5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil

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This post is sponsored by Emile Noel Olive Oil.

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

Over the years I’ve tried lots and lots of different ingredients to use in recipes. I’ve been cooking for myself for about 24 years. I’ve seen lots of fads and lots of things change within the realm of healthy food. In college, the idea among all the girls wanting to lose weight was that we could eat all the sugar that we wanted, but not the fat.

Now, of course, we know that not all fats are created equal — and sugar is definitely not a great weight-loss food!

Different items have fallen in and out of favor as I refine our family’s pantry staples, as I realize which purchases make the biggest impact on the taste and quality of our meals. One of my favorites that has stood the test of time is olive oil.

When FishPapa got his bad report from the doctor, I queried all my crunchy friends to see what were the healthy fats. Again and again, olive oil came up as being one of the “good guys”. I switched our diet to whole grains and used olive oil in every possible dish I could, including baked items.

Olive oil is, for sure, a regular in our family’s pantry. Here are five great ways I like to use it:

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

1. Use as a dipping sauce.

There’s a nice Italian restaurant near our house that brings hot bread and an olive oil dipping sauce. I recreate that at home by mixing a teaspoon of Jamie’s Spice Mix into a small dish of olive oil. This is such a simple appetizer, there’s no reason not to do it. If you want to veg out, serve steamed asparagus spears or artichokes instead of the bread.

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

2. Drizzle over avocado toast.

THIS is one of my favorite snacks. Toast a slice of bread, smash 1/4 to 1/2 ripe avocado over the surface, drizzle with olive oil, season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and coarse salt.

Avocado toast is good for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack — you name it!

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

3. Make a salad dressing.

You know how ridiculous I think it is to buy bottled dressings. There simply is no reason to do it, especially when olive oil and vinegar are cheaper than most bottled salad dressings.

My general rule of thumb is 1 part acid (vinegar or citrus juice) and 2 parts olive oil. You can adjust it to suit your tastes, and don’t forget to add in things like Dijon, jam, or herbs to mix up the flavor profile. Check out my Basic Vinaigrette to make your salads come alive.

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

4. Dress a sandwich.

Many sandwich spreads contain some kind of oil or fat. Why not cut out the middle man and dress your salad with pure olive oil. This is particularly good on a egg or tuna sandwich. If you’ve got tomato included, you’ll already have a bit of acid to offset the oil.

Layer your favorite meats and veggies on a baguette and drizzle with a little olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper and you’re good to go.

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

5. Toss on roasted vegetables.

For months now I’ve been roasting vegetables to serve as a side dish. (Someday, I’ll be able to squeeze it by my people as a main dish.) Last weekend I tossed a bunch of veggies on the grill. My 16-year old said, “What did you put on them?” His dad said, “Yeah, those were amazing.”

It was just olive oil, salt, and pepper. Obviously the grill enhanced the flavors of it all, but once again, olive oil, in all its simplicity, brings it all home.

Olive oil is able to stand the test of time, for which I’m really grateful. Love that stuff!

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

Recently, I had a chance to try Emile Noel’s Robust Taste Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Wow! When they say “robust”, they aren’t kidding!

I recently noted that the “pure” olive oil I regularly buy contains both extra virgin and refined oils. I don’t know much about the science of the two, but the Emile Noel oil had so much more flavor than our standard fare. It was really incredible, great for dipping bread or to add to my daily dose of avocado toast.

The oil has a little edge to it. FishBoy11 called it “bitter”, but I think robust is probably a better term. Now I understand what people mean when they say they’ve done an “oil tasting” — there really is a lot of variety out there!

If you’d like, you can enter to win 7 free bottles of Emile Noel’s Artisan Oils. The Taste of Authenticity Sweepstakes continues until mid May. If you’d like to share the links to the sweepstakes, head here for details. Click here to enter the contest. I hope you win!

5 Great Ways to Use Olive Oil | Good Cheap Eats

The Emile Noel Huilerie (that’s French for oil maker) a family-run mill in Provence who believes that organic virgin vegetable oil is the way to go. I’m not complaining!

Founded in 1920, Emile Noël now makes over 20 organic virgin vegetable oils, including blended oils that combine the benefits of each one. There’s a good match for every home cook and every style of cooking – helping you to enhance a varied, balanced diet.

They are verified non-GMO, organic, and sustainable. Visit their store locator to see where you can buy it near you.

What’s YOUR favorite use for olive oil?

Disclosure: I have been compensated for my time spent writing. All opinions are my own.

About Jessica Fisher

I believe anyone can prepare delicious meals—no matter their budget.

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  1. You said you even use olive oil in baked goods. Do you notice a change in flavor at all? Baking is the one thing I still use regular oils for, I use olive in everything else.

    • I use light olive oil in baking. I don’t notice a difference.

    • Teri says

      Carrie, you might want to try bean puree in place of oil in your baked goods. It works great! Teri

    • Lise says

      I have used extra-virgin, nicely flavorful olive oil in baking and haven’t noticed a difference in texture, although some of the fruity flavor does come through. However, I think it is subtle and even enhances the other flavors I usually bake with, like in chocolate cake and bran muffins. In fact, my favorite birthday cake is an olive oil chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting and cherry jam filling – the flavor of the olive oil is so luscious in the cake, but you wouldn’t be able to identify it as olive oil unless you knew.

  2. Sara K. says

    I use olive oil, like you, for roasted veggies. I also use it to kick start the veggies for vegetable soup. Sometimes I cook chicken in it, though I use coconut oil more often for that. Coconut oil and lemon pepper seasoning. Yum! I love dipping bread in seasoned olive oil, but had forgotten about it. I know what I’m having with dinner tonight!

  3. Melinda P says

    I only use extra virgin olive oil in very low heat or cold applications because the smoke point is so low. My favorite use for olive oil is to use a little on freshly cooked pasta to keep it from sticking together. I want try my hand at making olive oil mayo sometime, but I’ll use the light olive oil for that. Extra virgin olive oil is way too peppery for mayo.

  4. Jessica B says

    This probably isn’t what you meant, but a good rubbing with Olive oil completely resolved my son’s cradle cap when he was a few months old.. :o)

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