In terms of energy and resource consumption and waste, few places are as gluttonous as the kitchen. For those of us looking to make our lives a little greener, a good place to start is the kitchen, and reusing and repurposing is the way forward. Not only will we save ourselves the cost of having to buy these items more often, but we’ll conserve resources and prevent them from being tossed.

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Recipes that call for frying your food require a lot of oil, and it’s a waste to pour it down the drain every time you cook. For many cleaner-frying items like potatoes and other plant foods, oil can be reused many times over. To prolong the life of your oil, wait until it has cooled off after cooking and pass it through some muslin or cheesecloth. Make sure to strain out all of the food pieces from the oil to ensure that your next cooking experience goes smoothly and isn’t contaminated. You can now store your reused, eco-friendly oil in a sealed container!

While there’s no official rule as to how many times you can reuse frying oil, it will decompose over time and may not work as effectively. When your oil starts to turn brown, smokes easily, or has developed a greasy odor or a layer of film on top, those are signs that it’s time to dump it.

With a little extra effort, you can reduce waste, save money, and live greener!

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