Sesame oil and lard are two of the most popular cooking oils/fats out there.
Sesame oil, with its nutty flavor and high smoke point, is a staple in many cuisines around the world. Whether you’re using it to stir-fry your veggies or add depth to your marinades, sesame oil is a delicious choice.
But let’s not forget about lard! This type of animal fat has been used for centuries in baking and cooking, and for good reason. Its neutral flavor and high smoke point make it perfect for frying up crispy bacon or baking flaky pie crusts.
So which one should you choose? Keep reading to find out!
Comparing sesame oil vs lard
|Sesame oil||Lard (Pork fat)|
|Solid or Liquid?||Liquid||Solid|
|Smoke Point (Fahrenheit)||350-450 degrees||375 degrees|
|Taste||Nutty||Mildly porky to neutral|
|Good for Cooking…||Raw, low het, moderate heat||Raw, low heat, moderate heat|
|Allergens||Sesame seeds||Pork, meat allergy|
|Paleo?||Mostly yes (some debate)||Yes|
Differences between sesame oil and lard
Let’s start with the basics. First up, sesame oil is plant-based and is extracted from, you guessed it, sesame seeds! It’s typically extracted using a process called cold-pressing, where the seeds are crushed and pressed to release their oil. The resulting oil is clear and has a light, nutty flavor.
You can also get toasted sesame oil, where the seeds are toasted and then pressed or extracted using a chemical solvent to extract the oil. The resulting oil is a golden liquid with a nutty flavor and a high smoke point.
Lard is animal-based and comes from pig fat. It’s usually rendered, which means the fat is melted and separated from any impurities to create a pure, white fat. Lard has a creamy consistency and a neutral or porky flavor, making it a versatile choice for cooking and baking.
Another big difference between the two is their consistency – sesame oil is a liquid at room temperature, while lard is solid. This can impact how they are used in recipes, with lard being a popular choice for baking and frying, while sesame oil is often used as a finishing oil or in marinades and dressings.
Baking and cooking with sesame oil vs lard
Toasted sesame oil, with its rich, nutty aroma, is perfect for adding depth to stir-fries, marinades, and dressings. It’s a game-changer when making sesame chicken or a vibrant Asian slaw. A little goes a long way, so drizzle it sparingly to avoid overpowering your dish.
Refined sesame oil, on the other hand, has a milder flavor and a higher smoke point, making it ideal for high-heat cooking. It works wonders when stir-frying veggies or searing meat to perfection.
Now, let’s talk lard! This underrated fat adds a rich, savory note to your dishes. It’s fantastic for baking flaky pie crusts or creating golden-fried delights like empanadas. Lard is also a go-to when making traditional dishes like biscuits or tamales, bringing that nostalgic, comfort-food vibe to the table.
Can sesame oil and lard be substituted for each other?
While sesame oil and lard can both add flavor and richness to dishes, they are not interchangeable in recipes. They are too different. Sesame oil has a distinct nutty flavor and is best used in Asian-inspired dishes or as a finishing oil, while lard has a buttery flavor and is better suited for baking and frying.
If a recipe specifically calls for one or the other, it’s best to stick with that ingredient for optimal results.
Nutrition: Sesame oil vs lard
While lard has been unfairly demonized in the past, it is still high in saturated fat and should be consumed in moderation. Sesame oil, on the other hand, is a good source of healthy unsaturated fats and can provide a range of health benefits when consumed as part of a balanced diet.
Sesame oil also contains antioxidants and other beneficial compounds that can provide a range of health benefits, including improved skin health and a reduced risk of certain diseases.
That being said, lard is not without its benefits – it contains vitamins D and E, as well as oleic acid, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties.
|Per tablespoon (15mL)||Sesame oil||Lard (Pork fat)|
|Polyunsaturated||5.7 g||1.4 g|
|Monounsaturated||5.4 g||5.8 g|
|Saturated||1.9 g||5 g|
|Trans||0 g||0 g|
|Total Fat||13.6 g||12.8 g|
The primary fat source is bolded.
How to store sesame oil and lard
If you want your sesame oil to last longer, keep it cool and dark, and for lard, keep it chilled!
I keep my sesame oil in my pantry – away from direct sunlight and heat sources. It can last up to 6 months when stored properly.
On the other hand, lard should be stored in the refrigerator or freezer to prevent spoilage, and can last up to 1 year in the fridge or 2 years in the freezer.
Sesame oil vs lard: The ultimate verdict
After experimenting with both sesame oil and lard in my cooking and baking, I have to say that sesame oil comes out as the clear winner. Not only is it a good source of healthy unsaturated fats and antioxidants, it adds that rich, nuttiness to things like fried rice, stir-fries, and more!
While lard has its benefits, such as containing vitamins and anti-inflammatory properties, its high saturated fat content makes it a less healthy option overall.
In a nutshell, if you’re looking to infuse your dishes with an irresistible Asian flair, sesame oil is your secret weapon. On the other hand, lard adds a mouthwatering touch of indulgence to your baked goodies and comfort foods. The choice is yours, and it all depends on the flavors you’re craving. Happy cooking and baking!
Well, it depends on what you’re using it for! Lard is great for adding flavor and texture to dishes, while seed oils like sesame oil are better for their unique taste and health benefits.
While lard is often unfairly demonized for being high in saturated fat, it actually has some health benefits and can be a healthier option than some other oils. That being said, there are definitely healthier oils to cook with, such as olive oil or avocado oil, which are higher in healthy unsaturated fats.
When it comes to health, corn oil is generally considered a better option than lard because it’s lower in saturated fat and higher in healthy unsaturated fats. However, both should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet.