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Oxidative Stability and Changes in Chemical Composition of Extra Virgin Olive Oils After Short-Term Deep-Frying of French Fries

  • Original Paper
  • Published:
Journal of the American Oil Chemists' Society


We aimed at investigating oxidative stability and changes in fatty acid and tocopherol composition of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) in comparison with refined seed oils during short-term deep-frying of French fries, and changes in the composition of the French fries deep-fried in EVOO. EVOO samples from Spain, Brazil, and Portugal, and refined seed oils of soybean and sunflower were studied. Oil samples were used for deep-frying of French fries at 180 °C, for up to 75 min of successive frying. Tocopherol and fatty acid composition were determined in fresh and spent vegetable oils. Tocopherol, fatty acid, and volatile composition (by SPME–GC–MS) were also determined in French fries deep-fried in EVOO. Oil oxidation was monitored by peroxide, acid, and p-anisidine values, and by Rancimat after deep-frying. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) analysis was used as a proxy of the quality of the spent oils. EVOOs presented the lowest degree of oleic and linoleic acids losses, low formation of free fatty acids and carbonyl compounds, and were highly stable after deep-frying. In addition, oleic acid, tocopherols, and flavor compounds were transferred from EVOO into the French fries. In conclusion, EVOOs were more stable than refined seed oils during short-term deep-frying of French fries and also contributed to enhance the nutritional value, and possibly improve the flavor, of the fries prepared in EVOO.

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Acid value




Differential scanning calorimetry


Extra virgin olive oil


Fatty acid methyl esters


Free fatty acid


Gas chromatography


High performance liquid chromatography


Induction period


Iodine value




Monounsatured fatty acids


Polyunsaturated fatty acid


p-Anisidine value


Peroxide value




Total tocopherols


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We thank Alma Brasilis® (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), which kindly provided the three commercial samples of European EVOOs. The financial support of FAPERJ, CAPES, and CNPq (Brazil) is greatly acknowledged. E. Akil was a recipient of an MSc scholarship, A.M.M. Costa was a recipient of a DSc scholarship, and V. Calado was a recipient of a research fellowship, from CNPq (Brazil). V.N.Castelo-Branco was a recipient of a DSc scholarship from CAPES (Brazil).

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The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest to disclose.

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Correspondence to Alexandre Guedes Torres.

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Akil, E., Castelo-Branco, V.N., Costa, A.M.M. et al. Oxidative Stability and Changes in Chemical Composition of Extra Virgin Olive Oils After Short-Term Deep-Frying of French Fries. J Am Oil Chem Soc 92, 409–421 (2015).

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