We have searched high and low to bring you the best potato chips without seed oil. These chips are also free from weird chemical additives and oils dangerously heated past their smoke point. Potato chips don’t have to be junk food when they’re fried in the good stuff!
Below the table, you can find the pro’s and con’s of these potato chips and more detailed info about seed oil and its harms.
Seed oil free potato chips
|Our beef tallow potato chips!||Beef Tallow||0.4g||Tallow is savory!|
|Rosie's Chips||Beef Tallow||0.4g|
|Beefy's Own||Beef Tallow||0.4g|
|Jackson's Honest Potato Chips - Sweet Potato||Coconut Oil||0.2g||Typically Coconut-y|
|The Good Crisp Company Original||Palm Oil||0.7g||OK!|
|Boulder Canyon Avocado Oil Potato Chips||Avocado Oil||1.4g||OK!|
|Only recommended if the frying temperature is low, which is unknown: Patatas Fritas Torres Olive Oil Premium Potato Chips||Extra Virgin Olive Oil||1.0g||Good reviews!|
Seed Oils Produce Fatigue and Obesity
Seed oils, also known as vegetable oils, are bad for two reasons. First, they are highly processed oils that have been through unnatural factory processes that could make them rancid and dangerous to the body. Second, these oils are high in polyunsaturated fat, or PUFA. The PUFA in seed oils slows your metabolism down. There is a strong case that lots of PUFA causes chronic conditions like diabetes, obesity, and low testosterone. More info about PUFA’s dangers can be found in our big post about it.
The lower the PUFA in the chips the better it is. (We measured per 150 calories.) Even when there is a little PUFA, eating good Saturated Fat (SFA) can balance out some of the PUFA’s harmful effects. That’s why we mention the Saturated Fat (SFA) to PUFA ratio as well. The higher the SFA/PUFA ratio the better!
Bring Back Beef Tallow
If you want a no-seed-oil, low PUFA fat for frying potato chips, then beef tallow can’t be beat. It is probably the best oil for healthy frying. Beef tallow has only 4% PUFA, it can handle deep frying temperatures, and it tastes terrific. French fries used to be fried in beef tallow and people would rave about how good they were, but these were foolishly replaced by unhealthy and worse tasting seed oils.
For this reason, we have decided to make the best tallow-fried potato chips around. They have zero seed oils or additives, and they are about as low PUFA as it gets. They probably have a mere 0.4g PUFA. Tallow also has CLA, a natural compound that some believe is a fat burner.
You can get our tallow-fried potato chips here.
Beefy’s Own and Rosie’s Chips also make tallow potato chips. If we’re out of stock, go get their tallow chips instead! To the best of our knowledge, there aren’t any other beef tallow fried chips on the market, but you can make them yourself.
Coconut Oil Is The Best
Coconut oil has only a tiny amount of PUFA in it. It is a great alternative to seed oil. Coconut oil has a fantastic SFA/PUFA ratio of 48.1, which means there is 48 times more good SFA than bad PUFA in coconut oil! (Source) This is almost 200 times better than sunflower oil and soybean oil which have four times more PUFA than saturated fat. Nasty. And these are the typical oils used in the big potato chip brands. That’s why coconut oil is a much better choice if you want potato chips without seed oil.
However, there are two health concerns about frying potato chips with coconut oil.
Coconut Oil’s Smoke Point
Coconut oil has a low smoke point, which means that when you fry potato chips, the oil can start to burn slightly, which is very unhealthy and tastes bad. It’s important not to heat oil past its smoke point, or it will be bad for you no matter how little PUFA it has. But don’t worry, there’s a way to deal with this.
Refined Coconut Oil vs Unrefined
Refined coconut oil has been processed to remove some of the stuff that is natural in the coconut. This is a bit disappointing, and usually it involves the use of a factory with chemicals involved. This is probably not the best for your health.
Jackson’s Honest Brand Solves These Issues!
Jackson’s Honest addresses both our concerns about frying with coconut oil, leaving us confident in their product.
Jackson’s Honest chips use coconut oil, which is very low PUFA of course. But the company clearly states that they fry under 300 degrees only to ensure that the oil doesn’t go over the smoke point! So we don’t have to worry. Their oil does not burn and damage your health.
“We cook/fry at a temperature under 300-degrees so the oil is not denatured in the cooking process- its the same as if you were to consume from an actual coconut.” – Jackson’s Honest. (Source)
While they do use refined coconut oil (likely because it has a higher smoke point than unrefined), they state that their oil does not go through chemical processing. Excellent!
“The Coconut Oil Used to cook all Jackson’s Honest Chips is Refined Expeller Pressed Organic Coconut Oil. The coconut oil is refined using only steam, no other additives, which is the only method available to meet USDA organic standards.” – Jackson’s Honest. (Source)
Jackson’s Honest clearly goes above and beyond to ensure a clean, natural product that uses only the healthiest and most natural ingredients that are practical.
