A Recipe for Cafe Soap!

We had a soap party last weekend! A few friends came over and we spent hours melting, mixing, pouring, and having a blast. Coming up with soap recipes and creating them with friends are probably the 2 most enjoyable things about soaping, other than using your very own homemade bar for the first time!

One of the new recipes we tried out was for a coffee soap with jojoba oil. This soap is made with a double-strength coffee base instead of water, used coffee grounds as an exfoliant, and jojoba oil for its great nutrients and skin conditioning properties. We cut the bars last night and now we’re impatiently counting the days until they’re finished curing. We’re really excited to gift these when they’re ready – that is if we don’t end up hoarding them all for ourselves…

For a detailed tutorial on Cold Process Soap Making, click here! This tutorial will give you all the information you need to complete any of the soap recipes we post!

Cafe Soap Recipe
Makes an 84 oz. batch, yielding twenty 4.2 oz. bars if cut from a loaf mold

Base Oils
– if you can’t find some of these oils locally, check the fixed oils section of TheSage.com.
21 oz. olive oil
9 oz. macadamia nut oil
6 oz. jojoba oil
3 oz. castor oil
12 oz. coconut oil
9 oz. palm kernel oil

Lye Solution
19 oz. double strength coffee at room temperature
– to make the double strength coffee, pour 2/3 cup course coffee grounds into an 8-cup press and pour 4 cups of simmering water over the grounds. Let it sit for 4 minutes, then press and pour into a pitcher to cool. Save the used grounds for your exfoliant, and save the excess liquid for iced coffee!
8 oz. lye

3 tbsp used coffee grounds

Note: this soap will end up having a light coffee scent once it’s finished curing, but during the curing process (especially at the beginning) the scent of the moisture in the oils will overpower the coffee.

Remember to let your soaps cure for 4-6 weeks before using or gifting! What soap scents are your favorites?

17 responses

  1. I really want to make this but the ingredients seem expensive. About how much do you think a bar ends up costing? i would love to give them as gifts, but i’m really broke haha.

    • Hi! I’m right there with you on the expense. These oils really can get pricey! I did a calculation substituting Apricot Kernel Oil for Jojoba oil since it’s cheaper. Assuming you bought the smallest available quantities of the following oils from TheSage.com: Macadamia Nut Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Castor Oil, Coconut Oil and Palm Kernel Oil, and if you pick up some Olive Oil from Walmart, and estimating the shipping from TheSage.com to be about $23, your total cost per bar for a single batch of 20 soaps would be about $1.36. The cost of coffee & lye will only tack on a few cents to this total since the recipe doesn’t require much of either. I hope this was helpful! Please let me know if you want me to e-mail you the detailed pricing break-down!

      [edit] Just to clarify, the cost is $1.36 per bar (not more) because you will get multiple batches of soap out of some of those oils. For example, the Coconut Oil comes in a 5 lb. bucket for $16.50. You’ll get 6 1/2 batches out of that bucket, etc. Also, this recipe is for twenty 4 oz. bars, which is a fairly large bar of soap. You can cut the bars in half and make it a batch of 40 to reduce cost-per-bar even further!

  2. Hi there! I have never ever made soap but have wanted to try it. I think it is something my daughters (22 and 25) and I would have fun doing together! This recipe, along with your Citrus Honey Scotch Ale, is the inspiration I have needed! Found your soap on pinterest and can’t wait to try. Thank you so much for sharing – and your photos are beautiful!

    • Hi! I’m so glad you’re going to start soaping! You and your daughters will definitely enjoy doing it together. Coming up with recipes and using your soap for the first time is so fun and such an accomplishment! Thank you so much for your comment! πŸ™‚

  3. Hello,

    The recipe for oils lists everything with the word ‘oil’ after the title, except coconut…does it call for actual coconut, or coconut oil?


  4. I’m really excited to make this! I just got all the stuff today, however, my local homestead supply store didn’t have macadamia nut oil. I got almond oil instead. Do you think it would work ok, or should I just order macadamia nut oil online?

  5. Hello and THANK YOU. Your site is amazing and inspiring. I’m new to the soap world I’ve made 4 HP batches and want to make more. I’m starting a small business to supplement our income. Your recipes are just wonderful sounding and I want to try the one with the Ale your make friends made. Do you think I could HP it or try my hand at CP. any advice you could share for getting started would be great if you want to. Also, I’ve heard about and I’m thinking about doing a 5 gallon base oil mix then adding extra more pricy ingredients to each different batch. Would you recommend this and if so what oils would you use. THANKS AGAIN FOR YOUR SITE

    • Hi there! Welcome to soaping! πŸ™‚ Never having tried hot process myself, I can’t say for certain how this recipe would turn out but I know that HP can dull the scents of essential oils and other ingredients – so since this recipe will have a faint scent as it is, I would recommend doing it cold process to preserve the fragrance! My only advice would be, jump right in! πŸ˜€ For details on how to get started you can check out my post “Cold Process Soap Making for Beginners!”. Hopefully this will give you everything you need! πŸ™‚

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