We all know that olive oil is incredibly healthy! It’s a staple in many modern kitchens. It’s packed with antioxidants and has been shown to help lower cholesterol and even improve heart health. It’s most commonly consumed, but it is gaining popularity in being used in many DIY beauty products!
However you need to use olive oil, the question has probably come to mind. Can you microwave olive oil? And the answer is YES! But there are some things to keep in mind to retain all the nutrients and vitamins and ensure the oil doesn’t catch fire in the microwave.
So read on to learn more about how to safely and effectively microwave olive oil!
What is Olive Oil?
Olive oil is a popular oil derived from cold pressing olives. It contains healthy fats that are beneficial to the human body and is widely used in cooking, baking and even skincare products. There are several types of olive oils with varying levels of flavor, aroma, color and acidity.
Extra-virgin olive oil is considered the highest quality because it undergoes the most minimal processing and contains higher amounts of vitamins and antioxidants than other varieties. Virgin olive oil has also gone through minimal processing while regular olive oil is more heavily processed which can reduce some of its health benefits.
Not only does it help to enrich your meals with flavor, it also carries many health benefits such as improving cardiovascular health, aiding digestion, reducing inflammation, and even benefiting skin care. It’s also becoming increasingly popular in beauty products such as moisturizers, scrubs, and bath oils due to its mild chemical properties and nourishing vitamins.
How to Microwave Olive Oil Step by Step
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to microwave olive oil to ensure you are getting the best results every time!
Step 1: Measure out the exact amount of olive oil you need for your recipe. If you do end up with excess olive oil, immediately discard it afterwards. Do not reheat it.
Step 3: Turn the microwave to the lowest setting. This will prevent the oil from getting too hot too quick. The goal is to slightly warm it without overheating it.
Step 4: Microwave in 5 second intervals. Stir in between intervals to distribute the heat evenly and to prevent overheating.
Step 5: Take out of the microwave and use it in your recipe! When the oil has warmed completely, take it out of the microwave. It’s ready to use!
Is It Safe to Microwave Olive Oil?
Yes, it is perfectly safe to microwave olive oil! The smoking point of extra virgin olive oil is about 410 degrees Fahrenheit. But what does this mean? Olive oil can be heated up to 410 degrees Fahrenheit before breaking down. If you heat it past that, the oil can become carcinogenic and release toxic fumes. The high heat will also start to break down the healthy compounds.
But don’t let this worry you or deter you from microwaving olive oil! That’s why we wrote this guide. Follow the steps we have listed above. And keep the below tips in mind.
- Always use the lowest setting on the microwave when heating up olive oil. Oil naturally heats up twice as fast as water and will easily overheat. By using the lowest setting, you are ensuring you do not overheat the oil too quickly.
- Microwave the olive oil in short intervals. When you are heating olive oil, your goal should be to only warm it up, not nuke it. Microwaving in 5 second intervals prevents the oil from getting too hot.
- Do not use a plastic container to microwave the olive oil. Plastic has been known to leech chemicals into foods and liquids when exposed to heat.
- Stir in between 5 second intervals. Stirring allows you to redistribute the heat evenly throughout the oil. Microwaves often do not heat food and liquids evenly.
What Can Happen if You Heat Olive Oil Too High?
If you microwave olive oil too long or too high you risk losing the chemical structure, thus neutralizing the health benefits. The compounds and healthy constituents will start to break down once the oil reaches its smoking point. Even though olive oil is considered to be relatively stable when exposed to high heat, it’s best not to take any chances.
Final Thoughts on Microwaving Olive Oil
So, can you microwave olive oil? Yes, you can! Just make sure you are following the precautions and guidance we have listed out here in this article!
Always use the lowest setting on the microwave and heat in short intervals.
What do you use olive oil for? Let us know in the comments!