The Truth About Turkey Frying & Vegetable Oil

By Tom Seest

Is Vegetable Oil Safe for Turkey Frying?

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Fry your turkey using vegetable oil, but make sure that you know how much and the type to use to ensure a delicious yet nutritious result! Knowing these details can ensure a delicious and nutritious bird!
Peanut oil is an ideal option, due to its high smoke point and ability to be reused before becoming rancid; however, it must be monitored closely due to being a fire hazard and thus requires close monitoring.

Is Vegetable Oil Safe for Turkey Frying?

Is Vegetable Oil Safe for Turkey Frying?

Have You Considered Using Canola Oil?

Peanut oil is an ideal way to fry a turkey, as it’s cheap, versatile, and won’t clog up your frying pot like other oils do.
Peanut oil should be considered potentially risky when heated, leading to oxidation damage that may harm your health. As an alternative, extra virgin olive oil might provide more healthful solutions.
Also important when deep-frying a turkey is that the oil you select has a high smoke point – meaning that it won’t ignite under exposure to heat – as this ensures even cooking without burning the skin.
Unrefined peanut oil is highly recommended as it provides more natural antioxidant-rich polyunsaturates than their refined counterparts, helping your body remain healthier while decreasing risk factors for chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
Trans fats, commonly found in popular cooking oils like canola and vegetable oils, should also be limited as much as possible in your diet. Because trans fats can be harmful, you should strive to limit how many of them you consume each day.
Peanut oil offers many health advantages due to its low saturated fat content. This means it won’t raise cholesterol levels and thus benefiting your overall wellbeing.
Peanut oil contains sterols and small alcohol molecules that can enter your bloodstream and help fight some forms of cancer, such as b-sitosterol, campesterol stigmasterol, and D5 and D7 avenasterol (Table 2).
Peanut oil has also been proven to aid weight loss and increase energy levels while helping reduce inflammation to promote a healthier immune system.

Have You Considered Using Canola Oil?

Have You Considered Using Canola Oil?

Is Vegetable Oil Really the Best Option for Frying a Turkey?

Vegetable oil may be suitable for frying turkeys, but it should be chosen with caution due to its low smoke point – as this could easily catch fire while it cooks. This is for optimal safety when selecting an oil such as peanut or sunflower oil.
Peanut oil is one of the ideal oils to use when frying turkey because it can withstand high temperatures while offering subtle nutty notes without overshadowing other flavors.
Canola oil is another popular pick, due to being one of the few vegetable oils with less saturated fat content. With its mild taste, canola oil makes for great salad dressings or baking uses.
Oil of oregano is widely considered healthier than other oils as its rich supply of monounsaturated fats can reduce cholesterol levels significantly, providing good news to those suffering from heart disease or diabetes.
When frying turkey, it’s essential that the oil temperature range between 325 and 375 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal results. Therefore, cheaper vegetable oils that have a smoke point of 400 degrees are not recommended as they will alter this process and cause uneven browning of your turkey.
A safe way to cook a turkey is outside on a level surface far from any structures such as houses, garages, or swing sets, using heavy-duty potholders and having access to a fire extinguisher nearby.
Before deep-frying a turkey, be sure it has been thoroughly defrosted and that all parts have been extracted from its cavity. After this step is completed, set up your equipment on an outdoor surface such as grass or dirt to fry your bird.
As soon as the oil has reached 375 degrees F (190 deg C), carefully place your turkey into it and watch until golden-brown perfection has been reached. Remove from the fryer when finished and pat dry with paper towels – either dispose of or reuse the oil by placing in an airtight container and filtering through coffee filters or cheese cloth until free from impurities.

Is Vegetable Oil Really the Best Option for Frying a Turkey?

Is Vegetable Oil Really the Best Option for Frying a Turkey?

Is Peanut Oil the Best Choice for Frying a Turkey?

Deep frying turkey remains one of the most popular ways of cooking this holiday dish, but deep frying can be another great option for quick and simple enjoyment of it. Deep frying tends to dry out less and produce tender meat that boasts golden, crisp skin compared to roasting.
When deep frying turkey, make sure the oil you choose allows for maximum natural flavor while keeping its crisp exterior. A cooking oil with a high smoke point suitable for deep frying would be best.
Peanut oil is often the go-to option when it comes to deep frying turkey due to its unique nutty taste that pairs perfectly with turkey meat. Plus, its high smoke point allows it to be used in various other applications beyond deep frying!
Coconut oil is another delicious oil you can use to fry your turkey, with its sweet, tropical taste bringing an enjoyable tropical flair. Virgin and refined varieties can usually be found at most grocery stores; refined varieties have undergone more processing, so they don’t have the same intense tropical notes.
Antimicrobial properties of turmeric help keep your body healthy by fighting infections. Furthermore, this superfood boasts many useful vitamins and antioxidants such as vitamin C.
This oil boasts low saturated fat levels and can be considered healthy for most individuals if consumed in moderation. Studies have also linked its consumption with weight loss, improved cardiovascular health, and an increase in energy levels.
Coconut oil primarily consists of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), but also contains approximately 50% lauric acid which provides antimicrobial and immune system boosting capabilities, making it a top choice for those suffering chronic conditions like diabetes and arthritis. Furthermore, its natural fuel sources make it a viable replacement option in your diet.

Is Peanut Oil the Best Choice for Frying a Turkey?

Is Peanut Oil the Best Choice for Frying a Turkey?

Is Sunflower Oil the Best Choice for Frying a Turkey?

Sunflower oil is an excellent vegetable oil choice for frying turkey as it is easy to find, has a high smoke point, has a neutral flavor profile, and is relatively inexpensive.
However, it is essential that any sunflower oil you purchase be unrefined. Refining strips out many nutrients and fatty acids found within it as well as phytosterols and polyphenols that act as antioxidants – this process may render its antioxidant benefits meaningless.
An alternative choice would be an unrefined variety of sunflower oil such as safflower. This option offers lower levels of saturated fats than its refined counterpart, is heart-healthy, and suitable for high heat cooking applications.
Quality cold-pressed, unrefined sunflower oil should have a light golden yellow hue and transparent texture, with no detectable odors or stains present.
Checking the fatty acid profile of any oil you purchase is vital, as its balance of monounsaturated (MUFA) and polyunsaturated (PUFA) fats will have an impact on its stability. In particular, MUFAs tend to be more chemically stable than their polyunsaturated (PUFA) counterparts and, thus, less likely to experience oxidative damage during refining or cooking processes.
Selecting organic oils is of utmost importance, as these typically come from manual extraction without chemical solvents and processing at lower temperatures than their non-organic counterparts. Furthermore, organic varieties often boast higher vitamin and mineral content.
Sunflower oil with high levels of MUFAs is less prone to oxidative damage than oils with higher ratios of polyunsaturates, such as canola, olive, or soybean oils, tending towards mild-to-neutral flavors with better stability at higher temperatures, making these types more widely available than previously.
Vegetable oil blends may also be worth considering; typically made up of multiple oils (corn, sunflower and rapeseed are popular options), these products may offer you better value and may work equally well when used for frying.

Is Sunflower Oil the Best Choice for Frying a Turkey?

Is Sunflower Oil the Best Choice for Frying a Turkey?

Be sure to read our other related stories at SeedOilNews to learn more about seed oils.