Cooking For Nutrition: Which Oils Are Healthiest?

Cooking your meals at home is an easy calorie and fat saver. What type of oils you use can determine how certain foods cook, taste and just how healthy they are for you. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Olive Oil – Use olive oil in place of saturated fat, such as butter. Olive oil is rich in flavor and can be used for roasting or sautéing vegetables and lean proteins such as chicken breast. Beware that the smoking point is not very high so frying any foods at high temperatures will cause your food to brown quickly without properly cooking your food.
  • Coconut Oil – Coconut oil has a sweet, nutty taste, and is often used as a substitute for shortening or butter in a vegan diet. It also imparts a tropical flavor to vegetables, curry dishes and fish. Because it is primarily a saturated fat, use coconut oil in moderation, and buy the kind labeled “virgin.”
  • Grapeseed Oil – Grapeseed oil has a moderately high smoke point, which makes it great for sautés and frying. Also, grapeseed oil has little flavor therefore it won’t change the taste of any of the foods you’re cooking.
  • Canola Oil – Canola oil has a light flavor, which makes it versatile in cooking. Replace solid fats like butter or margarine with canola oil when cooking or baking. Canola oil works well for sautéing and stir-frying.