Oil is essential in cooking to produce flavorful foods, regardless of dietary restrictions. So it is important to know which oils are gluten-free.
All cooking oils are gluten-free, including canola. However, be sure the oil you choose is 100% canola and free from additives. Many of these contain wheat, thus making the oil not gluten-free. Crisco, Wesson, Mazola, Thrive Market, and Trader Joe's are certified gluten-free brands.
Knowing what you put in your body is important whether you have Celiac disease, are on the Keto diet, or just want to eat clean and healthy meals. I understand this as someone who is always trying to live a healthy lifestyle and is conscious of what I eat and cook. So keep reading as I dive into what canola is, why it is gluten-free, discuss other gluten-free oils, and more.
What is Canola Oil?
Canola oil is a culinary favorite that has roots in the 1970s. Canola originates from rapeseed plants - flowering perennials that produce pods of beneficial oils. Over the years, it has been refined into a food-grade version known as canola plants. The seeds from these plants are squeezed to release an oil, which is then purified and bottled for cooking.
This cooking oil has become famous for its light flavor and neutrality, making it perfect for countless dishes like salad dressing, marinades, and frying. Not only does canola oil bring great taste to your meal, but it also provides monounsaturated fatty acids, which are important for the health of your heart.
Not to mention, canola oil has a high smoke point making it ideal for all cooking, including frying, baking, and sautéing.
Is Canola Oil Gluten Free?
Canola oil is perfect for those on a gluten-free diet. Nearly all cooking oils are free from gluten, but it's important to always double-check the labels before buying. Depending on where the oil was manufactured, there may be traces of cross-contamination from other foods. Due to this, make sure the oil is certified gluten-free.
One side note, whenever items are flavored or include additives, there's always an additional risk of cross-contamination with gluten. While this isn't common, make sure to check that label!
Why is Canola Oil Gluten-Free?
Gluten is a protein in grains such as wheat, rye, and barley. Fortunately, canola oil is naturally gluten-free since it doesn't contain any of these grains or proteins. Furthermore, as mentioned, it is made from pressing and refining canola seeds - a plant that does not contain gluten. Therefore, you can trust that all pure canola oil is completely gluten-free.
Are All Brands of Canola Oil Gluten-Free?
Canola oil is gluten-free from plant to oil, so you should not have trouble finding a brand you prefer. A few of the brands you can trust to be certified gluten-free include:
- Healthy Harvest
- Thrive Market
- 365 Whole Foods
- Kirkland Signature
- Native Harvest
- Signature Select
- Trader Joe's
If you are unfamiliar with an oil brand, make sure canola oil is the only ingredient, and you will be fine.
Which Other Oils are Gluten-Free?
All cooking oils are naturally gluten-free. This includes the following:
Is Canola Spray Gluten-Free?
Cooking spray combines oil and lecithin from safe vegetable oils like canola, olive, coconut, peanut, or sunflower. To ensure that it's gluten-free before you buy it, double-check to ensure the product wasn't packaged near any wheat-contaminated environment.
Lecithin is an additive that prevents ingredients from segregating in a mixture, and it's usually sourced from soy. It works as a lubricant and emulsifier; when used in cooking spray, for instance, Lecithin ensures that the oil disperses evenly without leaving residues or sticking on your pots and pans.
If you are following a non-GMO diet, it is best to avoid most cooking sprays as they tend to be sourced from genetically modified soybeans. That being said, the oil and propellants used in these products do not contain gluten.
Is Canola Oil Vegan?
Yes, canola oil is vegan and a popular cooking oil made from canola seeds. It is low in saturated fat and high in monounsaturated fatty acids, making it an excellent alternative to other cooking oils.
Is Canola Oil Keto Friendly?
You are lucky if you follow the keto diet, as canola oil contains no carbs. It is high in monounsaturated fats and low in carbohydrates, making it a good choice for those following a keto-friendly diet.
Is Canola Oil Soy-Free?
Canola oil is not made with soy ingredients making it soy free and safe for those who are allergic to soy. Checking the product's label is important, as some brands may add soybean oil or other soy derivatives during processing.
In addition, it is important to look for a product made in a facility that does not process other soy products.
Why Canola Oil is a Healthy Choice
The health benefits of canola oil should not be understated. Canola oil is a healthy choice for cooking due to its low saturated fat content, high monounsaturated fatty acid content, and beneficial essential fatty acid profile.
In addition, it is a great source of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and improve overall heart health. It is also high in antioxidants which can help reduce oxidative stress and fight disease.
Is Pure Canola Oil Healthier Than Olive Oil?
Deciding which oil is best for one's health can be tricky, as both options offer some benefits. For example, olive oil contains high levels of monounsaturated fats - which are beneficial for cardiovascular well-being.
On the other hand, canola oil has larger concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids that may help reduce inflammation. But, again, it all comes down to your individual dietary needs and overall health objectives.
Is Canola Oil Healthier Than Vegetable Oil?
Canola oil is healthier than vegetable oil, as canola contains higher levels of monounsaturated fats and lower levels of saturated fats. As mentioned, canola oil is a better source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation and promote heart health.
Also, canola oil has a higher smoke point than vegetable oil, making it a better choice for cooking without setting off the fire alarm.
Drawbacks of Canola Oil
Like most foods, there are some potential drawbacks to canola oil. First, canola oil is a refined product, so it may contain trace amounts of chemicals and solvents used in the manufacturing process.
For the health-conscious, it is essential to be aware that approximately 90% of canola oil comes from genetically modified crops. This means its pesticide residue levels could exceed those found in organic and non-GMO versions.
Omega-3 fatty acids provide beneficial health benefits, yet canola oil may be less ideal due to its higher omega-6 than omega-3 ratio. In addition, inflammation is a likely risk from too much consumption of such fats.
Therefore, ensuring your diet maintains an even balance between the two types of fat is important. Furthermore, when buying oils like canola or other vegetable oils, choose organic and non-GMO without hexane or any other solvents included in their production process.
About THE AUTHOR
My name is Virginia Just, and I have a passion for food and consider myself to be a great home cook. I love watching Hell’s Kitchen and Masterchef with my husband to learn new techniques. I am currently working on getting my first of many nutrition certifications to become a Nutrition Coach and advise people struggling to stay healthy.Read More About Virginia Just