Here are 21 ways to substitute for vegetable oil for high heat, low heat, no heat and baking, plus easy recipes to try!
Vegetable oil is great vegan alternative to animal fats and is made from extracting the oils from a variety of seeds, nuts, grains and fruit.
But if you run out or need a healthier alternative, there are several ways to substitute for vegetable oil for all your cooking needs.
Keep scrolling for the best vegetable oil replacements by cooking method!
- Common Ways to Substitute for Vegetable Oil
- High-Heat Cooking
- Dressings, Sautéing and Sweating
- Recipes with Vegetable Oil
Common Ways to Substitute for Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oil is a neutral, high-heat oil, meaning you can cook with it at high temperatures before it starts to smoke and burn. Here are some high-heat vegetable oil replacements to use in frying, stir-frying, and grilling.
1. Canola Oil
Canola oil has the least saturated fat of any common cooking oil, making it a heart-healthy stand-in for the vegetable variety. It is made from the seeds of the canola plant.
It’s great for all cooking methods and can be used as a 1 to 1 substitute.
2. Safflower Oil
Safflower oil (not to be confused with the essential oil version) is great for cooking and works as a 1 to 1 substitute for vegetable oil. This oil comes from a thistle-y plant, related to sunflowers, and has a very neutral flavor.
Just be sure to steer clear of the regularly refined or unrefined versions for high heat cooking. These versions are more suitable for sautéing or dressing.
3. Peanut Oil
Peanut oil has a mild or neutral flavor and is made from it’s namesake nut. It has a high smoke point, making it great for all forms of cooking. It is also heart healthy and has antioxidant properties.
Use peanut oil as a 1 to 1 replacement for vegetable oil in cooking and baking.
4. Grapeseed Oil
Grapeseed oil is made from the seeds of grapes. It’s another great, high-heat vegetable oil alternate. Use grapeseed oil as a 1 to 1 substitute wherever you’d use vegetable oil.
5. Sunflower Oil
Sunflower oil is made from, you guessed it, sunflower seeds! It’s another great neutral oil that can stand high temperatures. Use sunflower oil for cooking, frying and baking as a 1 to 1 substitute.
6. Avocado Oil
Avocado oil is derived from the pulp of avocados. This vegetable oil replacement is very similar to olive oil in terms of utility and nutritional value. It’s heart healthy and can help lower cholesterol and blood pressure.
It’s also mild in taste and can stand high-heat, making it a great 1 to 1 substitute for vegetable oil.
7. Soybean Oil
Soybean oil is extracted from the seeds of the soybean plant. It’s rich in healthy fats and Omega-3s and may even promote bone health. Use soybean oil as a 1 to 1 substitute everywhere you would vegetable oil.
Ghee is butter that has had all the milk solids removed. It is a much better alternative for those with milk allergies and it’s also a great stand-in for vegetable oil. Ghee has a high smoke point (unlike traditional butter) and a rich and nutty flavor.
Use as a 1 to 1 substitute for vegetable oil in cooking.
9. Sesame Oil
Sesame oil comes from the seeds of the sesame plant and is best used in stir fry recipes and sauces. It has a very strong and distinctive flavor, so be sure this works with the other ingredients in your dish before using it as a vegetable oil substitute.
Dressings, Sautéing and Sweating
Here are some oils that don’t do well with high heat, but are great for lower heat applications or for dressings and marinades.
10. Olive Oil
If you need a little oil for sautéing at a medium to low temperature, you can use olive oil to substitute for vegetable oil 1 to 1. Olive oil has a stronger taste and lower smoke point, so you should never use it for frying and only for specific baking recipes.
This heart-healthy oil is also great for dressings and marinades!
Butter works as a great 1 to 1 substitute for vegetable oil at medium to low heats and in baking. Just melt it down and let it cool before adding it to your recipe.
Margarine is another great vegetable oil substitute for medium and low heat cooking and can also be used in baking. Substitute the same way you would butter.
13. Flaxseed Oil
Flaxseed oil is not stable over heat, but is great for drizzling over food and finishing dishes and in dressings and marinades. Use as a 1 to 1 substitute for any of these applications.
Baked goods don’t require an oil with a low smoke point so there are more replacement options available for this cooking method. Oils are typically used as a moistening agent in baking, which make even ingredients like fruits and vegetables suitable replacements.
You can use any of the oils above to substitute for vegetable oil in baking (except flaxseed oil, sesame oil and olive oil), plus the following:
14. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil can be used as a 1 to 1 substitute for vegetable oil in most baking recipes. Just note that there will be a slight coconutty flavor. If this works with the other ingredients in your dish, go for it!
Apple sauce makes a great vegetable oil replacement in cakes, muffins, cookies and brownies. Be sure to use an unsweetened version and substitute 3/4 cup applesauce to 1 cup of oil.
Regular or Greek yogurt are suitable vegetable oil replacements in most baked goods and can increase the nutritional value with added protein and calcium. Use plain yogurt as a 1 to 1 substitute for oil.
17. Mashed Fruit/Fruit Puree
Velvety fruits like avocado, banana, pears, pumpkin and sweet potato can also substitute for vegetable oil when pureed. These creamy blends bring moisture to baked goods as a 1 to 1 substitute, but may alter the color and texture.
You can mix a fruit blend with equal parts baking-safe oil to help improve the texture of your baked goods.
18. Pureed Veggies
Surprisingly, mild flavored vegetables like blended cauliflower, zucchini and beets can also substitute for vegetable oil, 1 to 1. Add your unseasoned, cooked and puréed vegetables to your recipe and enjoy a moist treat with increased nutritional value.
Mayo is one of the best-kept secrets in the world of baking. It’s a great substitute for vegetable oil in baked goods, making them extra moist and decadent. Use as a 1 to 1 substitute and enjoy!
20. Sour Cream
Sour cream is a similar vegetable oil replacement to yogurt and mayo. Use as a 1 to 1 substitute and enjoy a slight tanginess in your baked treat.
Shortening isn’t the most healthy vegetable oil replacement as it does contain cholesterol. However, it has great utility in baking. Use melted shortening as a 1 to 1 substitute for oil.
Recipes with Vegetable Oil
And here are some easy and delicious recipes to test out these 21 ways to substitute for vegetable oil.