Taste

The Many Ways To Use Coconut Oil In Your Kitchen

This is how you can crack open the benefits of this tropical oil.
05/09/2017 06:01am ET | Updated May 9, 2017
Magone via Getty Images

Coconut oil has long been loved for boosting your beauty routine, but it has also become a popular choice in the kitchen for anyone wanting to eat healthy.

Coconut oil contains high levels of medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs), which the liver uses as a source of energy. It is also revered for its boost of good cholesterol ― though reports say it can also raise your bad cholesterol, too.

While the verdict is still out on whether coconut oil is healthier than other popular cooking oils, such as olive or vegetable, one thing we know for sure is that it is a versatile ingredient to add to your pantry. You can use it just as you would butter, in anything from baked goods to vegetable sautés. And thanks to its high smoke point, it’s a good choice for frying, too.

Here’s how to get started on your coconut oil journey:

Baking

The easiest way to start cooking with coconut oil is actually to bake with it. Coconut oil provides a simple way to get the butter out of baked goods, whether it’s to make them dairy-free or just as a means to eat less butter. The oil has similar physical properties to butter ― firm when cool, and liquid when warm ― making it a natural replacement. Check out these recipes:

1
The Best Soft And Chewy Coconut Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies
Averie Cooks
2
3-Ingredient Coconut Oil Biscuits
Gimme Some Oven
Get the 3-Ingredient Coconut Oil Biscuits recipe from Gimme Some Oven
3
Pineapple Coconut Oil Banana Bread
Averie Cooks

Cooking

Cooking with coconut oil is just as easy as using olive oil. Even if it’s firm when you start out, it will quickly melt in a warm pan and it behaves in the same way as other cooking oils. Try it with these recipes:

1
1-Pot Lentil Dal
Minimalist Baker
Get the 1-Pot Lentil Dal recipe from Minimalist Baker
2
Asparagus Stir-Fry With Sesame-Miso Sauce
Naturally Ella
3
30-Minute Coconut Curry
Minimalist Baker
Get the 30-Minute Coconut Curry recipe from Minimalist Baker

Frying

Coconut oil is a stable oil, thanks to its high saturated fat content. It is a natural choice for frying because of its high smoke content. For the crispiest results, bring the oil to 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit before frying.

1
Coconut Oil Fried Brussels Sprouts
The Endless Meal
Get the Coconut Oil Fried Brussels Sprouts recipe from The Endless Meal
2
Coconut Oil Tostones
Paleo Running Momma
Get the Coconut Oil Tostones recipe from Paleo Running Momma
3
Easy Coconut Shrimp
Sally's Baking Addiction
Get the Easy Coconut Shrimp recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction