What happens to extra virgin olive oil when it is exposed to light and heat?

Why does heat affect your EVOO and what properties does it lose?

Summer hits us just a few days after its beginning.

Many customers are wondering how to protect extra virgin olive oil, a premium product, resistant, grateful, but that can lose quality if it is not taken care of. Moreover, taking into account that during these months the kitchen is the warmest place in the house, we must be extremely careful. So we can continue to make dishes as good as summer salads, salpicón, hummus or a rich carpaccio.

How to protect the oil?

Extra virgin olive oil is a product highly appreciated for its flavor and healthy properties. To preserve it correctly and maintain its quality over time, here are some guidelines you can follow:

Storage: store olive oil in a cool, dark place, away from direct light and heat sources such as the stove or oven. Light and heat can accelerate the oxidation of the oil and reduce its shelf life.

Suitable container: Use dark glass or stainless steel containers to store the oil. These materials help protect it from light and prevent undesirable flavors from being transferred. Avoid using plastic containers, as they can interact with the oil and affect its quality.

For this reason we consider our iOliva bottles and our 3 liter iOliva Bag in Box format an optimal format.

Hermetically sealed: Be sure to close the container tightly after use to avoid exposure to air. Oxygen can accelerate the oxidation of the oil and cause it to go rancid more quickly.

Avoid moisture: Keep the oil away from moisture, which can promote bacterial growth and affect its quality. Do not store it near the sink or other sources of moisture in the kitchen.

Early consumption: Extra virgin olive oil has its best flavor and quality in the first months after harvest. It is always advisable to consume it fresh to make the most of its organoleptic properties.

Label and date: Write down the date of purchase on the bottle to keep track of how long it has been since you opened the bottle. This will help you control its freshness and know when it is convenient to replace it.

Avoid cross-contamination: Do not use spoons or utensils that have been in contact with other foods when serving olive oil. This can introduce bacteria or other contaminants that affect its quality. Remember that, although extra virgin olive oil can last for several months under proper storage conditions, its quality deteriorates over time. If you notice a change in its taste, smell or appearance, it is advisable to discard it and replace it with a fresh one.

Example of an ideal packaging format for the protection of EVOO from light and heat: our 3L iOliva Bag in Box.

What does heat do to extra virgin olive oil?

Extra virgin olive oil, like any other type of oil, is sensitive to heat. When exposed to high temperatures, such as cooking heat, several changes can occur in the oil.

Accelerated oxidation: Heat accelerates the oxidation process of the oil, which can lead to the formation of compounds harmful to health and the loss of its healthy properties. This can negatively affect the taste, aroma and quality of the oil.

Loss of nutrients: Excessive heat can cause degradation of the nutritional components of extra virgin olive oil, such as antioxidants and vitamins. This reduces its nutritional value and health benefits.

Altered flavor and aroma: Intense heat can alter the flavor and aroma of olive oil. It can become more bitter, lose its freshness and develop unpleasant flavors. In addition, the volatile compounds that contribute to its characteristic aroma may evaporate. To preserve the quality of extra virgin olive oil, it is important to avoid exposing it to high temperatures for prolonged periods of time.

We encourage you to reserve a privileged place in your kitchen for olive oil so that you can enjoy all its properties and flavor for a longer period of time. As we have mentioned in other articles, EVOO does not have an expiration date, but it does have a best-before date.

It is preferable to recycle extra virgin olive oil if there are doubts about its condition. Soon we will tell you about the existing alternatives.

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