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Choosing the Right Oil

Choosing the right oil depends on how you’re going to use it.

If you’re going to heat the oil to a high temperature (deep-frying, pan-frying, etc.), use an oil that has a high smoke point – the higher the smoke point, the better suited the oil is for frying.

Smoke point is the temperature at which oil begins to smoke and breakdown – imparting an unpleasant flavour on food.

Oils for Frying:

OilSmoke point
Avocado520°F (271°C)
Soybean485°F (252°C)
Ghee (clarified butter)485°F (252°C)
Safflower450°F (232°C)
Peanut450°F (232°C)
Grapeseed455°F (229°C)
Canola435°F (224°C)
Olive410°F (210°C)
Coconut350°F (180°C)

Helpful hint:

To clean up spilled oil, cover oil with a layer of flour, let it absorb for a few minutes, then wipe up.


If you’re using oil to add flavour or richness, like in a salad dressing or sauce, pick oil that compliments the flavour of the dish.


Oils for Flavour and Richness:

AlmondToasted almond
AvocadoRich, buttery
GrapeseedMild, neutral
HazelnutToasted hazelnut
MacadamiaMild to rich macadamia
Extra virgin olive oilMild to rich olive
PecanMild to rich pecan
PistachioMild to rich pistachio
PumpkinToasted pumpkin seed
Toasted sesameStrong, nutty
SunflowerMild, neutral
TruffleMild to rich, mushroom-like
WalnutRich walnut

Helpful hint:

Store nut oils in the fridge, it will prevent them from turning rancid.


  1. I loved watching your show on Live Well Network and miss it immensely. I had to write to the network to tell them of my disappointment.

    Thanks for teaching an old gal a lot of new things.

    Blessings to you,

  2. Hi Kary,
    I missed seeing you on CBC, so I looked you up. Great website.
    I believe your ‘Oils For Frying’ chart has a typo related to grapeseed oil.


  3. If you are not going back to TV maybe put more videos up. It is great when you cook and we follow along.


  4. Please get back on TV – I hate the computer.

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