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Disposal of "off" or rancid oil

LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 12:58 PM

I rarely use canola oil for cooking, but was going to brown some beef short ribs in a large stockpot before putting them into the crockpot this morning. Before pouring a couple of Tbsp. of the oil into the stockpot, I took a whiff - yup, it's definitely turned. I buy the smallest possible bottle (1 pt., 8 oz.) but I still don't use it fast enough before it goes bad. (Next time, I'm going to store it in the fridge to see if that'll keep it better longer - or split a bottle with my mother, who doesn't use a lot of it either.)

But in any case - I know I shouldn't pour it down the kitchen drain or in the toilet. I'd like to recycle the plastic bottle, but based on what various sites say, including Wikipedia, "...The proper way to dispose of oil is to put it in a sealed non-recyclable container and discard it with regular garbage."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooking_...

What kind of "non-recyclable container" could be used? Anthing that I've thought I might use (i.e., a used sour cream container) is also recyclable.

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  1. greygarious RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 01:32 PM

    Waxed-cardboard milk/cream containers - the ones with the screw cap in the middle. I also use these (tops opened up) in winter to make giant nut-seed-peanut butter ice cubes to put out for the squirrels; it slows them down so they have less time to raid the bird feeders. Truth be told, although I am a dedicated recycler, I put empty bottles in the trash if I am unable to adequately wash all the residue out of them, which with oil and detergent bottles is often the case. I don't know what's worse - the landfill or gallons of water from repeated washing/rinsing.

    1 Reply
    1. re: greygarious
      LindaWhit RE: greygarious Jun 15, 2008 02:23 PM

      Those milk/half-and-half cartons are also recyclable in my area, so that doesn't work for me.

      As for washing out any remaining drops of oil from glass or plastic bottles of oil - I just upend the bottle over what I'm pouring it into and within a few minutes, almost all of it is out. I don't wash them out.

    2. karmalaw RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 01:34 PM

      Did you know that canola oil is made from Rapeseed? See:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapeseed

      In addition to rapeseed being lethal to a number of types of birds, the use of rapeseed oil is cpntroversial -- the FDA does not allow it to be used in infant formula because it is linked to growth retardation. It is also linked to heart lesions, decrease in platelet count, vitamin E deficiency, high blood pressure, and lowered life spans.

      see:

      http://www.westonaprice.org/knowyourf...

      I think the bottle did you a favor by going rancid.

      I use peanut oil or sunflower oil for my non-olive oil frying needs.

      9 Replies
      1. re: karmalaw
        LindaWhit RE: karmalaw Jun 15, 2008 02:33 PM

        Thank you, but you didn't answer my actual question. If you read my post, I said "I rarely use canola oil for cooking" so I believe the massive quantities that they've fed rats in health studies doesn't even compare to the minute amount of canola I've had in my lifetime.

        And with a bit more Wiki'ing, you'd see that canola oil contains only 0.5 to 1% erucic acid, well below the 2% allowed by the USDA than traditional rapeseed oil.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canola#H...

        Either way - do you have a suggestion for disposing of the oil as I asked in my original post?

        1. re: LindaWhit
          livetocook RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 02:53 PM

          If I had to dispose of it, I'd wait until my garbage was full, then pour the oil over top of it and tie it up and take it out. You don't have that much to get rid of. What ever is in the garbage with soak it up.

          1. re: livetocook
            LindaWhit RE: livetocook Jun 15, 2008 03:30 PM

            Now THAT is a great idea! Why didn't I think of that? LOL What with the used paper towels and other paper products I tend not to throw in the newpaper recycle bag (envelopes, etc.) it should be enough to soak up enough of the oil. Thanks ltc!

            1. re: LindaWhit
              goodhealthgourmet RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 03:46 PM

              pouring the oil into a full bag of garbage is definitely the way to go. that's how i always do it.

              re: the recycling of plastic containers, make sure they actually can be recycled - there are many that can't. the number stamped on the bottom is the best way to determine this. you have to find out from your local recycling program which numbers are accepted - typically it's 1 and 2, and sometimes 6. any other numbers actually can't be recycled, and it's the unfortunate job of recycling center employees to sift through everything and remove the wrong ones. i can't tell you how guilty i felt about this when i found out that all those yogurt & cottage cheese containers i had been putting in the recycling bin had to be picked out by some poor soul!

              [fyi, the tetra-paks & aseptic packages for things like soy & almond milk, drink boxes, etc. can only be recycled at a limited number of places, so find out about those as well before putting them in the recycling bin.]

              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                LindaWhit RE: goodhealthgourmet Jun 15, 2008 04:11 PM

                Waste Management (my local trash company) sends out legal-sized flyers that has all the details of what's recyclable and what's not - that's taped on the wall going down into my basement so I always have a reference. Plus, the WM guys will leave something in the bin if they don't take it. <vbg>

                Currently, I can recycle plastic bottles & jars marked 1 through 7, glass bottles/jars, aluminum and steel/tin food and drink cans, and milk and juice cartons and drink boxes, in addition to paper. Heck - they take the 28-30 lb. plastic containers I get the kitty litter in (although I've seen people drive by and stop and take them before the recycling team gets there to use for their own storage! LOL)

                1. re: LindaWhit
                  nofunlatte RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 04:15 PM

                  I've been using these to grow herbs! I just drill some holes at the bottom for drainage, fill with potting soil and plant some herbs. Which I use for cooking (keeping it all food-related) :-)

                  1. re: LindaWhit
                    goodhealthgourmet RE: LindaWhit Jun 17, 2008 07:54 AM

                    linda, that's amazing. few places will accept all grades of plastic - typically it's just 1,2, and occasionally 7.

                    in NYC the only plastic containers they'll accept are bottles & jugs...and the neck has to be narrower than the body of the container to qualify. it's absurd!

