While it is delicious, deep frying is nowhere near the healthiest way to prepare your food. In addition to the high calorie and fat content of deep fried foods, some oils can put chemicals in your food. You can avoid this by choosing the best oil for deep frying. Here is what you must consider when choosing the best oil for your health.
How Deep Frying Works
Before you can understand the process used to decide which oil is best, you must understand how deep frying works. Usually, you deep fry at a temperature between 350 and 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Food is submerged in oil at this temperature. The high temperature allows the entire exterior to cook upon being put in the deep fryer. This seals the food, which allows the internal parts of the food to steam. This results in a final product that is moist on the inside and crispy on the outside.
Cooking Oil Stability
Before choosing an oil for deep frying, you want to consider its stability. Stability means two things. First, the oil will not react with oxygen in the air when it is heated to a high temperature. Second, the oil will have a high smoking point.
It is for the above two reasons that deep frying oils usually contain a high amount of saturated fat. There are two separate types of fat that are saturated polyunsaturated and monounsaturated. Monounsaturated are significantly healthier, making them the better choice.
Another reason to choose monounsaturated fats is that polyunsaturated often react with oxygen. This makes them create harmful components when they are heated, which are then leached into your foods.
The final thing you must consider is taste. “Neutral” tasting oils will allow you to get most of your food’s flavor from the food itself, which is preferred for most deep fried foods.
The Best and Healthiest Cooking Oil
So, of all of the oils with high smoking points, which is the best? Coconut oil, of course. One of the greatest things about coconut oil is how well it holds up for deep frying. Experiments have even shown that cooking coconut oil at a temperature of 365 degrees for 8 hours does not result in any deterioration. This is because of the fat content of coconut oil- which is 90% saturated fats.
The only downside to choosing coconut oil is that it comes in many flavors and smells. This can affect the smell/taste of your food, so do not be afraid to shop around until you find a brand that you like.
Something else to keep in mind is the incredible health benefits of coconut oil. This type of oil is renowned for its ability to help kill viruses and bacteria. While it is unlikely to do so while you are deep frying, it can even help you lose belly fat.
The reason that coconut oil tops the list of best and healthiest deep fryer is its numerous help benefits and its ability to handle many hours of continuous deep frying without breaking down.
Tip: For the healthiest way to enjoy deep fried foods, try brushing your favorite food in a small amount of coconut oil and pop it in an air fryer
The Best Oil for Deep Frying Runner-Ups
Coconut oil can be expensive, or you just may not have any in the house when it comes time to deep fry food. In this instance, it is best to use ghee, fat dripping, tallow, or lard. One thing to be careful about is selecting fats that have come from an animal source. An animal’s diet can have a huge impact on whether their fats are mostly polyunsaturated or mostly monounsaturated. Try to eat fats from animals that grass-fed, or pasture-raised rather than those from grain-fed animals.
Even the term deep frying is related to an unhealthy, fatty process. While the foods that you make are quite delicious, this does not mean that it is the healthiest way of cooking. You can improve the health of your deep fried foods by choosing the right oil. Follow the tips in this guide, and you will be sure to choose healthier oil every time that you deep fry.