Thrive Market also sells coconut oil potato chips. While these chips are great on the PUFA question, it’s unclear whether the oil has been slightly burnt and whether the oil is chemically refined or not. We don’t know for certain, but we think it’s very likely that they have to use refined coconut oil, instead of unrefined, natural coconut oil. Since they are not advertising organic coconut oil having been used, we find it probable that their coconut oil was chemically processed in a factory, which is less than ideal for health reasons. We also wonder how near the dangerous smoke point these chips have come, since they don’t say anything about using a special slow and low-temperature process like the other brand. These issues are a concern, but these chips are still a great choice for avoiding PUFA! They are currently the only potato chips around that are made with coconut oil and white potatoes, not sweet potatoes.
Olive Oil Is Good Stuff For Potato Chips!
UPDATE: May 2023 – We no longer advise olive oil potato chips as the high temperature of frying can make the olive oil degrade and become carcinogenic.
Everyone agrees that olive oil is a great healthy oil. It has a SFA/PUFA ratio of 1.61. That ratio shows that there is still more saturated fat than PUFA, and olive oil is only 8.4% PUFA anyway.
We recommend Torres brand potato chips from Spain. You don’t want cheap, refined olive oil like the other brands use. Torres only uses extra virgin olive oil in their chips. Most olive oil chip brands don’t advertise that they use extra virgin olive oil, which means they very likely use highly processed “refined” olive oil instead. Refined olive oil has been through a factory process where it loses much of its health benefits and its rich taste. We don’t want that, so we stick to the real stuff, the extra virgin!
People rave about the taste of these chips. They contain no weird ingredients, no chemicals. Just potatoes, salt, and of course, extra virgin olive oil. If you aren’t interested in the sweet potato chips above, then we believe that these EVOO chips are the absolute best potato chips without seed oil available in the US today. Highly recommended!
Avocado Oil – We’ll Take It
Avocado oil is a pretty good option for frying potato chips. Brands seem to like using avocado oil to make potato chips without using seed oils, and it is certainly a lot healthier. Its PUFA content is 13%, which is acceptable, but we’d like to see better. Its SFA/PUFA ratio is 1.23. You could eat avocado oil chips in moderation, and maybe consider eating a little coconut oil or Vitamin E at the same time, to help balance out the PUFA. But we definitely prefer chips fried in coconut oil, tallow, or palm oil. Now that there are beef tallow fried chips on the market, you should get those instead.
Palm Oil For Chips
Palm Oil is a good cooking oil. It is relatively low PUFA and has a good SFA/PUFA ratio of 4 or 5 to 1. It can also handle high cooking temperatures well.
Palm oil gets a lot of flak for environmental reasons. If this concerns you, the product that we recommend gets their palm oil from sources certified by the Roundtable On Sustainable Palm Oil to be environmentally friendly.
Lard Used To Be Good
Looking for lard is one way to get potato chips without seed oil, but sadly it is not a very good option anymore. In the old days, lard would have been a lot more healthy than the seed oils, with a ratio of at least 3.5 SFA/PUFA and potentially up to 7.17 SFA/PUFA. Unfortunately, modern lard is much higher in PUFA than it used to be, due to the high PUFA feed that the pigs eat typically. Today lard probably has a ratio of 1.07 SFA/PUFA, which is not very good at all.
Also we don’t know of any Lard-fried potato chips that don’t contain chemical preservatives. Even so, brands that use lard, such as Utz’s and Gibble’s, would still be a little better than the seed oil brands.
Perhaps someone will make potato chips fried in low PUFA, pasture raised lard – that would be pretty good!
Why Not Butter?
You might be wondering why butter is not on this list. Butter is an excellent fat, with a mere 3% PUFA in it, but unfortunately chips cannot be fried in butter because it can’t handle the heat involved in deep frying. However, they probably can be fried in ghee (which is clarified butter) – but this isn’t available on the market yet either.
Are potato chips without seed oil really junk food?
Potato chips have a reputation as unhealthy junk food that makes you fat. But there’s really not much wrong with potatoes, salt, and good natural oil. These ingredients will keep your metabolism fast. But high PUFA seed oil slows your metabolism down. When your metabolism is slow, you gain fat and feel tired all the time. The seed oil in those junk potato chips basically junks up all your cells so they don’t run as fast.
But what if the chips are fried in good oils?
But when you eat the best potato chips without seed oil, you won’t suffer too many bad effects. Coconut oil actually goes so far as to speed up your metabolism! You might feel less tired after eating it. Sometimes you can even feel your body get warmer as your metabolism goes into high gear. This is why studies find that coconut oil burns bodyfat even when calories are high. Your body uses the calories to give you energy and burns up bodyfat when your metabolism is fast.
Seed oil does the opposite, making you tired, slow, and fat, eventually leading to degenerative disease. That is why seed-oil-free potato chips will not make you so fat, tired, and unhealthy, but junk food chips will.