What Can You Do With Used Cooking Oil?

June 11th, 2022 |  Categories Blog
A cook pours used cooking oil into a metal container

Did you know that you can recycle used cooking oil right at home? If you’re looking for a way to help make your household more eco-conscious, repurposing cooking oil can help. At SeQuential, we are leaders in used cooking oil recycling and know the value of taking something that looks like waste and turning it into a usable product. Here, we’ll discuss some of the things you can do at home.

Disposing of and Repurposing Used Cooking Oil

While there are many ways to dispose of cooking oil, composting may seem like the most environmentally sound solution. However, it’s not recommended to add it to your compost pile. While many oils are organic, they can negatively impact the composting process and create odor problems that attract rodents and other pests.

Also, you may need to create a cleaner product before reusing the oil in other applications. That means removing the loose food particles left behind from the previous cooking session. To do this, simply let the oil cool and strain it through cheesecloth or a fine-mesh sieve into a glass jar or another container. Then, store the oil in a cool, dark cupboard until you’re ready to repurpose it. Just keep in mind that oil may absorb some of the flavors of the food you’ve cooked. Did you use it to make cinnamon donuts or seasoned haddock? This could be a determining factor in deciding how to reuse it later.

Kill Pesky Garden Weeds

If you’re an avid gardener, you know how troublesome weeds can be. For a more natural, cost-effective way to eliminate them, the solution lies no further than your kitchen. New and used vegetable oil makes a great weed killer. Just add it to a reusable spray bottle and apply it to the weeds in your garden, making sure to coat them entirely along the foliage and stems. Then, wait for them to retreat, giving your plants more room to thrive.

Make Personal Care Products

Many personal care products can be made with home cooking oil. Along with other ingredients, this oil is useful in creating the following everyday essentials:

  • Hand soap
  • Make-up remover
  • Hair shampoo and conditioner

Used oil helps moisturize and soften your hair and skin, as well as remove waterproof makeup. For best results when creating personal care products, many people select coconut, olive, or almond oil.

Use Oil as a Household Lubricant

Used cooking oil can do more than moisturize your skin – it also may be used to preserve household items. Here are some common applications:

  • Cookware protector: Rub some used cooking oil on your pots and pans to help keep them looking new.
  • Locks and hinges: Used cooking oil can be used to lubricate keyed locks and squeaky doors, among other devices.
  • Gardening tools: Applying used cooking oil to shovels, lawnmower blades, and other tools can help prevent debris from sticking to them, keeping them cleaner longer.
  • Furniture protectant: From rattan and wicker furniture to leather, used cooking oil can help preserve these materials.

Light Your Way

Today, most people use battery-powered flashlights and lanterns as backup lighting in a storm. But if you have a household oil lamp on emergency standby, you can fuel it with the filtered cooking oil you just used to prepare dinner. This tip could come in handy in a pinch during a lengthy power outage.

Enhance Bird and Animal Food

Many people combine coconut oil and solid fats with suet and a birdseed mix to make chunks of food for the feathered friends in their yard. This can be a great spring or fall project to do with the kids, and they can hang the final product from the foliage on your property.

And while many farmers incorporate used cooking oil into animal feed, some pet owners do the same for their furry companions. The oil adds a dose of flavor and may help promote softer skin and sleeker coats.

Please note: Some oils may be better for your pet than others or cause adverse reactions. Be sure to check in with your veterinarian before trying anything new.

Reuse the Oil in Recipes

There is no limit to the number of times you can use cooking oil over and over again. And small amounts can even be mixed with new oil – which is ideal for efficient frying. This not only saves resources but also puts a little money back into your grocery budget. Just make sure to look out for signs of degradation with each use, such as foul odors or foam.

Learn More From SeQuential

Let us help you create a more eco-conscious home or business through our used cooking oil recycling services. SeQuential is in Portland and Eugene, Oregon, as well as South El Monte, California. You can drop off your used cooking oil at our West Coast locations to be recycled responsibly. For more information about us or where to find biodiesel, please contact us today.