Yes it’s true, you can cook with extra virgin olive oil! A high-quality extra virgin olive oil is perfectly suitable for cooking, frying, sautéing, poaching, dressing and baking. It is a heart-healthy fat, high in polyphenols, that lends a little extra something special to your favorite dishes. It’s a versatile ingredient, and can replace other fats like butter and canola oil, in almost all recipes for a health boost. Below are some of our favorite ways to swap in extra virgin olive oil.
BAKING WITH EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
While using olive oil in baked goods may seem strange at first, it adds a nuanced flavor to sweet treats, keeps cakes moist, and adds a luscious crumbly texture to crumbles. Some baking recipes will call specifically for extra virgin olive oil, but you can also substitute olive oil in recipes that call for butter for the flavor and health benefits.
Looking for a few good starter recipes to try out baking with olive oil? Give these recipes a try:
HOMEMADE VINAIGRETTE WITH EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
While store-bought salad dressings can seem convenient, nothing beats the taste of a simple homemade vinaigrette. Plus, store-bought dressings often contain lower-quality oils and added preservatives. Making your own salad dressing with extra virgin olive oil is a great way to reduce the amounts of processed foods in your kitchen and consume more healthy fats! Here’s our simple stand-by recipe:
- 1/3 cup plus 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice (preferably Meyer)
- 2/3 cup California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 3 large cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- ¾ tsp. coarse kosher salt
- Place all ingredients in a sealed jar and shake to combine.
SAUTÉING & FRYING WITH EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
Good olive oil will stand up well to high frying temperatures, and enhances the flavor of whatever it is you’re cooking as a bonus. In addition to frying eggs in olive oil, it’s a great choice for a simple stir-fry. Find our chart comparing the smoke points of different oils here, and note that in most kitchens, sautéing temperatures are usually under 400°F. Try for yourself with this recipe for Olive Oil Sweet Potato Chips.