            2. re: LindaWhit
              karmalaw RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 03:53 PM

              Unless you've got some massive quantity of oil to dispose of, then do what the others have said: let it cool and pour it over your garbage -- that's what I do. If there's more, I use an empty non-recyclable container.

              Meanwhile, when you purchase oil for cooking -- you might find better results with one of the other oils -- if you're doing high heat searing: peanut oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, lard or even bacon grease will usually give you better flavor and results.

              1. re: karmalaw
                LindaWhit RE: karmalaw Jun 15, 2008 04:13 PM

                I often find peanut oil gives a flavor I'm not looking for, but sunflower or safflower oil is what I used to use a long time ago, so that's a possibility.

                Bacon grease is saved for home fries. :-)

          2. EmileJ RE: LindaWhit Jun 15, 2008 06:53 PM

            of course if you have a diesel engine that runs on bio fuels ....

            1. Caroline1 RE: LindaWhit Jun 16, 2008 07:19 AM

              I save ALL of my used oil (don' use anything but olive and peanut oil so I've never had any turn ransid) in a half gallon screw-lid milk container, then put it out on recycling pick-up day. Even though the container is recyclable, so is the used/ransid cooking oil, and most importantly, it's reclaimed for bio-deisel. Whether the bio-deisel mfrs recycle the container is their responsibility. If you don't know whether this is done in your neighborhood, call your city sanitation department and ask questions. Good luck!

              1. Aimi RE: LindaWhit Jun 16, 2008 10:56 AM

                I just throw my oil away in the container that I bought it in, even if it is recyclable. Some recyclers don't want oily containers, anyway...

                1. e
                  emerilcantcook RE: LindaWhit Jun 16, 2008 11:40 AM

                  I am not sure the amount you have will be worth the effort (both you and the other party), but you can always freecycle it to someone that could convert it into biofuel.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: emerilcantcook
                    LindaWhit RE: emerilcantcook Jun 16, 2008 11:47 AM

                    Nah - it's probably only a cup or two.

                    1. re: LindaWhit
                      Caroline1 RE: LindaWhit Jun 16, 2008 03:08 PM

                      That's why I keep the gallon milk container under my sink. A cup or two here, a cup or two there, pretty soon I have a gallon of used cooking oil to recycle! vrrooooom! vroooooom! vrooooooom!

                  2. r
                    rtms RE: LindaWhit Jul 21, 2009 07:13 AM

                    I'm going to ask my local McDonald's (TM) if they will take the tail end of a bottle of oil that's smell bad. These fast food restaurants have oil disposal containers which is collected. I think that used deep fryer oil is sometimes used as biofuel.

                    1. Kajikit RE: LindaWhit Jul 22, 2009 05:59 AM

                      If the oil has turned in the bottle, I'd just throw the whole bottle straight in the trash. Sometimes it's not worth the trouble to try to recycle EVERYTHING and a bottle of rancid cooking oil is well down my list of priorities...

                      1. BeaN RE: LindaWhit Jul 22, 2009 05:26 PM

                        I'd compost it.

                        If I didn't have a compost heap, I'd just pour it out on the ground away from the house. It will degrade fairly quickly.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: BeaN
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                          rtms RE: BeaN Jul 30, 2009 09:25 PM

                          I didn't know that you could dump oil on the ground. Wouldn't that kill the critters in your and kill the soil and your plants?

                          1. re: rtms
                            BeaN RE: rtms Jul 31, 2009 09:50 AM

                            Cooking oil, not petroleum. We're not talking about a barrel of petroleum, we are talking about a limited amount of something organic. If I can put soybeans on my compost pile, I can put soybean oil on my compost pile. If I can put peanuts on my compost pile, I can put peanut oil on my compost pile. The oil is going to break down like any other organic material. It's already breaking down, which is why you are throwing it out.

                            U Maine Cooperative Extension describes cooking oils as "hard to compost" but they don't discourage the home composter from doing so. Applying oil directly to the exoskeleton of bugs will probably smother them - they breathe through the skin.

                            http://www.umext.maine.edu/onlinepubs...

                            It doesn't mention wine corks, but the real corks are compostable also.

                        2. s
                          smtucker RE: LindaWhit Jul 22, 2009 05:36 PM

                          We store old oil in the plastic jugs down in the basement and once a year a friend stops by and grabs it. He is running his car on oil, and loves getting free donations.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: smtucker
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                            pemma RE: smtucker Jul 28, 2009 05:24 AM

                            Is this really worth worrying so much about? Go ahead and throw away the very occasional plastic bottle filled with oil.

                            1. re: pemma
                              s
                              smtucker RE: pemma Jul 28, 2009 06:22 AM

                              I don't feel like I am worrying at all. I store the oil, someone comes by and picks it up and uses it. This small accommodation reduces landfill waste and gets him to his gigs. Seems like a win/win to me.

                              1. re: pemma
                                LindaWhit RE: pemma Jul 28, 2009 06:26 AM

                                I'm the OP, and the post by livetocook a year ago answered my question. But I had to respond to your comment - so when hundreds of thousands of people do what you suggest, it just adds to the overly crowded landfills. Doesn't make sense.

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