With so many cooking oil choices, it becomes hard to know just what works well. While you may be familiar with olive oil, a relative newcomer, avocado oil, is steadily becoming more popular. We’ll explain the two oils and break down what purposes they are ideal for.
Avocado Oil vs Olive Oil? Both avocado oil and olive oil are considered vegetable oils. They are plant-based and have a lot of health benefits and cooking applications. Both oils are high in good fats and low in bad fats, so they contribute to an overall healthy diet. There are some differences, though. While they share many similar health benefits, avocado oil is higher in vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant. Avocado oil also has a higher smoke point. You can use it when cooking at higher temperatures without the risk of your meal becoming smoky. Both avocado oil and olive oil are common ingredients in cosmetics and beauty products.
What is Avocado Oil?
Avocado oil comes from the pulp of avocados. It has many uses, most notably as a cooking oil.
What really distinguishes avocado oil is that it has a high smoke point. Therefore it can be used when cooking foods at a high temperature, such as above 400 F, and it won’t become smoky.
Avocado oil is also used in cosmetics and acts as a great moisturizer.
There are many benefits to using avocado oil. It is high in vitamin E and monounsaturated fats, so it is very healthy.
What is Olive Oil?
Olive oil comes from olives. It is used in all manner of cooking, including salad dressings and frying food, making it the most popular vegetable oil.
Other uses of olive oil include soaps, cosmetics, and even traditional oil lamps. It is quite versatile.
Olive oil is also is a good source of vitamin K and vitamin D.
There are many forms of olive oil, and the most popular is extra virgin olive oil. This name refers to its high quality because of the fact it is un-refined. It is therefore not treated with chemicals.
What’s the Difference Between Avocado Oil vs Olive Oil
- Saturated Fatty Acids
Saturated fatty acids are a type of fat that have single bonds. This means they have a higher melting point. While natural foods can have saturated fats, they are more commonly found in processed foods.
1 tablespoon of olive oil has only 2.2 grams of saturated fat. Avocado oil is quite similar in that it has 2 grams per tablespoon.
- Monounsaturated Fatty Acids
Monounsaturated fatty acids are good for you. They remain liquid at room temperature but can harden when exposed to cooler temperatures.
Both olive oil and avocado oil are the same in this category. In 1 tablespoon of both olive oil and avocado oil, you can find 10 grams of monounsaturated fat.
- Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids
Polyunsaturated fatty acids are considered another good fat. They can actually lower your cholesterol level and are a great substitute to saturated fat.
Again, avocado oil and olive oil are quite similar. In 1 tablespoon of olive oil there are 1.8 grams of polyunsaturated fat while avocado oil has 2 grams per tablespoon.
Despite their sources, olive oil and avocado oil have similar nutritional benefits. As we saw earlier, they are good sources of healthy fats.
As a result of their nutrients, both oils are good for heart health as well as lowering cholesterol levels. They are also rich in antioxidants.
The biggest difference between the two oils is that avocado oil has more vitamin E than olive oil. Vitamin E helps protect cells from free radicals, essentially helping the body fight off cancerous cells.
Both olive oil and avocado oil are used in the kitchen. They can be used in all manner of cooking although each is better suited to different recipes.
Avocado oil has a smoke point that is quite high while olive oil is on the lower side. Therefore, if you are cooking at temperatures above 400F, it’s better to use avocado oil. If you use olive oil, it can get smoky in your kitchen pretty fast.
If you decide to use cold pressed avocado oil, you will get more of an avocado flavor to it. This might change how you use the oil, depending on if you want that flavor profile or not.
Olive oil is more often used in salad dressings, although avocado oil can also be used. Both are used in the use of cosmetics and soap.
While olive oil is still the most commonly used vegetable oil, avocado oil is quickly becoming more popular.
What is better avocado oil or olive oil?
Overall, avocado oil has a slight edge over olive oil. They are both high in good fats and low in bad, saturated fats. However, avocado oil does have more vitamin E than olive oil.
When it comes down to usage, though, deciding on an oil is more about what you are using it for.
Both can be used for salad dressings and both are commonly used in cosmetics and soaps.
If you are looking for a cooking oil that is suitable for stir frying and deep fried food, then avocado oil is your better bet. It has a higher smoke point so it can withstand higher temperatures than olive oil can.
Can I substitute avocado oil for olive oil?
Yes, you can substitute avocado oil for olive oil because they have very similar benefits and nutritional profiles. Just be aware that avocado oil can still have a bit of an avocado taste.
If you are using the oil in salad dressing, or in a meal where you will really be able to taste the oil, then you might not want to substitute avocado.
While olive oil has become a cooking staple, there are other oils that are just as good. Avocado oil shares almost the same benefits as olive oil with two major differences. It has more vitamin E in it and has a higher smoke point.