Can I substitute Sesame Oil with Any Other Oil? 7 Sesame Oil Replacements

Sesame Oil Substitute

Pick up a sesame seed only to lose a watermelon”a Chinese proverb

Sesame seeds may look small to talk about, but the oil extracted from them is ranked much higher.

In fact, it has become a household name in Asian cuisines,

But, what if you couldn’t’ find it?

Don’t worry! We have a solution in the form of 7 alternatives that won’t undermine your cuisine’s taste.

So, let’s go and explore those replacements of sesame oil. But before that, a little intro.

What is Sesame Oil?

What is Sesame Oil

Sesame oil is yet another vegetable oil extracted from the seeds of sesame, used for cooking and as a flavor enhancer.

It has a nutty taste with aroma and is rich in healthy fats. The probable reason for its limited mass production is the prevalence of inefficient manual processes still practiced today.

Sesame Oil Varieties

The following are the three main types of sesame oil available in the market and how you should use each.

1. Dark or Roasted or Toasted Sesame Oil

The dark version of sesame oil is obtained from the roasted sesame, and that’s why it’s color is darker than cold-pressed sesame oil even.

That’s why it’s also called black sesame oil.

Having a lower smoke point and intense aroma, it’s not recommended for deep-frying.

Instead, it should ideally be used in stir-frying meats and vegetables, and for flavorings, like salad dressing or sauce.

2. Light Sesame Oil

Unlike dark sesame oil, this one is extracted from the raw sesame.

Its high smoke point (230°C max.) makes it ideal for deep-frying or cooking for a longer time.

The light yellow with low earthy nutty flavor is common in many Asian cuisines, like Crispy Sesame Chicken.

3. Cold-Pressed Sesame Oil

Unlike others, the cold-pressed method is a mechanical process by which oil is obtained without exposing the seeds of the sesame to high temperatures.

That’s why the oil is able to retain much of the nutrients which otherwise get lost in the extraction process.

Cold-pressed sesame oil is not only used for cooking but for other multiple purposes.

Like as an antiaging agent for the skin, as natural preservatives for pickles due to its antimicrobial properties, etc.

Health Benefits of Sesame Oil

Health Benefits of Sesame Oil

  • Being rich in copper, magnesium, zinc, and calcium, it works against inflammation and arthritis.
  • Rich in antioxidants makes it ideal to be used in beauty treatments for acne scars.
  • According to research, it lowers blood pressure when consumed as edible oil.
  • It’s one of the highest sources of unsaturated fats, as per the US Department of Agriculture’s statistics.
  • Swishing with sesame oil helps to remove plaque and to remove other diseases of the mouth.
  • It somehow helps in reducing anxiety as proved by a study, because it aids in the production of serotonin – a natural mood stabilizer.

Why do we need to Substitute Sesame Oil?

Substituting sesame oil with the nearest alternatives is for the reason that you have sesame oil allergy, or simply it’s not available.

Substituting an oil with another one is a bit easier, like replacing peanut oil with its alternatives and so on.

But, substituting vegetables change the taste significantly sometimes, like in the case of marjoram.

Possible Sesame Oil Substitutes

What can I substitute for sesame oil? Below we have discussed 7 oils that can be used as an alternative of sesame oil without thinking twice.

So, let’s get to know each of them in detail so that you may make the best choice.

1. Perilla Oil

Perilla Oil
Image Sources Pinterest

Perilla Oil is the nutty oil derived from Perilla frutescens seeds after roasting them.

It is known as the best alternative of sesame oil, the oil that won’t undermine your recipe’s taste.

With a smoke point of 189° C, perilla oil is considered a good sesame oil substitute for Lo Mein as well.

Why Perilla Oil?

