What To Do with Old Cooking Oil – Updated Guide

One of the most frustrating parts about cooking is having to deal with cooking oil.

It’s been used, and you don’t want to pour it down the drain, but you’ve got to do something with it.

Lucky for you, there are plenty of ways to reuse old cooking oil! We’ve got wonderful ideas on what to do with old cooking oil right here.

After frying chicken, bacon or fish, you’re left with a stinky, greasy mess.

For some people, an easy way to get rid of the used cooking oil would be to pour it right into the drain.

For others, however, that’s not an option.

Your best bet, then, would be to use another method of disposal.

And this is where we come in.

There are plenty of ways to reuse old cooking oil, and we’ve got the best ideas for how to do it.

What to do with old cooking oil

There are many ways that you can use old cooking oil – not just to help with house projects, but also to give back to the environment.

There are ways that you can use your old cooking oil as fuel, and there are some ways that you can preserve it for later use.

No matter what you plan on using the old cooking oil for, these ideas will help you out in a pinch.


Biofuel is one of the cleanest, environmental-friendly sources of energy.

Used vegetable oil is particularly great for this purpose because it’s all-natural.

According to the US Energy Information Administration, biofuels are non-toxic and have way fewer negative effects on our environment.

If you’ve got a whole bunch of used cooking oil, why not get creative and turn it into something useful?

Biofuel contributes immensely to reducing the amount of carbon emissions, and that helps the environment.

Keep in mind, this option will require more cooking oil than the little bit you used to fry bacon in the morning.

You’ll need to collect substantial amounts of old cooking oil.

As such, it’s not a practical option for individuals who only use a small amount of cooking oil per day.

On the other hand, it’s an impeccable option for restaurants that use large amounts of cooking oil on a daily basis.

Individuals with more than the normal amount of cooking oil can collaborate with such restaurants to give their old cooking oil a new life.

In most cases, the restaurant would sell it to local facilities that convert it into fuel.


If you’re looking for ways to give your old cooking oil a purpose, then composting is an option that you should seriously consider.

This method of recycling is a great way to make sure that your used cooking oil never goes to waste.

By using old cooking oil, you’ll be able to create compostable fertilizer.

Composting is a good way of keeping organic matter out of the city’s soil and water supplies, which helps improve local conditions and environment.

Vegetable cooking oil is particularly good for composting.

This makes it easier for individuals to collect their own used cooking oil in order to make sure that they don’t have excess waste.

You’ll need a composting bin to keep your old cooking oil as well as the other organic matter in, but there are many places where you can get them (large garden centers, hardware stores and nurseries, etc.).

Also, only add a small amount to your compost to prevent the pile from attracting critters.

Make soap

This is one of the more traditional ways to reuse cooking oil.

If you want, you can turn old cooking oil into soap.

This is a great way to use your used cooking oil if you’re trying to save money in the long run.

You can make soap at home using supplies that you probably already have in your house.

To make soap from used cooking oil, simply mix the grease with lye and water.

Depending on the amount of water that you put in, the resulting mixture will either be a liquid or solid substance.

If you want it to be a liquid, simply add more water.

If you’re making solid soap, then put in less water.

After that just leave the mixture to set and harden overnight, then cut it up into bars.

It’s a much better alternative to tossing the old cooking oil into the trash.

Lamp Oil

Used cooking oil makes for a great lamp oil.

It burns for a long time, and it uses up all of your old cooking oil in the process.

Thankfully, it’s a really simple thing and you’ll only require a lamp with a wick.

You can find lamps that use up to 98% of oil that they burn.

If you want to go all out, then you can find lamps that use all of your old cooking oil.

These are a little bit more expensive, but they’re worth it if you have a lot of used oil lying around.

Keep in mind, though, that it’s best not to leave the lamp on for long periods of time.

Animal Feed

Did you know used cooking oil is normally an ingredient in some types of animal feeds?

In fact, many people feed animal-based products to their animals as a way of supplementing their diet.

Such foods are often made with vegetable oil.

The used cooking oil is taken to animal feed companies where it’s refined and compounded into animal feed in a variety of forms.

It adds calories and quality nutrients to the feed making it suitable as an ingredient in pet food, poultry food, aquaculture feed, and swine feed.

If there’s a local company that makes animal feed in your area, you can ask them if they would be willing to take your old cooking oil as an ingredient.

