Can you cook eggs in coconut oil?
In this brief guide we will address the question, “can you cook eggs in coconut oil?” and discuss what are the benefits and drawbacks of using coconut oil to cook eggs.
Can you cook eggs in coconut oil?
Yes, you can cook eggs in coconut oil. However, coconut oil is not an optimal oil option to be used in cooking and you should prefer using vegetable oils with a higher level of unsaturated fatty acids, which are more suitable for cooking.
Unlike most vegetable oils, coconut oil is rich in saturated fats and, despite the health effects associated with its consumption, they have not yet been scientifically confirmed. For this reason, medical associations advise the moderate consumption of coconut oil and do not advise its use in cooking (1).
What are the benefits of cooking eggs in coconut oil?
The benefits of cooking eggs are improved with the use of virgin coconut oil. Some benefits are the following (1,2,3):
Coconut oil is a great source of fats, which provide the body with energy.
Coconut oil contains antioxidants, such as polyphenols, vitamin E and other phytosterols, which may act positively against inflammations and improve the gut microbiota.
Coconut oil is aromatic and flavorful, giving the eggs a distinct sweet, acidic flavor, due to the presence of many aromatic compounds, such as alcohols, ketones and aldehydes.
What are the risks of using coconut oil to cook eggs?
The risks of using coconut oil to cook eggs are related to the regular consumption of coconut oil. As a great source of saturated fatty acids, it should be used with moderation.
According to the American Heart Association, the limit of ingestion of saturated fatty acids in a diet of 2000 calories is 24 g daily (2). Some negative effects related to the consumption of coconut oil are (1,2):
Coconut oil can increase the cholesterol levels in blood, raising the risks of cardiovascular diseases and other metabolic diseases. Although there is a popular belief that coconut oil decreases the levels of cholesterol in blood, recent scientific evidence supports the opposite.
Several studies and meta-analysis showed that the regular consumption of coconut oil in the diet resulted in an increased cholesterol and low density lipoproteins (LDL).
Coconut oil can also lead to weight gain and obesity in the long term, contrary to common knowledge that this oil helps losing weight. Recent studies showed that the consumption of high amounts of coconut oil does not necessarily lead to weight loss.
Some studies show that the ingestion of coconut oil improves satiety and contributes to weight loss, while other studies show the opposite results and the conclusions are controver. In this sense, it is not safe to use coconut oil regularly as a cooking oil.
The ingestion of coconut oil should be moderated. When used for cooking purposes, it is safe to use at a low heat and not to frying, due to the low smoke point of the oil, which is low when compared to cooking oils.
In addition, the repeated heating of coconut oil by its reuse can generate toxic compounds which are carcinogenic.
What are healthy alternatives to coconut oil to cook eggs?
Healthy alternatives to coconut oil to cook eggs are (2,4):
Olive oil: contains monounsaturated fatty acids and therefore can resist cooking heat and be used for cooking purposes. It is a source of polyphenols and antioxidants and its consumption is associated with the reduction of the risks of cardiovascular disease.
Red palm oil: contains a high amount of carotenoids, which are antioxidants and pro-vitamin A
Flaxseed oil: Its consumption is reported to reduce the cholesterol levels in blood
Other FAQs about Eggs which you may be interested in.
In this brief guide we have addressed the question, “can you cook eggs in coconut oil?” and discuss what are the benefits and drawbacks of using coconut oil to cook eggs.
- Sacks, Frank M. Coconut oil and heart health: fact or fiction?. Circulation, 2020, 141, 815-817.
- Lima, Renan da Silva, and Jane Mara Block. Coconut oil: what do we really know about it so far?. Food Qual Safety, 2019, 3, 61-72.
- Mulyadi, Arie Febrianto, Matthias Schreiner, and Ika Atsari Dewi. Phenolic and volatile compounds, antioxidant activity, and sensory properties of virgin coconut oil: Occurrence and their relationship with quality. AIP Confer Proceed 2018, 2021.
- Ganesan, Kumar, Kumeshini Sukalingam, and Baojun Xu. Impact of consumption and cooking manners of vegetable oils on cardiovascular diseases-A critical review. Trend Food Sci Technol, 2018, 71, 132-154.