Sunflower oil and rapeseed oil sold out? Find here all alternatives for frying and baking

Find various methods for frying and baking without oil or other fat in this guide. See what to watch out for with the alternatives.

from Martin Gebhardt | Prepping | reading time 5 Min
Updated on 31 May 2023 10.979 views 71% found this guide helpful
Sunflower oil and rapeseed oil sold out? Find here all alternatives for frying and baking

Martin Gebhardt

From Martin Gebhardt. Check out my “About me” page.

👉 The key facts from this guide

  • Fry meat and vegetables with carbonated mineral water to replace oil. You can also use broth or other liquids to cook without oil.
  • There are many alternatives to sunflower oil and rapeseed oil, such as olive oil, butter, clarified butter, ghee, flaxseed oil, full-fat margarine, pork belly, Sanella, coconut oil, sesame oil, peanut oil and avocado oil.
  • Use parchment paper in the pan or a non-stick pan to fry without oil. You can also roast your food in the oven.
  • Replace oil with butter, margarine, coconut fat, yogurt, or applesauce when baking. You can also use fruit purée or puréed fruit.
  • Use an air fryer to fry without oil.
  • Use olive oil, flaxseed oil, truffle oil, or walnut oil as an alternative to sunflower oil and rapeseed oil in salad dressings and on salads.

Sunflower oil and rapeseed oil are becoming scarce, and all because of the Ukraine war.

There are shortages in German supermarkets as the biggest sunflower oil exporters fail to deliver their crops.

Some supermarkets are already limiting the amount of oil per customer so that there are still a few bottles left for those who really need them.

To avoid being dependent on panic buying, I will now show you alternatives to oil.

Here are various methods for frying without oil or other fats. See what to look out for with these alternatives.

Alternatives to oil for frying

You can wonderfully fry meat with carbonated mineral water. Put the water in the pan until it is hot and simmering. Now add the chopped meat or vegetables to the pan. Although the searing won't be quite like with oil, it will still be cooked through and tender.

Use only as much carbonated mineral water as you would use oil. And add a little more water when it evaporates.

You can also use broth or other liquids if you want to cook food without oil. These liquids also give your dish flavor and make it more tender and juicy.

There are many alternatives to sunflower oil and rapeseed oil
There are many alternatives to sunflower oil and rapeseed oil

If you still want the taste of seared meat or vegetables, then use the following alternatives to sunflower oil and rapeseed oil:

Olive oil

Olive oil is one of the healthiest oils you can buy. It is made from the fruit of an olive tree and contains monounsaturated fatty acids that can reduce the risk of heart disease. It is a great substitute for vegetable oil when preparing something savory like a salad dressing or frying meat and vegetables (use olive oil without the label "virgin" or "extra-virgin"). However, due to its strong taste, it should be avoided when baking.


If you're looking for a simple ingredient that you probably already have in your kitchen, melted butter is an effective substitute for vegetable oil - especially for baking recipes like cakes, muffins, or cookies. Not only does it work great for adding moisture to your recipe, but it also adds extra flavor and richness. However, butter is not suitable for frying.

Clarified butter

For frying meat, fish, and vegetables, clarified butter is a better alternative to regular butter, as it contains less water than regular butter.


Ghee is a form of clarified butter - which means all milk solids and water have been removed. Ghee is commonly used in traditional Indian cuisine, has a high smoke point, and has a rich, nutty flavor that is suitable for both cooking and baking.

Flaxseed oil

This healthy oil, also known as linseed oil, is made from the dried, ripened seeds of the flax plant. Flaxseed oil is a suitable vegetable oil substitute for salad dressings, marinades, or drizzling on food, but it doesn't work well for cooking over heat or baking as it is not a stable oil.

Full-fat margarine

Full-fat margarine has a higher fat content than regular margarine and is therefore good for frying. Read the package insert of the margarine and you will find out whether it is suitable for frying.


Bacon is made from the meat of a pig. It is often used for frying, but can also be used for other cooking methods. The white fat can be used in many ways, such as frying or cooking in other ways.


Sanella is not a normal margarine, as it has a higher fat content than other margarine. Therefore, Sanella is excellent for baking, frying, or cooking.

Coconut oil

Coconut oil, a cooking oil made from the meat of coconuts, is another suitable alternative to vegetable oil. With its relatively high smoke point, it is excellent for almost any recipe in the kitchen, including frying - although you need to melt the oil first as it is naturally solid at room temperature. Because of its natural sweetness, it is also perfect for baking.

Sesame Oil

Sesame oil is a type of vegetable oil that is extracted from sesame seeds. It has a deep, nutty flavor and is often used in Asian cuisine. In addition to being used for frying, sesame oil can also be used as a dip sauce or to enhance stir-fries.

Peanut Oil

Peanut oil is a type of vegetable oil that is made from peanuts. It has a high smoke point and is used for frying.

