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Grapeseed Oil vs. Olive Oil

Last Update: June 12, 2024

No healthy pantry is complete without oil, but which one is best? There’s a huge range of options, with various colors, flavors, uses, and nutritional values at play. It’s enough to make anyone’s head spin when trying to stock your pantry. Today, let’s kick overwhelm to the curb! We’re breaking down two popular picks—olive oil vs. grapeseed oil—to help you decide which one is best for your diet and lifestyle.

What Is Grapeseed Oil?

grapeseed oil vs. olive oil

Grapeseed oil is made by repurposing the seeds of wine grapes, which are byproducts of the winemaking industry. It’s a pretty genius way to make the process more sustainable. Of course, not all wine grapes are created equal. Some grapeseed oils are extracted in large factories that use solvents. For a healthier grapeseed oil option, look for bottles that are cold-pressed or expeller-pressed [1].

Grapeseed Oil Nutrition

Okay, but is grapeseed oil good for you? Grapeseed oil is best known for delivering polyunsaturated fats (which contain omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids) [2][3].

Vitamin E Benefits

Grapeseed oil is also high in vitamin E, which studies have suggested may contribute to some benefits, like supporting a healthy aging process [4]. According to a 2019 study, vitamin E may also help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease [5].

Grapeseed Oil Uses

Grapeseed oil can be used for frying! Start your sauté pans, because grapeseed oil is a great addition to your daily cooking routine. You can use this oil as part of your skin care regimen, too, which is another big difference between grapeseed oil vs. olive oil. Let’s take a closer look.

Olive Oil vs Grapeseed Oil For Cooking

Olive oil’s smoke point is lower than grapeseed oil, so take that into account when you’re getting ready to oil the pan [6]. Grapeseed oil has a high smoke point of 420 degrees Fahrenheit. Grapeseed oil is a better choice if you’re stir-frying with high heat, while olive oil is great for roasting veggies because it’ll infuse them with extra flavor.

Olive Oil vs Grapeseed Oil Taste

Grapeseed oil has a very neutral taste similar to canola or vegetable oil, so it’s great for recipes that already have a ton of other flavorful ingredients. Olive oil tends to have an earthier, deeper flavor profile that will add interest to your dishes.

Grapeseed oil for skin

Grapeseed oil is a healthy choice, plus, it’s easy to simplify your skin care routine when grapeseed oil is involved. Due to its high concentration of vitamin E and linoleic acid, it’s believed that grapeseed oil may offer benefits when used topically. However, “the direct topical application of grape seed oil on human skin has not yet been well investigated,” so keep that in mind if trying it for yourself [7]. Proponents have used grapeseed oil for acne, and as a gentle cleanser. This oil also makes a luxurious massage oil—just add a drop or two of your favorite essential oil.

Grapeseed Oil Products

Two top picks make it easy to add this ingredient to your arsenal.

Thrive Market Grapeseed Oil

This neutral cooking oil was pressed from the seeds of wine grapes and is the ultimate cooking oil. Its mild flavor doesn’t compete with other ingredients, and a high smoke point means you can fry, bake, or sauté to your heart’s content.

Now Foods Grapeseed Oil

Looking for a new oil for your clean skin care routine? This light and odorless oil contains essential fatty acids and works for all skin types. Use it as a base for lotions or serums, or even to condition hair.

Recipes With Grapeseed Oil

From Tuesday night dinner to Saturday’s spa night, these recipes all call for grapeseed oil.

Instant Pot Chicken Tinga Tacos

Whole30®-compliant and ready in about 45 minutes, chicken tinga tacos (in the Instant Pot!) make for a memorable meal any night of the week. Grapeseed oil starts the party as the cooking oil of choice for sautéing your chicken before the lid goes on.

Creamy and Tangy Spirulina Vinaigrette

Only a few basic ingredients (like coconut oil mayo, tangy mustard, and grapeseed oil) are needed to shape up a creamy, superfood dressing.

Jackfruit Jambalaya

You won’t believe this jambalaya is vegan! Jackfruit adds a “meaty” quality—especially where texture is concerned—and classic ingredients like onions, peppers, and garlic make it easy to see why this Southern-inspired dish is a favorite.

Gut Goddess Dressing

Here’s another healthy salad dressing that’s easy to make at home. Neutral grapeseed oil is a great pick, especially when vibrant herbs like tarragon, basil, and parsley come to the party.

Essential Oil Rollers 4 Ways

Create a custom blend of your favorite essential oils. Grapeseed makes a great carrier oil, then add chamomile, peppermint, myrrh, and black pepper essential oils.


What Is Olive Oil?

grapeseed oil vs. olive oil

One of the biggest differences between grapeseed oil vs olive oil is history. Olive oil is one of the most popular oils in the world. With roots in the Mediterranean (evidence of olive oil use can be traced back to 2600 B.C.), this ingredient can be found in a range of global cuisines. It probably comes as no surprise that the Mediterranean Diet promotes EVOO as a source of healthy fats, along with other good-for-you ingredients such as walnut oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, seafood, fruits, vegetables, and fresh herbs [8].

