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Favorite High Heat Cooking Oil

alexa52 Jan 9, 2009 11:32 AM

I have recently started using high heat safflower oil for a lot of my cooking. I was wondering what other oils people like using for high heat cooking.

  1. baldwinwood Jan 9, 2009 11:35 AM


    6 Replies
    1. re: baldwinwood
      billieboy Jan 9, 2009 12:05 PM

      Yep..the only one to use. Neutral flavour.

      1. re: billieboy
        MMRuth Jan 9, 2009 03:25 PM

        What brand of peanut oil do you like? I have trouble finding ones with neutral flavour, and generally use grapeseed oil.

        1. re: MMRuth
          foodsmith Jan 10, 2009 10:31 AM

          Yeah peanut oil in my experience doesn't have a neutral flavor. Canoila oil does. Coconut oil is actually the healthiest oil you can use and it has a high smoking point but an obvious flavor.

          1. re: foodsmith
            billieboy Jan 13, 2009 09:39 PM

            We have different taste buds. Canola oil tastes fishy to me but peanut oil has no taste.
            No accounting for taste hee hee hee

            1. re: foodsmith
              greygarious Jan 15, 2009 08:40 AM

              Coconut is not healthy - it's got the bad fats. Nutritionist on one of the PBS cooking shows I watched just yesterday said to avoid foods containing coconut oil and noted that when shipping regulations changed so that it was no longer feasible for the (Swedes, I think - or possibly Norwegians) to import a lot of coconuts, their rate of heat disease dropped 25%.

              1. re: greygarious
                foodsmith Jan 15, 2009 10:38 AM

                I believe that is based on outdated research and depending on the processing it can be the healthiest kind. I will double check this, the research on these things changes. The kind I buy is in a jar and is a congealed white solid that you have to scoop out with a spoon and it melts on the pan. It is not liquid form like the kind you buy at the supermarket. It's hard to find anywhere but at health food stores.

      2. j
        jmnewel Jan 9, 2009 11:36 AM

        My favorites are avocado oil (hard to come by and expensive where I live) and grapeseed oil.

        1. l
          Lenox637 Jan 9, 2009 03:23 PM

          peanut or grapeseed

          1. r
            RGC1982 Jan 9, 2009 06:27 PM

            Peanut. I hate the smell of Canola.

            1. j
              jlafler Jan 9, 2009 06:49 PM

              Another vote here for grapeseed.

              1 Reply
              1. re: jlafler
                Shrinkrap Jan 9, 2009 11:02 PM

                Peanut. Big Safeway gallon, not expensive Planters Quart.

                Oh shoot! That was supposed to be a reply to the original post. How do I delete?

              2. JoanN Jan 10, 2009 03:37 AM

                Peanut, bought by the gallon in Chinatown for Asian cooking and all deep-fat frying, and grapeseed for just about everything else.

                2 Replies
                1. re: JoanN
                  johnb Jan 10, 2009 08:04 AM

                  I've never used grapeseed. What's the advantage?

                  1. re: johnb
                    JoanN Jan 10, 2009 08:39 AM

                    It can be brought to quite a high temperature and it has a neutral flavor profile so it allows the flavors of whatever you're cooking to shine through. Also, and I don't know why this should be true, it seems less "greasy" to me.

                2. Karl S Jan 10, 2009 08:34 AM

                  In bulk - peanut or soy or corn.

                  In small amounts - grapeseed.

                  Never canola.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Karl S
                    Ruth Lafler Jan 15, 2009 12:22 PM

                    Yup. Like a significant portion of the population, canola tastes fishy to me.

                  2. CPla Jan 10, 2009 09:15 AM

                    Grapeseed. Neutral and quite light, though I do not mean that in the sense of 'light' that seems to get on every label nowadays.

                    1. c
                      currymouth Jan 10, 2009 09:32 AM

                      Somewhat difficult to find, but I found Rice Bran oil has a high flash point and leaves no taste behind. Japanese Restaurants uses it for their Tempura deep frying.

                      1. Caroline1 Jan 10, 2009 10:16 AM

                        LouAna Peanut Oil in the gallon jug

                        1. m
                          MikeG Jan 10, 2009 10:58 AM

                          I grew up with safflower oil, though this high-monounsaturate stuff is a new twist. Otherwise, I agree with JoanN about grapeseed oil re greasiness but find that true of safflower as well but end up using whatever's around the kitchen. I used to be able to find grapeseed oil at a decent price but no more so I gave up on that. For deep-frying, I must confess I'm too cheap to use peanut oil only once and too lazy to filter with too small a fridge to save it so I go for soybean and corn oil in gallons when they're on sale and just toss the oil when I'm done....

                          It's a little interesting that no one's mentioned filtered olive oil. It can be virgin or extra-virgin but as long as it's filtered, it also has a high smoking point...

                          8 Replies
                          1. re: MikeG
                            foodsmith Jan 10, 2009 12:57 PM

                            Deep frying in olive oil? I've found it's a good way to kill yourself, nearly. Maybe I used the wrong type, but I won't go there again :)

                            1. re: foodsmith
                              MMRuth Jan 10, 2009 01:43 PM

                              What happened? I've done that on occasion, but don't remember having a problem.

                              1. re: MMRuth
                                foodsmith Jan 13, 2009 09:02 PM

                                It just has a very low smoking point (at least the kind I usually buy) and can burn, cause lots of smoke and of course splatter in your face and burn you. I just avoid frying with olive oil unless it's a saute on a very low heat :)

                                1. re: foodsmith
                                  jlafler Jan 14, 2009 06:16 PM

                                  Mario Batali says olive oil is his oil of choice for deep-frying.

