A versatile cooking oil, this extra-virgin olive oil from California Olive Ranch is fresh, mild, and smooth, so your other ingredients won't be overwhelmed.
California Olive Ranch
Light and fruity on the palate without an overpowering taste or aroma, this budget-friendly olive oil from organic brand Zoe is versatile and yummy.
Raw, unrefined, and made from single-origin Sicilian olives, Papa Vince has subtle notes of artichoke and pepper, making it a distinctive (albeit pricey) finishing oil.
Rich and nutty, Partanna Extra Virgin Olive Oil is affordable, packed with flavor, and works wonders when drizzled on top of crusty bread or fresh salads.
One of the highest-rated and most affordable oils for all-purpose cooking, Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil has a perfectly mellow balance of fruit and spice.
Not only is olive oil packed with heart-healthy fatty acids and antioxidants, but it also lends a distinctively fresh, earthy taste to virtually any dish. Whether you're using olive oil as a cooking base for sautéing veggies or as a finishing touch on fresh pasta, pizza, or seafood, there's a variety and a price point to meet all of your culinary needs.
When it comes to choosing the perfect bottle of olive oil for most everyday cooking purposes, our vote is always go for extra-virgin. Essentially a freshly pressed fruit juice, extra virgin olive oil is much different from refined grades of olive oil (such as “light” or “pure” oils) which are made using heat or chemicals. As an unrefined oil, extra-virgin olive oil retains the highest level of vitamins and minerals naturally found in olives, and is the highest-quality and best-tasting olive oil you can buy.
Here are our top five picks for the tastiest, most versatile, and highest-rated extra-virgin olive oil for all of your cooking needs.
Learn More About Our Top Five Picks:
1. California Olive Ranch Everyday Extra Virgin Olive Oil — Check Price
Made from cold-pressed Arbequina, Arbosana, and Koroneiki olives grown and harvested exclusively in Northern California, this award-winning extra-virgin olive oil from California Olive Ranch is versatile, delicious, and gets our vote for best overall.
Since this olive oil is cold-pressed within hours of picking, it has a distinctly fresh and ripe flavor with subtle hints of green apple. A light floral aroma and mild flavor make this olive oil a versatile choice for a wide range of cooking applications, from a flavorful butter substitute in baked breads and cakes to a light sauté oil for veggies — and even as a finishing oil for fresh bruschetta.
Sustainability is another key component of this brand, and part of the reason why we picked it as our top choice. California Olive Ranch oils are certified extra-virgin by the California Olive Oil Council (COOC), passing both rigid chemical and sensory evaluations. This extra-virgin olive oil is also verified non-GMO by the Non-GMO Project. One of the few domestically produced extra-virgin olive oils available for purchase, California Olive Ranch is a solid and sustainable pick.
2. Zoe Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil — Check Price
Best Budget Buy
The only USDA-certified organic olive oil on this list, Zoe Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil also gets our vote for most budget-friendly option.
This oil is first cold-pressed from a blend of Cornicabra, Hojiblanca, and Picual olives from central Spain’s Castilla-La Mancha region. With a delicate balance of fruity and buttery notes and a bouquet of black pepper, fresh basil, and almonds, this oil is flavorful and fragrant without being overpowering. Thanks to its light and fruity flavor profile, this oil is mild enough to use as a hot cooking oil for meat or veggies, though it also adds a creamy freshness to salad vinaigrettes, fresh pesto, and hummus when used cold.
Non-GMO certified, organic, and awarded the Northern American Olive Oil Association seal which ensures compliance with the highest international olive oil standards, this high-quality olive oil is a great option.
3. Papa Vince Extra Virgin Olive Oil — Check Price
This single-origin, first cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil is sourced from family-owned orchards in Santa Ninfa, a small city located in the southwestern region of Sicily. Nearly neon green and incredibly robust, this special oil makes a great gift for foodies.
Pressed from sweet, bright green Nocellara del Belice olives native to Sicily, this olive oil has a fresh and grassy taste with a peppery kick at the end. Many reviewers taste hints of tomato, artichoke, and black pepper in this robust oil.
Since this oil is raw, unfiltered, and unrefined, it can be taken as a daily supplement for an antioxidant boost. It’s also delicious when used as a dip for crusty bread, a finishing oil on salads, cheese, and sweets, or as a seasoning oil.
4. Partanna Extra Virgin Olive Oil — Check Price
Another Sicilian olive oil brand worth highlighting, Partanna Extra Virgin Olive Oil is also made from the sweet green Nocellara del Belice olives native to the region.
Produced by the Asaro family since 1916, this oil has a fruity flavor profile with notes of artichokes, almonds, and a very subtle peppery finish. This oil is more versatile (and less expensive) than Papa Vince while still having a unique and similarly zippy flavor. It can be used for everything — from a cooking oil for everyday sautéed seafood or veggie dishes, to a dip for bread.
Reviewers especially love drizzling this fresh and fruity oil over savory roasted veggies, raw kale salads, and fresh pasta to add brightness and dimension in flavor.
5. Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil — Check Price
This versatile and affordable extra-virgin olive oil makes the perfect everyday cooking oil since its flavor profile is mellow and smooth. With equal parts fruity and spicy, this well-balanced olive oil earns a spot on our list as our go-to cooking oil in a pinch.
This oil is made from a blend of different olives sourced from European countries, including Italy, Greece, Spain, and Portugal. Though it’s not single-origin, this olive oil still undergoes rigorous testing for quality and flavor through the North American Olive Oil Association.
It should also be noted that this bottle features a convenient and user-friendly pour spout that eliminates the need for an oil cruet or decanter. Drizzle a few tablespoons of this oil in your pan as a healthier butter alternative before roasting veggies, searing fish fillets, or sautéing chicken and shrimp dishes.
Now that you've picked the perfect bottle of olive oil, let's!