So you whipped up a giant batch of beignets/fried chicken yesterday that tasted ah-mazing (um, feel free to invite us over next time), but now you’re left with a pot full of used cooking oil and have no idea how to dispose of it. We’ve got you covered.
What not to do: Don’t—we repeat, do not—pour leftover cooking oil down the sink, where it can clog up your pipes or the city sewer mains.
What you should do: First, let the oil cool. Many fats like bacon grease and coconut oil will solidify at room temperature and can then be discarded directly into the trash. For liquid oils like peanut and canola, pour into an old, non-recyclable container and toss in the trash. You can also use this clever site to find out where to recycle cooking oils in your area.
One last thing: Only get rid of your cooking oil when you’re ready—you can actually safely reuse most fryer oils once or twice. Simply cool the fat, strain it and store in a cool, dry place. Just make sure you’re reusing the oil for a similar purpose. Nobody likes the taste of fried chicken in their doughnuts. (Actually, that sounds kind of delicious but you get the idea.)