                                  1. re: jlafler
                                    food_eater79 Jan 14, 2009 06:49 PM

                                    I love OO, but it has a relatively low smoke point though, yeah?

                                    1. re: food_eater79
                                      jlafler Jan 15, 2009 08:17 AM

                                      Yes, I've always been told that EV olive oil in particular has too high a smoke point to be good for frying. But I'm not sure that's correct. And Batali seems to think that smoke point isn't all that matters:

                                      "The smoking point of an oil is the temperature at which it will start to smoke and turn harsh or bitter. The oils typically recommended for deep-frying have smoke points of around 440 F to 450 F -- peanut, corn, and safflower oil are at the high end, grapeseed and canola are slightly lower. The smoking point of olive oil is quite a bite lower, around 375 F. According to logic, then, and a whole lot of "food science experts," it would seem that frying in extra-virgin olive oil would result in burnt flavor or soggy undercooked foods. But anyone who has ever eaten an artichoke "alla Giudia" in Rome knows this not to be the case, and olive oil is my oil of choice for deep-frying."
                                      -- Molto Italiano, p. 24

                                      I hasten to say that I don't do high-heat frying with olive oil myself, but I thought this was interesting. I tend to trust Batali on these things.

                                      1. re: jlafler
                                        Karl S Jan 15, 2009 08:27 AM

                                        Well, the clue is that the type of frying Italians tend to do is in the mid-300s and often is not long in duration.

                                        I would not do American fried chicken in EVOO, for example.

                                        The other things is that EVOO is frightfully expensive for deep frying in quantity, and that's waste. Batali can pass those costs on to his patrons. I can't....

                                        1. re: Karl S
                                          foodsmith Jan 15, 2009 10:45 AM

                                          Batali also has a $500k kitchen to play in, with excellent safety equipment. Am I going to go on his advice and try deep frying in extra virgin olive oil in my little kitchen? I don't think so!

                                          Interesting tidbit anyway that I'll keep in mind.

                          2. goodhealthgourmet Jan 10, 2009 10:59 AM

                            Grapeseed or Rice Bran.


                            1. k
                              Kelli2006 Jan 10, 2009 11:53 AM

                              I don't deep fry, so a quart of Planter's peanut oil lasts me 1-2 months.

                              1. j
                                Jim Washburn Jan 14, 2009 06:43 PM

                                If cost isn't a factor, peanut or grapeseed, otherwise, corn. Canola oil stinks, <phew!>.


                                1. f
                                  food_eater79 Jan 14, 2009 06:51 PM

                                  I usually use canola oil (cheap). What has more trans fat or saturated fat? Canola or peanut oil?

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: food_eater79
                                    goodhealthgourmet Jan 14, 2009 06:58 PM

                                    peanut oil has more sat fat than canola. in fact, canola has the lowest sat fat content of all veg oils. neither contains trans fat.

                                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                      food_eater79 Jan 14, 2009 07:30 PM

                                      Yeah I always thought it has the least fat and highest smoke point for the price. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, anybody. Smell goes away, but healthy cooking has importance too.

                                      1. re: food_eater79
                                        Ruth Lafler Jan 15, 2009 12:33 PM

                                        Smell may go away, but taste doesn't, and to me, canola tastes as nasty as it smells.

                                        I think this whole fad for "healthy" oils is just that, a fad. Sure it makes a difference for laboratory anaylsis, but out in the real world, the way real people eat, I'm very skeptical there's a significant impact on health from using different oils.

                                        Let's not forget that it wasn't that long ago that nutritionists were telling us to use transfat-laden margerine instead of butter because it was healthier. Just remember that like today's recommendations for canola oil, that was the recommendation based on the state of the art of nutrition science at the time.

                                        Canola oil is not a natural product -- in the long term, I'd rather trust oils and other fats that have been part of the human diet for milennia than fats designed by agribusiness to be "good for us."

                                  2. h
                                    hankstramm Jan 15, 2009 12:33 PM

                                    Grapeseed is good. The choice in the French Laundry is canola. I'd like to place a bet that no one who says they can smell canola in a blind taste can distinguish is from 5 oils (obviously I wouldn't put nut oils in the mix). Canola is probably the most neutral oil. Peanut, neutral??? You use it for its high smoke temp and but definitely not its neural flavor--it's the total opposite..

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: hankstramm
                                      Ruth Lafler Jan 15, 2009 12:36 PM

                                      I'd take that bet. I'll have someone set it up. Canola is not as neutral as grapeseed or rice bran, IMHO.

                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                        hankstramm Jan 15, 2009 12:57 PM

                                        I agree with grapeseed being more neutral--rice bran I've been itching to try but haven't yet. My contention is that I highly doubt someone could pick out canola from five other oils. My guess is that maybe 1 person out of 100 could distinguish them in a blind test. The great wine critic Harry Waugh was once asked if he'd ever mistaken burgundy for bordeaux, his answer was, "not since lunch". It's great when people are put to a test on things they think they know a lot about. Like fine vodka--when they do blind tastings with premium vodkas, people prefer the cheap crap, if it's served a little colder than the high end stuff because the flaws are hidden by the chill. What's the answer, buy expensive vodka or just chill the cheaper stuff.

                                        That might be a fun thing, an blind neutral oil tasting. Personally, I like using lard...

                                    2. l
                                      likescrab Jan 15, 2009 12:56 PM

                                      at my rest, my husband is allergic to olive oil, which obviously we'd never use for deep frying. we use peanut oil exclusively in the fryer.

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