Skip to main content

Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes: Cooking Oils for Frying and Salads

Writer and expert6 months ago
View perriconemd's profile

It’s officially that time of year when everyone’s preparing to whip up their traditional holiday recipes for those who are soon to be gathered around the table. Cooking and baking delicious dishes for family and friends is a highlight of any celebration, so ensuring your guests indulge in foods made with ingredients that are not just tasty but good for them should be top of mind.

More specifically, when it comes to choosing the best cooking oils for those Thanksgiving recipes, selecting the right one is a big deal. This is because, along with proteins, carbohydrates and vitamins, fat is one of the nutrients required by our bodies to survive.

Unfortunately, though, not all fats are created equal so it’s best to stay away from the “bad” fats (saturated and trans fats), which are typically solid at room temperature — think butter, shortening, lard, stick margarine, coconut oil and palm oil. The key to a healthy diet is using these bad fats in moderation to lower your risk of heart disease.

Instead, you want to opt for the “good” (unsaturated fats). Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, specifically, are preferred given their ability to support total skin and body health, provide anti-aging benefits and support a healthy heart by lowering bad cholesterol levels. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), some of the healthiest cooking oils, therefore, are typically liquid. These include:

  1. Canola Oil
  2. Corn Oil
  3. Olive Oil
  4. Peanut Oil
  5. Soybean Oil
  6. Safflower Oil
  7. Sunflower Oil
  8. Vegetable Oil
  9. Avocado Oil
  10. Grapeseed Oil
  11. Rice Bran Oil
  12. Sesame Oil

When used in cooking, each of the above are generally safe to use at higher temperatures but if you happen to experience a cooking “mishap” this holiday season and your oil begins smoking or catches fire, start over because AHA points out that oil degrades at its smoke point, which will not only affect its nutritional value but it’s flavor, too. Oh, and don’t fry your food with these oils, it’s more beneficial to grill, stir-fry or roast your foods.

So, now that you understand the ins and outs of healthy cooking oils, you can feast over the holidays knowing that you’ve kept the bad stuff off the table — literally.

Writer and expert
View perriconemd's profile