Unfortunately, there are a lot of imposters out there.
Real extra virgin olive oil contains 100% olive oil—nothing more, nothing less. Many manufacturers, however, dilute their olive oil with sunflower oil, soybean oil, or another culinary culprit—and mislabel it as extra virgin. In some cases, low-grade oil is even mixed with chemicals like chlorophyll (for color) and beta-carotene (for taste) to appearauthentic.
You’re probably wondering how to tell which olive oils on supermarket shelves are actually extra virgin. Identifying true EVOO can be tricky. Most people—especially Americans—are so used to subpar olive oils that they’d have trouble identifying the real thing.
But there’s a reason why some of the world’s healthiest populations love authentic EVOO: nothing else compares in terms of both taste and health benefits (including protection against heart disease, inflammation, and high blood pressure).
Here are five simple steps for selecting an authentic EVOO.