Need a heat stable oil that will serve well for frying, baking, and sauteeing? Learn how to render tallow quickly in your Instant Pot!
The idea that animal fats are bad for you is finally starting to be dispelled. As humans, we ate tons of animal fats such as tallow, schmaltz and even lard long before heart disease was a huge issue. It was the one fat that pioneers and settlers had with them wherever they had animals to butcher.
When factory made fats such as canola oil, corn oil, and soybean oil came on the scene, they were touted as the “healthy fat” to use for heart health. Restaurants went from frying foods in beef tallow to trans fats such as soybean oil. Movie theaters stopped popping popcorn in coconut oil and switched to canola and soy oils out of fear of fats.
What is canola? Can it be found in nature?
This is what independent scientists and health researchers say about canola oil: Canola oil is a poisonous substance, an industrial oil that does not belong in the body. It contains “the infamous chemical warfare agent mustard gas,” hemagglutinins, and toxic cyanide-containing glycosides. It causes mad cow disease, blindness, nervous disorders, clumping of blood cells, and depression of the immune system. (source)
If it was found out that canola oil could be dangerous, sales would obviously plummet. Since the food industry had a friend in the American Heart Association, something had to be done, right?
Follow the money. Animal fats were demonized and these new factory fats were now embraced as the way to heat healthy. (source-read more here)
Aren’t saturated fats bad for you?
First, we need to find out exactly what the different kind of fats are. There are two main groups of fats, saturated and unsaturated. The difference between the two is the fatty acid chain.
What exactly are saturated or unsaturated fats?
Unsaturated fats would include plant based oils such as olive, corn, soy, and peanut oil. They remain liquid at room temperature, and can cloud when cold. If a fat molecule contains one double bond, it’s “mono unsaturated”. If it has more than one double bond, it’s considered “poly unsaturated”. When you have double bonds within the fat chain, hydrogen is elminated.
An unsaturated fat is a fat or fatty acid in which there is at least one double bond within the fatty acid chain. A fat molecule is monounsaturated if it contains one double bond, and polyunsaturated if it contains more than one double bond. Where double bonds are formed, hydrogen atoms are eliminated.
Most unsaturated fats are not heat stable, and can break down when cooking.
Saturated fats are solid at room temperature, and are normally animal based. A saturated fat has no double bonds, has the maximum number of hydrogens bonded to the carbons, and therefore is “saturated” with hydrogen atoms. Saturated fats are heat stable and perfect for frying or other high heat applications.
Are animal fats bad? Aren’t they full of saturated fats?
Yes, they are full of saturated fats, but they aren’t bad for you. As a matter of fact, over their plant based counterparts, they have more vitamins and nutrients! Good for you things like:
- high in the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.
- high in CLA (Conjugated Linolecic Acid) which is thought to reduce cancer, reduce body fat, and help with brain function
What is the difference between animal fats?
Depending on the animal it comes from, that is what the fat is named.
- Tallow-comes from beef, and other split hoof animals such as lamb, deer, and elk. It is commonly called “suet” before it is rendered, or cooked.
- Lard-comes from pigs
- Schmaltz-comes from chickens and other poultry such as geese, turkeys and ducks
So, how do you render tallow and other animal fats?
You can render tallow and other animal fats in 3 different ways:
- on the stove top
- in a crockpot
- in the Instant Pot
The Instant Pot is my favorite method to render tallow, as you can have a batch done in less than 20 minutes!
If you don’t raise your own animals, you will need to make a stop at your butcher store. Ask for the beef suet. If you can source grass fed, that is more nutritious. Unfortunately, that isn’t always easy, so don’t stress to much about that. Just do the best you can.
Turn your Instant Pot on “Sautee”, and allow it to get nice and hot. Cut your beef suet up into 1 inch chunks, and place in the bottom of the Instant Pot liner. You won’t need the lid for this, but you will need to keep an eye on it.
As the suet begins to heat, it will turn a nice golden color. Strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve to remove any leftover chunks. I always put those chunks back in to get the rest of the fat out. Store your hot tallow into canning jars, or oven proof glass. Be careful your jars are very dry, because hot oil and water is a nasty thing.
When the tallow is cool, it will turn a beautiful snowy white color and be solid. You can store it on the counter if you are going to use it within a couple of weeks, otherwise store it in the fridge. Rendered tallow can also be stored in the freezer for later use.
Use for frying, sauteeing, and roasting. Rendered tallow is great on all sorts of vegetables and for even mixing in with lower fat meats such as bison, lamb, or turkey to give it more flavor and fat when cooking.
What would you use your rendered beef tallow for? Be sure to let me know how you use it in the comments!
- 1 pound beef suet
- Instant pot
- fine mesh sieve
- Glass canning jars
- Turn your Instant Pot on "Sautee", and allow it to get nice and hot.
- Cut your beef suet up into 1 inch chunks, and place in the bottom of the Instant Pot liner. You won't need the lid for this, but you will need to keep an eye on it.
- As the suet begins to heat, it will turn a nice golden color. Strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve to remove any leftover chunks. I always put those chunks back in to get the rest of the fat out.
- Store your hot tallow into canning jars, or oven proof glass. Be careful your jars are very dry, because hot oil and water is a nasty thing.
- When the tallow is cool, it will turn a beautiful snowy white color and be solid. You can store it on the counter if you are going to use it within a couple of weeks, otherwise store it in the fridge. Rendered tallow can also be stored in the freezer for later use.
- Use for frying, sauteeing, and roasting. Rendered tallow is great on all sorts of vegetables and for even mixing in with lower fat meats such as bison, lamb, or turkey to give it more flavor and fat when cooking.
One pound of raw beef suet will fill a quart jar, with 1/2 pint jar left over.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 24 Total Fat: 2g Saturated Fat: 1g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 6mg Sodium: 5mg Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 0g Sugar: 0g Protein: 2g
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