Don't compromise on flavor or health – 5 tips to select a high quality olive oil

Olive Oil is Super Healthy 

You probably know that olive oil is super healthy. It can be incredibly beneficial for heart health, brain health, digestive support, and so much more! (Learn more about the health benefits of olive oil here.)  

For a long time, I assumed that all olive oil was created equally. I assumed that “fancier” olive oil was just a luxury item.

SHOCKER! I have since learned that the quality of your olive oil is critical, not only for taste but also to ensure that you are getting all the health benefits.

Poor Quality Olive Oil 

Did you know that choosing bad or low-quality olive oil can mean unpleasant tastes, poor nutritional value, and potential health risks?

Poor-quality oils often lack the flavors and aromas of high-quality ones, meaning that your food won’t taste as good. It may even taste bitter.

Even worse, poor quality olive oils might contain harmful compounds due to oxidation and rancidity. That mean your olive oil might be contributing to inflammation in the body & negative health outcomes. Yikes!

To avoid these issues, it's crucial to consider factors such as grade, source, packaging, freshness, and certifications when selecting olive oil. Opting for reputable brands and understanding the characteristics of high-quality oils ensures a better culinary experience and potential health benefits.

Here are the Top 5 Tips for Picking Olive Oil  

Lucky, there are LOTS of great options out there! Here are the 5 tips to keep in mind when searching for olive oil.

 1. Pick Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO):

 Look for labels that say "Extra Virgin" on olive oil bottles. This means it's the best quality. Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) is made without heat or chemicals, keeping the natural flavors and good stuff like antioxidants and polyphenols. Cold pressing helps the oil stay healthy and tasty.


2. Check Where It Comes From:

Buy olive oils from places known for making good olives, like Tuscany in Italy, Andalusia in Spain, or certain regions in Greece. These areas are famous for growing top-notch olives and follow strict rules to make sure the oil is genuine and high-quality.


3. Look for Dark Bottles:

Choose olive oils in dark glass bottles or containers you can't see through. This helps keep the oil fresh by protecting it from light. Light can make the oil go bad faster and lose its flavor and goodness.


4. Find the Harvest Date:

See if the bottle shows when the olives were picked to make the oil. Fresher oils taste better and have more nutrients. Avoid bottles that don't say when the olives were harvested because they might not be as good.


5. Check Certifications:

Look for special stamps or logos like PDO in Europe or "COOC Certified Extra Virgin" in California. These show that the olive oil meets certain quality standards. Choosing certified oils means you're getting the real deal and good quality.


Keep these tips in mind when you are shopping, friends, and you are sure to pick a winner!


Our Favorite Olive Oil: Discover the Excellence of Laconiko 

Laconiko olive oil is renowned for its exceptional quality, taste, and health. Sourced from carefully selected Koroneiki olives in Greece, Laconiko embodies centuries-old traditions and meticulous craftsmanship.

Laconiko olive oil is cold-pressed and ensures maximum freshness, preserving essential nutrients, antioxidants, and healthy fats.

The distinct flavors of Laconiko oils enhance culinary experiences. Explore the excellence of Laconiko olive oil and elevate your cooking to new heights!

Note that we are an affiliate for Laconiko, which means that we earn a small percentage sales, at no cost to you. We ONLY recommend products we absolutely love and believe in! 


What Should Good Quality Olive Oil be Like?

Good quality olive oil should have several qualities that set it apart. Here’s what to look for when consuming olive oil.

Appearance: It should typically appear greenish-gold in color, although the shade can vary. Avoid olive oils that are overly yellow, as this may indicate lower quality or potential oxidation.

Aroma: A good olive oil will have a fresh and fruity aroma, often with hints of grass, herbs, or  pepper. Most importantly, it should smell pleasant and inviting.

Flavor: High-quality olive oil should have a balanced and complex flavor profile. It may exhibit fruitiness, bitterness, and a peppery finish. The flavors should be harmonious and not overpowering.

Texture: Good olive oil has a smooth and velvety texture when tasted. It should not feel greasy or heavy on the palate.

Acidity: Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), which is considered the highest quality, typically has low acidity levels, usually below 0.8%. Lower acidity is associated with a more stable and flavorful oil.

Freshness: High-quality olive oil should taste fresh and vibrant, with no rancid or "off" flavors. Check the harvest date on the label to ensure you are getting a fresh product.


What happens if you choose a low-quality olive oil?

Choosing a low-quality or bad olive oil can have negative consequences. This is both in terms of taste and potential health impacts.

Here are some potential issues associated with selecting poor-quality olive oil:

Unpleasant Taste and Aroma:

Low-quality olive oil may have a flat or rancid taste. It may lack the complex, delicious flavors and aroma characteristic of high-quality oils. It can negatively impact the overall taste of your dishes.

Reduced Nutritional Value:

Some lower-quality oils may undergo excessive processing, which can strip away the natural antioxidants and beneficial compounds found in high-quality extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). As a result, you miss out on potential health benefits associated with quality olive oil.

Potential Health Risks:

Poor-quality olive oils may be prone to oxidation and rancidity, leading to the formation of harmful compounds. Consuming rancid oils may have negative effects on health, including inflammation and oxidative stress.

Adulteration and Fraud:

Olive oil fraud can be a concern in the industry. Some lower-quality oils or blends may be sold as extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), leading to mislabeling and deceiving consumers. Adulteration with other oils, such as mixing lower-cost vegetable oils with olive oil, could be concern.

High Acidity Levels:

Lower-quality olive oils may have higher acidity levels, which can contribute to a harsh and unpleasant taste. Additionally, higher acidity is associated with a less stable oil that is more prone to spoilage.

Some Recipes we Love

Ready to use Olive Oil more? The easiest way to get more olive oil in your diet is to replace other oils (like vegetable or canola) that you currently use with good quality olive oil! If you want to go a step further, check out some recipes we love. 

Lemon Garlic Dressing

Balsamic Vinaigrette 

Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

The Best Homemade Hummus 


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