Your whole food, plant-based life.

Homemade Body Butter Recipe

I made my first batch of body butter today. I think my life has changed forever. Delightful, decadent and easy, I have wanted to try making it for a long time. I was convinced that it would be difficult and not work the way I wanted. Boy, was I wrong.



I love creamy body butters. Living in a climate that gets quite cold and dry in the winter, they are a must in my house. But two things have always bothered me. They can be quite expensive and also, full of ingredients that are less than desirable for your skin and health.

We often forget that our skin is the largest organ on our body and absorbs what we put on it. If you are using lotions and body butters with chemicals in them (fragrances, preservatives, color additives, etc.) be aware that your skin absorbs the chemicals, too. Not exactly desirable. I often just use almond oil on my skin after a shower but sometimes I want something a little more decadent. Body butters, made with pure oils and essential oils for fragrance are just the thing.



I called my friend Jen Vertanen, who writes the blog, “The Wholehearted Life”, knowing that she has spent years playing with recipes for home made soaps and lotions and asked her opinion on ingredients. She told me to use 75% solid to 25% liquid oil. Sounded easy enough.

I measured out shea butter (I use this shea butter: organic raw shea butter and coconut oil for the solid, and melted them in my home-made double boiler. (If you don’t have a double boiler, make sure there is space for the steam to escape and you are using heat proof glass.)



I wanted to use rosemary as one of my scents. I didn’t have any rosemary essential oil so I added fresh rosemary as the oils were cooling. I also stirred in the almond oil at this point. Once the oil was cool, I strained out the rosemary, added peppermint (just a few drops, it is strong) and sweet orange essential oils and tried to whip the butter as instructed in other body recipes that I had researched. Nothing happened. I was about to give up and just let the oil harden when I had an idea.



I placed the oil mixture outside (it’s cold…it’s Minnesota) and let it partially set up. At that point, I tried whipping it again in the kitchen aid mixer and, success! A beautiful body butter, so simple to make, smelling delicious and with a texture that was like clouds of silk.

*Because of the popularity of this recipe on pinterest, I am getting many, many questions that are more suited for an expert. This is a raw food site, this was my first attempt at body butter, it worked better than I could have hoped for and if you make this recipe as stated, it will work great for you too!! I am sorry but I can’t answer the technical questions. Cheers!*

IF YOU ARE HAVING TROUBLE WITH YOUR BODY BUTTER WHIPPING: you probably rushed this step. It needs to be cooled significantly….like in the picture.

I have to admit, I am pretty excited at how easy it is to make. I used sweet orange, lemon and lavender in my second batch. Heavenly. You can just use the basic recipe and add your favorite essential oils. Just make sure they are skin friendly!

A few people have asked about jars. I use these: Weck Jars




  1. You can use what ever oils you wish, just make sure you keep the ratio 75% solid to 25% liquid. SO IF YOU ARE ALLERGIC TO ANY OF THE ABOVE LISTED OILS, JUST REPLACE THEM WITH AN OIL THAT YOU ARE NOT ALLERGIC TO. Just make sure you replace a solid for a solid and a liquid for a liquid.
  2. The chilling step is crucial. If you don’t chill it properly, it won’t whip or stay whipped. About 20 minutes in the freezer usually does the trick for this batch. Make sure you scrape down the sides before mixing.
  3. Since this recipe does not contain any water, it will not mold. You should keep in a cool place but it does not have to be refrigerated.
  4. I do not know the exact shelf life but I know it will keep at least a few months, plus.
  5. The body butter melts as it goes on and gets a little oily but absorbs beautifully, quickly and leaves your skin very soft.
  6. You can order the shea butter here: Raw Shea Butter

You can order the coconut oil here: Coconut Oil

You can order the almond oil here:  Almond Oil

You can order the Weck Jars here:  Weck Jars

Alternatively, coconut oil and almond oil are quite easy to locate at your local coop, Whole Foods or health food store.

  1. This recipe has been tested many times. If you don’t follow the recipe, you will not get the same results.
  2. Many people ask for exact amounts of essential oils. I start with at least 20 drops of what ever oil I want to use and just increase slowly until I am happy with how it smells. So…be free! Use your own creativity here.


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  1. Annie Dobson wrote on November 14, 2017

    wonder if beeswax and lanolin can be added as part of the sold amounts and aloe vera in the liquid – how is solids and liquids mathematically translated into percentages??

  2. Mary wrote on October 28, 2017

    Can you use this on your face? Would it irritate your eyes?

  3. I wrote on October 14, 2017

    I just madd the butter and it feels amazing. But, could you also store it in a plastic container? Thanks!

    • Susan wrote on November 1, 2017

      I wouldn’t just because I don’t like plastic and the fact that chemicals can leech from it. Cheers!

  4. Katrina wrote on October 8, 2017

    Does anyone know if I can swap shea for cocoa butter? I have some already that I’d like to use in a recipe like this. Thanks!

    • Deebee wrote on November 8, 2017

      Yes, you can use cocoa butter

  5. collee wrote on August 25, 2017

    Coconut Oil dries my skin. Can you suggest alternatives? Thanks.

    • Noga wrote on October 9, 2017

      I use cocoa butter. The smell is amazing!

  6. Lynda Robertson wrote on July 23, 2017

    I Made this body butter and I used avocado oil instead of almond oil. It feels great on my skin. Even my husband tried it.
    Thank you for a great recipe.

  7. Lauren Laurent wrote on July 20, 2017

    I messed up but it still came out great. I put in the almond oil in early with the Shea butter and coconut butter in the double boiler. I had to freeze for 50 minutes before whipping. But it’s perfect now!

    • Lauren Laurent wrote on July 20, 2017

      Woops.. Meant to write coconut oil… And not coconut butter. But I also wanted to say that this also works very well as massage cream. I have been a massage therapist for 18 years and made this body butter to use after a body scrub that I was doing. I ended using it for the deep tissue massage too. It’s an awesome body butter and
      massage cream!!!

  8. Charli wrote on July 4, 2017

    1 cup of shea butter and 1/2 cup each of coconut and almond oil is a 50:50 solid:liquid ratio of ingredients. I realized that AFTER I finished making this and went to try it and it was basicaly just oil. Either cut the liquid or add more shea butter.

    • Susan wrote on July 6, 2017

      Since coconut oil is solid at room temp, we consider it a solid in this recipe. Cheers!

      • Wirlfir wrote on July 20, 2017

        It’s possible that in summer, even at room temperature, the coconut oil melts (melting point at around 24 degrees Celsius) and it’s an unstable oil, meaning it changes to solid and liquid very easily. It’s often over 24 degrees in summer where I live and also very humid, often the humidity is 90% RH during spring or summer, so my coconut oil in room temp. is mostly liquid during these months. So it’s possible that the recipe needs adjustment depending on the weather. Just a suggestion, since I’ve been attempting different hand cream and lotion recipes.

        • Victoria wrote on August 16, 2017

          It has been in the high 90’s here for weeks. I do not have air conditioning. Humidity is lower though. None of my body butters have melted, but the coconut oil in the jar from the store is completely melted. Maybe the shea butter keeps it fluffy and not melted… Most of what I make does have a higher % of butters/coconut oils.

        • Ro wrote on August 4, 2017

          Can u make this without whipping it?


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