The Finest Sesame Oil for Stir-Frying and Cooking Steaks

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Sesame oil is an excellent method to add a little nuttiness to your regular cooking. Sesame oil, being an unsaturated fat, is a much healthier alternative for cooking than other kinds of oils, and it is perfect for imparting flavor to a wide range of recipes, not just stir fries and soups.

Sesame oil is classified into two categories. In this post, we will look at the differences between light sesame oil and toasted sesame oil and how they should both be used in cooking. We also examine a variety of light sesame and roasted sesame oils to help you find the finest sesame oil for cooking.

Best Selection

The Spectrum unrefined organic sesame oil is our kosher, USDA organic, and Non-GMO Project Verified top recommendation for sesame oils for cooking at temperatures up to 350F.

Budget Selection

Our budget selection for sesame oils for daily cooking is the 365 Everyday Value organic sesame oil, which is certified organic, kosher, and vegan.

Product Name Grade
Spectrum Unrefined Organic Sesame Oil A+
365 Everyday Value Organic Sesame Oil A
Seitenbacher Premium Sesame Oil A
Napa Valley Naturals Organic Sesame Oil A
OTTOGI Premium Roasted Sesame Oil A-
Ziyad Extra Virgin Sesame Oil B+
Dabur Sesame Oil B+
Kevala Organic Toasted Sesame Oil A
Naturevibe Botanicals Sesame Seed Oil A-
La Tourangelle Toasted Sesame Oil A-

1. ​Spectrum Unrefined Organic Sesame Oil  

Highlighted Characteristics

  • An unrefined sesame oil which is expeller pressed
  • All-purpose oil that you can use for cooking with up to 350°F
  • Comes in a 16 fl. oz glass bottle with no-drip spout
  • Non-GMO Project Verified and certified USDA organic
  • Also certified as being kosher

Spectrum unrefined organic sesame oil is USDA certified organic and Non-GMO Project Verified. This is an all-purpose oil that may be used in ovens up to 350°F. The sesame seeds are acquired from the United States or Mexico and then expeller pressed before being packaged in a 16 oz glass container with a no-drip spout. Being an unrefined oil, it has a strong sesame fragrance, and some consumers have had difficulty pouring the oil cleanly from the container. This oil is also kosher certified.


  • Unrefined sesame oil
  • Organic
  • Expeller pressed
  • Non-GMO
  • Kosher
  • Glass bottle


  • The spout on the bottle may cause it to leak when pouring
  • The sesame aroma can be quite strong in this oil

2. 365 Everyday Value Organic Sesame Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • An 8.4 fl. oz glass bottle of unrefined sesame oil
  • Has a mild flavor and light color
  • The sesame seeds have been expeller pressed
  • Manufactured in the US from Mexican sesame seeds
  • Certified USDA organic, vegan and kosher

The 365 Daily Value organic sesame oil comes in an 8.4 fl. oz glass container and is made in the United States from expeller pressed and unrefined sesame seeds from Mexico. This sesame oil is not only USDA organic, but it is also kosher and vegan.

This light-colored sesame oil has a softer taste than other sesame oils and has not been well received by all purchasers. One unusual consumer even noted that it tastes like canola oil!


  • Unrefined sesame oil
  • Glass bottle
  • Organic
  • Kosher
  • Vegan


  • Flavor may be a little too mild for all tastes
  • The odd buyer considers this tastes more like cannola oil!

3. Seitenbacher Premium Sesame Oil

Highlighted Characteristics

  • An unrefined and cold pressed sesame oil
  • Certified as being USDA organic
  • An all-purpose sesame oil suitable for medium heat cooking
  • Imported from Germany this comes in 8.4 fl. oz glass bottles

Seitenbacher premium sesame oil is a cold pressed unrefined sesame oil that comes in a twin pack of 8.4 fl. oz glass bottles. This lighter sesame oil has a mild taste and is appropriate for medium heat cooking as well as sauces.

