Below, I’ll dig into the answers to all of these questions, and much more. So, let’s dive in!
What is soybean oil?
Soybean oil is a type of vegetable oil derived from soybeans. It is one of the most widely consumed and commercially available oils worldwide.
Due to its high smoke point and neutral taste, soybean oil is commonly utilized in commercial settings for frying and baking purposes, as well as in processed or packaged food items. It’s also used in livestock feed.
For individuals who aim to avoid genetically modified ingredients, soybean oil may not be suitable since the majority of soybeans produced in the United States are genetically modified.
How is soybean oil made?
Soybean oil is made by extracting the oil from whole soybeans, typically through solvent extraction.
First, the soybeans are cleaned and cracked into small pieces. Then, they undergo a process called flaking, where they are rolled into thin flakes.
The flakes are then mixed with a solvent, usually hexane, which helps extract the oil.
The mixture is heated and passed through a distillation process to remove the solvent, leaving behind crude soybean oil.
This crude oil goes through refining processes such as degumming, neutralization, bleaching, and deodorization to obtain the final soybean oil product.
Benefits of soybean oil
Soybean oil offers several benefits. Firstly, its versatility makes it suitable for various cooking methods due to its high smoke point and neutral flavor.
Soybean oil can help promote heart health, thanks to its healthy polyunsaturated fats, including omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. It also has monounsaturated fats like oleic acid which is anti-inflammatory and reduces cholesterol. Additionally, it is a good source of vitamins E and K.
However, moderation is key, as excessive consumption can lead to an imbalance in omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids.
Soybean oil nutrition facts
|Serving size||1 tbsp (15mL)|
|Total Fat||13.6 g|
The primary fat source is bolded.
How to cook and bake with soybean oil
When it comes to cooking and baking with soybean oil, you’ve got yourself a versatile option! This oil can handle some serious heat, thanks to its high smoke point of around 450-475°F. That means you can use it for frying, sautéing, and even deep-frying without worrying about it breaking down and turning your dish into a smokey disaster.
Whether you’re stir-frying vegetables, deep-frying chicken, baking cookies, or making a homemade dressing, soybean oil is a great go-to choice that works well in various recipes.
When it comes to baking, soybean oil can be a fantastic choice too. It helps keep your baked goods moist and tender while providing a subtle flavor that won’t steal the show. So go ahead and use it in your cookies, cakes, muffins, and more!
Ways to use soybean oil
Here are some of the delicious things you can make with soybean oil:
- French fries
- Potato chips
- Fried chicken
- Baked goods (cakes, muffins, brownies, and more)
- Pancakes and waffles
- Tortilla chips
- Fried fish
- Salad dressings
These are just a few examples, but the possibilities are truly endless!
How to store soybean oil
To keep your soybean oil in tip-top shape, make sure to store it in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dark spot, away from heat and light sources.
If you notice any funky smells or strange tastes, it might be time to bid farewell to the oil.
Generally, unopened bottles of soybean oil can stay fresh for up to 2 years, while opened ones should be used within 1 year. Just remember to check the specific recommendations on the product you have, as shelf life can vary a bit.
What are the best substitutes for soybean oil?
The #1 substitute for soybean oil is vegetable oil, which is often made from a blend of different oils, including soybean oil. It is a versatile option suitable for high-heat cooking and has a similar flavor profile.
Canola oil is also very similar and has a neutral flavor that works well for most things you would use soybean oil for.
For cold dishes and light cooking, virgin olive oil is also a good alternative, offering a distinct flavor and health benefits.
Soybean oil can be part of a healthy diet when consumed in moderation, as it is a good source of unsaturated fats and vitamin E. However, excessive consumption of soybean oil, like any other oil high in omega-6 fatty acids, may contribute to an imbalance in the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids, which could have negative health effects.
Soybean oil is often referred to as vegetable oil, as it is a commonly used type of vegetable oil. However, vegetable oil can also be made from other sources, such as a blend of different oils.