Are you trying to figure out how to use MCT oil?
After all, you’ve probably already heard about all its positive health benefits, right?
From giving you more energy to suppressing your appetite, if you’re not taking advantage of this superfat on a keto diet, you’re majorly missing out.
To correct this blunder the right way, today’s guide has you covered.
We’ll be exploring all the ins and outs of MCT oil, including:
- A brief intro on what it is and why it’s worth your time
- How to use MCT oil
- Whether powder or liquid form is a better option
- The best times to consume MCT oil
- 9 delicious keto recipes packed with it
If you already know why MCT oil should be a daily part of your keto life, you can skip ahead to our best tips on how to use it and our favorite recipes.
But if this is the first time you’re hearing about the benefits of MCT oil, keep reading…
Before I dive into how to use MCT oil, you should have a basic understanding of what it is so you know why it’s worth your time, when to use it and how it can help you reach your keto goals.
For newbies, let’s start with what the letters in the acronym “MCT” mean. MCT stands for medium chain triglycerides, a form of saturated fatty acids.
When inside your body, MCTs create ketones. These are energy molecules that become the preferred source of fuel once you reach ketosis.
One powerful attribute that comes with MCTs is that they don’t need digestive enzymes to be broken down. They’re a readily available energy source once consumed.
And, unlike other energy molecules such as glucose, whatever you don’t use isn’t stored for later as fat.
Instead, the overflow is turned into more usable ketones.
Another huge difference between glucose and ketones is that the latter is far less reactive in the body. So the energy boost you get from MCT oil is steady instead of fluctuating throughout your day.
Having more energy is only one benefit associated with MCT oil.
- Better mental clarity and sharpness
- Proper cell functioning
- Higher thermogenesis (i.e., your body’s ability to burn calories)
- Correct metabolic functioning
- Improved cognitive health
- Diabetes prevention
- Stronger heart health
- Healthy digestion
- Normal hormonal functioning
- Improved physical performance
- Help with weight loss and weight maintenance
To get to these powerful benefits, MCTs must be extracted from whole foods like coconut and then converted into usable forms such as MCT oil or MCT oil powders, which you can then eat or drink.
Do that and you’ll have yourself a clean, fast-acting source of energy without the crashes typical of glucose-backed options.
And while MCTs may hit your system quickly, they won’t give your body the same over-stimulation glucose does (because they’re less reactive) and their energy boost lasts much longer too.
Now that you have a better understanding of MCTs, you’re probably itching to find out the best ways to use MCT oil.
Here are your three most popular options.
Fortunately, there are a few ways you can start including MCTs in your daily routine depending on your lifestyle.
Let’s start with the easiest first:
#1: For a Quick & Easy Option, Use MCT Oil Softgels
If you’re beyond short on time, hate cooking or you just need something you can take on the go, a softgel packed with MCT oil may be right for you.
With this route, you don’t have to carry a big container of powder with you or worry about spilling your MCT oil while you travel.
You can pack enough softgels with you ahead of time or you can take them before you leave for the day.
Softgels are a quick, easy, mess-free option for busy people.
They’re also flavorless and odorless which makes them ideal for anyone with super-picky taste buds.
The next two MCT oil options are great for readers who want to take their food and drinks to the next level — nutritionally and flavor-wise.
#2: To Give Your Meals a Quick Boost, Reach for MCT Oil in Liquid Form
MCT oil in liquid form is perfect for adding a boost to your morning coffee or pre- and post-workout drinks and smoothies.
Take this route and you simply pour in a tablespoon of MCT oil and, in return, you’ll turn your body into a ketone-generating machine.
You can even add MCT oil to your salad dressings or keto recipes for an instant boost to the nutritional value of your meals and snacks.
And if you’re trying to reach your macros but you’re falling short on fat each day, adding a tablespoon of MCT oil can help you hit your targets. And that means you’re one step closer to reaching ketosis and losing weight.
The good thing about the liquid form of MCT oil is that the taste is so neutral it won’t affect your drinks or meals.
