Packed with healthy fats like extra-virgin olive oil, yet with a higher smoke point, avocado oil is a staple ingredient for any healthy kitchen. Read on for all the details!
The Basics: What is Avocado Oil?
Unlike most oils, which are made from pressing the seeds to extract oil, avocado oil is obtained by pressing the actual flesh of the fruit. As a result, you end up with an oil packed full of healthy fats and minerals.
An interesting point to note is that individuals with latex allergies are at risk for developing allergic reactions from avocados and avocado oil.
As with other oils, avocado oil is primarily made up of fat. One tablespoon contains 124 calories and 14 grams of fat, with 70% of that fat coming from heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids, 12% from saturated fat, and 13% from polyunsaturated fat.
Thanks to these healthy fats, avocado oil has been shown to help reduce triglycerides, LDL cholesterol levels and blood pressure, leading to reduced risk of heart disease.
As with all oils, the fats in avocado oil boost nutrient absorption of fat-soluble compounds, such as carotenoids and vitamins A, E, D, and K.
In addition to these health fats, avocado oil is a good source of lutein, an antioxidant that’s essential for retina health and protects against age-related macular degeneration, as well as Vitamin E, which also has antioxidant properties.
How to select
When purchasing, the number one thing to look for is that the bottle your buying is 100% pure avocado oil.
I found a high quality bottle at my local supermarket, but you can also purchase it online.
How to store
As with the other oils we’ve discussed, avocado oil should be stored in a cool, dry place away from heat and light. Unopened, a bottle will last for 24 months; however, once opened, it has a shelf life closer to 6 months.
How to use in cooking/baking
Before buying avocado oil, I was always hesitant, thinking that I wouldn’t use it enough to justify spending the money. I couldn’t have been more wrong. In fact, the concern is now how quickly I go through a bottle.
As it has a milder flavor than coconut or olive oils, it’s ideal for homemade mayo and sauces that have more delicate flavors.
However, it also boasts a high smoke point (at least 400oF), making it ideal for stir-frys, sautéing, or roasting vegetables.
For those of you on special diets, avocado oil is approved for both the low FODMAP and GAPS diets.
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