Healthy Cooking Oils-Explained

cooking-oil

Learn about the most nutritious options for roasting, baking and more
Olive and canola oil are kitchen staples because they’re so versatile. But those aren’t the only healthy cooking oil picks for cooking and baking. Check it out below to see alternative options, all of which are far better choices than the corn, soybean and vegetable oil blends that so many of us grew up with.

*Keep refrigerated

MUFAs = monounsaturated fatty acids

Almond Oil

Why It’s Healthy: Has MUFAs, which help lower cholesterol.

What It’s Good For: Salad dressings and marinades. Try it as a dip for apple slices or on an apple and arugula salad.

Canola Oil

Why It’s Healthy: Contains MUFAs and omega-3s, which have been linked to a lower risk of diabetes as well as stroke.

What It’s Good For: Since it’s flavorless, this oil can be used for many things, especially stir-frying and panfrying.

Flaxseed Oil*

Why It’s Healthy: Rich in omega-3s.

What It’s Good For: Dressings. Do not heat.

Hazelnut Oil

Why It’s Healthy: Has a high MUFA content.

What It’s Good For: Drizzling over steamed vegetables or whisking into salad dressing and sauces, since it has a strong nutty flavor. Try it on roasted broccoli.

Olive Oil

Why It’s Healthy: Contains MUFAs as well as anti-inflammatory compounds that can help lower your risk of heart disease, diabetes and arthritis pain.

What It’s Good For: Rosting and sautéing.Flavorful extra-virgin oils are best for dipping, drizzling and dressings. (Will lose flavor when heated.)

Toasted Sesame Oil*

Why It’s Healthy: Has MUFAs, which help lower cholesterol.

What It’s Good For: Dressings, sauces, dips and drizzling, thanks to its deep, nutty flavor. It’s also great in stir-fries.

Sunflower Oil

Why It’s Healthy: Contains MUFAs. Choose one labeled high monounsaturated or high oleic, which means it’s mostly monounsatured fat.

What It’s Good For: All-purpose, since it has a neutral taste.

Walnut Oil*

Why It’s Healthy: A good source of omega-3s.

What It’s Good For: Drizzling on roasted or steamed vegetables and whisking into salad dressings.

By Joy Bauer, RD