This oil is more expensive than other organic sesame oils since it is imported from Germany.


  • Unrefined sesame oil
  • USDA organic
  • Cold pressed
  • Medium heat cooking
  • Glass bottles


  • ​Costs more as imported from Germany
  • ​Smaller 8.4 fl. oz bottles

4. Napa Valley Naturals Organic Sesame Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • Unrefined and cold pressed sesame oil
  • A lighter flavored and colored oil suitable for using as an all-purpose oil
  • Certified as USDA organic
  • Bottled in the Napa Valley from oil produced in Mexico
  • This comes as 12.7 fl. oz in a wine bottle

The organic sesame oil from Napa Valley Naturals is a lighter oil that is great for cooking as well as marinades and sauces. The delicate and nutty taste and nutritional profile of this sesame oil are preserved by being unrefined and cold pressed. This oil is certified USDA organic and is packaged in a 12.7 ounce wine bottle in Napa Valley.

While it is bottled in California, some buyers have been dismayed to discover that it is manufactured in Mexico, and as with any glass bottle, there is a possibility of getting a broken bottle.


  • Unrefined sesame oil
  • Cold pressed
  • Organic
  • Bottled in a wine bottle
  • ​US bottled


  • Some buyers are disappointed as this is produced in Mexico rather than the US
  • Can be a risk of receiving the glass bottles damaged

5. OTTOGI Premium Roasted Sesame Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • A 56 fl. oz can of sesame oil with a pour spout
  • Made from whole Chinese grown sesame seeds in South Korea
  • Triple filtered before being canned
  • This sesame oil is the bestselling brand of sesame oil in Korea

The OTTOGI premium roasted sesame oil, made in South Korea from whole sesame seeds produced in China, has a well-roasted and unique scent and has been filtered three times before being bottled. This is the most popular sesame oil brand in Korea.

This comes in a huge 56 fl. oz. can, and although it has a pour spout for convenience of pouring, some consumers have complained that the spout’s poor design makes it difficult to pour out the oil without spilling it. There is also the possibility that the can may be damaged during transportation.

Since this is a toasted oil, it has a lower smoke point than other kinds of sesame oil and is best used at lower temperatures or to season meals towards the end of cooking.


  • Roasted sesame seed oil
  • Comes canned with a pour spout
  • Well-roasted aroma
  • Bestselling Korean brand
  • Triple filtered


  • Toasted oils have a lower smoke point than other sesame oils
  • Design of the spout can make it difficult to pour
  • The can may be damaged during shipping

6. Ziyad Extra Virgin Sesame Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • An unrefined and cold pressed sesame oil
  • Is double filtered after pressing
  • Comes in a larger 26 fl. oz glass bottle
  • A light colored oil which is also low in aroma

Ziyad extra virgin sesame oil is made from expeller cold pressed sesame seeds and is twice filtered to create a light colored oil. This is a pure unrefined oil, albeit there is some debate about whether it was pressed in India or Mexico. This comes in a transparent glass container with a capacity of 26 oz. The occasional customer has stated that this oil has little scent and taste.


  • Unrefined sesame oil
  • Cold pressed
  • Double filtered
  • Glass bottle
  • Larger bottle


  • You may not be as keen on this sesame oil as it is low in flavor
  • This can also lack aroma compared with other sesame oils
  • It is unclear as to whether this oil is produced in India or Mexico

7. Dabur Sesame Oil

Highlighted Characteristics

  • Pure refined sesame oil that does not contain any additives
  • An all-purpose oil which is ideal for cooking with
  • A lightly flavored sesame oil produced in India
  • Available in different sized bottles

Dabur sesame oil is a refined oil that comes in a variety of plastic container sizes, including 250ml. This is a mildly flavored and colored all-purpose sesame oil that may also be used to cook. Some people may find this sesame oil too light. This sesame oil is made in India and has no additives.


