It happened at about 2 p.m. Monday at Cos's Corner Deli on East Elizabeth Avenue in Linden.
The owner, 46-year old Harry Bains, told police that a dark-skinned male in his 20's entered the store, displayed a handgun and had a windbreaker-type jacket pulled up around his face.
When the suspect went to try and open the cash register, Bains said he took a small pot of scorching hot oil and threw it at the suspect, striking him.
As soon as the oil hit, the would-be robber then fled the store on foot without taking anything, with Bains giving chase.
A search of the area for the suspect failed to locate anyone.
Detectives will be reviewing footage from a surveillance camera in the store.
Local hospitals were notified in the event the suspect seeks medical treatment for possible burns.
Bains was not injured.
After wiping up most of the splattered oil and calling police, this brave father of three was behind the counter, once again.