T Nation

Is Peanut Oil Good for Cooking?


#1

In China, olive oil is quite expensive, and coconut oil can be hard to come by.


#2

Pretty sure peanut oil has a buku high ratio of omega 6 to omega 3. Not recommended


#3

It's not optimal no.

Do you have access to Canola/rapeseed oil? It's a better option than peanut oil.


#4

To answer the question literally, peanut oil is freaking AWESOME to cook with. High smoke point means it won't break down under high temps like olive oil, etc.

Enjoy cooking with peanut oil- it's awesome, especially if it's what you can afford.


#5

Healthy ? Nope

Tasty? Yep


#6

Sounds like a pretty intense oil choice right there.


#7

Yup, That's why it was renamed after the country it was invented in. CANA you guess DA country?


#8

OP,

Worse case scenario use a butter/oil mixture.


#9

What's wrong with pig fat?


#10

This is sort of interesting. I assume this carries over to eating, e.g., peanut butter? Not a good fat profile?


#11

I use omega3 enriched organic peanut butter.

Peanut oil is ok in moderation, but almost everyone gets too much omega6 compared to omega3. When choices are available, why not make the better one more often than not, right?


#12

The problem with peanut oil and vegetable oils is they are highly refined and processed, devoid of any of the natural health promoting antioxidants that would otherwise be found in these oils. Commercial, processed refined oils are pretty bad for you from a health perspective.

Personally, I only cook with Extra virgin olive oil/butter mix or coconut oil while only consuming others oils when eating out.

OP,

Since you live in Asia I will ask, do you have access to red palm oil (NOT THE HYDROGENATED TYPE)? If you have virgin palm oil then you are in good shape, it's healthy and even has a high smoke point.

As mentioned earlier, if you can't find anything but peanut oil, use butter only when you can and a mixture of and oil and butter when butter won't cut it.


#13

Just like most things, not always. It's pretty common to see (at least where I've lived and traveled in the US) choices of expeller pressed, virgin, and/or unrefined oils in most grocery chains (a lot of them have the same parent owners). Peanut oil is no different. Spectrum, etc.

If everything else in someone's diet is in check, then this is again more majoring in the minors. No one is advocating frying every meal in peanut oil, but if culturally, that is what's available and what you can afford, then it's what you use. Use it sparingly.

I would wager the OP gets a lot of fish. If OP is supplementing fish oil and eating other omega3 foods, peanut oil isn't going to break the diet or put him on the road to ill health. Eat natty PB but OMG peanut oil will kill you dead.

I swear there is such food paranoia in these forums sometimes.


#14

Agreed here. But, that's also a pretty generic statement and Western biased. Guy lives in China. Different culture, different population, different food choiced, different health profiles. Peanut oil is to Chinese cooking what Olive Oil is to Italian cooking.


#15

In most cases unrefined oils are the exception not the standard as they are much cheaper to produce. If I were to guess, peanut oil available to most is the refined type since the allergens are by and large removed while in the unrefined version they are not. If it is unrefined however, go for it.

I would avoid using a shitty refined oil as your main cooking oil, this does not fall into the minor issue category.


#16

And this is a health oriented (no pun intended) forum, not a culinary arts forum. I dont really care that peanut oil is common in asia. Nor do I care that italian oil happens to be far more healthy.

He asked if peanut oil is good for cooking. Not if peanut oil is good if you are chinese or only have access to chinese food. It's not a western bias. It's a fact that there are better choices than peanut oil.


#17

^Bingo.

Move one country over and you'll find what's culturally accepted in much of India is trans fat laden hydrogenated vegetable oil. Basing the composition of your diet on cultural norms is a bad idea.


#18

Whoa, didn't you just recommend Canola oil?

http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/the-great-con-ola

Is this really better than peanut oil?


#19

And again, in moderation (like anything else), peanut oil is "good for cooking".

Then again, one slice of frozen pizza will kill you dead.

5 or so years ago (and certainly further back), most on these forums would have had heart attacks if you suggested they consume coconut oil (OMGz saturated fatzzz).

There are 'healthier oil' like virgin OO, but when you heat them up beyond their smoke point, they break down and become worse than higher smoke point oils. No one knows if OP's o3/o6 is out of whack or not.

No one bothered to ask what OP's goals or concerns were, or what his 'health history' was. Question was simply "is it good to cook with". Yes. It is.

Better alternatives? Sure. He knows it and implied that they are expensive (possibly prohibitively so). So given that he's got peanut oil out the wazoo and that's what he can afford, the answer should be "There are alternatives X, Y, and Z, but if that's what you can afford, use it in moderation (like everything else)."

So many binary thinkers here.


#20

I've read some nutritionists suggest it's a healthy oil while others agree with what you wrote. After reading the article "can-ugly oil" a while ago, I wouldn't normally recommend Canola. However, in the context of question where OP does not have access to healthy oils, I would take a chance on Canola+butter mix over straight peanut oil any day.

So Canola is potentially better but not best.