Natural Basil & Tomato Soap

Sometimes you'll need a creative alternative to an organic or vegan recipe. Not only does this one qualify, but it is a little unusual and will strike some curiosity in your shoppers. (Terrific at your market tables when you want something to chat about to new faces musing over your creations.)

Information & Details


Natural Basil & Tomato Soap

Occasionally, we will bring this one to the market for a little variety. This is a very organic type of soap that is unique and people will buy just out of curiosity. This is a soap for the “all natural organic” crowd, so we like to incorporate essential oils for scents instead of fragrance oils. Of course, it also seems fit that this is a vegan type of soap, so we stick with plant based oils. Remember, you can modify any of these recipes to your liking. This recipe yields 3 lbs. of soap, or about 10 – 12 bars from a bread mold.

  • 2.4 oz. cocoa butter

  • 2.4 Shea butter

  • 16.8 oz. palm oil

  • 9.6 oz. coconut oil

  • 14.4 oz. pomace olive oil

  • 2.4 oz. castor oil

  • 6.69 oz. lye/sodium hydroxide

  • 18.24 fluid oz. distilled water

  • 1 Tablespoon basil powder

  • .75 oz. basil essential oil

  • 8.5 oz. pureed ripe tomatoes (1 tomato is fine)

  • 1 tbsp. bentonite clay

  • ½ tsp green mica (optional)

  • ¼ tsp. Red paprika (optional)

You’ll need to follow your basic cold process soap making instructions for this homemade tomato recipe. Start by making your bowl of lye and water solution as you would any regular cold process soap. Don’t forget your eye protection. You know how we feel about that! Set aside to cool in a well ventilated area, and let this cool to room temperature.

Now weigh out all of the soap making oils – cocoa butter, Shea butter, palm oil, coconut oil, olive oil and castor oil – and place in large bowl. Heat over medium heat on the stove or microwave until all of the oils have melted, then remove from heat and set aside to cool. Make sure that you don’t over microwave if you use this method. You want just enough time to melt your hard oils.

While your two bowls of oils and lye are cooling separately, you can begin to prepare your other ingredients. Weight out the ripe tomatoes and remove the skin, stems, and leaves, then mash with a fork or similar utensil. If your tomatoes are super ripe you won’t need to use anything else. Set aside. Using separate containers for each ingredient, weigh out the basil essential oil, and measure out the basil powders.

Once your ingredients have cooled to less than 120 degrees, slowly pour the lye-water into the soap oils and mix until you reach trace. Separate the batter into two parts. Add the tomato puree into one part. This will turn a natural shade of tomato color, but if you want a more exaggerated color, add a ¼ tsp of red paprika.

Now add the clay, basil powder and basil essential oil to the remaining soap in the pot and mix well with the blender. The basil powder has a natural green shade and when mixed with the clay it will cure a natural earthy shade of green. Again, if you want a more exaggerated color, add just a ½ tsp of green mica. Once thoroughly combined, slowly pour the clay half soap into your mold.

Here you can dust a light layer of basil powder over the top for a clean pencil line. If you cover it with too much powder the two halves will not adhere effectively. To get the two halves to join, spritz the top of the clay half with rubbing alcohol, sprinkle the powder, and spritz again before carefully layering the tomato half over the top.

Level the soap as much as possible so the final size of your bars will be consistent. I generally level out the top of my soap using a butter knife. I run a butter knife back and forth along the width of the mold to evenly distribute the soap, then run it back and forth along the length. Now cover and insulate your mold for twenty-four hours. After the insulation period your soap is ready to un-mold. Remove your soap from the mold and cut into bars.

Allow this to set adise and cure for 3 – 6 weeks.