  • Refined sesame oil
  • All-purpose
  • Various sized bottles
  • Additive free


  • Comes in a plastic rather than glass bottle
  • A lighter sesame oil which may not suit all tastes

8. Kevala Organic Toasted Sesame Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • An unrefined and cold pressed toasted sesame oil
  • Bottled in the US and produced in Mexico, this is available as an 8 fl. oz glass bottle
  • Certified USDA organic and Non-GMO Project Verified
  • Also certified as kosher

Kevala organic toasted sesame oil comes in an 8 oz glass container and is cold pressed and unrefined. Since it is cold pressed, the nutrition, fragrance, and taste of the oil are preserved. This is USDA organic and Non-GMO Project Verified. This kosher food from Mexico is packaged in the United States.

This is a deeper colored oil with the unmistakable nutty taste anticipated of sesame oil, and its scent may be greater than other brands of sesame oil for individuals who are new to using sesame oil. Since this is a roasted sesame oil rather than a lighter sesame oil, it will not be ideal for sautéing at higher temperatures.


  • Unrefined toasted sesame oil
  • Organic
  • GMO-free
  • Kosher
  • Bottled in the US


  • As a toasted oil this should only be used in cooking at low temperatures
  • This has quite a strong aroma that not all buyers will be as keen on

9. Naturevibe Botanicals Sesame Seed Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • An 8 fl. oz plastic bottle of unrefined sesame oil
  • This is a lighter colored oil which also has a lighter taste
  • Manufactured in India from organic sesame seeds but not currently certified USDA organic
  • Can be used for cooking with at low to medium heat

The Naturevibe Botanicals sesame seed oil comes in an 8 fl. oz. plastic container and is an unrefined oil appropriate for cooking at low to medium heat. Manufactured in India, this is labeled as being prepared from organic sesame seeds, and the maker has many organic accreditations; however, the package presently does not reflect a USDA organic certification. The odd customer has found this to be on the lighter side of sesame oils, so depending on your preferences, you may not like cooking with it as much.


  • Unrefined sesame oil
  • Lighter oil
  • Suitable for cooking
  • Made from organic seeds


  • Does not appear to currently be certified as organic
  • This is a very light sesame oil which may not suit all tastes
  • Comes in a plastic bottle rather than glass

​10. La Tourangelle Toasted Sesame Oil 

Highlighted Characteristics

  • A 16.9 fl. oz can of toasted sesame oil
  • The oil is sourced from African or South American sesame seeds
  • Seeds are roasted at lower temperatures then expeller pressed
  • The oil has toasted flavors and is deep amber colored

The La Tourangelle toasted sesame oil comes in a 16.9 oz can and is made from sesame seeds farmed in Africa or South America. In keeping with its French background, the seeds are carefully roasted at moderate temperatures after harvesting and then expeller pressed to extract the sesame oil. The oil is filtered and packaged after extraction.

This pure sesame oil has a deep amber hue and a rich taste with slight toasted characteristics. While organic, this is not yet USDA certified organic. Several customers were dissatisfied with the flavor of this sesame oil, believing it lacked flavor and was too weak in comparison to other sesame oils. Because of the form of the pour spout, you may have difficulty pouring the oil from the container.


  • Toasted sesame oil
  • Expeller pressed
  • Dark colored
  • Rich flavor
  • Organic


  • Not currently certified USDA organic
  • The design of the pour spout means it can leak when you pour
  • Some buyers have commented this lacks flavor compared to other toasted sesame oils

Considerations Before Purchasing Sesame Oil for Cooking

Sesame oil is a classic in Asian cuisines, and its smell, as well as its nutty and rich tastes, meaning it can lend a lot of flavor to a variety of meals. In addition to stir fries and noodles, it may be used to soups, roasted vegetables, marinades, and even dips like hummus. Sesame oil will also give popcorn a particular taste.

