Olive oil is a versatile and delicious oil derived from olives. Traditionally found in the Mediterranean, olive oil is one of the most popular oils.
Olive oil is used in cooking, hair, beauty, and skincare. There are various types of olive oil with extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) being the most sought after.
The easiest way to spot fake olive oil is by tasting it but unfortunately, you can’t do that in grocery stores and supermarkets, or when you buy online.
This article breaks down 6 ways to spot fake olive oil and shares a guide to the best authentic olive oil brands on the market.
However, there are several unscrupulous companies in the market that deliver olive oil that has been saturated with other oils or extracted in questionable ways.
These products are rampantly labeled as “Italian extra-virgin” or “organic” when they are nothing of the kind.
As an individual consumer, there’s little you can do to stop these companies. You can, however, pay more attention when you’re shopping for olive oil.
If you know what to look for, it’s easier to spot fake olive oil.
Related Content: What Are the Differences Between Virgin Olive Oil and Extra Virgin Olive Oil?
8 Ways to Spot Fake Olive Oil
1. Check Label
The most famous olive oil regions in Italy are Sicily and Apulia. Check that the olive oil comes from one of the cities located in these regions.
If still in doubt, you can shop online and buy directly from the manufacturer. Also, ensure the bottle is labeled as “extra virgin.”
2. Price Point
Authentic olive oil isn’t cheap. Nevertheless, they aren’t super expensive either or have extraordinary packaging. The good olive oil brands start at around $15.
Related Content: Comprehensive Guide to the Best Olive Oil Brands for Hair, Health & Beauty.
3. Check Fine Print
Check the fine print on the bottle. Take note of the harvest date as this will let you know just how fresh the oil is.
Another point of note is the location and estate the olive oil was harvested from. This is a likely indication of genuineness.
4. Olive Oil Fridge Test
Try this simple olive oil fridge test trick. Pour some olive oil into a bowl and leave in the fridge for a few days.
If the olive oil forms a crystal-like consistency, it’s likely genuine but if it forms a block, it has been altered in some way.
5. Olive Oil Taste Test
Real olive oil tastes fresh, bright, earthy, woodsy, or something related to what those words conjure up in your senses.
Great olive oil should not taste weird, off, or rancid. If the olive oil tastes anything like that, return and ask for your money back.
6. Check Seal of Certification
The most common seals feature the “COOC Certified Extra Virgin” seal from the California Olive Oil Council for California-made oils and the European Union’s Protected Designation of Origin (PDO).
The International Olive Oil Council (IOC) also have their own standards and hold a competition every year in this regard. Finally, also look for Italy’s DOP.
Authentic olive oil should be stored in dark-colored bottles, which are usually dark brown or green.
This is to protect the oil from degradation and preserve its integrity.
If the oil is in a crystal clear bottle or a plastic bottle, put it back on the shelf.
8. Understand What Extra Virgin Olive Oil Means
Take the time to understand the differences between virgin olive oil and extra virgin olive oil. An earlier article looks into this in great detail. Read it HERE.
Armed with the tips above, you should be able to make a more informed decision when it comes to purchasing real extra virgin olive oil in the future.
Real Olive Oil Brands
I have recommended seven of the very best olive oil brands below.
You can find even more recommendations at Guide to the Best Olive Oil Brands for Hair, Health & Beauty.
Venta del Baron Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Bono Sicilian Certified PDO Val Di Mazara Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Dehesa de la Sabina USDA Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Oro Bailen Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Egregio Ecologico Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Kilkai Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Fonte di Foiano Grand Cru Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Olive oil authenticity will often make a big difference when it comes to how your dishes end up tasting especially if you’re using the olive oil in dressings or a dip.
This post contains affiliate links which means I will make a small commission if you purchase through those links. Read full disclosure HERE.