In general perception, oil in our diet means inviting fat, cholesterol, heart disease, etc. But a section of dietitians says that our body needs oil to supply the essential fats. Also, our body needs oil to absorb fat-soluble vitamins. Keep doctors and dietitians apart, what we cannot live without is deep-fried crunchy food. Think about those crispy chicken wings or French fries we enjoy during movie time. But it is also important to use the best oil for frying. Because some kinds of oil are healthy and some are not that we are going to discuss below.
You will find many products in the market with a heart-healthy tag on them. But in reality, all of them are not healthy. Because healthy oils are those with lower levels of linoleic acid, you may notice many people prefer olive oil for deep frying. It is because olive oil contains less linoleic acid than other vegetable oil. So whenever you go to buy oil, don’t look at the marketing tag but read the ingredient list. It will tell you the source of the oil which matters the most.
In this article, we will discuss what are the best oil for frying. We have compiled a list of healthy oil for your reference. Also, we will explain the benefits of those healthy oils and why they are considered healthy. So, zoom your screen and read about the best oil for frying to buy on your next shopping date.
Characteristics of a Healthy Oil For Frying
Deep-fried foods are a key part of different traditional and international cuisines. It makes a different industry of food known as fast food. Many people discourage deep-fried fast food due to its probable negative effect on your health. But the effect of fried food on your health depends on the type of oil used to fry it. Some oils have a higher smoking point. It means these oils resist higher temperatures and are good for frying. The best oil for frying
- Has a high smoking point
- Is stable and doesn’t react with oxygen at high temperature
- Contains higher levels of saturated fats
- It tends to be more stable under high temperatures
- Has mostly saturated and monounsaturated fat
- Has a neutral flavor
Cooking oil that is not good for frying contains large amounts of polyunsaturated fats. Because polyunsaturated fats have a chemical structure containing two or more double bonds. The double bonds tend to react fast with oxygen and form harmful compounds when coming under high temperatures.
Also Read: Low Calorie Air Fryer Pork Chops Recipe
How To Define Healthy Oil?
How to know whether a particular oil is healthy or not depends on many factors. The most important is how the oil reacts under high temperatures. In this regard, olive oil, avocado oil, and canola oil are best as these oils react least when heated.
Some oils have a higher smoking point, and some have a lower. When oil passes its smoking point, its cells break down and release free radicals. These free radicals react with oxygen and cause harm to your body.
Oils with high smoking points are healthful because they are more stable. And the stability depends on the amounts of fatty acids it contains. Because fatty acids provide stability and more fatty acids means the more tightly packed the oil is. And it doesn’t easily break down under heat.
Oils containing saturated and monounsaturated fats are the most stable for cooking. Higher levels of saturated fats prevent oxidation that causes acids to break apart.
Oils containing polyunsaturated fats have fatty acids joined by short chains. This causes easy breaking of the cells when heated and releases more free radicals. So this type of oil is not good for frying or high heat recipes.
Best Oil for Frying
Now you know how to define healthy oil and what makes oil good for frying. So here is a list of the best oil for frying.
#1. Olive Oil
Nutritionists and cooking experts both rely on olive oil as one of the healthiest oils to cook. This light oil is excellent for deep frying. But its healthy tagline remains justified till it is entirely virgin. So you should buy olive oil with the label of extra “virgin”. It means the oil is not processed or refined. Because unprocessed and unrefined oil is of the best quality. It contains both polyunsaturated fatty acids and monounsaturated fats. These are considered good for health, and oil containing these nutrients is tagged as heart-healthy.
Olive oil has a high smoking point in comparison to other oils. So it is ideal for cooking at all temperature levels. You can use it for baking, frying, and even dressing your food.
You need to remember one thing that many brands attach the extra virgin tag in the oil packaging. But in reality, the products do not meet the standard of extra virgin oil. So you need to be very careful when buying olive oil to avoid fraud.
#2. Coconut oil
A section of people tend to discourage this pure vegetable oil for its high saturated fat content. But coconut oil, with a high smoking point at 350 F is ideal for frying food at medium heat. Also, its 2 percent polyunsaturated fat content makes it healthy and one of the best oils for frying.
Coconut oil contains a high amount of fatty acids that help to burn your body fat. Also, it is good for brain development and instant gain of energy in your body. This flavored oil increases the good cholesterol level in your blood, reducing the risk of a heart attack.
#3. Vegetable oil
Vegetable oil refers to any oil derived from plants. Its health benefits depend on the source plant from which it comes and for what purpose it is used. It is a good option for deep frying. Vegetable oils available in the market are generally a combination of different plant oils. It may contain corn, soybean, sunflower, and other oils.
Vegetable oil is considered heart-healthy because of its high level of polyunsaturated fat, which reduces the risk of heart disease. It is good for deep frying because of its high smoking point, especially one containing safflower and rice bran oil. You can also use a blend of peanut oil, sunflower oil, and mustard oil. It is excellent for frying at a temperature of 400-500° F.
As it is called vegetable oil, the manufacturer can add any oil of such kind without mentioning the names. So It may include both healthy and unhealthy ingredients. And a section of people discards this oil for its probable unhealthy contents.
#4. Canola oil
Canola is a flowering plant providing the oilseeds known as rapeseed which is the source of canola oil. It contains monounsaturated fats and is also rich in polyunsaturated fats. Canola oil has the least amount of saturated fats in comparison to other vegetable oils. And its high smoking point makes it ideal for frying food at high temperatures.
You need to be careful when buying canola oil. Because some manufacturers refine the oil before supplying it to the market, which reduces the nutrients, so try to buy unprocessed canola oil for the highest benefits.
#5. Avocado oil
This creamy oil is rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. It is the best source of monounsaturated fat contents among all edible oils. And the oil also contains a good amount of vitamin E. This high amount of nutrients make the oil more expensive than others of its kind. But this unflavored oil is an excellent choice for cooking oil. Its high smoking point makes canola oil ideal for frying food at high temperatures.
#6. Sunflower oil
This is one of the most popular and all-purpose edible oils. Rich in vitamin E, sunflower oil also contains a high amount of omega-6 fatty acids. One tablespoon of sunflower oil provides 28 percent of your daily need for vitamin E.
Sunflower oil is made from the pressed seeds of the flower. And the neutral flavor oil is excellent for all cooking purposes. You can use it for deep-frying, shallow-frying, baking, and roasting. Its high smoking point at 230 °C makes it the best oil for frying. Besides, it is inexpensive and easily available.
#7. Peanut oil
This healthy plant-based oil is popular for its nice flavor and nutty taste. There are different types of peanut oil available. It contains a high amount of monounsaturated fat that makes it a healthy oil for all-purpose cooking. It is also popularly known as groundnut oil. This unique oil has a high smoking point that makes it ideal for deep frying.
#8. Sesame oil
This oil is preferred for its strong flavor. It contains a high amount of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. For its high smoking point, you can cook with this oil at high temperatures. Despite the 41 percent polyunsaturated fat content, sesame oil is ideal for deep frying. The oil contains Lignan compounds, which is an antioxidant. It remains stable at 338°F and prevents the oil from breaking down when heated.
Fried food is a key part of our culinary culture, and we all love it. But these foods are often discouraged because of their bad impact on your health. As we have discussed above, whether the fried food is healthy or not depends on the oil used to fry them. The article describes the factors that define healthy oil. And we have included a list of the healthiest oils for deep frying. I hope the article will be helpful for you when you will go to select the best oil for frying.
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