Oops, I forgot to add an oil to my soap! How to Rebatch Soap

If you’ve been making soap for awhile, or sometimes it can be one of the first mistakes a new soapmaker makes, you’ve done this. You mix your lye solution, prepare your oils, bring your soap to trace, pour it into your mold…but wait! It fills your mold about an inch short.

how to rebatch

Or, maybe you didn’t notice the shortness of soap batter, but you cut your soap and it is crumbly when cutting.

You weigh your soap and it weighs 50 ounces. You look at your recipe and all ingredients (oils, water, fragrance, additives) add up to 58 ounces! OOOOOPS!  You forgot to add 8 oz. of olive oil!

I know that the recipe I used for this soap should have filled it to the top. I forgot to add the olive oil, a whopping 16 ounces! It is probably hard to see but I’m about 1/4 inch below the top of this mold.

forgot oil in soap

Here it is unmolded – the same day! Yep, it turned this beautiful red color.

soap troubleshooting

I weighed it and new exactly what I had done (or not done!). I didn’t add the olive oil.

When something like this happens, don’t toss your soap! You can rebatch it! Here’s how.

Every soapmaking should have a salad shooter in their arsenal. We’re going to grate the soap down and that is just not something that I want to do by hand.

Chop your soap into pieces that will fit through the salad shooter and grate!

rebatch soap

Add the oil that you forgot and toss it to mix it good! Get your hands in there! (This one happens to look a bit like hamburger meat.)

how to rebatch soap

Dump it into a Crockpot.

how to fix soap

Turn your Crockpot on and let it heat up. Stir every 10 minutes or so. I set mine on high, but soon had to turn it down as it was a bit too hot. The oil will separate out at some point. Mix, Mix, Mix.

Cook it until it has all gelled.

gelled soap

Glop it into your mold!

rebatch soap

It is not the prettiest soap but it is a soap with a story!

Unmold and cut the next day. Cure for at least 3 weeks.

rebatch soap

Prevent it!

  1. Mark off each oil as you add it. Sometimes we forget what we measured out!
  2. I will sometimes setup my workstation with all of my oils to the left of my scale. As I measure, I move the oils to the right of my scale.

A few considerations:

If you don’t rebatch your soap right away, then you might have to add water, as water evaporates as you let your soap sit. Add 1 teaspoon per pound of soap shreds and mix well.

You might have to add additional fragrance. If the cooking process evaporated out much of your fragrance, you can add some at the end before you glop into your mold. Add 1/4 oz. per pound of soap shreds.





The winner of yesterday’s blog post comment giveaway is Cecilia!

“Hi there, i usually use stearic to harden my bars..beeswax also works well. I may try salt to see how it turns..thanks for the info amanda..love your tutorials.” 

Cecilia, email me and I’ll get you whichever eBook you choose!

Today’s giveaway is another eBook! Post a comment and we’ll draw a name tomorrow at 1 pm (central time).

WINNER SELECTED!  The winner of the drawing is Deena!  Congrats!

I want to know…what is your most memorable soapy disaster? How did you fix it? What did you learn?



By |2017-02-01T15:33:01+00:00August 13th, 2015|Soapmaking Tips, Soapmaking Troubleshooting|16 Comments

About the Author:

I am a soapmaker, author and blogger! I started blogging in 2008, sharing soap recipes, design tutorials and publishing articles on various topics of soapmaking.


  1. K Brown August 12, 2018 at 8:21 pm - Reply

    Hi.. I’m new and haven’t added enough EO to two batches… Real bummed as I left the Jojoba and honey out of the first batch as well… It set fine and looks great so that isn’t an issue… However they both just smell like oil… Not unpleasant but sad, figure they’ll still be nice soap to use just won’t have a pretty smell… Rebatch or not… That is the question… I’m not selling the soaps… Just making for the family… Down here is Australia the price of EO’s is horrendous (although knowing the process, understandable)

  2. Dee March 27, 2018 at 1:00 am - Reply

    Hi mi did just that yesterday…I forgot 32oz olive oil….you said add the forgotten oil then u said add water…I m a bit confused.

  3. Kathi March 4, 2018 at 8:02 pm - Reply

    I left out Shea butter in a recipe today, so mad at myself! And so already I think it is lye heavy! It is drying so quickly with a crack on top only 5 hours after I put it in the mold.

    I want to rebatch and add the Shea butter. Do I hve to wait to rebatch?

  4. Eugenia Degroot November 3, 2017 at 12:12 pm - Reply

    my most tragic soap accident was I made a soap for valentines day and did not like the way it came out . So I did rebatch it and made a much better looking and smelling soap. I love doing rebatch I purposely buy fresh soap base and rebatch it to make beautiful soaps much easier for me when i don’t want to work with lye !