  • It’s rich in omega-3 fatty (54-64%), Omega-6 (14%), and Omega-9
  • The presence of the above mentioned polyunsaturated fats in perilla oil prevents us from certain diseases like cancer, heart diseases, inflammation, and arthritis

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Perilla Oil (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700 KJ
Saturated Fats Up to 10g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats Up to 22g 39g
Polyunsaturated Up to 86g 41g

Taste of Perilla Oil

Nutty and bold flavor

Using Perilla Oil in Dishes

Sautéing, cooking, and dressing. Mostly used in Korean cuisines, like Soba Noodles, Tteokbokki, etc

2. Olive Oil

Olive Oil

If you’re a health-conscious folk, olive oil is the best alternative of sesame oil you would opt.

Its health benefits have made it so popular that today it’s available in more than three types or grades

That is virgin, Extra virgin, and the refined one.

Roasted sesame oil can be best replaced with refined olive oil, whereas virgin and extra virgin olive oils can replace cold-pressed sesame oil easily.

It’s considered the best sesame oil substitute for fried rice as well.

Why Olive Oil?

  • Olive oil is rich in antioxidants
  • It is rich in health or monounsaturated fats: 73g in 100g olive oil
  • Has anti-inflammatory properties
  • Extremely low cholesterol helps to prevent heart diseases and strokes

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Olive Oil (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700 KJ
Saturated Fats 14g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats 73g 39g
Polyunsaturated 11g 41g

Taste of Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil has a bit pungent or spicy taste, indicating its rich in antioxidants.

Using Olive Oil in Dishes

Extra virgin and virgin are used mostly in dressing and sautéing, whereas refined olive oil can be used in high and low-temperature cooking.

3. Peanut Oil

Peanut Oil

Peanut oil is the nearest sesame oil substitute for dumplings, especially Chinese dumplings.

Peanut oil is a vegetable oil extracted from peanuts and is widely used in Chinese, American, Asian, especially Southeast Asian countries.

The unique feature of this oil is its high smoke point of 232° C, higher than any other vegetable oil

The roasted sesame oil can be best replaced with roasted peanut oil, and so on.

Why peanut Oil?

  • Regular use of peanut oil helps in reducing the risk of heart disease, thanks to the abundance of unsaturated fats in it.
  • Some studies have shown people with diabetes are significantly improving by regularly taking peanut oil in their diets.
  • Taking just one tablespoon of peanut oil in any form will provide you with 11% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin E, which helps to enhance immune responses in humans.

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Peanut Oil (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700 KJ
Saturated Fats 17g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats 46g 39g
Polyunsaturated 32g 41g

Taste of Peanut Oil

It ranges from a light neutral flavor to slightly nutty, with a roasted version having the strongest flavor of all.

Using Peanut Oil in Dishes

Used for sautéing, frying, adding flavor

4. Walnut Oil

Walnut Oil

Walnut is another substitute for sesame oil for its rich and nutty flavor – served best at room temperature to avoid mild bitterness.

A very low smoke point, 160° C of walnut oil is the reason it’s not suitable for high-temperature cooking.

Why Walnut Oil?

  • It promotes skin health in many ways, thanks to the presence of omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Improves blood sugar level, blood pressure, and cholesterol level for having polyunsaturated fats.

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Walnut Oil (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700 KJ
Saturated Fats 9g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats 23g 39g
Polyunsaturated 63g 41g

Taste of Walnut Oil

Nutty flavor

Using Walnut Oil in dishes

Not recommended for deep-frying, but perfect for salad dressings.

To flavor steaks, fish, and pasta

5. Canola Oil

Canola Oil

It’s also a great alternative to sesame oil, with many proved health benefits. It has the essential Omega-3, which is otherwise found in the fish, and Lenolied acid, which is called omega-6.

It’s more beneficial if used without heating because it retains most of the fatty acids, which is good for the circulatory system.

In addition to having a high smoke temperature of 204°C, its flavor is not-so-strong as well.

Why Canola Oil?

  • Has a significant amount of phytosterols which reduces the absorption of cholesterol
  • It’s rich in vitamin E, which prevents the body from free radical damages, heart diseases, and cancer
  • It has the lowest amount of trans or saturated fats, that’s often called the bad fats
  • Rich in good fats, such as Omega-3. Both of these helps to prevent certain heart-related diseases and strokes by lowering bad cholesterol.

