oils to use for cooking that are not olive oil

August 1, 2016

oils to use for cooking besides olive oil | suzyandco.com

Originally I was looking for alternatives to olive oil. Why...
As strange as this sounds, I am not a huge fan of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). Yes, I know. Blah, Blah, Blah healthy. Yadda, yadda, yadda monounsaturated fats. Blah, blah, blah, phytonutrients.
My biggest issue with EVOO is the taste. I love the taste of EVOO. Yes, I love the taste of EVOO for:
  • dipping bread
  • Italian salad dressing
  • Italian or Greek dishes 

That pungent, peppery flavor goes great with many things.
But not everything.
Sesame ginger dressing - nope.
Taco meat - nope.
Mayo - not always
Stir-fried rice - nope
homemade BBQ sauce - nope.
Home made granola - nope.
So what do you use in these cases?
It has been hard for me to find good, healthy oils, with a mild flavor that can be used in a variety of dishes.

Here is a list of some oils I like to use. I would love to experiment with other oils,
Sesame oil - This is a great oil to use in asian dishes. It is more mild than toasted sesame and can handle a higher heat.
Toasted Sesame oil - one of my favorites. However, it has a low smoke point and is usually expensive. I use this in dressing and asian-flavored dishes that are not going to be heated to a high temp. Sometimes I will use half toasted sesame and half of a less expensive oil in recipes. That way you can still get that great flavor but save a bit of money. 
Unrefined Coconut Oil - Good for higher heat. This oil has a coconutty flavor though. Sometimes you really don't want that coconut flavor. With eggs, or in pizza crust - not good! If you get refined coconut oil you will not get that strong flavor, but the refining process will take away some of the health properties associated with the oil. This oil works great in dessert dishes and baked goods.

Coconut oil has a high amount of saturated fat. This is a good thing. Saturated fat can be very healthy and it is very shelf stable and will not go rancid like other oils. 
Avocado oil - this is one of my newer favorites. It has a nice mild flavor and is extracted through cold pressing as opposed to high heat. This one I use a lot because it is really versatile and the flavor goes with everything. It is also better for high heat cooking because it has a high smoke point.

I also researched the fatty acid profile and I think it is much better than others. It does not contain quite as much omega-6 as grapeseed oil.
Grapeseed oil - This is another very light tasting oil with a higher smoke point. I debated about including it. It is not my top choice because it has a high ratio of omega 6 fatty acids - which aren't bad, but we usually get too much of them. And most grapeseed oils are also extracted using high heat or chemical solvents so I have been searching for a better brand. But this is one that I will use only occasionally now.

There are many other oils to cook with. This is just a short list for now to give you some ideas and alternatives. As I explore other oils and do more research, I will share those as well. 

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