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Cooking Oils – About The Table

Cooking oils are as essential as any other ingredient in the dish. They tend to have a bad reputation, as people often translate them as pure fat. But the truth is that a balanced diet needs a good dose of oil, and if it’s one of the lists we describe below, even better! 

Olive Oil

Olive oil is known around the globe as a healthier option not only for cooking or baking, but also to use as a base for vinaigrette or salad dressings. Refined olive oil also has a smoke point of 350°. Which means it can handle medium-high heat without going unstable. 

But even though olive oil can handle the heat, it’s not recommended for deep-fried recipes, mostly because it has its own buttery, spicy, fruity, or grassy notes. When cooked, the flavor changes and can affect the rest of the food.

If you are already a fan of olive oil, always look for the “extra virgin” version, meaning the oil is unrefined and has more nutrients, antioxidants, and healthy fats intact. 

Avocado Oil 

Avocado oil is considered one of the healthiest oils for cooking because of its high content of monounsaturated fats. That means it’s easier to absorb and digest, especially when uncooked. 

Store-bought avocado oil generally has a higher smoke point compared with other plant-based options: about 520° F, which makes it a pretty efficient pantry item. You can use it when sautéing, roasting, searing, and grilling. It has a mild, buttery flavor that works well in both sweet and savory dishes. 

Coconut Oil

This one has had its own hype in the last few years! And while coconut oil has multiple uses, it’s important to understand that it’s not the healthier option for cooking. Both refined and unrefined (a.k.a. virgin coconut oil) have a high saturated fat content.

While you can use it on dessert recipes for its fruity flavor and smell, it’s better to stick to the previous options (avocado, olive oil) for keeping our foods delicious and healthy. 


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