Avocado Oil

Avocado oil is an oil that is extracted from the flesh of the avocado fruit and provides a healthy, delicious alternative to vegetable oil. With its high smoke point and creamy buttery taste, this oil is perfect for almost all cooking applications in the kitchen, including grilling, frying, sautéing, as well as baking and making dressings or marinades.

With a good non-stick frying pan, you can fry many things fantastically without oil.

More tips for frying without sunflower oil and rapeseed oil

  • Do not use regular margarine (low-fat margarine) for frying, as it contains too much water. In 100 grams of low-fat margarine, there are about 58 grams of water and 40 grams of fat. Sanella has a higher fat content and is therefore suitable for frying without oil. Full-fat margarine is also ideal for frying.
  • Be attentive when using butter, as it burns much faster than oil and contains more water than clarified butter. Melt the butter and bring to a boil briefly, then add your vegetables or meat immediately. However, clarified butter is much better, as it has a higher heat tolerance.
  • Use parchment paper in the pan so that your food does not burn. Most parchment paper can withstand up to 250 degrees Celsius. Or use cooking film.
  • Ideally, you have a pan with a perfect non-stick coating, so you don't need oil for frying. Your food won't stick to the bottom of the pan, and you can fry dishes without fat wonderfully.
  • Do not fry your food in the pan, but put it in the oven instead. This will roast it from all sides.
  • Buy fatty meat, so you don't need oil for frying, as the meat already has enough fat.
  • Use cooking spray, which is low in calories and nothing burns with it.

Alternative to Oil in Cake

What can I use instead of oil when baking a cake? You can use the following as an alternative to oil when baking:

  • Butter
  • Margarine
  • Vegan margarine
  • Coconut oil
Cake can be baked with yogurt instead of oil
Cake can be baked with yogurt instead of oil

Applesauce as a substitute for vegetable oil

Believe it or not, unsweetened applesauce can be a great substitute for vegetable oil in your baked goods, especially in bread, cakes, and muffins, as it adds moisture and actually has fewer calories than oil. Due to its natural sweetness, you can even reduce the amount of sugar in your recipe.

Yogurt as a substitute for vegetable oil

When baking, you can also replace vegetable oil with dairy products like yogurt, which can give any of your baked goods a creamy, thick texture as well as a slightly tangy taste. Plain, low-fat yogurt works best.

Fruit purée as a substitute for vegetable oil

If you don't have applesauce on hand, any puréed fruit or fruit purée will work well as a substitute for vegetable oil when baking. Try puréeing bananas, pears, or even pumpkin or sweet potatoes to give your baked goods a delicious flavor.

There are also experiments with quark, semolina, buttermilk, and cream. However, note that the consistency of the cake will change.

Alternative to oil in fryers

The deep fryer is the epitome of greasy and crispy food - but it can be done differently.

With the invention of air fryers, you no longer have to sacrifice taste for convenience. These fryers use hot air to cook your food without oil and can prepare a variety of dishes - such as fried chicken, french fries, potato wedges, fried fish.

Alternative to sunflower oil and rapeseed oil in salad dressings and on salads

Most people probably don't use sunflower oil and rapeseed oil on salads themselves. The best alternative here is the tasty olive oil.

And for salad dressings, I recommend using cold-pressed plant oils such as:

  • Olive oil
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Truffle oil
  • Walnut oil

Why frying without oil makes sense!

Frying without oil is becoming a trend in the food industry. And not just for health reasons. It can also be a way to reduce cooking costs, and for some people, frying without oil is a way to choose healthier foods.

Why should you fry without oil?

  • By frying with little or no oil, you save money on your food bill, since you no longer need as much vegetable or olive oil as before
  • By frying with little or no oil, you also save money on your electricity bill, since less energy is needed to heat the pan

Be creative!

If you don't have a non-stick pan, take a look in your kitchen for waffle makers or sandwich presses. These devices often have a wonderful non-stick coating and you can also fry vegetables and meat in between.

There is also the possibility of making your own oil from plants. How this works, you can read in my guide "How do I make oil from plants myself? - Discover the secret of nature".

Prepare correctly with an emergency list

I don't advise you to rush to the nearest supermarket to see if there is still oil available. After all, you now know suitable alternatives to oil for frying and baking.

Instead, create an emergency supply of food according to my checklist. Calculate here exactly what you need in terms of food for how many days and for how many people.

You do the same with water and calculate with my calculator the amount of water you and your family need.

And in the end, you should also deal with emergency equipment for crisis. For this, I have created a prepper list that will help you if a disaster really strikes.

Take care, Martin
Martin Gebhardt

Author of the guide

Martin Gebhardt

Hey, I'm Martin. On my blog, you will learn the basics and numerous details about living in the wild. I think survival, bushcraft and the good life in nature are the keys to happiness. Find me here on Instagram or on YouTube. You can find more about my mission on the About Me page.

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