Want to know what the best oil for frying is? We’ve rounded up the most common and popular cooking oils and have demystified their purpose and benefits for you! Find out which oils are best for baking, frying, all purpose cooking, and making salad dressings with!
Best Oil For Frying
Cooking oils can affect the taste of your desired dish, so it’s important to know which oils are best for what type of cooking. If you’ve ever asked yourself what oil was best for baking, frying or light sauteing, we have the answers! Let’s go over some quick tips to keep in mind when choosing a cooking oil and let’s find out what the best oils for frying and everything else are!
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Tips For Choosing Cooking Oils
1. Keep Those Smoke Points In Mind! Each cooking oil has its own smoke point which can, in it of itself, be used as a guide to determine what it’s best suited for. When looking at smoke points, keep in mind that the higher the smoke point, the more heat your oil can withstand.
2. Don’t Brush Off Omega-3s or -6s! Omega-3s are a type of polyunsaturated fat that can reduce the risk of heart disease, balance hormones, prevent strokes, and decrease inflammation in the body.
3. Change It Up. There are so many oils on the market, each with their own set of health benefits and functions, that it would be a shame to not incorporate most of them into your diet. If not for cooking’s sake, do so for your health as oils are incredibly beneficial to healthy heart, brain and body function.
Best Oils For Browning, Searing, Frying, All Purpose Cooking
1. Almond Oil
Almond oil is a healthy oil that is good to use in frying and any other type of cooking. This oil is best used in high heat dishes as it has a high smoke point and can withstand heat. When oils are cooked beyond their smoke point they begin to release free radicals as well as a chemical called acrolein, which is responsible for that burnt taste and aroma in foods. Almond oil is also an extremely rich source of Vitamin E, which is a powerful antioxidant that fights aging and other chronic illnesses. The oil is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids and contains only 7-8% of saturated fats – fats that have a negative impact on our bodies. When purchasing almond oil, be sure to look for one that is food grade or for culinary use.
2. Avocado Oil
Avocado oil is as good (if not better in our humble opinion) as olive oil in terms of flavor and health benefits. Best used for searing meat, making stir fries or in salad dressings (as it imparts a light, nutty flavor), avocado oil is one of the healthiest and best oils to go with. The oil boasts a high level of monounsaturated fatty acids which prevent belly fat, fight diabetes and lead to glowing hair and skin!
3. Canola Oil
There’s been lots of speculation as of late regarding the true benefits of canola and other vegetable oils. While we are still unsure as to how healthy canola oil is (we do know that it can wreak havoc on your hormones), we do know that it is one of the best oils to use for frying and baking! Canola oil contains 7% of saturated fats, a low number in comparison to other man-made oils. Unlike almond or avocado oils, canola is a good source of Omega-3s, as those fatty acids make up 11% of the oil’s composition. Because of its light flavor and high smoke point, canola oil is one of the most versatile cooking oils to use and works well in both cooked and uncooked foods.
4. Safflower Oil
Safflower oil comes from the safflower plant’s seeds, which are related to sunflowers. Safflower oil has a lighter taste and a higher smoke point, which makes it another great choice for frying or browning. Safflower oil also helps lower blood sugar and has been studied for its antioxidant properties. The oil is a superb source of monounsaturated fats that makes it a healthy choice for fried snacks and meals.
5. Sunflower Oil
The benefits of sunflower oil include its ability to improve heart health, strengthen the immune system, improve your skin health, prevent cancer, and lower cholesterol. This culinary oil is also best for sauteing and frying. It contains less saturated fats than avocado oil and is rich in polyunsaturated fats. Sunflower oil is also a good source of Vitamin E. This oil from vibrant, beautiful flowers is a good choice for frying and keeping your meal healthy and balanced.
Best Oils For Baking, Oven Cooking, Crisp Sautes, and Stir-Frying
1. Olive Oil
Olive oil is an oil that doesn’t need an introduction. It’s one of the most popular, commonly used oils in the country and with good reason. It has a mild, nutty flavor that works well with all types of cuisines and contains both vitamins and antioxidants. Olive oil is a rich source of Vitamin E and K (a vitamin necessary for healthy arteries, strong bones and optimal brain development). And contrary to popular belief, the best uses for olive oil are for gold dishes, salads and pesto. So, remember home chefs, leave the frying and browning to oils like avocado or almond.
