If you want to improve the nutritional value of the food you are cooking, you should definitely try cooking with coconut oil. Coconut oil used to have bad reputation since it contains saturated fats. Nevertheless, newest studies prove that coconut oil has a number of health benefits and that there are different types of saturated fats.

Use Coconut Oil for Cooking in This Way

You may hesitate before you start using coconut oil for cooking because it differs from the rest of the cooking oils because it has a solid form. This is totally normal for refined and unrefined coconut oils and this is because of its content of saturated fats. This oil begins to melt when it reaches a temperature of 76 °F (24°C). However, fractioned coconut oil has a liquid form at room temperature.

You can use coconut oil for baking, deep frying and shallow frying. This oil can be used for various recipes as a replacement for oils, butter and similar fats. Coconut oils does not oxidize easily and its smoking points is about 350°F (187°C).

People find it really hard to get the coconut oil out of the jar due to its solid form. However, here are some tips that can help you:

  • Put the jar into a bowl or glass with hot water and make sure it is melted. Then, pour the oil into silicone ice cubes and leave it to cool. Pop out a cube when you need coconut oil.
  • Keep the coconut oil somewhere hot.
  • You can also whip up the oil and put it in a jar. In this way, it will be easier to scoop some oil when you need it.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Cooking With Coconut Oil

Coconut oils is 90 % saturated fat and this may seem as a disadvantage, but bear in mind that not all fats are the same.

Some of the Pros

  • Coconut oils contains saturated fats which are rich in lauric acid. It is proven that this acid increases the levels of the good cholesterol, HDL in the blood. According to other studies, this acid is helpful against infections.
  • Coconut oil has medium-chain triglycerides (MCT). These fatty acids are turned into energy really quickly and they are not stored as fat.
  • Coconut oil can resist oxidation at very high temperature.

Some of the Cons

  • Coconut oil contains about the same number of calories as all other oils.
  • Unrefined coconut oil might leave a smell and taste of coconut oil in the food, and some people don’t like this.

Incorporate Coconut Oil in Your Diet in This Way

  • In coffee. You can add some coconut oil to your coffee or your tea. You can blend the coffee and the coconut oil in a blender together.
  • In smoothies. Put a tablespoon of this oil while preparing your smoothie. Heat the coconut oil before you add it to the smoothie.
  • Stir fry cooking. Since it has high smoking point and high concentration of saturated fats, you can use coconut oil for stir fry cooking.
  • Popcorn. Replace regular oil with coconut oil and your popcorn will taste much better.
  • Baking. Replace regular oil with coconut oil for your baking recipes.
  • Frying.
  • Homemade coconut mayonnaise. Use coconut oil instead of the regular oil.
  • White rice. Add coconut oil to white rice and its calories will significantly decrease.

Which Coconut Oil is the best – Fractioned, Refined or Unrefined?

There are three types of coconut oil: fractioned, refined and unrefined. You need to know the differences between them before you decide to buy one.

Refined Vs. Unrefined Coconut Oil

Unrefined coconut oil or also called cold pressed, extra virgin or virgin coconut oil has not been bleached and has not been exposed to high temperatures. It has a distinctive flavor and smell of coconut. This oil is the least processed and has the most health benefits. Nevertheless, this oil leaves the taste and smell of coconut in most foods and this is not something everybody enjoy. Additionally, it has a lower burning temperature than the refined coconut oil.

Refined coconut oil has been deodorized in high heat so that its flavor and odor are removed and it has also been bleached in order to remove any impurities. This oil has also got high burning point, one which is about 450°F (232 °C).

Provided that you choose to use coconut oil which is refined, take into account that not all refined coconut oils are the same. You need to stay away from coconut oils which have been hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, or coconut oils which have undergone chemical distillation process.

Fractionated coconut oil

This oil is also known as liquid coconut oil. Nevertheless, in the process of making this oil liquid, most of its lauric acid has been removed and also all of its health benefits have been removed. However, if you prefer coconut oil in a liquid form and one which is tasteless and scentless, this is a perfect choice for you. Nevertheless, use this oil at a temperature lower than 320 °F (160 °C).

You can find coconut oil in most health food stores and supermarkets.

Source: www.healthyandnaturalworld.com

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