What are your thoughts on potato chips fried in olive oil?
I saw some at the store and wondered if you thought they were a better snack than regular potato chips.
What oil are regular potato chips fried in, anyway?
-- Richard Faenza
Los Angeles, CA
Most commercial potato chips are fried in cottonseed, sunflower, safflower, or peanut oil.
The reason behind that is simple -- they have high smoke points. This means they can be heated at a higher temperature than other oils without their flavor being affected. Music to a cook's ears!
Regardless of the type of oil potato chips are cooked in, you usually get 10 grams of fat per 1 ounce serving.
Potato chips fried in olive oil aren't as great as they may sound.
Sure, olive oil contains a higher percentage of monounsaturated fat than cottonseed oil, but you should not be looking to potato chips to increase your heart-healthy fat intake.
Besides, from a caloric standpoint, they are identical to any other potato chip.
If you enjoy the taste of these chips, enjoy them as a treat.
Don't, however, think of them as a "healthy" potato chip alternative. Extreme heat takes away a good percentage of olive oil's antioxidant and healthful properties.
This is not to say olive oil transforms into a "bad" oil, but rather that using olive oil for deep frying is not a heart-healthy move.
If you are looking to incorporate more monounsaturated fats into your diet, I would much rather you chomp on some peanuts, add some avocados to your sandwich, or simply dress your salad with olive oil.