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Perhaps one of the best oils today used for both cosmetic and cooking purposes is sunflower oil. It has tremendous health benefits, making it a popular option for almost everyone around the world. Sunflower oil gets extracted by pressing sunflower seeds, which offers many health benefits. For instance, sunflower oil is very low in saturated fat content. Any food high in saturated fats isn't good for our health as these raise our cholesterol levels.
By using sunflower oil in your cooking, you can make your dishes healthier. Now, the question is, which is the best sunflower oil for cooking? By knowing what to look for and which brands are the best, choosing one will become easier for you.
Using Sunflower Oil for Cooking
Many have now switched to using refined sunflower oils in the kitchen instead of neutral vegetable oils. It is a healthy substitute for sautéing, frying, searing, and more. You can use unrefined type of sunflower oil like extra-virgin olive oil, like in salad dressings or pasta.
Since sunflower oil's smoking point is high enough, it does well for frying foods and other methods that require high heat. Just remember that like all the other unsaturated oils, sunflower oil may get unstable and break down when you expose it to prolonged heating.
What to Look Out for When Getting the Sunflower Oil for Cooking
When you decide to switch using sunflower oil for your needs, there are some factors to should consider including:
Refined vs. unrefined
Sunflower oil comes as either unrefined or refined. It is important to know the difference, the advantages, and the disadvantages. Refined sunflower oil undergoes a process of filtering out and cleaning impurities and can have a shelf-life of a year if you store it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
Unrefined sunflower oil gets extracted using a pressing process from the seeds with minor to no filtering at all. Unrefined sunflower oil has a shorter shelf life, between 3 and 4 months and like the refined type, you must also store it in a cool place away from direct sunlight.
Refined sunflower oil is best used for baking and frying purposes. Unrefined oil is great for salads and any side dish that you don't subject to heat. You also know that since unrefined sunflower oil has not undergone too much filtering, it retains many healthy components. This, therefore, should be the type used in cosmetics, whether for nurturing body and hair or for massaging.
Sunflower thrives well in countries all over the world and as such, sunflower oil products are widely available to people interested in healthier living. You can visit your local grocer to find different brands in the cooking oil aisles. You can also purchase your sunflower oil online after going through the details of each product.
Sunflower oil has a neutral flavor. If you want to add some diversity to your dishes, you can opt for sunflower oil blends or those infused with basil, garlic, and other types of herbs. But unadulterated sunflower oil is already versatile in itself. This means that sticking to your comfort zone of using just regular sunflower oil without flavors in it for your frying, dressing, or baking needs is still an excellent choice.
Based on fat content, there are three types of sunflower oils, depending on the balance between monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats: high-oleic, mid-oleic, and linoleic. High Oleic sunflower oil is the healthiest choice if you plan to buy this oil for your cooking. It has a higher level of monounsaturated fats and it's more stable compared to the other two. This feature also makes it ideal for high-heat cooking. High-oleic sunflower oil has a subtler flavor profile and a longer shelf-life compared to linoleic or mid-oleic sunflower oils.
Top 5 Sunflower Oils
Baja Precious - High Oleic Sunflower Oil
Baja Precious Sunflower Oil gets extracted by pressing sunflower seeds. The high oleic oil undergoes processing that follows only strict quality standards. It contains higher levels of monounsaturated fats and lower levels of polyunsaturated and saturated fats.
This makes it very healthy for heart health and an effective alternative to butter. Baja Precious Sunflower Oil is also very versatile as you can use it for different types of cooking. Since it has a high smoke point, it's an excellent choice for high-heat cooking too. Aside from cooking, you can also use it for cosmetic applications.
La Tourangelle, Organic Regenerative Sunflower Oil
La Tourangelle, Organic Regenerative Sunflower Oil has a premium taste extracted from high-quality ingredients. For more flavor to any meal, add a touch of this oil. With its ingredients being 100% all-natural, pure, and grown following only regenerative farming methods, this oil is perfect6 for your kitchen needs, from frying to sautéing to grilling and more.
Using La Tourangelle, Organic Regenerative Sunflower Oil will make it easier for you to create distinctive dishes in your kitchen. The oil is a great choice for roasting veggies, stir-fry, grilled meat, and more. You can create standout moments in the kitchen and the table with this oil.
Safya - 100% Pure Sunflower Oil
Safya - 100% Pure Sunflower Oil is a 100% refined-wintered sunflower oil. What makes this brand unique is that it does not contain crystalized parts or waxes. This is possible thanks to Safya's winterization process which is also called 'dewaxing.'
The process involves purifying sunflower oil to make it clear and give it a subtle flavor. Safya - 100% Pure Sunflower Oil is almost tasteless and has a high smoke point making it suitable for different kinds of cooking tasks. As for its health contents, this sunflower oil is high in healthy polyunsaturated fatty acids and vitamin E.
Healthy Harvest Non-GMO Sunflower Oil
Healthy Harvest Non-GMO Sunflower Oil comes enriched with healthy vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids. It's also free from GMOs and doesn't contain any chemicals. This makes it highly recommended for heart health as it helps reduce cholesterol levels.
Healthy Harvest Non-GMO Sunflower Oil has a longer shelf life too. If you want to bring the best of nature to your home, introduce your family to this oil. This is a healthy, non-GMO cooking oil made without hydrogenation or any other processes that cause damage. You can enjoy flavorful meals with no negative impact on your blood sugar, heart, and overall health.
La Tourangelle Garlic Infused Sunflower Oil
La Tourangelle Garlic Infused Sunflower Oil is another one of the best sunflower oils for cooking. Aside from the brand's regular sunflower oil, which is already great, La Tourangelle also offers this oil for those who want to have some diversity in their food.
La Tourangelle Garlic Infused Sunflower Oil is a very aromatic oil infused with organic and fresh garlic. You can use this flavorsome oil for high-heat cooking and it is also ideal for marinades and salad dressings. You can even drizzle it on your pasta dishes or use it as a dipping oil for a dash of garlic flavor.
Having a bottle of sunflower oil in your kitchen will always be worth it as there is a range of things you can do with it, not to mention the health benefits. Sunflower oils have already made their mark in the health world as people have begun discovering their potential for the body and the taste.
The oil has a high smoke point, a neutral flavor, and it's very affordable. The choice of which to buy, whether unrefined or refined, will largely depend on your needs and preferences. Just make sure that the product you choose doesn't contain any harmful chemicals or GMOs.