You might be in the middle of baking your favorite brownie recipe, and you notice that you only have extra light olive oil at home.
Most brownie recipes call for vegetable oil but can you really use olive oil as a vegetable oil substitute? And does it taste the same?
We find out whether you can use olive oil for brownie recipes. We also take a look at the benefits and disadvantages of using olive oil in baking.
Can You Use Olive Oil In Brownies?
Yes, you can use any type of olive oil in brownies. It won’t impact the structure or the texture of the brownies too much.
However, any vegetable oil substitutes will affect the taste of your baked goods.
If you have to use any kind of olive oil, then it is best to go for a refined olive oil rather than a extra-virgin oil. The mild variety preserves the classic brownie flavor.
Alternatively, you can also use some butter olive oil which typically contains a miler variety.
Saying this, you may also like the taste of olive oil in brownies.
It creates a slightly bitter taste and fruity flavor which works well with the chocolate.
But swapping vegetable oil with olive oil in your brownie recipe does not only change the flavor of your delicious treats. It also adds much healthier fat than melted butter.
While butter and vegetable oils also contain fat, olive oil has a lot less saturated fat which is easier to digest for our tummies.
Benefits Of Using Olive Oil In Brownies
There are a number of great advantages when you use olive oil in brownies.
One of the biggest benefits is that olive oil is much healthier than the traditional vegetable oil.
As olive oil is always made with olives, you do not have to worry about any additional ingredients.
In addition, this substitute vegetable oil is also much gentler than normal vegetable oil. Olive oil doesn’t require any chemical processes.
Instead, the olives are harvested and they go through a range of different grinding techniques to extract the oil.
This does not only preserve the flavor but also a lot of the nutritional value of the olives.
This means olive oil has a larger amount of monounsaturated fatty acids than vegetable oil which makes it healthier.
When you are baking olive oil brownies, then all these great health benefits are added to your brownie batter.
Disadvantages Of Using Olive Oil In Brownies
Using olive oil in homemade brownies can also have some downsides.
Cooking oil, including sunflower oil and vegetable oil, has a very mild flavor, so you cannot taste it in your brownies.
However, when you use olive oil in your baked goods, you will get a hint of the distinct flavor of olives.
Many bakers who love the traditional brownie recipe say that the olive oil makes them taste slightly bitter, and this is not what you want in brownies.
The best way to avoid this strong taste is to use a milder flavor of olive oil.
Many people describe olive oil as being slightly bitter when used in baked goods, something you definitely do not want for your brownies!
To avoid this, use a light olive oil rather than a stronger extra virgin oil.
In addition, it’s important to remember that good quality ingredients impact the result, so try to buy a high quality olive oil as a replacement for vegetable oil.
Any cheaper olive oils are usually much more pungent which means you will be able to taste the olive oil when making brownies.
However, bear in mind that olive oil is much more expensive than vegetable oil, so the more brownie batter you make, the greater the cost of your brownies.
Vegetable Oil Alternatives When Baking Brownies
If you are too worried about the strong flavor in your homemade brownies, then there are also some other substitute vegetable oils that you can try.
Canola Oil And Corn Oil
Both canola oil and corn oil are commonly used in baking, so you may even have these vegetable oil substitutes at home.
Both these oils are relatively cheap and they have very little flavor, so you won’t taste them in your brownies.
Coconut oil is slowly becoming a big favorite with bakers, and it can add an extra level of flavor to your brownies.
After all, coconut and chocolate make a wonderful combination in many chocolate treats.
Making brownies only requires a few basic ingredients, and one of them is butter, so you can use the fat of your classic butter as a way of substituting olive oil or vegetable oil.
However, an additional amount of butter in your brownies may make them rise a little more, so brownies with substitute butter will taste a bit more like a cake.
Baking Brownies With Olive Oil
Most brownie recipes require vegetable oil or sunflower oil but if you do not have any of this at hand, then olive oil is your best option.
Here are our top tips on how to bake brownies with olive oil, vegetable oil, canola oil or any other oil substitute.
Measure Your Ingredients Properly
Getting the same amount of ingredients as stated in your brownie recipe is essential to bake the perfect brownies.
Many baking recipes will give you the precise amounts, so try not to deviate from this.
Choose The Right Size Pan
With a pan that has the right size, you can spread your brownie batter evenly and thinly. This means your brownies won’t get too crispy too quickly.
Use A Light-Colored Pan
Brownies are naturally dark thanks to the delicious cacao powder and chocolate in them, so you should choose a light-colored pan which allows you to see better how your brownies are cooking.
The simple answer to our question “Can you use olive oil in brownies?” is yes. You can use a mild flavor olive oil in your brownie recipes.
However, it is best to avoid extra virgin olive oil or too strong substitute olive oil as this can impact the flavor of your baked goods.