Why use coconut oil for popcorn or anything else? Isn’t it bad for you? Health nuts rejoice! Coconut oil is on a fast track to replace household oils in your kitchen, and the same holds true for using it to pop popcorn. You can make popcorn a healthy snack and most everything else you cook. This article will tell you why coconut oil is healthy.
Fat is not bad
Now, after you’ve read and re-read that sentence, let me explain a little about good fat. Our culture has become so accustomed to labeling all fat as bad, and low-fat items as a healthy choice. Not all fat is created equally. There are good and bad fats, and you should be eating plenty of good fats in your diet (unless you’ve been instructed otherwise by your doctor).
Good fat has a lot of healthy potential. It is a source of energy that helps you absorb vitamins and minerals. Fat is essential for building cell membranes, clotting blood, improving muscle movement, and fighting inflammation.
Coconut oil is a saturated fat that can really make popcorn even more delicious and essentially healthy.
The truth about saturated fat and why coconut oil is healthy
The push for using coconut oil in your kitchen isn’t without good cause. There are a ton of great health benefits when using coconut oil. Here’s a few to consider:
- It is high in medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are used as a quick source of energy
- Eating larger amounts of MCTs has been shown to increase the amount of calories you burn in 24 hours by as much as 5% (thus aiding in weight loss).
- MCTs also have an appetite reducing affect.
- The fatty acids in coconut oil have the ability to kill harmful pathogens in your body, such as bacteria, fungi and viruses.
- Containing natural saturated fats, coconut oil can also help raise good HDL cholesterol. This in effect is great for your heart health.
Per Sarah Wilson, more and more scientists and chefs and wellness nuts are agreeing: the fats we’ve been told to eat for the past 50 years – the poly-unsaturated, so-called “vegetable” ones – are, in fact, the worst stuff we can put in our bodies. And the fats we’ve been told to never touch – the saturated ones – are actually the healthiest, safest and, in fact, are the least “fattening” (if you’re not eating a sugar and carb-heavy diet while also eating fat).
So it is easy to see why coconut oil is gaining popularity across the nation. There’s so many great benefits to adding it to your diet.
Why does coconut oil make popcorn healthy?
When using coconut oil to make popcorn, you are getting all the health benefits of both. Coconut oil does not add any additional flavoring to the popcorn, which allows anything you add – say spices, cheeses, fruit flavorings or caramels, to come through more strongly.
That’s why at My Popcorn Kitchen, we use refined coconut oil to cook all of our popcorn flavors in. It is also a natural preservative that keeps our popcorn fresher, longer. It is completely unnecessary to add preservatives when coconut oil does the job naturally. We don’t add any preservatives to any of our popcorn flavors.
Another reason we use refined coconut oil instead of other types of oil is because it has a proper smoke point when used for popping. This means when we heat the oil to 450 degrees, it will not smoke. This is important because when oil starts to smoke, it is signifying that it is beginning to break down. When oil smokes, it generates toxic fumes and free radicals, which are very harmful to your body.
Tasty and beautiful popcorn
We also find that using coconut oil will make our popcorn not only tasty, but beautiful. Our popcorn is:
- Fluffy with just the right amount of crunch
- Keeps the white color of popcorn (when other toppings or cheeses are not added)
We have also found that plain popcorn that is popped with coconut oil will have such a great flavor that it doesn’t necessarily need to be loaded with other flavors. (Such as our Low Salt flavor). Don’t forget that drizzling a little coconut oil on top of your fluffy popped popcorn is also a tasty treat and will also help any toppings you add (such as spices, salt or sugar) to adhere to the kernels.
Now, before you go running out to buy a jug of coconut oil and start chugging, you must remember everything is best in moderation. Start slowly by replacing your everyday recipes with it and expand as you like. For instance, add a dollop to your oatmeal, rather than butter. Spread on toast or rolls. Or add to your baked potato.
Popcorn is healthy too!
Prior to this, we’ve explored how popcorn has even larger amounts of antioxidants than fruits and veggies. Now, let’s explore how to make a tasty bowl of coconut oil popped popcorn right in your very own kitchen. (And if homemade popcorn is not your thing, you can always enjoy our specialty flavors: from basic flavors to heavenly caramels and everything in between).
What coconut oil is best?
First, you want to decide what kind of coconut oil to choose. Options include virgin, organic, refined and unrefined. All coconut oil has a method of processing, but with unrefined virgin coconut oil, it is essentially less processed thereby unbleached and with a coconut-y smell and taste. Some people think this is too strong and opt for refined. Refined has a higher smoke point and all the health benefits (with the same amount of MCTs and fatty acids) and what we use at MPK. Choosing reputable brands is also a good idea. We sell both red coconut oil and white coconut oil. Buy the oil you prefer, then, grab a tried and true recipe and taste the amazing benefits of coconut oil.
Final Thoughts on Healthy Coconut Oil
As you can clearly see, coconut oil is the best way to go when popping popcorn in the comfort of your own home. It is a great choice for your heart and health. It tastes great and has a ton of potential for the base of any flavor. In fact, you can also just pop on over to My Popcorn Kitchen to shop for the most interesting and amazing flavors you can find anywhere on the planet that are all made with coconut oil.