Peanut oil substitution for vegetable oil?

I plan to bake Merrill's a pplesauce cake with caramel glaze which I have enjoyed greatly. Find that I only have peanut oil on hand. Could I substitute peanut oil for the vegetable oil that is called for in the recipe?

  • Posted by: Lorenza
  • April 13, 2012


ChefOno April 14, 2012

No, I don't think your mind is playing tricks on you. If you smelled peanuts, it was either unrefined or roasted peanut oil. They both have a definite odor and taste. The stuff I use for frying is highly refined and completely neutral. And it works well in baking applications.

The only oil that comes to mind that changes under heat is canola. The stuff smells like old fish at temperature. At least it does to me. I'm told not everyone can smell it and I guess that must be true because none other than Thomas Keller uses the stuff.
ChefOno April 13, 2012
Umm… Refined peanut oil is completely neutral in flavor.
SKK April 13, 2012
Hi ChefOno, Respect your knowledge and have learned a lot from you.

This is probably a silly question I should know the answer to and don't. In making salad dressings, sometimes I use vegetable oil, sometimes great olive oil (friends bring be great olive oil from Italy that I could drink it is so amazing) and sometimes grapeseed oil. Depends on what flavor I want to stand out. Would never consider peanut oil because when I smell it is not neutral.

Does the heat make it neutral? Does the suggestion 'peanut oil' on the label make me taste different things?

So much to learn.

Thanks in advance.
beyondcelery April 13, 2012
I've done this in recipes before and it changes the flavor and texture slightly, but that's all. You're probably fine. Since this is a cake recipe, if you don't mind it richer, you could sub melted butter instead (if you have that). If I were doing this, I would probably use melted butter instead of peanut oil. But I'd still use peanut oil if it's all I had.
SKK April 13, 2012
Peanut oil has a very distinctive flavor and intense. Vegetable oil is neutral. Of course you can substitute and be prepared for a different flavor than if using vegetable oil.
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