The simplest way to think about sesame oil for cooking is to begin with light sesame oil and end with roasted sesame oil. In general, the deeper the color of the sesame oil, the greater the taste. In the context of sesame oil, a lighter oil does not relate to a reduced fat oil; rather, it refers to the color of the oil.

Light sesame oil, with its more neutral taste, may be used in the same way as vegetable or canola oil, and is ideal for frying at high heat or roasting. A darker sesame oil, like light sesame oil, has a smoke point of 450F and may be used for cooking up to medium temperatures, but unlike lighter sesame oil, a darker oil is more likely to lose taste if heated over high heat or for too long.

Toasted sesame oil (also known as Asian sesame oil) may be used in cooking, but only at moderate temperatures since it has a lower smoke point than sesame oil. Since it is created from roasted seeds, using toasted sesame oil to cook with and then overcooking it will result in a meal with burned and bitter tastes. Because of its powerful nutty and roast taste, toasted sesame oil may overshadow a meal, so add some to your skillet towards the end of cooking for added flavor.

Consuming sesame oil has been linked to a range of health advantages. It is a healthier option for cooking as an unsaturated fat, and as a source of Omega-6 fatty acids, it may help avoid heart disease. According to one research, people who ingested four tablespoons of sesame oil every day for a month had lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels than those who consumed olive oil.

Sesame oil also includes two antioxidants, sesamol and sesaminol, which have been connected to good health effects as they may help lower oxidative stress in the body, which has been associated to ailments including arthritis, diabetes, and, of course, heart disease.

How Are Various Varieties of Sesame Oil Made?

Sesame seeds (Sesamum indicum) contain around 50% oil by weight, and sesame oil, unlike other forms of oil, is highly durable and resistant to rancidity. A simple extraction or press warms the sesame seeds to between 250F and 300F for a few minutes to generate sesame oil. After being cooked, the seeds are crushed in a press to extract the oil. At this time, the oil has a smoke point of roughly 410F, making it suitable for a variety of culinary tasks.

A refined sesame oil is one that has been extracted using additional methods, such as chemical solvent extraction.

Cold pressed (and frequently unrefined) sesame oil is made by crushing the seeds at room temperature rather than heating them. An expeller press is used to do this. This is a screw machine in which the screw travels forward and uses pressure and friction to extract the oil from the seeds. While this process is described as cold pressed, it is not usually the most accurate description since the friction and pressure required in expeller pressing naturally generates some heat.

Cold pressed sesame oil often has a milder taste than refined sesame oil, however the cold pressing technique results in a lower smoke point of roughly 350F, making it less ideal for sautéing at higher heat.

Roasted sesame oil is prepared from sesame seeds that have been browned for up to 30 minutes at 360°F. After that, the roasted seeds are crushed. When compared to other sesame oils, this produces a significantly darker oil with a stronger scent.

Keeping Sesame Oil

While sesame oil is shelf-stable when kept in a cold, dark area, keeping it refrigerated after opening can help keep it from becoming rancid. If you haven’t used an open bottle of sesame oil in a while, smell and taste a bit of it before using to verify it hasn’t gone rancid.

Allergies and Sesame Seed Oils

or tree nuts, so if you have any allergies, properly read the product labeling before purchasing. Sesame oil should be avoided by those who are intolerant or allergic to sesame seeds. While sesame oils may not include nuts or tree nuts, they are often produced in facilities that do.

While there are no laws requiring manufacturers in the United States to include sesame seeds in their ingredient listings, many do. Sesame oil is also known as gingelly oil, and sesame seeds as sim sim or benne seed.


In this post, we looked at the differences between light and roasted sesame oils and why one is more suited to cooking than the other. We’ve also looked at a few ways to use this unsaturated fat with nutty undertones into your usual cooking.

We hope you liked reading our evaluation of some of the finest sesame oil for cooking and that our reviews helped you choose the correct sesame oil, whether you want a lighter oil for frying or a toasted sesame oil to give a burst of rich flavor to your meal at the conclusion of its cooking period.

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