Virgin coconut oil is one of the best cooking oils that you can use. It has been a staple cooking oil for thousands of years in tropical climates. Many cooking oils that are used are not really healthy for cooking because heating the oil causes it to become rancid and changes the structure of the oil. When used in cooking the chemical structure of coconut oil is kept in tact and is resistant to mutations of fatty acid chains even when used in higher cooking temperatures, unlike most vegetable oils. Research has shown that the medium chain fatty acids found in coconut oil boosts the body’s metabolism and helps provide greater energy which can lead to weight loss.
Virgin Coconut oil is also rich in lauric acid, a nutrient that supports the body’s immune system. Lauric acid is also found in human mother’s milk. Dr. Mary Enig suggests the average adult include about 3.5 tablespoons of coconut oil per day in their diet to take in an equivalent amount of lauric acid that a nursing infant would receive from breast milk. The best way to get this amount of coconut oil in your daily diet is to cook and bake with it in your recipes. Eating it on its own can be done but most people prefer not to eat a spoonful of coconut oil.
It is important to purchase quality virgin coconut oil instead of refined and processed coconut oil in order to get all the benefits. Most of the coconut oil that is found in stores is refined and not extracted in a natural way. The best coconut oil I have found is from Tropical Traditions.
Ways to use coconut oil
Whenever possible I use coconut oil in cooking. Many times I use it in replacement of oils or fats that are in a recipe to make it healthier and to get our daily dose of coconut oil. Here are some of my favorite ways to use it:
- Replace vegetable oils with coconut oil when you saute vegetables
- Use coconut oil to make popcorn (this is sooo delicious!!)
- In baking, replace butter with coconut oil
- Make coconut candy or homemade chocolate with coconut oil
- Add a tablespoon of coconut oil to a smoothie
- Make fruit popsicles and add a spoonful of coconut oil
- Have a coconut milk breakfast porridge (like this one) and add coconut oil
- Use coconut oil to make homemade frosting
- When pan frying, coconut oil is a great frying oil for pancakes, fritters, chicken cutlets, fish, or falafel to name a few
- Coconut oil is great for making granola
These are some of my favorite ways to make sure we get coconut oil into our diet as much as possible.
What are your favorite ways to use coconut oil in cooking? Please share in the comments!
Original Content provided by Hip Foodie Mom