I cooked chicken with olive oil. I observed that it gives a bitter taste to the curry.

Using soybean oil or sunflower seed oil gives a taste which I like more.

Is this effect expected?

  • 2
    Why do people do anything? Because they like it? Because when they first did it, it was the only source locally for oil? Because they've learned not to burn it?
    – Tetsujin
    Jul 30, 2022 at 10:10
  • I've tried to cover ll the bases in my answer, but it might be worth saying what sort of olive oil you used - round here if it just says "olive oil" it's probably refined, or refined with some unrefined oil added back in (which is mentioned on the label for one I sometimes buy)
    – Chris H
    Jul 30, 2022 at 10:16
  • Hi, your original question was completely opinion-based. People use ingredients for different reasons, and just because you dislike a flavor, it doesn't mean that everyone else dislikes it too. I changed the question, so now at least some of your assumptions can be addressed by answerers.
    – rumtscho
    Jul 30, 2022 at 11:11

1 Answer 1


Some oils work better in some dishes than others. It sounds like you wanted a neutral oil. I certainly wouldn't use olive oil in curries, but that's mainly because sunflower or rapeseed (canola) oil is cheaper and the olive oil would be wasted.

Olive oil has its own distinctive flavour, which works well in some foods, but not in others. This flavour is described as bitter, though not usually bitter enough to be a bad thing in many dishes - after all, extra virgin olive oil can be used alone for dipping bread, though it's common to dip in balsamic vinegar as well, which provides sweetness to offset the bitterness.

However the tastiest olive oils aren't very good for frying - they're unrefined and burn too easily. Bitterness can be a result of burning, and with olive oil particularly it seems to come out at the first hint of smoking. So you may have cooked too hot, especially if you used an unrefined oil Refined olive oils work well for cooking chicken. I used to do it a lot, either by pouring some into a pan and adding the chicken, or by brushing large pieces of chicken with oil, and sprinkling herbs and black pepper on the surface. Now I don't cook chicken but do the same with veg, tofu, etc. Again a little sweetness (from well-cooked onions for example) mutes any bitter flavour.

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