Here's What Rachael Ray Says You Should Do With Leftover Oil

The trickiest part of frying food at home isn't nailing the batter or getting that perfect crispy texture — it's figuring out what to do with all the oil that's left in your pot when you're finished. You know you should never (and we do mean never) pour hot oil down the drain. As The Daily Meal notes, not only can it destroy your pipes, but it can even mess with your entire town's sewage system (essentially the fat molecules bond to the calcium that's in sewer water and can cause severe blockages). What are you supposed to do then? Simply wait for it to cool and then toss it?

Luckily, Rachel Ray has a solution. In an Instagram video with her husband, the celebrity chef shared her best advice for disposing of your leftover oil without wasting it. Try this next time you fry food and find yourself left with a vat of oil you don't simply want to throw away.

You can save leftover oil to use again

The most common method for dealing with leftover oil is to pour it into a disposable container, let it cool, and then throw it into the trash. Ray, however, suggests taking out the last step and saving your container of oil to use again, rather than tossing it. "You can use oil more than once if it's not dirty, like if there's literally nothing burning in it and nothing has fallen in the bottom of it and made it dirty," she explains in the clip.

Ray isn't the only proponent of reusing frying oil. Tasting Table suggests straining out any debris and then storing your leftover oil in an airtight container in a cool, dark place to be used the next time you fry. As for how many times you can reuse it? There's no hard answer, but it will break down the more you use it, so Cook's Illustrated recommends three to four times before tossing the oil.