Peanuts are among Americans’ most beloved foods, but you may not use peanut oil nearly as often in your home-cooked meals. That said, you’ve likely enjoyed many a restaurant dish without realizing it’s the peanut oil that makes it taste so satisfying. This is one of those ingredients that improves the eating experience while providing a lot of health benefits. Let’s learn a bit more about peanut oil uses, nutritional value, and other concerns with this FAQ post.
Is peanut oil as healthy as olive oil or vegetable oil?
Some people assume that peanut oil is somehow less healthy than other kinds of oils, but that’s not the case at all. This vegetable oil is naturally free of trans fats, free of cholesterol, and low in saturated fats. It is high in unsaturated fats (just like olive oil is), but that’s actually a good thing for your health. The monounsaturated fats it contains are those “healthy fats” or “good fats” you often hear about!
This peanut product contains other important nutrients, too. It’s a good source of vitamin E and of phytosterols, both of which benefit heart health. When you use peanut oil for frying, you’re making one of the healthiest choices you can make. Because this oil can be used at a higher temperature, your food will contain less oil residue, making it better for you overall. Peanut oil won’t absorb flavors from the food you cook along with it, meaning that everything tastes better. This can encourage healthier choices over all.
Is peanut oil safe for those with peanut allergies?
This is one of the most common questions asked about peanut oil uses and safety. Research has found that highly refined peanut oil does not cause an allergic response in those with severe peanut allergies. That’s because this type of peanut oil has its allergic proteins removed during the refining process. This research is backed up by the FDA Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004 and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act which state that “highly refined oils and ingredients derived from highly refined oils are excluded from the definition of ‘major food allergen.’”
With that said, you should always consult with your doctor before incorporating peanut oil into your diet if you have even a mild allergy. For all consumers, peanut oil can safely be stored for six months to a year as long as the bottle is capped tightly and is kept away from light and heat.
What are some popular peanut oil uses?
There are some who swear by using peanut oil for hair restoration or even skincare as home remedies. But the most popular peanut oil uses stem from the kitchen. As we mentioned earlier, peanut oil is ideal for frying. If you want to achieve a crispier, tastier, and healthier fried chicken or even a Thanksgiving turkey, peanut oil is the way to go.
That’s certainly not the only way this oil can be used, though. You can substitute peanut oil for just about any other vegetable or olive oil in a recipe you love, whether it be in your homemade granola, on top of grilled vegetables and seafood, or as a salad dressing base. The possibilities are nearly endless with peanut oil.
Are there different types of peanut oil
There are different kinds of peanut oil. Refined peanut oil, as we mentioned above, removed the allergic component of peanuts and is bleached and deodorized during the refining process. This is the kind of peanut oil you’ll often find in fast food restaurants and popular chains. Gourmet peanut oil is considered a specialty oil. This non-refined oil can often be found in roasted varieties, which adds a nutty, aromatic quality to dishes. Keep in mind that some oils are blended, while others are 100% pure. You’ll want to go with a 100% peanut oil if you want to reap all the benefits this ingredient can provide.
“Organic Peanut Oil” - The Peanut Institute
“Peanut Oil Health Benefits” - The Peanut Institute
“Peanut Oil: One of the World’s Traditional Healthy Oils” - The Peanut Institute
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