How to Substitute Sesame Oil

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Sesame oil is used in many Asian recipes such as marinades and salad dressings to add a bold flavor. If you cannot find the sesame oil that you need for a recipe, there are several substitutions you can make. Keep in mind that not just any oil will do, since sesame oil is a unique and flavorful type of oil.

A small bowl of sesame oil and sesame seeds
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Things You'll Need

  • Sesame seeds
  • Nonstick skillet
  • Vegetable oil
  • Canola oil
  • Olive oil
  • Blender
Step 1

Replace the sesame oil with peanut oil. Peanut oil can be found at your local grocery store and it has a flavor similar to sesame oil. Use the same amount of oil called for in your recipe. For example, if your recipe called for 1 cup of sesame oil, use 1 cup of peanut oil.

Peanut oil and peanuts
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Step 2

Add toasted sesame seeds to the recipe instead of sesame oil. Toast the seeds over high heat using a nonstick skillet. Shake the pan every few seconds to ensure the seeds are receiving equal heat. Toast the seeds for 2 minutes or until they emit a fragrant sesame odor. Add the seeds teaspoon by teaspoon into your recipe and taste after each teaspoon. Do not dump all of the seeds in at once because they might end up adding too much of a sesame taste.

A spoonful of sesame seeds
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Step 3

Try creating your own sesame oil by adding a neutral type of oil to some toasted sesame seeds. Add ¼ cup of sesame seeds to 1 cup of vegetable or canola oil, and place them on a skillet at medium heat. Cook the oil and seed mixture 2 minutes or until you notice the seeds starting to brown. If you notice any of the seeds starting to burn, take the skillet off the heat immediately. Let the mixture cool, and then mix it in the blender. After the mixture has rested for 2 hours, strain and bottle the homemade sesame oil.

A glass bottle of sesame oil
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Step 4

Substitute olive oil for sesame oil for another healthy choice. While olive oil does not have the same taste as sesame oil, they are both extremely healthy oils. If you were using sesame oil simply for the health benefits, olive oil works well as a substitute. Simply purchase olive oil at your local grocery store and substitute it at a 1:1 ratio.

A spoonful of olive oil
Inácio Pires/Hemera/Getty Images

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Tips & Warnings

  • If you cannot find sesame seeds, you can replace them with peanuts in step 3 for a similar taste.

References

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