Pecan oil is a byproduct of the pecan nut that’s starting to reserve its spot in health food stores and specialty food shops all across America.
This natural edible oil is extracted from pecan kernels and is primarily used for cooking. Pure cold-pressed pecan oil tends to have a mild or neutral odor and flavor that allows it to blend well with any recipe.
Pecan oil also has important health benefits
Pure virgin pecan oil is considered healthy since it contains good monounsaturated fats and is low in saturated fats.
Only 9.5% of fatty acids in pecan oil are saturated. That’s lower than other commonly used cooking oils like olive oil with 13.5%, peanut oil with 17%, and butter with 66%¹. Pecan oil is lighter and does not contain some of the additives that other oils possess.
The balance of fatty acids found inside pecan oil have been known to reduce bad cholesterol and the risk of heart disease².
Pecan oil is now officially a "heart healthy" food
As of 2012 The American Heart Association has deemed that pecans are “heart healthy” and allowed them to be sold with the association’s “heart-check” printed on the label. If you see this heart-check on a product label, it means that a particular food meets the requirements of The American Heart Association’s HeartCheck Food Certification Program³.
Since pecans are full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and anti-oxidants, they have many health benefits other than helping you trim your waistline and lower your cholesterol.
“Scientists have proven that pecans have more anti-oxidants than any other tree nuts,” says Cindy Wise, Executive Vice President of The Texas Pecan Growers Association.
Cooking benefits of pecan oil
Pecan oil also has a high smoke point of 470° F (higher than other common culinary oils) . This allows the oil and its flavor to stay intact longer and at higher temperatures.
That means you can use it for baking, frying, grilling, sautéeing, and browning meat in a skillet without easily burning it.
Using pecan oil outside of the kitchen
Did you know that early Native American tribes used pecan oil in natural remedies to aid in curing and preventing illness?
Pecan oil was also used as a natural, organic skin remedy throughout ancient culture. Today, it can be found in many massage oils, cosmetics, and can be used in aromatherapy as well as the production of bio-fuel.
Needless to say, pecan oil can cure a multitude of sins.
Pecan oil in cosmetics
In the use of cosmetics, pecan oil most often appears in soaps, perfumes, or lotions in order to prevent and treat dry skin.
Pecan oil is considered a carrier oil and is used in aromatherapy in order to dilute essential oils for application. Carrier oils, like pecan oil, have a thicker texture and are mostly odorless, so they can help reduce the harsh smell of essential oils.
Be sure to read next week’s blog as we show you the best uses for pecan oil in the kitchen!
Ready to get started? Buy pure, cold pressed pecan oil here in our Farm Store!