After squeezing olives to make olive oil, you’re left with the skin and flesh of olives. They still contain a little bit of oil, but you can’t press them anymore. What if you could process them further to get all of the residual oil out? That would save a lot of money, right? Well, that’s essentially what olive pomace oil is…
Let’s take a look at this lesser-known cooking oil, from its production to its benefits and everything in between!
What is olive pomace oil?
In a nutshell, olive pomace oil is derived from the skins and flesh of olives (known as pomace) after the first extraction of olive oil. It’s a cheaper alternative to higher grades of olive oil.
The remaining oil in the pomace is quite minimal, which is why chemical and heat extraction methods are often used to remove it.
It’s the lowest grade “olive oil”, and actually it doesn’t quite meet the requirements set by the International Olive Council to be considered olive oil.
Because olive pomace oil is flavorless, it’s highly versatile for high-heat cooking. However, it’s worth noting that some countries have issued bans and warnings regarding its use.
How is olive pomace oil made?
Olive pomace oil is produced by extracting the residual oil from the skin and flesh of olives after the initial extraction of olive oil.
The leftover olive pomace undergoes a refining process that typically involves solvent extraction, heat, and filtration.
The solvent is used to extract the remaining oil from the pomace, which is then subjected to heat to remove any remaining solvents.
Finally, the oil is filtered to remove impurities, resulting in olive pomace oil.
This process allows for the efficient extraction of oil from the olive remnants, maximizing its yield and reducing waste.
What’s the difference between olive pomace oil and olive oil?
Now, you might be wondering how olive pomace oil differs from regular olive oil.
The key distinction lies in the production process and the quality of the oil. While olive pomace oil is obtained from the residue of olives after the initial extraction, olive oil is derived solely from the first pressing of the olives. This makes olive oil higher in quality and flavor compared to olive pomace oil.
If you’re interested, here is the best olive oil you can buy!
Benefits of olive pomace oil
When it comes to nutritional benefits, olive pomace oil offers a few advantages. It contains primarily monounsaturated fats, which are considered heart-healthy and can help improve cholesterol levels. It’s also a good source of vitamin E, an antioxidant that supports overall health.
One of the significant advantages of olive pomace oil is its high smoke point. This means you can heat it to higher temperatures without it reaching its smoke point and breaking down. Unlike extra-virgin olive oil, it’s excellent for frying, sautéing, and other high-heat cooking methods.
Olive pomace oil nutrition facts
|1 tbsp (15mL)
The primary fat source is bolded.
How to cook and bake with olive pomace oil
When it comes to cooking, olive pomace oil’s high smoke point of 460°F makes it perfect for sautéing, frying, and stir-frying your favorite dishes.
Its mild flavor won’t overpower the other ingredients, allowing their natural flavors to shine through. Use it for sautéing vegetables, grilling meats, or in salad dressings.
In baking, olive pomace oil can replace traditional fats like butter or vegetable oil. Try substituting it in your favorite cake recipes, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the moist and tender results.
Olive pomace oil can also be used in baked goods such as biscotti, focaccia or herb-infused breadsticks.
Ways to use olive pomace oil
Here are a few popular dishes where olive pomace oil can be used:
- Crispy fried chicken or fish
- Mediterranean salad
- Focaccia bread
- Roasted vegetables
- Pasta dishes
- Grilled seafood
- Olive oil cake
How to store olive pomace oil
To store olive pomace oil, choose a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight, such as a pantry or cupboard, to prevent oxidation and degradation of the oil. Refrigeration is not necessary.
The shelf life of olive pomace oil can vary, but generally, an unopened bottle can last up to two years. Once opened, it’s best to use it within six months to a year.
What are the best substitutes for olive pomace oil?
Refined olive oil, regular olive oil, or other vegetable oils can be used as substitutes for olive pomace oil.
Refined olive oil is the closest alternative to olive pomace oil in terms of flavor and smoke point.
Regular olive oil works well for regular and high-heat cooking, but keep in mind that it has a stronger olive flavor compared to pomace oil.
If you don’t mind a slightly different flavor profile, vegetable oils like canola oil can often be used as a substitute, especially for baking. Just be sure to check the smoke point of the oil you are working with.
Olive pomace oil and olive oil serve different purposes. While olive pomace oil is suitable for high-heat cooking due to its high smoke point, olive oil, especially extra virgin olive oil, offers a distinct flavor and is best used in raw or low-heat applications.
Yes, it’s not as healthy as extra-virgin olive oil, but olive pomace oil is still considered a healthy option due to its high monounsaturated fat content, which can contribute to heart health when consumed as part of a balanced diet.
Olive pomace oil is commonly used for high-heat cooking methods such as sautéing, stir-frying, and deep-frying. It is also suitable for baking and can be used as a substitute for other oils or butter.
Extra virgin olive oil is the highest quality and least processed type of olive oil, with a distinct flavor and aroma. Virgin olive oil is slightly more refined but still retains some flavor. Olive pomace oil, as discussed, is a byproduct of olive oil production and has undergone further refining, making it more suitable for high-heat cooking.