Avocado oil is the latest oil to move to the top of the list of healthier oils. Higher in monounsaturated fats and lower in saturated fats than olive oil, avocado oil has been linked with reducing LDL cholesterol, the symptoms of arthritis and so much more. The high smoke point of avocado oil also makes it better for cooking with than other plant-based oils and avocado oil can also be used in recipes or even just for drizzling over a salad or soup.In this review we look at some of the best avocado oil for cooking with and consider why its high smoke point is important, as well as what to look for when choosing an avocado oil for cooking. We also look at the fats in avocado oil as well as some of the early research linking avocado oil to a number of health benefits.
The Chosen Foods avocado oil made from non-GMO Hass avocados is our best pick of the avocado cooking oils.
Pressed from premium avocados, the La Tourangelle avocado oil is our Californian pressed avocado oil budget pick.
Table of Contents
- Quick Comparison: Top 10 Best Avocado Oils
- 1. Chosen Foods Avocado Oil
- 2. La Tourangelle Avocado Oil
- 3. Chosen Foods Avocado Oil Spray
- 4. Baja Precious Avocado Oil
- 5. Bella Vado Organic Extra Virgin Avocado Oil
- 6. Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil
- 7. BetterBody Foods Avocado Oil
- 8. Massimo Gusto Extra Virgin Avocado Oil
- 9. Prasada Avocado Oil
- 10. Healthy Harvest Avocado Oil
- Things to Consider Before Buying Avocado Oil for Cooking
Quick Comparison: Top 10 Best Avocado Oils
1. Chosen Foods Avocado Oil
The Chosen Foods avocado oil is made with 100% Hass avocados sourced from non-GMO farms in central Mexico. This 33 fl. oz oil is expeller pressed without the use of chemicals and it is Non-GMO Project Verified.This oil has a smoke point of 500°F, although some users have found that it can be prone to smoking at lower heats than expected. This oil may also have less taste to it than other avocado oils which means it may not be as suitable for using as a dressing oil.
2. La Tourangelle Avocado Oil
The 100% pure La Tourangelle avocado oil is expeller pressed from premium avocados. This 16.9 fl. oz can is Non-GMO Project Verified and certified as gluten free; it is also pressed in California. The manufacturer of this oil does not provide a smoke point but does state that the oil is suitable for using at medium-high heat.There is a risk of the can being dented on arrival which can make it difficult to open. The design of can may also make it difficult to pour from and overall, the oil may not be quite as fresh as you would expect.
3. Chosen Foods Avocado Oil Spray
The 6 fl. oz bottle of Chosen Foods avocado oil spray contains only avocado spray, no chemicals, emulsifiers or propellants. Suitable for using as a cooking spray or in recipes, this has a 500°F smoke point and a mild flavor. This is also Non-GMO Project Verified and kosher.As this is a spray bottle there can be problems with the spray nozzle and as a propellant free spray, the oil can be forced out very quickly in a stream rather than a spray which can end up on the stove or countertop.
4. Baja Precious Avocado Oil
Containing pure avocado oil sourced from Mexico and bottled in California, the Baja Precious avocado oil has been expeller pressed and is free from any hexane. The 25.3 fl. oz bottle BPA free plastic bottle has a non-drip retractable pourer for easy pouring, although there can occasionally be faults with the pourer top, and the bottle itself is made of BPA free green plastic rather than glass. Some have also found the smoke point, which is listed at 500°F plus, to be lower on this oil.
5. Bella Vado Organic Extra Virgin Avocado Oil
The Bella Vado organic extra virgin avocado oil is cold pressed, unrefined and unfiltered. This 8.5 fl. oz bottle of oil has a bright emerald green color and is extracted and bottled in California from locally grown Hass avocados. As well as certified USDA organic, this oil is also Non-GMO Project Verified. As this does come in a glass bottle there can be a small risk of breakage, and this oil will cost more than other avocado oils.
6. Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil
Made with first pressed oil extracted through expeller pressing, the Primal Kitchen avocado oil is Paleo and Whole30 approved as well as Non-GMO Project Verified. This 16.9 fl. oz oil is made from Spanish avocados. Some buyers have found this oil to be too lightly colored and consider that it lacks flavor. This oil must also be refrigerated once opened.
7. BetterBody Foods Avocado Oil
Made with pure avocado oil which has been naturally refined, the BetterBody Foods avocado oil is kosher, free from gluten and any GMO ingredients. This 16.9 fl. oz bottle of oil has a 500°F smoke point and does not need refrigerating after opening. The bottle is plastic rather than glass though, and there can be a risk of the bottle being damaged during shipping. The flip top can also be difficult to open and reseal after use.
8. Massimo Gusto Extra Virgin Avocado Oil
Produced in Mexico, the Massimo Gusto extra virgin avocado oil has a smoke point of 491°F and has been expeller extracted. This comes as a value twin pack of 33.6 fl. oz bottles although some consider that this pure avocado oil lacks color and flavor when compared to similar oils.
9. Prasada Avocado Oil
The cold pressed Prasada avocado oil is Non-GMO Project Verified. This pure oil is made with avocados sourced from Mexico, the US and Spain and is advertised as having a 520°F smoke point. This 16.9 fl. oz bottle is made of plastic rather than glass, although it does have an easy pour top. Some buyers also consider that this oil lacks color when compared with other pure avocado oils.
10. Healthy Harvest Avocado Oil
The one gallon pack of Healthy Harvest avocado oil is naturally processed and Non-GMO Project Verified. This is a lighter colored oil compared to other avocado oils and although a larger bottle, it will still need using within six months or so of opening. It will also take more storage room. This oil comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Things to Consider Before Buying Avocado Oil for Cooking
Avocado cooking oil is pressed from fresh avocado pulp from the fruit of the Persea americana, or avocado tree. Most of today’s avocado oil is produced in Mexico from Hass avocados, although the US is increasing production.
Avocado oil is suitable for using as you would use olive oil, such as for marinating, pan searing, in mayonnaise and salad dressings. You can also use it when baking, for drizzling over roasting vegetables or on cold soups. A tablespoon can even be added to smoothies!
When choosing an avocado oil for cooking, always look for one which is 100% pure. Ideally, it should also be extra virgin, unrefined and cold pressed for maximum benefits. There are also a number of certified organic avocado oils available.
An unopened avocado oil should have a shelf life of around two years. Unless advised to refrigerate on opening, avocado oil should be stored in a cool and dark place away from any sources of heat and light. Avocado oil is best used within six months of opening.
Avocado Oil, Smoke Point and Cooking Temperatures
Out of all the plant-based cooking oils, avocado has the highest smoke point of 510°F to 520°F. Just to compare, a ‘light’ olive oil can be around 430°F while an extra virgin olive oil or EVOO can be as low as 220°F. This means avocado oil is ideal for roasting, sautéing and stir frying although unlike EVOO which has quite a neutral taste, unrefined avocado oil is strongly flavored.
It is worth noting that although a virgin avocado oil may be advertised with a very high smoke point, it is still sensible to keep to a cooking range of between 375°F to 400°F as not all claims about avocado oil’s very high smoke point may be true. Whatever you cook in whichever oil, you should never allow oil to smoke heavily as this not only reduces any benefits of the oil, but it also means the oil has started to create dangerous compounds.
Types of Avocado Oil Pressing
An extra virgin avocado oil has been extracted from just the first press. There are two main types of pressing, expeller and cold pressing.
Expeller pressing is when the oil is squeezed straight out from the avocado without the use of any chemicals or extra heat; although the process does actually generate some natural heat. Cold pressing is the same process carried out in a temperature controlled setting - usually less than 120°F. Oils which are cold pressed keep most of their nutritional value, flavor and colors. Expeller pressed loses slightly more, but the worst type of extraction using heat and/or chemicals significantly reduces the nutritional value of an avocado oil.
