Cooking Oils Guide

Canola oil

Very low in saturated fat but high in heart-healthy monounsaturated and omega-3 fats, canola oil is a good pantry staple. Its neutral taste means it works well with most foods. Avoid using the oil at high temperatures, as it can create harmful polar compounds.

Extra-virgin olive oil

Bursting with monounsaturated fats and antioxidants, ‘EVOO’ is particularly beneficial for heart health. New research has shown extra-virgin olive oil is one of the safest and most stable oils for cooking, even when used at high temperatures. Fruity and a little peppery in taste, EVOO goes perfectly in salad dressings or over roast vegetables, and can even be used for pan-frying.

Rice bran oil

Made from the outer layer of the rice grain called the bran, this oils subtle flavour lends itself to stir-fries and baking. It has a moderate amount of healthy unsaturated fats. The health-giving compounds in rice bran oil lower cholesterol.

Coconut oil

Trendy coconut oil is not as healthy as you might hear. With up to 92 per cent saturated fat, it’s not the best choice for your heart. Nevertheless, coconut oil creates minimal polar compounds when heated and has a distinct coconut flavour. It remains firm at room temperature, so it can be used to set ‘raw’ desserts.

Avocado oil

Tasting like - avocado! - this oil has a similar composition to
olive oil and is ideal for salad dressings, roasting and frying. Its a heart-healthy choice.

Sesame oil

A little goes a long way with this aromatic oil. Its a healthy choice in Asian cooking to give a distinct nutty flavour. Don’t forget to store sesame oil in the fridge so it doesn’t go rancid.

Vegetable oil

This oil is extracted from legumes, fruits, grains, nuts and/or seeds, not vegies! With a neutral taste, it’s suited to a variety of dishes. Although it’s typically made from canola and soybean oils, it’s wise to avoid buying a ‘blend’ unless the ingredients are specified, or you may end up with a mixture high in saturated fat - due to the use of coconut and palm oils.

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