Among all kinds of comfort food out there, nothing beats the signature taste and satisfaction of deep-fried food. Just think about how your mouth will instantly water when you see a plate of French fries, chicken wings, onion rings, and tempura. But what are the healthiest options for cooking oil?
However, it is common knowledge that deep-fried food is not really an ideal addition to one’s diet. Even if you don’t eat it every day, deep-fried food can still negatively affect your health, primarily because of the type of oil you use.
So, how do we choose the healthiest options for cooking oil to perfect all these delicious goodies? This article will explain that to you.
How to Choose the Best Oil?
As you are reading this, you probably already have a couple of different types of oil in your pantry right now. You must know that they are used for various purposes. For example, oil for deep frying is all about the smoke point. This is because the ideal temperature for deep frying is around 350–375°F and some oils cannot withstand that heat. If your oil has a low smoke point, it will begin to break down and create a rancid, unpleasant taste that will spoil the flavor of the food you cook in it.
Which Cooking Oil Should I Choose?
Given that reason, a good and healthy oil for deep frying will have a high smoke point and be stable enough that they don’t react with oxygen. Here are some options:
Avocado oil has one of the highest smoke points at 520°F. The oil imparts a hint of sweet and nutty flavors. It also raises the levels of good cholesterol in the body and lowers the bad. It also contains vitamin E. However, the downside of avocado oil is that it’s significantly more expensive than other oils.
Peanut oil is a popular choice for deep frying because of its neutral flavor. It also has a high smoke point of about 446°F. It can be considered a more healthful option since peanut oil is high in monounsaturated fat and contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
If you are health conscious but would still like to indulge in some deep-fried food every once in a while, coconut oil is among the healthiest cooking oils that you can buy. It is also stable as it is comprised of 92 percent saturated fat and is resistant to oxidization. One study even showed that coconut oil was still stable after 8 hours of deep-frying. However, since it has a relatively low smoke point of 350°F, it may be better for shallow frying.
Lard, ghee, tallow, and other types of animal fat can be great for deep frying. You can easily achieve the perfect crisp with these options. Keep in mind that actual fat content varies depending on the source. For healthier options, it is best to choose fat from free-range animals.
Deep-fried food can taste good and be really satisfying, but remember to eat them in moderate amounts and incorporate other nutritious elements in your diet. If you want to learn the basics of deep-frying and other forms of cooking, you can enroll in a cooking class to enhance your kitchen skills.
If you want to hire a private chef or attend a cooking class, Food Fire + Knives has you covered. Book a reservation today!