Six Steps to Extending the Life of Your Oil

Fryer oil plays a very important role in your kitchen. From deliciously battered fish to perfectly fried chicken, the life and quality of your fryer oil can often mean the difference between great-tasting food and a soggy mess. Well-managed, properly filtered oil, used in conjunction with regularly maintained equipment, helps reduce kitchen costs and waste while increasing operational efficiencies and productivity. A trained staff and quality equipment put you at an advantage when it comes to frying the foods your customers love. Follow these steps to extend the life of your fryer oil and achieve optimal frying results.

1. Filter Oil at Least Twice a Day

Proper filtration is the most important step in extending the life of your fryer oil. It helps control consistency and keeps operational costs down. When you filter, it’s important to be mindful of the following guidelines:

• Filter for a minimum of five minutes per fryer vat
• Filter oldest oil first
• Add powder to polish the oil
• Use fryer filter paper
• Clean fryer vat while filtering to remove any food particles
• Check oil with test kit after filtering
• Rotate fryer vats as needed
• Track filtration
• Dispose of oil with manager approval

2. Skim Every 15 Minutes

Start by skimming the top and sides of the fryer with the skimmer, and then dispose of any errant particles. Removing loose food particles helps keep your oil clean longer and improves the consistency, letting your food maintain its unique flavor profile.

3. Establish a Schedule for Turning Off Vats

Schedules for turning on and shutting off the fryer are an efficient and sustainable way to extend the life of your oil. This helps your equipment preserve oil and conserve energy.

4. Cover Fryers When Not in Use

Protecting your fryer decreases the likelihood of contamination from substances and particles not intended for the fryer.1

5. Check Fryer Calibration on a Quarterly Basis

Fryer systems tend to require re calibration over time. Checking calibration regularly helps ensure your fryer is working at its best. Compare the temperature of your fryer to the temperature reading on a food thermometer placed in hot oil. Adjust your fryer’s temperature accordingly. If your oil is too hot, it will degrade more quickly.

6. Fill Fryer Only to the Appropriate Oil Levels

Avoid filling the fryer above the recommended fill line. Keeping oil measurements at the proper level reduces excess waste and ensures adherence to food-safety guidelines. It is also a back-of house safety procedure aimed at preventing oil-related injuries.

How Long Should My Oil Last?

For every day that you properly manage your oil, it gains two days in functional oil life. However, all oil has a shelf life. The life of your oil depends on the type of oil, quality of filtered oil and the kind of food fried, as well as the frequency with which you use the fryer. For example, medium-durability oil such as premium soy can generally be used for at least seven to 10 days if the oil is properly managed and filtered.

The Hidden Enemies of Frying Oil

A number of factors can adversely affect the quality and life of your cooking oil, and educating your staff on such “enemies of oil” can help you create consistently well-fried foods. Here is a list of the most common fryer oil adversaries:

How Durable is my Oil?

It depends. Consider these three factors when purchasing fryer oil: flavor profile, nutritional value and shelf life. Each one plays a different role in how long your oil will actually last. For quick reference, here’s where a few oils land on a scale of least durable to most durable.

Get the Most out of Your Oil

Experience the Benefits of an Oil Management System

Well-maintained, quality equipment can make all the difference when it comes to extending the life of your oil. But the reality is, no matter how well your fryer is working or how effective your employees are at properly filtering and managing fryer oil, manual oil maintenance can be a dirty, hazardous job. That’s why companies have created automated oil management systems to be
used in conjunction with existing fryers. Automated oil management systems can take the hassle out of changing and filtering your oil – resulting in safer and more sustainable and efficient oil management. These systems often include tech features – such as a dashboard for easy-to understand performance indicators and monitoring systems – enabling you to track daily usage and disposal patterns and receive alerts. Using an oil management system can help set up your restaurant for long-term success by properly tracking, filtering, disposing of and maintaining your fryer oil.

Request an On-Site Survey

Hungry for More?

Fryer oil has the ability to make or break your customers’ dining experience. Bottom line: The taste, texture and appearance of your restaurant’s fried food depend on the quality of your oil. While maintaining fryer oil can seem like a sizable investment both in time and resources, it’s worth every penny. By extending the life of your fryer oil, you’ll be able to fry up the golden, crispy food that keeps your customers happy and hungry for more. To learn more, contact a Restaurant Technologies representative.