Why Your Pantry Needs Avocado Oil

Delicious, healthy, and easy-to-cook with.


By Jennifer House, R.D.


Look out olive oil, there’s a new kid on the shelf – avocado oil!

Avocados are technically a fruit rather than a veggie, and very high in fat. Ancient Aztecs used to call avocados “vegetable butter.” Unlike most oils that come from seeds, avocado oil is pressed from the fruit of an avocado. Avocados produce mild flavored oil, which varies in color from light yellow to a deeper emerald green. 

Since avocado oil has an even higher percentage of healthier monounsaturated fats than olive oil and the highest smoking point of all cooking oils, it truly deserves a spot in your pantry. 

Monounsaturated Fats: 

76% of the fat in avocado oil is monounsaturated, 12% polyunsaturated, and 12% saturated fat. Fats are necessary for many body functions, including absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, healthy hair, and skin. Of course, fat also improves taste of foods too! 

Monounsaturated fat was made famous by the Mediterranean Diet and promotes heart health by decreasing “bad” LDL blood cholesterol. Replacing monounsaturated fats for simple carbohydrates (like eating an avocado instead of pretzels) can also increase “good” HDL blood cholesterol, favoring heart health even further. 

Another reason why oils high in monounsaturated fats are healthy is that they are, by default, lower in omega-6 polyunsaturated fats unlike most vegetable oils and processed foods made with these oils. High amounts of omega-6 fats can promote inflammation, possibly leading to heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. 


Besides the healthy fats, avocado oil is high in Vitamin E as well as carotenoids. Among other roles in our body, Vitamin E serves as an antioxidant. It protects our body cells from free radical damage. Carotenoids are also antioxidants. The most prevalent one in avocados is lutein. Lutein promotes eye health by fighting against macular degeneration and also has potential anti-carcinogenic activity. 


Another heart healthy benefit of avocados and their oil is due to plant sterols. Plant sterols are a group of phytochemicals found in plants such as whole grains, oils, beans, fruit, and nuts. Sterols have cholesterol-lowering properties as they compete with cholesterol for absorption in our bodies. 

High Smoke Point: 

One big benefit of avocado oil is that it has a high smoke point. Once oil reaches its smoke point, it will release smoke and the oil will start to decompose and produce toxins. Avocado oil won’t smoke until about 520 degrees Fahrenheit. For comparison, olive oil smokes at a lower 375 degrees. This makes avocado oil great for high temperature cooking like stir-frying. 

The flavor of avocado’s oil is light and won’t overpower the taste of your dressing or dish, making it very versatile. Use avocado oil as a healthy addition in your kitchen for baking, frying, BBQing, in salad dressings, or for dipping your baguette! 

Jennifer is a registered dietitian, registered nutritionist, and a member of the Alberta College of Dietitians and Dietitians of Canada. Combining her personal and professional passions, Jennifer loves to blog about food and eating during pregnancy and for young kids and families. You can find her on First Step Nutrition.

Photo credit:  Africa Studio/