The Best Way To Store Bacon Grease (And No, You Can't Empty It Down The Drain)

Bacon — what would breakfast be without it? Arguably, not as good, because this regular at the kitchen table is one of the most iconic breakfast foods in the U.S. But with all the bacon that Americans consume — and it's a whopping 18 pounds a year for each of us – there are some questions we can't ignore. What are you supposed to do with the leftover bacon grease? And do you even have to get rid of it at all?

First and foremost, you should never dump that grease down your kitchen drain unless you're a big fan of calling a plumber for help. So, if not in your sink, where is it supposed to go, and what uses does it have once the pork and pancakes are plated? We have good news for you: Bacon grease is easy and safe to store and is the perfect secret weapon to use for several kitchen projects. It's not just for breakfast — it can improve your dinners and baked goods, too. So, grab a glass container while we get into a few things you should keep in mind before storing your bacon safely.

Bacon grease can't go down the drain

Part of what makes bacon so darn delicious is the fat content. As it renders off the meat during cooking, it leaves perfectly cooked bacon strips that are packed full of flavor. At the same time, that grease is not good for your kitchen pipes — dumping grease down the drain allows it to cool and clog the plumbing, which can be an expensive problem to solve.

The best way to handle your bacon grease is to pour it into a container to dispose of it or use it later. And ideally, you are going to want to store that grease in a container that is glass or metal. Once it's cooled, the container is then ready to go in the fridge or your freezer. You do not want to store your bacon grease in plastic containers since the heat of the grease can cause the plastic to melt, which can be both messy and potentially dangerous. The last thing you want is to ruin brunch with a grease burn. Now that you know the best container to store it in, you should know what to do with it. 

Bacon grease has many uses to explore

Once you have a jar of bacon grease stored safely in your fridge, there are so many ways to use it. For starters, you can use a scoop of bacon fat for frying up eggs on a morning when whole bacon strips aren't on the menu — it will give your breakfast a little extra flavor. Bacon grease is also a great addition to any quick bread — like cornbread. Another way to use it is by making a killer bacon grease country gravy recipe.

There are also some uses for your bacon grease that may not be so obvious, like using it when cooking other meats. Taffy Elrod, a food instructor from the Hudson Valley, sat down with The Takeout to share how she uses bacon fat, "I love using bacon grease to enrich stews and braises made with leaner cuts of meat, like venison or lean beef." Not only can it help you brown up your vegetables and meat, but the fat will give extra flavor and texture to your braises, making them downright luxurious.