Cooking oils play a vital role in the outcome of your culinary dishes, and this makes it important for one to know how long a cooking oil intended for use will take to reach a specific temperature needed for a perfect cooking process.
There have been so many questions on the time it takes for cooking oils to reach 350°F (175°C) and this have made me carry out a detailed experiment to ascertain the time taken for a preferred cooking oils to reach the optimum temperature for cooking using multiple trials. This I have carried out to help you make an informed decision in the kitchen.
To begin, I choose eight oils commonly used in the kitchen Olive Oil, Canola Oil, Vegetable Oil, Peanut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil and Grapeseed Oil.
¼ cup (59 ml) of each oil was measured out after which the cup containing olive oil was poured into a stainless-steel frying pan and then placed onto a pre-heated electric burner set to medium heat for a consistent heating. A digital meat thermometer is inserted into the olive oil but was not allowed to touch the bottom of the pan to ensure I get accurate values during the heating process.
The olive oil temperature was continuously monitored with the aid of the thermometer and the time for the oil to reach 350oF was noted and recorded. What if the thermometer is not readily available in your kitchen, here is how to know when oil hot enough for cooking.
Three trials were performed for the olive oil to ensure consistency and accuracy.
This procedure is repeated for Canola Oil, Vegetable Oil, Peanut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil and Grapeseed Oil using the same stainless steel frying pan of the same size and shape under the same experimental conditions.
The following results and using ¼ cup 59 ml of the various oil were obtained below.
The experiment was repeated this time using 1/2 and 1 cup of the various oils. The result is provided below.
Since I know we all don’t have the same heating device I also performed the experiment using ¼ cup (59ml) of the different cooking oils with each in turn heated by electric, gas burner and an induction cooktop. All were adjusted to medium heat for the heating process.
The result I got are shown in the table below.
From the result I obtained above, it can be inferred that all oils don’t heat up at the same temperature due to their different smoke points. Oils with higher smoke points such as canola oil, vegetable oil and peanut oil heat up much quickly because of their higher smoke points.
When heating oils, we observed that the heating times can vary depending on the type of oil and the heating device used. Oils with higher smoke points such as canola oil, vegetable oil, and peanut oil, generally tend to heat up more quickly compared to oils with lower smoke points, such as coconut oil.
It is important for you to note that hot oils can cause severe burns and so there is need for one to take proper precautions when handling hot oils to prevent accidents or injuries.
We have all seen the different time taken for the desired choice of oil to reach the desired cooking temperature and this is due to the differences in their smoke points. Armed with this information, you should be able to select a suitable oil needed to achieve an optimal cooking be it pan frying, deep frying and sauteing or heating oils to 180oC or 375oF.