If you spent any time in my kitchen, you might be astonished at how many uses I could find for coconut oil. Since making a major change in my cooking and nutritional awareness, I’ve switched almost entirely to coconut oil as my go-to oil for everything from roasting to baking. It’s amazing in its performance and its components — full of lauric acid and plenty of healthy saturated fats, coconut oil is my kitchen MVP.
So imagine my pleasure when Tropical Traditions offered to send me a jar of their highest rated Gold Label Extra Virgin Coconut Oil to sample and review. Below are my thoughts, and as a reward for getting through all of the words there’s a bit about a Tropical Traditions-sponsored giveaway at the bottom. Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product. But now, a word from our sponsor:
Win 1 quart of Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil!
Tropical Traditions is America’s source for coconut oil. Their Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil is hand crafted in small batches by family producers, and it is the highest quality coconut oil they offer. You can read more about how virgin coconut oil is different from other coconut oils on their website: What is Virgin Coconut Oil?
You can also watch the video they produced about Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil:
Tropical Traditions also carries other varieties of affordable high quality coconut oil. Visit their website to check on current sales, to learn about the many uses of coconut oil, and to read about all the advantages of buying coconut oil online. Since the FDA does not want us to discuss the health benefits of coconut oil on a page where it is being sold or given away, here is the best website to read about the health benefits of coconut oil.
smell: After first opening the jar I was struck by the intensity of the coconut smell. Unlike many coconut oils I’ve used, this has neither a neutral smell of an oil bleached and sterilized, nor does it smell as sweet as others — somehow, it smells authentic. Like a real coconut, plucked from a tree and hacked open on site. If you’ve ever cut open your own coconut, you may understand what I mean. There’s a raw, almost soured scent that comes with a coconut, and although this certainly isn’t unpleasant it does take a little getting used to when you’re accustomed to “coconut”-flavored products or the raw coconut’s distant step-sister, sweetened flaked coconut. I use some of Tropical Traditions’s beauty products in addition to their coconut oil, and these have the same sort of aroma. I imagine it has something to do with the way the coconut is processed — minimally — and how fresh the original product is from the get-go.
(Specifically, this particular brand of the Tropical Traditions coconut oil — their Gold Label variety — is special for many reasons: It is hand-milled in the traditional way by families in the Philippines, done so without expeller-pressing machines or bleaching or hydrogenation, and therefore retains the coconut scent and flavor and all of the nutrition that comes with it.)
taste: The coconut oil has a kind-of-funky taste, but only insomuch as it corresponds with the smell described above. Again, the slightly savory-sour flavor from the virgin coconut is a bit odd to get used to, but I understand why it is the way it is having experienced a real coconut before. I’m in the habit of taking a spoonful of coconut oil every day, often to sustain energy in between meals, and knowing how authentic and pure this coconut oil was kept me going back for more.
touch: Unlike many coconut oils, which can be chunky or have hard flecks of actual coconut, this oil is silky smooth. When solid at room temperature, the oil has an almost flaky consistency like any good shortening in a pie crust. Through all of my sampling, I have yet to encounter any stray solids in this jar, and I think that this texture is one of my favorite characteristics of this brand.
see: It’s white and creamy and as inviting as a jar of buttercream frosting. Tropical Traditions sent me an immense quart jar of the stuff, and I admit I couldn’t have been happier when I unwrapped the package to find this waiting for me. Think of how many sweet potatoes I could roast and how many eggs I could fry!
uses: I have used this coconut oil for frying, sauteeing, roasting, greasing a pan, baking a cake and making coconut buttercream, moisturizing my cuticles and, via a tablespoon to my mouth, providing a quick burst of long-lasting energy.
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Overall, I trust Tropical Traditions as a reliable, responsible company with a wide range of products and great customer service. I first found out about them when I started researching coconut oil-based beauty products this summer. I ordered one of their face creams and a rose-scented body lotion, and happily used them to keep my skin hydrated and free of chemicals. I usually use plain coconut oil on my face and skin, but a jar of oil is not the most reliable thing the travel with, especially in the heat of the summer. Thankfully, my new moisturizers were exactly what I was looking for.
I’m happy to report that the Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil is as high quality as I expected. Because their company is passionate about spreading the good news of the coconut, Tropical Traditions is sponsoring a giveaway on my blog today!
To enter, simply sign up for their newsletter, and leave a comment telling me you did so. For an extra entry, visit the Tropical Traditions site and tell me what product is your favorite — they have everything from coconut vinegars and baking products to organic products and grass-fed meat and dairy. I’ll choose a winner on Monday and Tropical Traditions will mail you your very own jar of their Gold Label Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. You have until next Monday at midnight to enter, and unfortunately this giveaway is open only to readers in the continental U.S.
Thanks again to Tropical Traditions for the sample and for the giveaway — stay posted for some upcoming coconut recipes and more!