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Are Cooking Sprays good or bad?

Cooking Spray

Are Cooking Sprays good or bad?

Cooking Sprays: In the day of the low fat diet, cooking sprays became all the rage! Why? They were able to do the job of oil with cooking without all the fat. You’ll still see a variety of cooking sprays in the oils aisle + you may wonder, should I get one? Let’s dive into the question: are cooking sprays good or bad?

Fat or No Fat?

I think the biggest downfall with using cooking sprays is that it minimizes the amount of fat you consume in your diet. Most of the time when you’re using fats, such as olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, this is only going to add nutrient density + healthy fats to your diet. Fats ARE NOT bad. When you use fats in cooking, you’re able to absorb the fat soluble vitamins in the food you’re eating. Our fat soluble vitamins include vitamins A, D, E, and K. If you don’t have any fat in your meal, you aren’t going to be able to absorb these well. Fat is our friend + can help aid in providing satiety in a meal.

So, do I think cooking sprays take substitute from using a fat? For sure! Do I think we need to substitute fat? Absolutely not.


Many ingredients listed in cooking sprays are unneeded chemicals that you could easily avoid using real wholesome organic oils.

  • Many cooking sprays contain propellants, which can propane, isobutane, other hyrocardons, carbon dioxide. Not only are questionable chemicals for consumption, but also can affect the environment.
  • Genetically modified oils {Depends on which cooking spray you get, but this is almost always for canola oil, which is a common cooking spray}
  • Emulsifier, usually lecithin. The most common industrialized lecithin is produced from soybean oil, which is naturally a more inflammatory oil, and it has to go through a very rough process using harsh chemicals like hexane throughout the process. Leaving lecithin left with some chemicals. Everything is technically made up of “chemicals” – don’t let that be a scary word to you, but this is completely unneeded man made chemicals that is really pointless to consume. We’re exposed to so much that we can’t control – this is something that we can control!
  • Most cooking sprays also use an anti-foaming agent – usually dimethyl silicone. Also found in industrialized things, such as paint and cosmetics. I couldn’t find too many studies on this + the amount that is probably in the cooking spray is super small. But again, we’re looking at the whole picture – if this is your go-to for cooking, this is another unnecessary chemical that we’re exposed to. Find out more about specific cooking oils in my podcast.

Now these are your very basic ingredients of cooking sprays, if you get a cooking spray that has “flavors”, you’ll get additional ingredients that are almost always 100% questionable.

Should I Use Cooking Spray?

I would steer clear from cooking sprays for your everyday cooking. Utilize that good fat + reap the benefits it does for your body. If you do buy a cooking spray, keep it for only spraying your grill grate or something like that where it’s more difficult or messy to use real wholesome oils. I personally will only get avocado oil spray (for the grill grate reason!) made by Chosen Foods, as they use no propellents, no chemicals, and keep it really simple with the ingredients of just “avocado oil”. But, I would still recommend for all your basic cooking needs, just use that real oil!

At Nuvitru Wellness, we are passionate about helping people reach their health and well-being. Our experts and holistic nutritionists near Austin, Texas, and surrounding areas offer personalized guidance to help you improve your goals.

Avatar for Lahana Vigliano
Lahana Vigliano

Lahana Vigliano is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and CEO of Nuvitru Wellness. She has her Bachelor's Degree in Nutrition Science and Masters Degree in Nutrition Science and Functional Medicine. She is currently pursuing her doctorate degree in Clinical Nutrition. Lahana and her team help support women who struggle with weight loss, hormonal imbalances, digestive issues, chronic fatigue, and many other lingering issues that leaves women not feeling their best. She uses food as medicine, as well as herbs and supplements when needed, to support her clients. She looks at the whole body holistically making sure women are understanding how nutrition, sleep, stress, and their environment impact their health. Connect with her on Facebook + Instagram (@nuvitruwellness).