Extra Virgin Olive Oil vs. Coconut Oil: We're Breaking it Down
Olive oil and coconut oil are extremely versatile, yet offer different flavor profiles and consistencies. Olive oil is more frequently used for cooking, while coconut oil is touted as an ingenious baking substitute. You know how much we love EVOO, but how does it measure up to other oil front-runners? We’re breaking down how these two compare and contrast.
What’s the Difference Between Olive Oil and Coconut Oil?
These plant-based fats offer various health benefits. Both are naturally vegan, gluten-free, and keto-friendly, making them suitable for various dietary needs. Olive oil and coconut oil are also both derived from fruits. Coconuts are classified with tree nuts for allergy purposes by the FDA, but actually considered a member of the fruit family.
The flavor of good, extra virgin olive oil is buttery and pepper-like in taste. This makes it more adaptable across the kitchen, while coconut oil has a sweeter, yet milder flavor. And here’s the skinny on calories—they both measure in at the same, with one tablespoon containing between 119-120 calories and 14 grams of total fat.
The Winner? Olive Oil Comes Out on Top.
When placing the two side-by-side, extra virgin olive oil comes out on top. Olive oil has more health benefits, such as lowering LDL cholesterol and the risk of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and even some cancers. Extra virgin olive oil boasts a higher smoke point than coconut oil, making it suitable for deep-frying, baking and general high-heat cooking. Rich in good fat (polyunsaturated fat) and low in bad fat (saturated fat), it also contains plant chemicals known as polyphenols. These compounds reduce inflammation among other health benefits. Coconut oil is 100% fat, with 80-90% as saturated fat. Coconut oil fats have been said to impact weight loss and cholesterol, though more research is needed.
Finally, there are few ingredients that offer the robust peppery flavor of cold pressed extra virgin olive oil. If you want to taste the difference, all you need is a drizzle of Kosterina Original Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
Ok, but can I still use Coconut Oil?
Yes! We’re not here to villainize coconut oil. It’s still a good alternative to butter or as a baking substitute. It also has a coconut flavor, which olive oil does not. When comparing the two, EVOO rises as the healthier option but coconut oil is not the bad seed (or fruit) in this deep dive.