Cooking without oil is a popular method among the plant-based community who tend to favor an intake of higher carbs and lower fat. However, even if you don’t share these dietary preferences, there are actual health benefits to opting for no oil cooking.
There’s no denying that unrefined and cold-pressed oils, such as olive and avocado, can provide beneficial properties like polyphenols, lowering inflammation, and good cholesterol.
However, when heated at high temperatures, many of these unrefined oils become unstable, losing nutrients and becoming sources of unnecessary added fat and calories. Oils can even be harmful when heated beyond the smoke point, as they release toxic fumes and carcinogens. This is why these healthier oils are best consumed raw (e.g. as a dressing) or cooked on a low heat.
Now, that’s not to say we don’t advocate for adding healthy fats to your meals. But just be mindful that cooking oil doesn’t contribute the same health benefits as raw cold-pressed oils and whole food sources of fat like avocados, nuts, or seeds.
The main reason why oil is used in cooking is for non-stick purposes. However, certain cooking methods and modern cookware have made it possible to achieve the same outcome without sacrificing flavor.
Here are some ways you can cook without oil:
If you do prefer to cook with a little bit of oil every once in a while, the best oils to cook with are usually ones that can remain stable at higher temperatures.
We recommend avocado, coconut, and grapeseed oil for cooking purposes.
With all of these cooking methods and modern kitchen appliances, there shouldn’t be a need to use oil as a non-sticking agent. Remember to opt for whole foods or raw unrefined oils for your sources of fat to stay on your journey to better health.
Get more recipes and alternatives for no oil cooking by trying Yes Health for free for 14 days to see what your health coaching team recommends for you.