How to choose the right oil

Vegetable oil is the most common oil used by home cooks but it may not be the best oil for the job depending on what you’re making. Choosing the right oil can take your cooking from amateur level to pro status in no time. Here’s a list of what oil works best when. Oils with higher smoke points (the temperature at which an oil begins to smoke and impart bitterness or poor flavours to foods) are best used for frying. Oils with low smoke points are best in dressings, sauces and as finishing oils.


Almond – dressings

Avocado – dressings, sauces

Canola – dressings, sautéing, frying, baking

Grapeseed – dressings, sautéing, frying

Hazelnut – dressings, sauces, baking

Olive – dressings, sautéing, light frying (avoid frying with extra-virgin olive oil)

Peanut – stir-frying, sautéing, frying

Pumpkin – dressings, sauces

Safflower – sautéing, frying

Sesame – dressings, sauces

Soybean – sautéing, frying

Sunflower – dressings, sautéing

Walnut – dressings, sauces, baking