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Canola Oil (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700 KJ
Saturated Fats 8g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats 61g 39g
Polyunsaturated 26g 41g

Taste of Canola Oil

Canola oil has a neutral taste, and this is what makes it favorite by majority of the cooks

Using Canola Oil in dishes

  • Grilling, because of the high smoke point
  • Used in baking because of its light flavor
  • Salad dressing

6. Avocado Oil

Avocado Oil

If you’re trying a sesame oil recipe, but wants less nutty flavor, then Avocado is a good alternative.

It’s extracted by pressing the avocado pulp.

Unlike sesame, it tastes earthy and grassy, which is reduced when it’s used in cooking.

Its high smoke point of 271°C makes it fit to be used for cooking at high temperatures.

Why Avocado Oil?

  • It’s rich in Oleic acid, which improves heart health by affecting cholesterol levels.
  • The presence of Lutein, an antioxidant, prevents certain eye diseases.
  • Improves skin and healing of wounds

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Avocado Oil (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700 KJ
Saturated Fats 12g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats 71g 39g
Polyunsaturated 13g 41g

Taste of Avocado Oil

Slightly grassy with a mild flavor of Avocado, but more neutral than olive oil when cooked

Using Avocado oil in dishes

Grilling, sautéing, and salad dressings.

7. Tahini Paste

Tahini Paste

Another replacement for sesame oil is Tahini.

Tahini is well known in the Middle East, as popular dishes like Hummus are incomplete without it.

Although this paste is made from sesame itself, the reason it can be used as a replacement is due to the entire different taste it develops after becoming the paste.

If your recipe doesn’t require cooking or deep frying, the best solution is Tahini as a sesame oil alternative.

Why Tahini Paste?

  • Full of minerals, vitamins, and unsaturated fats
  • Has plenty of antioxidants
  • Contains anti-inflammatory properties
  • Strengthens your nervous system

Nutrition Facts Comparison

Tahini Paste (100g) Sesame Oil (100g)
Energy 3700KJ 3700KJ
Saturated Fats 8g 14g
Monounsaturated Fats 20g 39g
Polyunsaturated 24g 41g

Taste of Tahini Paste

Nutty, creamy and savory taste with a tinge of bitterness

Using Tahini paste in dishes

It’s Used in dips, marinades, salad dressings, etc.

Fun Fact

The popular educational television program Sesame Street, which started in the 1960s, wasn’t related to sesame in any way. Instead, the name was derived from the all-time famous magic spell, ‘Open, Sesame!’, mentioned in The Arabian Nights.

How to Make Toasted Sesame Oil from Regular Sesame Oil?

How to Make Toasted Sesame Oil from Regular Sesame Oil
Image Sources Pinterest

First, it’s necessary to remove the confusion.

And that confusion is,

The toasted sesame oil available in the market is made from the sesame seeds that are toasted before any oil is extracted from them.

We are going to describe how you can make toasted sesame oil from the regular sesame oil you already own.

So, let’s begin.

Before starting it’s worth mentioning that use the latest gadgets rather than doing kitchen work manually because it not only increases work efficiency but saves time as well.

Pour the required amount of sesame oil on to a pan and heat it for some time.

Once you see your desired darker color, take it off from the stove and pour it in some bottle or container.

The homemade roasted sesame oil is ready!

Not to mention again that the taste you would get from the above method won’t match the taste of the actual toasted sesame oil available commercially. Why?

It’s because of the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) those manufacturers follow, in addition to the expertise, experience and other factors.

Some people suggest DIY sesame oil as its replacement too, but that’s not a rational choice in our view.


Because, when you’re allergic to a food item, it is better to keep aloof from it– irrespective of the fact it is commercial or homemade.


The nutty, earthy, high in antioxidants sesame oil can easily be replaced with seven different alternatives, without comprising the taste much.

This only thing to keep in mind while substituting is the type you’re replacing with – replacing roasted with roasted, unrefined with unrefined, cold-pressed with cold-pressed and so on.

Have you ever tried replacing sesame oil with any of its replacements? How different was the taste? Share with us in the comments section below.

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