Why Is Coconut Oil A Healthy Cooking Ingredient?

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  • Posted on: 4 May 2016
  • By: Simon
Why Is Coconut Oil A Healthy Ingredient For Cooking?
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Why Is Preparing Meals With Coconut Oil Such A Good Idea?

There are many types of cooking oil available in the market, but the best coconut oil cannot be beaten as a healthy cooking oil. Not only is it great for preparing food, it is equally amazing for baking, is full of minerals, vitamins, and healthy medium chain fatty acids. Cooking with coconut oil is a far healthier choice than cooking with most other oils. It also great for sautéing and frying, and has moderately high burning and smoke point.

Which Cooking Oils Can I Replace With Coconut Oil?

Coconut oil can be used as a replacement for all types of cooking oil like sunflower oil, canola oil and vegetable oil. It can also be used as a lard, shortening, margarine and butter substitute while baking.

Use coconut oil as a frying substitute

If you use coconut oil as a substitute to fry, then it is not going to matter much because the food will largely turn out as you expect. However, if you use it for baking then it might depend on the particular recipe that you are using. Generally, with most baked items, fats can be substituted freely but there can be a slight difference in texture with the end result if you use a much more saturated fat.

In recipes which need the oil to be in liquid form, you will have to melt the coconut oil before you use it.

Will Coconut Oil Affect The Flavor Of The Food I Cook?

There are two types of coconut oil – virgin and expeller-pressed. Virgin coconut oil is unrefined and has the strongest scent and flavor. Virgin is also the most popular type of coconut oil, and generally the most recommended one to use for most applications.

Just be aware that virgin coconut is not the best choice if you do not like the stronger flavor or are in search of a flavorless option which will not add any extra flavor to your food at all

Even though the scent and flavor of the oil might mellow down slightly while you cook, the virgin oil will still retain a stronger coconut flavor than the refined type. This flavor might disrupt the tastes in some delicate dishes. This will also be the case with your baked dishes, perhaps even more so.

In various flour-based recipes, the natural coconut oil flavor will become more dominant and may overpower other flavors.

If you are interested in a tasteless option, then you should try a refined version like refined and expeller-pressed coconut oil. The refined oils are deodorized and thus have a milder flavor and scent. They are, in fact are very bland which makes them tasteless or almost tasteless.

So, if you do not want a strongly flavored coconut oil while cooking, then the refined version will be the best for you. Expeller-pressed coconut oil can be used in any coconut oil recipes, will act similarly, but will not overpower other flavors of your dish.

How To Make Coconut Oil Tasteless

Even if you have decided to cook using the milder refined or expeller-pressed coconut oil, you can still follow the tips given below if you want to tone down any probability of coconut flavor invasion:

  1. Avoid using too much coconut oil. This is quite obvious but still needs a mention. If you use too much of this oil, you will not be able to avoid its flavor.
  2. Use strongly flavored ingredients while cooking. Things like onions, garlic, red meats, peppers, have a stronger flavor, and if you use them, your mildly flavored coconut oil will remain in the backseat.

Should I Store Coconut Oil In The Fridge?

Coconut oil is almost all saturated fat and thus is shelf-stable at room temperature. You do not need to store this oil in the fridge unless you need it to harden up for some purpose. Your coconut oil will be in perfectly fine condition for 2 years or so, which is a very long shelf life. However, if you live in an area with very warm climate and the oil melts at room temperature, then you may want store it in the refrigerator to help it last longer.

In general, you should allow the oil to reach room temperature before you use it in your cooking recipes with coconut oil.

Is Coconut Oil Good For Frying Food?

Coconut oil is the healthiest oil for deep-frying. According to studies, even after deep-frying with coconut oil at 365 degrees Fahrenheit for 8 hours at a stretch, the quality of the oil does not deteriorate. More than 90 percent of the fatty acids present in coconut oil are saturated, making it extremely heat-resistant.

What Is The Cooking Temperature Of Coconut Oil?

All cooking oils have a burning point and a smoke point. Once your cooking oil reaches the smoke point and begins smoking, it has become dangerous and unhealthy and needs to be discarded. The smoke point of almost every coconut oil is around 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Coconut oils, generally begin burning at 420 degrees Fahrenheit. The burn and smoke point of refined coconut oil is higher than its unrefined version.

Some Amazing Facts About Coconut Oil:

Coconut oil has a kind of saturated fat known as “medium chain triglycerides” (MCT's), which are easy to digest and are also easily burned to release energy. This works in just the same way that simple carbs give you an energy boost. However, with coconut oil, there will be no rise in blood sugar levels.

Coconut oil is the healthy option for cooking

This makes coconut oil very good for those people who have low energy levels, or those who have difficulty in digesting fats. There are many other benefits to taking it, but here are the top 10 health facts about coconut oil.

A great bonus of the MCT's present in coconut oil is the effect it has on your metabolism, particularly its ability help you lose weight. As per studies, many people who replaced their cooking oil with coconut oil have enjoyed more efficient weight loss compared to those who still use other cooking oils.

One of the MCT's present in coconut oil is known as lauric acid, which is a very useful acid. It has great antifungal and antimicrobial properties, which help maintain normal immune function and gut flora.

Advantages Of Cooking With Coconut Oil

By following coconut oil recipes or at least using some coconut oil while cooking, you can enjoy lots of health benefits. Much more so than if you cook with regular cooking oils like olive oil or vegetable oils. As already mentioned, coconut oil is rich in vitamins, nutrients, and has medium chain fatty acids, and all this can help your body in functioning properly.

Overall, the best coconut oil helps boost the immune system and increases energy levels and speeds the metabolism of the body. Cooking with this oil helps maintain healthy cholesterol levels, helps un-clog arteries, prevents diseases like diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, and helps you lead a healthier life!

3 Reasons to Be Cooking With Coconut Oil

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