Unrefined and Refined Avocado Oils
An unrefined oil is one untouched since extraction apart from some oils which may have been mechanically filtered to remove any impurities. A refined oil will have been deodorized or bleached after extraction and these oils have often lost quite a bit of their color and smell. Refined oils are preferred by those who may not be as keen on the taste of avocado but would still like to obtain some of its nutritional value (although some of this is lost during refining).
Natural refining is a newer process for producing avocado oil and this means that the oil has been refined mechanically rather than with the use of chemicals. Like any refined oil, this will have lost some of its benefits, but will not have lost as much as a conventionally refined avocado oil.
Monounsaturated and Saturated Fats in Avocado Oil
Because avocado oil contains around 50% monounsaturated fat in the form of oleic acid, this makes it more stable, or less likely to oxidize, than polyunsaturated fats. It also remains liquid at room temperature.
Extra virgin avocado oil contains around 72% to 76% monounsaturated fats – higher than the 67% that olive oil contains. Avocado oil also contains around 12% saturated fats, lower than palm oil, coconut oil, EVOO, soybean oil and sunflower oils but more than walnut, safflower, grapeseed and canola oils.
When avocado oil is cold pressed, not only does this produce a higher quality oil with lower levels of oxidation and acidity, but it also leaves much of the monounsaturated fats intact.
Monounsaturated fats can help reduce LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol levels which can help reduce risk of heart disease. Avocado oil has also been shown to reduce blood triglycerides and lower blood pressure in animal studies.
Monounsaturated fats can also promote healthier skin along with the high levels of vitamin E which avocado oil contains. One study or 13 patients with psoriasis showed than an avocado oil and vitamin B12 cream improved their symptoms after 12 weeks of treatment. Avocado oil has also been shown to promote wound healing in animal studies.
Avocado oil is a source of lutein, a carotenoid which we have to obtain from our diet. Lutein, or the yellow pigment xanthophyll carotenoid, is found concentrated in the macula region of the eye and lutein helps protect the eye from being damaged by high-energy blue light and UV radiation.
Having lutein in the diet can help prevent age-related macular degeneration or ARMD which is the leading cause of blindness in older people in the western world.
Although carotenoids such as lutein are found as pigments in many plant foods, they do need fats to absorb them better. This is why avocado oil promotes absorption of these and other nutrients obtained not just from the oil, but the rest of the meal which has been cooked in or dressed with avocado oil.
One study showed that absorption of carotenoids increased from 4.3 to 17.4 fold when avocado oil was added to a salad of romaine lettuce, carrots and spinach compared to a salad without avocado oil.
Avocado Oil as an Anti-Inflammatory
Unsaponifiables are an extract from avocado and soybean oils which may help reduce some of the symptoms, such as stiffness and pain, of osteoarthritis. This extract may also help prevent gum or periodontal disease. When unsaponifiables were added to bone and periodontal tissue, they were able to block a specific protein called IL1B which promotes inflammation and is the main cause for destruction of tissues and bone loss in gum disease.
Because avocado oil is also rich in antioxidants, it can help fight some of the damage to our cells caused by free radicals, molecules which are waste products of our metabolism. Some research has shown that avocado oil can enter the mitochondria of our cells - the part of the cell which produces energy and therefore is where many harmful free radicals are produced - and neutralize some of these free radicals and prevent them from damaging the cell.
It is easy to see why avocado oil is replacing oils such as EVOO in our homes. With its high smoke point, lower amounts of saturated fats and beneficial molecule content, avocado oil is fast becoming the all-purpose oil of choice, whether for cooking or finishing dishes with.In this review we have looked at ten of the best avocado oil for cooking with and some of the factors, such as types of pressing and refining, to consider when choosing an avocado cooking oil. We hope that you have enjoyed this review and if you have yet to try avocado oil out in the kitchen, we trust that this review has helped persuade you to make the switch to this healthier plant-based oil.