There is a lot to be said about coconut oil and its use in your daily diet. Yes, it’s extremely high in fat. Yes, it’s all natural and doesn’t have weird chemicals. I will leave the readers to their own pros and cons for consumption of coconut oil in their diet. As for using coconut oil for skin and hair care I am a big fan!
Coconut Oil is an edible oil extracted from the kernel or meat of matured coconuts harvested from the coconut palm. It has various applications in food, medicine, and industry. Because of its high saturated fat content it is slow to oxidize and, thus, resistant to going rancid and lasting up to two years without spoiling.
At room temperature (about 75 degrees) or warmer the oil is liquid and splashes out easily. You need to be aware of its state when opening it so as not to spill it out accidentally. If you put it in a cooler area or the fridge it will start solidifying. When it is in solid state you can scoop it out with a spoon.
The following are the most commonly found types of processing for coconut oil:
Organic Coconut Oil and Non Organic Coconut Oil – Certified organic coconuts have NOT been treated with chemicals or fertilizers. Look for the USDA certificate label/stamp on the container! Choosing whether you want to use organic or non organic is up to you.
Virgin (unrefined) Coconut Oil –
Virgin Coconut Oil can only be achieved by using fresh coconut meat. Chemicals and high heat are NOT used in refining. Natural, pure coconut oil is very stable with a shelf life of several years.
Expeller-Pressed Coconut Oil –
For this processing the coconut meat goes through a steam deodorizing process. The taste is very bland, unlike virgin coconut oil which retains the odor and taste of fresh coconuts. Some people prefer a bland, tasteless oil.
Whether you use it in a solid or liquid state will usually not matter. Some people keep theirs at room temperature just because it’s easier to scoop or pour out. I whip mine into coconut butter and keep it in the fridge because that is my personal preference. It seems more light and airy to me when it’s cold. My daughter keeps a jar in her bathroom where it stays much softer. She just opens the jar, scoops a bit out with her finger and rubs into her lips, face, hands, etc. For her it’s very convenient this way!
A few of the thousands of ways to include coconut oil in your COOKING;
For the CHICKENS…
When I scramble eggs for our chickens, or cook them any treats that would call for a bit of oil, I use coconut oil.
|‘We Prefer all our treats cooked in coconut oil’!|
Homemade Magic Shell Chocolate Sauce – for ice cream (my personal favorite)
1 3-5-ounce dark chocolate bar
1 tablespoon coconut oil
pinch of sea salt
Microwave chocolate and coconut oil for one minute. Stir to combine. While warm, drizzle over ice cream. It really is magic. From an awesome and well known local chef, cookbook writer, blogger. Thanks, The Chubby Vegetarian!
Most everyone loves stir-fry and it’s one of those go-to recipes you can use up some leftovers! Coconut oil is great for stir-fry. It can help your body absorb more of the vitamins in your veggies. Simply replace the same amour of oil you use with coconut oil!
Popcorn -popped the old-fashioned way:
2 TBS coconut oil
1/3 cup organic popcorn kernels
sea salt (to taste)
Add coconut oil and popcorn to a heavy bottom, lidded pot.
Cover and set the pot over medium heat.
As soon as the kernels start to pop, shake the pot to keep them from burning. Pop about 4 minutes, or until most of the kernels have popped- when you hear more than 5 seconds between each pop.
Uncover, sprinkle with sea salt.
Makes about 8 cups of popped popcorn.
You can find coconut oil to purchase online or in most food stores. Always read labels!
How to make your own COCONUT BUTTER for skin, hair and body care!
|Scooping the coconut oil out of the jar.|
- The coconut oil should be refrigerated till it’s completely solid.
- Scoop out the coconut oil into a mixing bowl…I use a stand mixer but a hand-held will also work. I am using a whisker- style beater but regular ones will work, too.
- Start mixing.
- It will take 7 – 8 min so you might want to have a timer handy.
- Stop about half way and use a spatula to move the oil from the side of the bowl if needed.
- If it seems to NOT be FLUFFING up after half way here you can put the bowl of coconut oil back in fridge till it becomes solid again. Just start over from this point.
- When it has been mixing for 7 or 8 minutes and looks like whip cream it’s time to pour it into an airtight storage container. You now have COCONUT BUTTER!
- You will need to put the container coconut butter in the fridge till it gets solid. I keep mine in the fridge because its easier for me to work with in that form.
- Leaving it out may cause it to get soft or even go back to liquid state but this in no will in no way mean it’s gone bad. You can even redo the mixing process if necessary!
|Close container and refrigerate.|
Your COCONUT BUTTER is now ready to be put to work as a moisturizer for face, under-eyes, lips, body, hands, feet, hair and many many other skin and hair care uses. It only takes a very small amount and it goes a long way!
You can make your own coconut butter or buy already whipped up at health food stores and all-natural supply shops but whichever you do try it. It’s soooo yummy just to look at and feels like silk on your skin!
You can use the coconut butter as is (which is fabulous) or rev it up with the addition of essential oils and carrier oils like jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, olive oil, etc.
If you are only adding essential oils to the coconut butter you can put them in, a few drops at a time, at the beginning if the mixing…a little at a time till the fragrance is the strength you want.
|Add fragrance to your coconut butter!|
You can experiment with fragrances by taking a small amount from the main container, let it soften a bit in another container and put a few drops of EOs in it. There are many easy online recipes for making lotions, hand cream, body and face, sugar scrubs, hair conditioners…
Watch this is very basic video on how to do more with the coconut butter! *I am NOT promoting anything they are using! …just gives you a little visual on the process.
Two books that have been a great help to me in learning about essential oils, carrier oils and herbs are; The Complete Book of Essential Oils & Aromatherapy, by Valerie Ann Worwood. 500 Formulas for Aromatherapy, by Carol Schiller and David Schiller.
After digging in the dirt, chasing chickens or kiddos, cooking, cleaning and the list goes on and on…don’t you think you deserve some PAMPERING?