5 Things to Love About Coconut Oil

Diane Sanfilippo Food & Recipes, Most Popular 8 Comments

I really, really, really love coconut oil. Organic, virgin, unrefined coconut oil.

I buy coconut oil all the time. This week, I was lucky enough to receive a sample of Tropical Traditions brand Gold Label Standard Virgin Coconut Oil. I also recently received my order for their Coconut Creme Concentrate as well! I'm in love with that stuff…but more on that later, this post is about the OIL!

So here they are, my 5 Things to Love About Coconut Oil:
(These are in no particular order. There are more things to love about coconut oil, but in an effort to keep it short, I'm sticking to 5.)

1. Coconut oil is fantastic for cooking.

I use it to lightly oil a pan for frying an egg, sauteéing kale or any veggies that might have a slightly bitter taste as the coconut oil is just barely sweet. I also use it to shallow pan-fry chicken when I want the skin to get crispy!

Since coconut oil is mostly a saturated fat (comprised of healthful medium-chain fatty acids which have been touted as weight-loss enhancers!), it is stable at high temperatures and doesn't oxidize easily as olive oil would. This robust property makes coconut oil an ideal cooking oil!

2. Coconut Oil is great for baking.

You can use it in place of vegetable oil or, for heaven's sake, crisco (both of which are highly processed oils with molecular structures that are not easily recognized by your body). As a side note, I NEVER use vegetable oils or crisco. Those are not foods. This does not include olive oil, nut oils or sesame seed oil – those are in my kitchen.

3. Coconut Oil is a HEALTHY saturated fat.

Yes, you read that correctly. It's a naturally occurring saturated fat that your body knows how to handle and process. We've been told over the last 30 years or so that eating saturated fat was unhealthy and this isn't true! One interesting thing to note about coconut oil is that it melts into a liquid at around 76 degrees. Last time I checked, our bodies run somewhere around 98 degrees. That means this stuff doesn't stay solid when it hits your body. Other fats out there that are naturally liquid but become solid by a chemical process (hydrogenated oils) don't melt again until they hit much higher temperatures in a pan or an oven. Our bodies aren't that hot.  I'll get into the great fat debate more in a future post, but for now you can go ahead and do a google search for “health benefits of coconut oil” and see for yourself. I eat tons of coconut oil and I'm not fat, I promise.

4. Coconut Oil makes a fantastic natural moisturizer.

I use it on my face and all over my body. It absorbs fairly quickly and doesn't remain as an oily layer on your skin. I recently heard a quote about how to select products to put on my skin, I believe it was something to the effect of “if you wouldn't eat it, don't put it on your skin.” Considering our skin absorbs what we put on it, I can see how that makes perfect sense. I now keep a small glass jar filled with Organic Green Label Coconut Oil in my medicine cabinet for use morning and night after I wash my face or take a shower. It will not leave your face or body oily, just try it for a week and see for yourself!

5. Coconut Oil mixes easily with organic, unsweetened cocoa powder to make homemade CHOCOLATE! 

That's right, when I'm out of a fantastic bar of organic dark chocolate and I have a craving, I make my own. Here's one recipe that I posted on the Balanced Bites Facebook Fan Page that uses coconut creme concentrate, coconut oil and peanut butter. Yum.

Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

Go ahead and shop at TropicalTraditions.com for items like coconut oil, coconut flour, shredded/flaked coconut and coconut cream concentrate (like coconut butter) and you won't be disappointed.

By using my links to shop at Tropical Traditions, you will receive a complimentary copy of the book “Virgin Coconut Oil: How it has changed people’s lives and how it can change yours!” by Brian and Marianita Shilhavy with your first order! This book is filled with testimonies and research showing how healthy coconut oil is, and it also includes over 85 recipes showing how one can incorporate coconut into their diet.

Comments 8

  1. Diane,

    Great blog. I love it. Super resourceful and interesting. Thanks so much for always posting interesting articles. I am definitely going to continue coming back. I had a question about coconut oil. I recent purchased Jarrow's Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, I love it but I was curious about storage. It says best storage method is in the refrigerator, but I hate how solidified it gets in the cool temperature. Can I store it at room temperature? How do you store yours?


  2. Hi-

    You can DEFINITELY take that oil out of the fridge! I would never tell someone to store it there…even in a hot climate. Coconut oil is a tropical oil and it's NATURAL state is in a warm climate and liquid. It's solid at room temperature here in San Francisco since we have a cool climate.

    I hope that helps! I'd also recommend keeping it stored in a glass container if it doesn't come in glass already. Just melt it down and then transfer it.

    Glad you like my blog! Look out for a new coconut recipe on Monday!


  3. Just ordered some today…can't wait to experiment cooking with it because I know it's used in a lot of south Indian cooking from Kerala. I use coconut oil on my hair every couple of weeks to keep it shiny (most Indians in India use coconut oil in their hair everyday), and it certainly keeps my hair healthy!

  4. Hey Sarita-

    Cool! What kind did you get? The gold label has an interesting quality to it that I wasn't used to. I've also gotten the green label which is more similar to the ones I've gotten in stores here. Let me know how it goes. I cook with it all the time! I'm going to try the hair treatment- how long do you leave it in before washing it out?


  5. My grandmom's skin & hair were flawless even when she was in her 80s. We would visit her (in Kerala) during the summer hols and she had a grove of coconut trees in her backyard. Each day, a helper would climb up the tree and pluck the ripe coconuts needed for the day. Just reading this article, takes me down memory lane and reminds me of all the yummy food she made -all cooked in coconut oil.

    I try to keep the oil massage tradition going with my kid. I warm up the oil, massage his hair & body, leave it on for 30mins, and give him a good rinse. There are herbal rinsing techniques too but that will be too much for this post. Your hair & skin will smell of coconut oil though for a couple of days after….

    I am glad to learn of the benefits of coconut oil and now can use it to make my favorite traditional recipes – GUILT Free 🙂

  6. I am allergic to coconut; what would be your second favorite cooking oil? 🙂 I really wish I could use it, but the hives tell me NO!

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