Roasted Peanut Oil: A Premium Finishing Oil

Roasted peanut oil history

Roasted peanut oil is made with peanuts, which are legumes that historians believe originated in Peru. They were used in religious ceremonies by the Incas. European explorers discovered maize and peanuts in Brazil, which they took to Africa and other parts of the world to be cultivated.

Roasted peanut oil appears to be unknown in Western cookery until the late 1990s when it became trendy. To make it, the peanuts are first roasted before the oil is extracted. Roasted peanut oil is usually expeller-pressed.

Roasted peanut oil is sometimes called gourmet peanut oil. It is a kind of unrefined peanut oil, which means that it has not been filtered or deodorized. It is typically extracted with mechanical means — as opposed to chemical means — to ensure that it maintains its strong flavor profile.

Roasted peanut oil flavor profile

Roasted peanut oil has the distinctive flavor and aroma of roasted peanuts. Its peanut flavor is often described as intense. Whereas refined peanut oil has been processed to make it a neutral and versatile oil, roasted peanut oil is not.

Health benefits

Like regular refined peanut oil, roasted peanut oil has a set of important health benefits that it gets from nutrients like:

  • Vitamins: Like refined peanut oil, roasted peanut oil is a good source of vitamin E.
  • Phytosterols: The phytosterols in roasted peanut oil may be important for heart health.
  • Unsaturated fatty acids: Peanut oil is a good source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids that are beneficial for lowering the risk of heart disease.

The nutrients above provide health benefits like:

  • Cancer: The antioxidants in roasted peanut oil can protect from various chronic diseases including cancer.
  • Diabetes: There is some evidence that peanut oil can help your body to better control blood sugar levels, which may help lower your risk of developing diabetes.
  • Heart disease: Some of the fatty acids in roasted peanut oil may help to lower your triglyceride levels and as well as the plaque accumulation in your arteries.

Health concerns

Peanut oil is fat so it can contribute to obesity because of its high caloric content. Roasted peanut oil does contain the protein that causes reactions in people with peanut allergies. You will need to avoid it if you are allergic to peanuts, unlike regular refined peanut oil. The refinement process removes the allergens. You should also consider the omega-6 fatty acids in peanut oils since they can contribute to inflammation when consumed in excess.

Common uses

Manufacturers ensure that roasted peanut oil retains its flavor so that it can be used as a flavoring ingredient. Roasted peanut oil is commonly used in the same way that toasted sesame oil is used: it is a finishing oil and a key ingredient in several dipping sauces. It gives dishes a strong flavor similar to the flavor provided by toasted sesame seed oil.

Because the peanuts from which it is extracted have already been roasted or fried in a wok, roasted peanut oil contains compounds that have already been exposed to heat and transformed by it. Frying with it is inadvisable because of the high risk that you will burn those compounds.

Roasted peanut oil is preferred for South Asian dishes including those from Thailand. It makes a flavorful addition to noodle dishes and marinades. Western and Asian-style vinaigrettes can benefit from it as well.