But that’s also a downside too.
If you want a nutritional boost that’s also packed with flavor, a powdered MCT oil option is probably better for you.
#3: For a Dry, Portable, Flavor-Packed Option, Use MCT Oil Powder
A powdered MCT oil like this one turns any drink into a creamy, decadent delight. And it works for both hot and cold drinks.
This means you can add powdered MCT oil to your coffee, tea and smoothies to elevate your taste buds and nutrition levels.
Powders are also easy to incorporate so they don’t require a blender. Just stir your powdered MCT oil right in water if you’re short on time.
And if you decide to travel, your powder can come with sans worry about messy, oily spills that could always potentially happen with liquid versions.
But powdered MCT oils don’t just elevate your drinks.
As you’ll see shortly, when they’re added to recipes, they can turn your dishes into craveable snacks and meals bursting with nutrition and flavor.
So now the biggest decision becomes: How do I choose between MCT oil powder and MCT in liquid form?
After all, each one can be added to your drinks and meals so how should you decide between the two?
Take it easy and let this next section help you make the right choice for your situation.
There are definitely a few pros and cons to consider with each form of MCT oil.
To start, here’s how the liquid form compares:
The Good and Bad Sides Of Liquid MCT Oil
MCT oil in liquid form is less processed and doesn’t come with any added fillers or chemical additives.
And when it comes to low-heat cooking, liquid MCT oil is ideal.
It can also be used as a base for a healthy salad dressing or even a sauce for your favorite zoodles.
But there are some negatives to consider here:
- MCT oil in liquid form can be a bit greasy so recipes can get a little too oily if you’re not careful about measuring, including your coffee or tea.
- Liquid form is tougher to travel with, especially if it ends up spilling or leaking everywhere and on everything.
- Liquid MCT oil has a low smoke point so baked recipes and high-heat ones are off limits.
- It’s harder to mix with other powdered supplements such as collagen protein or an exogenous ketone base and tends to clump.
- Liquid MCT oil may be difficult to digest if you have gastrointestinal issues and sensitivities already, or you start out with too much in the beginning without letting your body adjust.
To limit common symptoms such as gas, diarrhea, digestive discomfort and irritability, be sure to take liquid MCT slowly and gradually over time and don’t consume too much of it at once.
You may also find taking MCT oil on an empty stomach works better for you.
Up next, you’ll see how MCT oil powder compares.
The Pros and Cons Of Powdered MCT Oil
Compared to liquid MCT, the powdered option is:
- Easier to travel with. Whether in ziploc bags or plastic containers attached to your shaker bottle, MCT oil powder is less messy when on-the-go from the gym or your way to work.
- Easier to mix. You can add your MCT powder to both your exogenous ketone base and collagen protein smoothies with seamless blending and zero clumping.
- More versatile with cooking. Use it in baked recipes or stir it in your favorite keto-friendly pancake mix or oatmeal.
- Easier to digest. Since the powder is easier on your digestion than the liquid form, you’ll be able to up your intake and turn up your ketone producing signals even higher.
- Creamier. You’ll also swap an oily texture for a creamy one that can satisfy even your strongest cravings.
But, keep in mind, it’s not all keto unicorns here.
Many MCT oil powders on the market are loaded with chemical additives and fillers. Some even contain sweeteners that have the same blood sugar spiking effect as glucose, which could kick you out of ketosis without you even realizing it.
That’s why it’s essential to pay attention to the label and list of ingredients anytime you’re shopping around for an MCT powder — or any other keto supplement for that matter.
You also want to make sure the MCT oil powder you choose has the right kind of fiber in it.
Low quality fibers are often added as a way to bulk up the product while cutting costs.
But if the MCT-to-fiber ratio is off, you won’t reap all the benefits of MCT oil mentioned earlier in this guide.
Research safer options that have this balance right using high-quality fiber sources instead of cheap ones.
Now, if you’re still on the fence about whether the liquid form or powdered MCT oil is right for you, check out this guide when you’re done here.
