Coconut oil and ghee are both strong alternatives to butter, margarine, and other oils, but they differ on both taste and nutrition.
Which is better?
This depends on what you need.
In terms of nutritional content, ghee and coconut oil are similar in calories but ghee has a different fat composition and more nutrients.
On taste, if you fancy a more coconut-y flavor in your dishes or baked goods, coconut oil is better. Meanwhile, ghee mimics butter in taste and texture more effectively, often making it a more versatile option for cooking and baking.
Below, we explore all of this in more detail.
Comparing Coconut Oil vs Ghee
Coconut oil and ghee are both great options for cooking, and both offer up healthy fats. However, arguably, ghee might have coconut oil beat in a few ways.
Coconut Oil vs Ghee Nutrition
While coconut oil contains healthy fats from medium-chain triglycerides and has vitamin K and vitamin E, ghee comes out as the nutritional breadwinner with its vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, and vitamin K content. The only downside is that ghee comes with a bit more calories (energy) due to its slightly higher fat content. So, let’s take a closer look at coconut oil versus ghee.
Coconut oil contains about 90% saturated fats. Meanwhile, ghee comes in at about 50% saturated fats, containing more unsaturated fat than coconut oil. The unsaturated fat in ghee includes omega 3 and 6 fatty acids and zero trans fats. In comparison, coconut oil has some omega 6s but no omega 3s.
Neither has any significant carbs, fiber, or protein. In terms of calories, coconut oil and ghee are very similar.
|Per one tablespoon serving||Coconut Oil||Ghee|
|Calories||117 calories||120 calories|
|Total Fat||14 grams||15 grams|
|Carbohydrates||0 grams||0 grams|
|Protein||0 grams||0 grams|
|Allergens?||Coconut allergies||Dairy intolerances/allergies|
The Key Differences Between Coconut Oil and Ghee
Nutritional content aside, coconut oil and ghee are made in two different ways and from different sources. They also vary in taste. At the same time, many people do use these two entities similarly for cooking and baking. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the exact differences between these two.
Ingredients in Coconut Oil vs Ghee
Coconut oil is made from the flesh or “meat” of the coconut. Usually, this process involves pressing the coconut flesh to produce oil via compression or heat. You’ll often see coconut oil labeled as “cold pressed” or “expeller pressed.”
Cold pressed coconut oil involves pressing the coconut in a temperature-controlled environment to produce oil. Expeller pressed coconut oil involves pressing the coconut and producing oil through friction and heat. The biggest difference between these two processes is that since expeller pressed coconut oil uses heat, it actually loses some of its nutritional content.
Meanwhile, ghee, also known as clarified butter, is made by heating butter and separating out the solid milk portions from the fat. This means it’s actually tolerated much better by those with lactose, casein, or dairy sensitivities, while still containing some of its nutritional value.
Comparing How Coconut Oil vs Ghee Taste
Typically, coconut oil adds a nutty and coconut-y taste to dishes or recipes. This means that coconut oil has a more distinct flavor than ghee. Ghee tends to taste more buttery, helping it blend in easier with a wide variety of dishes. In fact, ghee is frequently used in place of butter.
Cooking With Coconut Oil vs Ghee
Both coconut oil and ghee provide great options for cooking and baking. Yet, the main thing to keep in mind is that coconut oil will add more of a distinct coconut-y flavor to your dishes or baked goods. Meanwhile, ghee has more versatility due to its buttery taste.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
This depends on your definition of “better.” If you desire a higher nutritional content, ghee contains more vitamins, including vitamins K, A, and D. If you want a coconut flavor added to your baked goods or dishes, coconut oil is better. For a more buttery taste, ghee is best. The choice is up to you!
Yes! Coconut oil can be used in place of ghee. In fact, you can replace ghee with coconut oil using a simple one-to-one ratio. If the recipe calls for two tablespoons of ghee, you can, instead, use two tablespoons of coconut oil.
Both are actually very similar in their caloric content, making them both great options for weight loss or a weight maintenance regime.
Since ghee is basically derived from butter, butter is the best alternative to ghee. These both have comparable fat contents and smoke points. However, you can replace ghee with coconut oil using a one-to-one ratio.
Ghee and coconut oil have similar calories, carbohydrates, and fat content. Since both are primarily fats, they are calorie dense but also fit into a keto or similar low-carb diet.