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I found various contradicting sources as to whether coconut oil can be used for frying or not. Some claim it is "The ideal oil for frying" as it has a high smoking point, while some say it is not suited for frying, since it has a low smoking point. So which is true? Please give trustworthy sources - the more scientific the better.

Thanks in advance

  • also: if someone with reputation >300 reads this: Maybe you want to create the taggs coconut-oil (as olive-oil exists) and smoking-point for me – Lonely Neuron Jan 16 '18 at 3:20
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    I have a suspicion (no time to check now) that like olive oil it will depend how refined the oil is. Perhaps you could link to the sources you found. – Chris H Jan 16 '18 at 6:45
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There are multiple qualities, differently refined, on the market. Highly refined qualities that leave only the oil (various fatty acids) itself will have a very high smoke point and be suitable for high heat frying. There is a lot of saturated fats in coconut oil, which result in both the solid texture at low temperatures and the stability at high heat.

Unrefined or less-refined qualities will have other compounds left in, which can contribute to aroma (and possible nutritional benefits) but will also lower the smoking point and can actually result in an off taste and/or byproducts not considered healthy (why is off topic here).

Various smoke points are quoted, from 300°F for some unrefined varieties to 450°F for some highly refined ones. Exact smoke points likely depend on how exactly it was refined.

The exact same applies to olive oil, BTW: Highly refined varieties are known to be perfectly usable for high heat work, with the opposite being true of unrefined ones.

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