oil recycling

How To Recycle Your Cooking Oil


Do you always throw out your used cooking oil? Cooking oil recycling is an effective way to create biofuel. Here’s how you can recycle your cooking oil.

In the US alone, restaurants and hotels use over 3 billion gallons of cooking oil every single year. While some of that is absorbed during the cooking process, much of it is used in deep fryers and disposed of after it’s no longer useful or clean. It can be dangerous or illegal to dispose of it improperly, so make sure you know all about cooking oil recycling.

Some people might be tempted to just pour old oil or fat down the drain after you’re done with it. This can ruin your pipes, city sewer systems, and could even violate your lease if you rent your home. Adding it to compost could disrupt the system and pouring it into the trash could start a fire.

Given everything that could go wrong, make sure you dispose of cooking oil correctly. Follow these 3 tips for responsible cooking oil recycling.

1. Filter It

Cooking oil isn’t cheap. If you’ve just made a big meal of some deep fried food and ended up with a lot of cooking oil left over, you don’t even need to get rid of it. You can filter it and use it again.

As long as you didn’t cook anything overly aromatic, like fish, with your oil, it can be filtered and reused.

Grab a coffee filter or two and tuck it into a jar. Use a rubber band to keep it steady and then slowly pour the oil into the filter. You’ll get any food particles and debris out of the oil and end up with a jar filled with oil you can add to your next stir-fry.

2. Talk To Other Restaurants

If you really don’t know what to do with your oil, you should talk to nearby restaurants. Living in a city, you might build a relationship with the place across the street or next door. They might have a service that takes care of their needs and that they can invite you to participate with them in.

If they’ve got a big outdoor receptacle, ask them and they might invite you to add your oil to it in exchange for something else.

3. Look Online For Biodiesel Enthusiasts

Lots of people are into converting diesel engines to accept cooking oil. They’re always looking for new restaurants and hotels who will give away their cooking oil as fuel. If you find a network of enthusiasts near you, you could bring your oil to them.

Once you make the connection, get their contact information and pass it along to any other people in your network who might have the same problem. Every biodiesel enthusiast loves the opportunity to put free fuel in their tank.

Cooking Oil Recycling Can Be Simple

Most of the people who dispose of cooking oil improperly only do so because they don’t know how to get rid of it. If you’re new to an area, you might not know the local laws and what’s expected when you’re engaging in cooking oil recycling. Thankfully, there is a large network of people who might be able to help you out.

If you’re interested in learning more about biodiesel, check out our guide to the 5 things you need to know about it.

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