  5. Mag June 6, 2017 at 8:13 am - Reply

    How would you add lye? If not enough in beginning. Water/lye ratio when soap isn’t hardening

  6. Laurie August 17, 2015 at 6:57 pm - Reply

    btw, Amanda… your soap truly looked like sloppy Joe for a crowd.

  7. laurie August 13, 2015 at 7:59 pm - Reply

    omy, there have ben so many panicy moments.
    I had just poured 4 drop swirl colors into a lovely bucket of soap batter when I hear, ” Mom, Auggie is on the roof !” Well , of course I had to go rescue the boy ( 4 years ) and when I got back, that soap was rock hard in that bucket. I left it, thinking I would just deal with a delicious smelling bucket shaped soap pie, but the next day I COULD NOT unmold that soap. In the end , I had to cut off the bucket with a sawzall… Goggles have many uses in the soapmaking field !
    BTW, The soap was fine, after I trimmed all the overheated, wierd , convoluted, cellulitey overheated edges .
    But, the colors? very ploppy and blobby. I had a ball cutting this soap into useable bars… Kind of reminded me of cutting a rolly watermelon

  8. Ewenique August 13, 2015 at 7:33 pm - Reply

    I made a batch with Dead Sea mud and activated charcoal, a recipe which I had made before. However, I misread the recipe and for two of the four oils put in the percent instead of the amount. So the bars had a crazy superfat and were very soft. I let them cure for several months hoping they would harden up, but they didn’t. I had figured out what I had done wrong and played around with soapcalc to come up with a new recipe where I could add more oils to the rebatch. The result was a wonderful facial soap!

  9. Pat August 13, 2015 at 7:22 pm - Reply

    Near the beginning of my soapmaking career, I made a 8 lb batch of “Peppermint Patty” soap with cocoa powder for color and peppermint EO. I made a beautiful swirl (for those days) and after I poured it into my slab mold, I turned around and there sat my pyrex cup with my melted cocoa butter! I quickly poured the beautiful swirly soap back into the soap pot and added the cocoa butter. Stirred it up and re-poured. I came out with a wonderful smelling BROWN peppermint soap. LOL Since then, I have had a couple of batches that didn’t turn out like I wanted and I put them through my trusty Salad Shooter. Rebatched in the oven with a bit of milk added for moisturizing. I didn’t know about using crock pots back then. But next time I have a disaster I will whip out my crock pot and have a go at it.

  10. Deena August 13, 2015 at 6:44 pm - Reply

    My soapy disaster put me on the road to HP. I was making a Lavender-Mint CP and when I added the EO-FO blend it riced and seized before I could even stir in the rest of the fragrance! Luckily, I had melted my oils in a large stockpot so I immediately put the yucky soap into the pot, added some water, cooked and voila! semi-rebatched-HP soap (my first). It came out beautiful with a country-rustic look and heavenly smell! Lessons learned: I thoroughly research the effects of the fragrances I use and I also found out I like doing HP!

  11. Marilyn August 13, 2015 at 5:46 pm - Reply

    I made shampoo bars from a NG internet recipe,25% for 4 oils including castor! that came out sticky and way too soft. Not enough lye? Too much Castor? Perhaps i rushed the scale? I just don’t know……I HP’d the batch, adding sodium lactate, but they were still way too soft. I just didnt want to throw them out. They smelled amazing with super huge bubbles,and were soooo moisturizing so i chopped them up and added it to your salt bar recipe! Awesome and thank you for those salt bar recipes!

  12. Cee August 13, 2015 at 5:44 pm - Reply

    The worst thing that ever happened to me happened early on in my soaping career. I carefully weighed out my oils and melted them in a Pyrex cup in the microwave. Then, for some reason, I didn’t feel confident about the weight so I poured the hot oils back into the weigh bowl to check the weight… then watched in horror as it melted and oil spilled all over my counter top. The scale was a cheapie kitchen scale with — you guessed it — a plastic weighing bowl! Dumb!
    PS: I love my Salad Shooter!

  13. Cecilia August 13, 2015 at 4:11 pm - Reply

    Was a cucumber/nopal soap with honey. I got a volcano tunnel..was very sad so i rebatched, added a little bit of milk, zap tested, and it turned ok…no so grate but i could sell it…

  14. Shelley August 13, 2015 at 3:56 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this important information. As a brand new shaper, I will be printing this out to keep for future reference ( if needed! ).

  15. Amy Barker August 13, 2015 at 2:05 pm - Reply

    The fourth batch I ever made was a goats milk soap, with coffee ground from a local coffee roaster. It looked ok, but I didn’t put any fragrance in. So I rebatched it with some Turkish Mocha FO and it came out AMAZING!

    • Amanda Gail August 13, 2015 at 2:48 pm - Reply

      Mmmmm, that smells amazing!

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