 oz.
    Thanks for helping to learn about how to make the five pound recipe.

    1. Hi Jewel!

      That amount of lye (8.124 oz) is if you do a 0% superfat which might be a bit drying if you use it on your skin. It’s still balanced and technically not lye heavy, but there’s just no room for measuring error. You might want to consider a little higher superfat.

      For a 5% superfat, Bramble Berry’s gives me this:

      Castor Oil 4.00oz 7.14%
      Coconut Oil (76 Degrees) 14.00oz 25.00%
      Olive Oil 38.00oz 67.86%
      5% Lye (Sodium Hydroxide) Amount 7.718oz
      Ounces of liquid recommended 18.48oz
      Yields 82.20oz

      Since my soaps are palm free, they tend to be softer than those made with palm oil (or lard/tallow) so I almost always drop the liquid amount a bit. If you keep the higher amount that bramble berry says, it will still work – just give extra time to trace, set up in the mold and cure.

  20. Jan, I’m making your carrot soap! Didn’t quite get the carrots to purée stage using a food processor. Waiting for the oils and lye solution to cool. Is it ok if small bits of carrot are suspended in the soap? Hope I haven’t ruined it.

    1. Hi Jewel! Tiny little specks are probably okay, but any chunks or larger pieces should be strained or fished out. Hopefully, your stick blender will take care of any large pieces though if you didn’t get to strain them first. Good luck with your soap!

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  23. Tried this today and I LOVE the way it looks. Do you think it would also work to substitute squash, pumpkin, and/or sweet potatoes for the carrots? I know I will be trying it again and am already looking for variations. Thank you!

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  25. This soap is soooo nice to bathe with. Made some and used for myself this morning. The kiddos will definitely like it.
    thanks for the recipe.

  26. I would like to make this for a friend but she has coconut allergies. What would you suggest subbing for that with this recipe?

    1. Hi Sharon, That’s so thoughtful of you to consider your friend’s allergies! I know she will really appreciate that! The first choice would be babassu oil. You can substitute that in equal measure for coconut oil in soap recipes. It does alter the lye amount just a tiny bit.
      In this recipe, you’d just change the lye to 3.82 ounces if you use babassu oil instead of coconut. I buy the Dr. Adorable brand on Amazon and it works perfectly every time! If that won’t work, let me know and maybe we could figure out a different bastille (or “almost castille”) recipe for her.

  27. Hi Jan ..can I juice carrots instead of using purée ? By the way what is purée ? Don’t mean to sound crazy but is that like bottled carrot JUCIE ? Please help

    1. Hi Angel! The puree is cooked carrots blended until it’s really smooth, like carrot baby food or a smooth applesauce type texture. This recipe should work just fine though if you use carrot juice instead.

  28. How long did you let the soap sit before unmolding and cutting the bars. I made this yesterday and it seems quite soft though it is solid?

    1. Hi Sally! Sometimes it takes a few days for some soaps to set up. This soap is higher in soft oils so might take longer than recipes with more butters and hard oils. Also, it depends on if your soap went through gel phase or not (at cool temps, the soap stays softer for longer) and how thick your batter was when you poured it. Since it’s been a few days since you left your comment – how is it looking now?

  29. Hi! I made this soap last spring and it was great; I am getting ready to do it again tomorrow! I use your basic goats milk recipe for pretty all the soaps I have made and just wanted to say thanks! When I was first exploring the world of cp soap making (after making a melt and pour) I stumbled on your site and have returned to it over and over for recipes!!! Thanks so much!!!

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