2. Grapeseed Oil
Grapeseed oil is another great option for baking, oven cooking and sautes. It has a neutral flavor which is a plus for us as we’ve grown weary of using canola in our baked goods. Much as is the case with the other cooking oils, grapeseed oil contains a multitude of health benefits such as Vitamin E and Omega-6s. Omega-3s and -6s are essential fatty acids, meaning that they are not naturally produced in the body and must be obtained through diet. Omega-3s can be obtained through food sources such as fish, whereas Omega-6s can be obtained through nuts and seeds. Both fatty acids must be in balance as they both work together to regulate hormones and other fundamental bodily functions; keep in mind that Omega-3s decrease the body’s inflammatory response while Omega-6s increase inflammation (an important component of the immune system). The best uses for grapeseed oil are in vinaigrette dressings and when sauteing vegetables.
3. Peanut Oil
Peanut oil is most commonly used in Asian cultures. It is known for being intensely flavorful. People use peanut oil in their cooking for the delicious flavor that it imparts on food. Peanut oil is a very heart-friendly cooking oil, as it has the ability to reduce your risk of heart attacks and strokes. It is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids which increase the levels of “good cholesterol” in our body. It also protects us against symptoms of aging such as wrinkles. So, you might wanna use peanut oil to stay strong, healthy and young-looking everyday!
Best Oils for Light Sautes, Low-Heat Baking and Sauces
1. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil can be referred to as the celebrity of cooking oils. It’s received a lot of attention as of late for its numerous health benefits and is often touted as a cure-all or miracle product. These claims are definitely not far from the truth (here’s a secret! Not only do we cook with coconut oil, we also use it to remove our makeup at night! Try it, ladies, and feel the difference in your skin) as coconut oil really does contain numerous health benefits. These benefits include, but are not limited to, increased energy and fat burning; reduction in harmful pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi; improvement in blood cholesterol levels with the potential of decreasing the risk for heart disease; and, healthy hair, skin and nails! Refined coconut oil has a slightly-less coconut flavor and aroma, whereas unrefined coconut oil is more intense in its flavor. This oil is best used as a butter or shortening substitute in baking, or in soups, stews and curries.
2. Sesame Oil
Sesame oil is a flavorful, intense oil that is best left for Asian dishes only such as stir fries or fried rice. Sesame oil contains trace amounts of Vitamin E and K and is great at promoting healthy skin, oral health, whiter teeth, and can reduce blood pressure, to name a few benefits. Sesame oil is made up primarily of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, with only 15% of its composition made up of saturated fats.
3. Soybean Oil
Soybean oil is another good option for low-heat baking or light sautes. It’s neutral flavor makes it a universal oil that can be easily adapted to any cuisine or food type. Soybean oil is best used for light vegetable and meat sautes and is also a good source of Omega-3s and polyunsaturated fats. Soybean oil is important to cognitive, bone, eye and skin health. Soybean oil can improve and, in some cases, reverse the signs of Alzheimers; it can stimulate the regrowth of bones; and, protects our cell membranes, which can be exposed to bacteria and other harmful pathogens.
4. Walnut Oil
Walnut oil is a flavorful option that is best suited for pastas and salad dressings. Walnut oil consists of 67% polyunsaturated fats and is a great source of Omega-3s. The health benefits of walnut oil include, but are not limited to, improved blood circulation, lowered risk of heart disease, balanced hormones, decreased inflammation, and improved skin health.
When cooking with oil it’s important to remember two things:
1) Fats are necessary components that our bodies need and crave, so don’t fear cooking oils!
2) With that said, don’t go overboard with the cooking oils either as they are fats in the end and, while great in moderate amounts, can lead to weight gain if consumed in excess.
Now that you know what the best cooking oils are, how about some recipes to practice your new found knowledge with? Don’t miss these Ground Beef Dinner Recipes that are anxiously awaiting to be made and Recipes for Hardcore Game of Thrones Fans!
That’s all, folks! If you enjoyed our 6 Best Oil For Frying post, let us know in the Comments section below. We love hearing your feedback and comments; we also love sharing, so if you have other great ideas about the best frying oil, we’d love to hear about it and try it for ourselves! HomemadeRecipes.com was founded to create an online community where foodies, epicureans and chefs can share recipes and learn new ones! We need your help, however, in creating this community where you can come, share and learn. If you love to cook, love food or have some great recipes and ideas you’d like to share with us, shoot us an email and make sure to stay in touch on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest! We’re always looking for contributors and want to hear from you.
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