From good old-fashioned fried chicken to fish and chips, deep-fried foods are bursting with flavor that make them sure crowd-pleasers. But the burning question is what to do with all the oil after deep frying. Here's how to store the oil safely and effectively for reuse.

Check the label on the cooking oil container to see whether the manufacturer has included any tips on storing the particular type and brand of oil. Though most food-grade oils are generally stored the same way, some may have more specific storage requirements or a longer shelf life than others.

Let the oil cool to about room temperature after turning off the heat. Once cooled, drain the oil through a cheesecloth to remove any bacteria. Pour the strained oil into a glass jar with a metal lid. Tightly seal the container and store in a cool, dark, dry place at room temperature, or in the refrigerator if you live in an extremely hot climate. The oil may appear a bit cloudy after some time in the refrigerator, but it should become clear again once it reaches room temperature.

Tip

Store the oil to be reused for no longer than three months.

Avoid reusing the oil for deep frying more than once or twice, as the smoke point of used oil is reduced after multiple uses.

Do not pour used deep fryer oil down the drain or toss it in the trash. Call the local recycling center and ask if they accept food oils, and donate it to be recycled into tallow, which is then used in many different forms.