The next question is:
The short answer: Whenever you need energy.
See, your body will burn the MCT almost instantly for fuel.
This means you’ll want to time your intake for those points in your day when your body desperately craves an energy boost.
You can do this before your workout, after or during your afternoon slump for an energy kick strong enough to power through your day.
Try adding MCT oil to your food anytime you need a healthy fat dose to meet your macros or stave off hunger as well.
The fastest way to consume MCT oil is drinking it in your tea or bulletproof coffee.
But if you want to get more creative and put your chef hat on, you can also add it to your fave recipes to turn your normal dishes into fat burning, brain-fueling all star meals instead.
To help get you started and give you some major MCT oil inspo (and maybe some drool), check out these nine recipes next.
These recipes will help you get a tasty jump start to using MCT oil the right way:
#1: Bulletproof Coffee
Not only will this create a creamy, frothy texture, it will also give you an energetic and mental boost to start your day on the right foot.
And that’s exactly what happens when you add it to your smoothies too.
#2: Citrus Keto Green Smoothie
In this bright green and keto-friendly smoothie recipe, you’ll find MCT oil in its liquid form instead of powder to keep the texture thin enough to sip through a straw.
And thanks to the micronutrients green powder, there’s also a nice boost of enzymes, organic fruits and veggies, and that citrus flavor you might be craving but missing on keto.
#3: Keto Oatmeal
Think you can’t have the warm, stick-to-your-ribs bowl of oatmeal you’ve grown up with on a ketogenic diet?
This keto oatmeal recipe replaces carby oats with flax meal and chia seeds so you’ll have a filling, low-carb version safe to enjoy in keto.
Then kick this recipe up a notch with a vanilla flavored powdered form of MCT oil to add both a creamy texture and a sweet taste you’ll think about all day.
#4: Matcha Latte Pancakes
Don’t want to give up pancakes just because you follow keto?
You don’t have to!
With these matcha latte pancakes, you can enjoy pancakes again while also getting a healthy serving of MCTs, vitamin E and magnesium.
Now it’s time to get to the most fun use of MCT oil on a ketogenic diet: fat bombs.
Don’t know what a fat bomb is?
They’re an awesomely quick and easy way to satisfy your cravings and get a mouthful of fatty nutrients and MCT oil all at once.
#5-#7: Fat Bombs
If you’re new to fat bombs, try out one (or more) of these recipes using MCT oil and thank me later:
Though we’ve covered plenty of breakfast options, don’t think your MCT usage is limited to AM meals and snacks. As you’ll see in these last two recipes, MCT oil also works well in dinner and dessert recipes too.
#8: Shrimp Stir Fry
If you’re craving takeout without carbs and sugar-filled sauces, consider making this shrimp stir fry recipe instead of calling your local restaurant.
You’ll have the health benefits of the MCTs and you’ll only fork over 9g of carbs instead of the triple digits you’d see with traditional takeout.
#9: Enjoy Chocolate on Keto
And for those times when a sweet craving strikes, have this homemade
keto chocolate bar on hand and you’ll keep yourself on the path to ketosis.
Plus, with MCT oil and maca powder, you’ll also give yourself a nice nutritional boost while you satisfy your sweet taste buds.
With all these tasty ways to use MCT oil, the final question left becomes: Which one will you try first?
Start Using MCT Oil Today
As you saw in today’s guide, each one has its pros and cons and can offer you something different depending on your current sitch.
You may find a combination of more than one type works best for your lifestyle so experiment with as many forms as you can.
If you’d like to learn a bit more about MCT oil before you jump right in, check out these resources next:
By making MCT oil part of your daily routine, you’ll give your brain and body the boost it needs to reach and maintain ketosis and capture all the associated health benefits that come with it.
Devan’s obsession with health and fitness started early and there’s been no stoppin’ her. When she’s not writing for PK, you’ll find her curled up with one of the many health books she’s devouring or outside looking for her next adventure.