How Is Olive Oil Made?

Olive oil is made by cold-pressing olives, which extracts the liquid.

Olive Oil vs Grape Seed Oil Nutrition

With high concentrations of antioxidants and fatty acids, olive oil is one of the healthiest picks on the market [9]. (As for olive oil calories, one tablespoon comes in at around 120.) In addition to being considered a non-negotiable ingredient in the Mediterranean Diet, olive oil may support cardiovascular health, according to a Spanish study.

Both olive oil and grapeseed oil contain about 14 grams of fat. Olive oil contains 2 grams of saturated fat, vs. 1.3 g of saturated fat in grapeseed oil. While olive oil may support heart health, grapeseed oil is also full of healthy polyunsaturated fats and high in vitamin E that may support healthy aging.

The Best Olive Oil

Head to our shelves to take your pick from our most popular olive oils.

Thrive Market Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil

A customer favorite since it launched several years ago, our 100% Greek EVOO is grown and bottled on the island of Crete.

California Olive Ranch Extra Virgin Olive Oil

California’s best olives are pressed into this fruity and floral oil that’s perfect for roasting vegetables or dressing a salad.

FODY Foods Garlic Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Following a low FODMAP diet? Keep this bottle of garlic-infused Italian olive oil handy. A drizzle quickly adds aromatic flavor to your favorite recipes—without causing digestive upset.

Olive Oil for Cooking

Once you add olive oil to your pantry, you’ll find yourself reaching for it at almost every meal.

Olive Oil Cake

A rich olive oil cake is perfect for any occasion. This treat is infused with orange juice and rosemary, honey for sweetness, and is completely gluten-free!

Homemade Mayo

Julia Child mastered the art of DIY mayo using a whisk, a kitchen towel, and lots of arm muscle, but you can achieve the same results with a food processor. Try our easy recipe made with olive oil, lemon, and Dijon mustard, then add your favorite flavors like herbs, garlic, or even sriracha.

Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies are a classic dessert, but have you tried them with olive oil? This addition adds a unique flavor that bounces off bittersweet chocolate for a sophisticated-yet-comforting bite.

olive oil chocolate chip cookies

Tomato and Olive Oil Salad

Come summer, is there anything better than fresh tomatoes drizzled with oil and seasoned with flaky salt? We didn’t think so. This recipe makes the most of the garden’s bounty with just a few simple ingredients.

Tomato olive oil salad

Rosemary Granola

Olive oil imparts a savory note to this addicting granola made with sunflower seeds, almonds, oats, and a pinch of cayenne.

Olive Oil Salad Dressing

Here’s an olive oil salad dressing that gets kicked up a notch by avocado, cilantro, and onion powder. It’s basically the only recipe you’ll need for tossing salads or drizzling over grilled summer vegetables.

Grilled romaine salad

Understanding the Differences: Grapeseed Oil vs. Olive Oil

Now that you know a bit more about the similarities and differences between grapeseed and olive oil, let’s now take a closer look at how these two popular choices compare. This chart is designed to help you easily distinguish between the two, ensuring you make the best choice for your cooking and health needs.

Aspect Grapeseed Oil Olive Oil
Source Extracted from the seeds of grapes Pressed from whole olives
Flavor Profile Mild, slightly nutty flavor Can range from fruity to bitter, with a peppery note
Smoke Point High (about 420°F or 216°C) Ranges from medium to high (320°F – 468°F or 160°C – 242°C depending on the type)
Main Fatty Acids High in polyunsaturated fats (mostly linoleic acid) High in monounsaturated fats (mostly oleic acid)
Vitamin E Content Higher Vitamin E content Lower Vitamin E content compared to Grapeseed Oil
Omega-6 Fatty Acids Higher content Lower content
Use in Cooking Ideal for high-heat cooking and frying Best for low to medium-heat cooking, dressings, and dipping
Health Benefits Rich in antioxidants, may help reduce cholesterol Supports heart health, rich in antioxidants, may have anti-inflammatory properties
Shelf Life Generally shorter shelf life Longer shelf life
Cost Typically less expensive Can be more expensive, especially extra-virgin varieties
Culinary Applications Neutral taste makes it versatile for baking and sautéing Distinctive flavor enhances salads, pastas, and finishing dishes

Notes:

Smoke Point: The smoke point of olive oil varies greatly depending on its quality. Extra-virgin olive oil has a lower smoke point than more refined olive oils.

Health Benefits: Both oils have their own unique health benefits. Olive oil is particularly noted for its role in the Mediterranean diet.

Use in Cooking: Grapeseed oil’s high smoke point makes it suitable for high-temperature cooking, whereas olive oil is ideal for flavoring, dressings, and lower-heat cooking.

The specific characteristics of each oil can vary based on the brand, processing method, and variety. For a deeper dive into how each of these oils can enhance your culinary creations, check out our comprehensive guide to choosing the best cooking oils, including grapeseed oil and a detailed overview of olive oil.

Remember, whether you’re sautéing veggies or dressing a salad, the right oil can make all the difference. Happy cooking!

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