Are you someone who loves experimenting with different cooking oils in the kitchen? Or maybe you’re just looking to switch things up from your usual go-to oil? Either way, you’ve come to the right place!
Today, I’m putting macadamia oil and coconut oil head-to-head. Both oils have their own unique flavor profiles and nutritional benefits, but which one is better when it comes to cooking and baking? Let’s find out!
Comparing macadamia oil vs coconut oil
|Macadamia oil||Coconut oil, Virgin/Unrefined||Coconut oil, Refined|
|Solid or Liquid?||Liquid||Semi solid||Semi solid|
|Smoke Point (Fahrenheit)||410 degrees||350 degrees||400 degrees|
|Good for Cooking…||Raw, low heat, moderate heat||Raw, low heat, moderate heat||Raw, low heat, moderate heat|
|Allergens||Macadamia, tree nut||Coconut, tree nut||Coconut, tree nut|
Differences between macadamia oil and coconut oil
Macadamia and coconut oil both contain tree nuts and are 100% plant-based.
Macadamia oil is extracted from the nuts of the macadamia tree, native to Australia. It has a smooth, buttery flavor and a high smoke point, making it suitable for various cooking methods.
Coconut oil is made by grating, drying, and pressing the flesh of coconuts. Coconut oil typically has a strong coconut aroma and taste, but refined coconut oil is more neutral.
Be sure to use cold-pressed macadamia oil and coconut oil as this process retains their nutrients and flavor much more than any other kind of method of processing.
Virgin/unrefined vs refined coconut oil
Virgin/unrefined coconut oil is extracted from fresh coconuts using methods like cold-pressing or centrifugation, preserving its natural aroma and flavor. It’s minimally processed and retains more nutrients.
On the other hand, refined coconut oil undergoes further processing, which includes bleaching and deodorizing to remove impurities and neutralize its flavor. Refined coconut oil has a higher smoke point, making it better for high-heat cooking, but it loses some of its natural goodness.
Baking and cooking with macadamia oil vs coconut oil
Macadamia oil has a great buttery flavor that can be used in a range of things, from marinades to fried foods. It’s excellent in both savory dishes (think Asian-style foods) and also as a replacement for butter in sweet treats. Its high smoke point allows for frying, sautéing, and stir-frying without sacrificing flavor.
On the other hand, coconut oil‘s distinct tropical taste lends itself well to desserts like cookies and granola bars. It can also be used in vegan recipes as a butter substitute. However, due to its lower smoke point, coconut oil is best for gentle cooking, such as light sautéing or used in no-bake recipes like these coconut cookie dough bites.
Can macadamia oil and coconut oil be substituted for each other?
You can replace macadamia oil with coconut oil as long as you don’t exceed coconut oil’s smoke point of 350-400 degrees (higher for refined coconut oil) when cooking. For most baking recipes, this shouldn’t be a problem.
Likewise, if you’re not a fan of coconut oil, you can substitute it with macadamia oil. This will give you a milder flavor, and it’s delicious in raw foods like this homemade macadamia nut butter.
Nutrition: Macadamia oil vs coconut oil
Both macadamia oil and coconut oil are healthy sources of fat.
Macadamia oil is high in good, non-inflammatory monounsaturated fatty acids, which are heart-healthy fats that can help lower cholesterol levels. It also provides vitamin E and antioxidants.
Coconut oil is rich in medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are easily digested and can provide a quick source of energy. However, coconut oil is high in saturated fats, so it’s important to consume it in moderation.
|Per tablespoon (15mL)||Macadamia oil||Coconut oil, Virgin/Unrefined||Coconut oil, Refined|
|Polyunsaturated||0.5 g||0 g||1 g|
|Monounsaturated||11 g||1 g||1 g|
|Saturated||2.5 g||13 g||12 g|
|Trans||0 g||0 g||0 g|
|Total Fat||14 g||14 g||14 g|
The primary fat source is bolded.
How to store macadamia oil and coconut oil
Both oils have very little polyunsaturated fat content, so they are very shelf-stable with a shelf life of up to 2 years.
Both should be stored in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Refrigeration is not necessary but can extend their shelf life. Keep in mind that coconut oil solidifies at cooler temperatures, but this does not affect its quality. Simply warm it slightly or let it soften at room temperature before use.
Macadamia oil vs coconut oil: Which is better
While both oils have their unique qualities, I personally lean toward macadamia oil for its versatility and nutritional benefits. Its delicate flavor, high smoke point, and healthy fats make it a great choice for a wide range of recipes, from sweet to savory dishes. However, coconut oil’s tropical taste and MCT content can be a wonderful addition in certain dishes. Ultimately, it boils down to personal preference and the specific requirements of each recipe.
Both coconut oil and macadamia oil can be great for your hair, but it depends on your hair type and needs. Coconut oil is known for its moisturizing properties and can be especially beneficial for dry or damaged hair, while macadamia oil is rich in antioxidants and may help promote hair growth and scalp health.
Yes, you can use coconut oil as a substitute for macadamia oil in certain recipes, but keep in mind that coconut oil has a stronger flavor, so it may alter the taste of the dish. Avocado oil and grapeseed oil are also good substitutes.
Yes, macadamia oil is generally considered a healthy oil because it’s high in monounsaturated fats, antioxidants and vitamin E. However, as with any oil, moderation is key due to its high calorie content.