Tropical Traditions Gold Label virgin coconut oil — a review
|March 25, 2012||Posted by eryn under Cooking, Frugal Living, Health and Safety, Natural Living, Organic, Paleo|
Coconut oil is a staple in our household. It is my go-to oil for cooking because it is a healthier option than butter or olive oil. We usually use Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, but I was recently sent a jar of Tropical Traditions Gold Label virgin coconut oil to review. I was very excited to receive this, since I have wanted to try Tropical Traditions coconut oil but I had shied away from it in the past because it is more expensive than our usual brand.
The first thing I noticed was that the Tropical Traditions coconut oil arrived in a glass jar. Since we try to avoid plastic as much as possible in our household, this is something I really appreciate. I consider glass a healthier option for food storage, and I can always find a good use for a glass jar in our household.
The second thing I looked at was the label and there were more positives to be found there as well. According to Tropical Traditions, their Gold Label coconut oil has the highest amounts of antioxidants available in virgin coconut oil. Antioxidants play a vital role in protecting your cells against free radicals that can cause cancer, heart disease and other illnesses, so that’s really good news. The label also states that this coconut oil is produced by small-scale family businesses in rural areas of the Philippines. That’s good news, too, if you care about supporting a diversified economy.
The other thing I noticed was that there are slight differences between the Nutiva coconut oil and the Tropical Traditions Gold Label when it comes to nutrition. The Nutiva oil has 130 calories per tablespoon, while the Tropical Traditions Gold Label has 117 calories. They both have 14 grams of fat, but the Nutiva is higher in saturated fat (13 grams versus 11.8 grams for Tropical Traditions). I’m not a nutrionist, so I couldn’t really tell you whether these differences are significant but it surprised me that there was a difference given that they are both organic coconut oils.
We’ve been using the Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil for about 2 weeks now and I have to say that we’ve been impressed with its performance overall. We’ve noticed that it has a richer and fuller flavor when used in cooking and less of a coconut aftertaste. My husband also likes to use coconut oil in his coffee and he preferred the Tropical Traditions coconut oil for that, too.
However, the Nutiva oil definitely came out on top when we tried tasting them straight out of the jar. It had a richer, creamier flavor, while the Tropical Traditions oil had an aftertaste that made both of us want to gag.
When it comes to cost, Nutiva also has the upper hand. When I calculated in shipping to my house, buying a 5-gallon plastic pail of the Tropical Traditions coconut oil costs about 48 cents per ounce. If you want those glass jars, it costs even more. Even with a current buy one, get one free special on the 32 oz. Tropical Traditions Gold Label coconut oil, it costs about 75 cents per ounce with shipping. On Amazon.com, you can buy a 2-pack of 54-ounce containers of the Nutiva coconut oil right now for $46.50 through the Subscribe & Save program, which amounts to 43 cents per ounce.
The bottom line: For cooking, I don’t think the Tropical Traditions coconut oil can be beat. When it comes to health, I also believe it has an edge because of the higher levels of antioxidants and glass jars. As a frugal shopper, the high cost is a huge disadvantage to me, but overall I think you are getting a higher quality product with the Tropical Traditions Gold Label coconut oil.
My rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Update: After I posted this review, a representative of Tropical Traditions contacted me with more information about their production methods that I wanted to pass along to my readers. Tropical Traditions coconut oil is handmade in small batches, not mass-produced by machine using heat and chemicals. As such, Tropical Traditions says it is very hard to compare their coconut oil to a mass-produced brand. You can read more about the production differences here.
Disclosure: I was not compensated for writing this review post. Tropical Traditions provided their product for review. My opinions are 100% honest and 100% mine. This post also contains an affiliate link. If you order by clicking on any of my links and have never ordered from Tropical Traditions in the past, you will receive a free book on Virgin Coconut Oil, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you. Thanks for supporting Our Natural Journey at no cost to you. For more information, please read my disclosure policy.