In return, you’ll get a discount on their feed products.

It’s a win-win situation.

You get your old cooking oil out of your way, and the company gets to use it in their product.

Furniture Polish

You might want to polish up your furniture using used cooking oil.

This is the perfect method to make your furniture look new without having to spend too much money on it.

From time to time, you really need to clean and polish your furniture.

You can do this using your old cooking oil.

There are some compounds in vegetable oil that make them useful for polishing wood and leather.

This is one of the more unique ways that you can use old cooking oil when it still has practical value.

You’ll need some used cooking oil and some padding material (wadding or wool, for example).

Apply a small amount of the used cooking oil on your furniture and let it sit for a bit.

After that, buff it using the padding material.

Polish away!

Paint Remover

There are some really good reasons why you might want to use used cooking oil as a paint remover.

First of all, it’s a much cheaper alternative compared to buying new paint removers.

Secondly, this method is a lot safer than the traditional ways of removing paint, but it’s also very effective.

It requires less time and effort but gives you great results nonetheless.

If you’ve got some old paint stuck on your hands, furniture or any other item, you can use old cooking oil to remove it.

Just rub it in and wash your hands with water and it will do the rest.

It will remove any paint stuck on your hands.

The same thing goes for furniture or any other item you want to clean up.

These are just some of the many ways you can use old cooking oil after it has been used in cooking.

Household Lubricant

Used cooking oil can also be used as a lubricant.

This is particularly useful if you want to make sure that your bicycle chains are in tip-top shape.

Using old cooking oil makes it easier to wipe off the grease and grime on your chain.

Simply add some old cooking oil right into the chain, and then work it around with a cloth for about a minute or two.

After that, wipe off the excess oil using another clean cloth.

It may also come in handy in smoothing creaky door hinges at home, or when working with wood.

First, apply a small amount of used cooking oil on the hinge with the cloth.

Do this a few times to make sure that it gets all of the dirt and grease off of it.

If you ever have a stuck lock-key situation, old cooking oil can be used to help the key turn smoothly.

Pour some of the used cooking oil on your key, and then use it to turn the lock.

It should make it easier for the key to move around in the lock.

Pot and pan protector

Cooking oil can also be used as a great alternative to non-stick cooking spray.

It works just about the same way.

The only difference is that it’s not as sticky.

You can use cooking oil as a way to protect your pots and pans from getting rust in the future.

After you’re done cooking, simply wipe them off with some old cooking oil and you’ll be good to go.

Keep your pots and pans looking like new always!


If you don’t want to store your old cooking oil for a long time, then it can be safely recycled.

But first prepare it in such a way that it’s easy to recycle.

You can decide to freeze the old used cooking oil, or leave it in liquid form.

In order to safely recycle the old cooking oil, you’ll need a special bucket or another container that you can fill with the old cooking oil.

First, place your old cooking oil inside of your container and let it sit for about a week before you attempt to recycle it.

During that time, keep filling it with more used cooking oil so that there’s enough to take to a recycling center.

Make an effort to remove food pieces from the cooking oil before transferring it to the container.

After a week or so, you should have a good amount of used cooking oil that’s ready to be taken to a recycling center.

You can take it there in your bucket or container.

They’ll take care of the rest for you.

Dispose of with the rest of the household waste

This is a fairly good way to dispose of your old cooking oil.

You’ll have to collect it in a bottle or empty milk cartons, and then seal them tightly and well.

There shouldn’t be any kind of leaks coming from any of the containers that you’re storing it in.

From there, put it in your food waste bin for disposal.

It’s that simple to have your old used cooking oil disposed of suitably.

The Bottom Line

Now that you’ve seen all the impeccable things that you can do with old cooking oil, will you start saving your used cooking oil so that it doesn’t go to waste?

There are quite a few benefits associated with saving and re-using your old cooking oil.

Not only does it make good sense to recycle your food waste, but it also helps you save a lot of money in the process.


Can I repurpose used cooking oil?

Yes, you can. After it’s been used in cooking or other purposes, you can simply store it in a jar or container with a tight fitting lid.

You can then repurpose it in several ways.

Will used cooking oil go bad?

Not necessarily. Used cooking oil does expire after a long time, though.

Just like any other food stuff, it will eventually go bad.

But if you’re careful about storing it, then you can prevent the old used cooking oil from going bad for a long time.