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Why Chef Mikel Anthony Counts On Cottonseed Oil For His Culinary Creations

Chef Mikel Anthony works in the Chef’s Roll Test Kitchen where he gets to do his two favorite things: make great food and share that food with thousands of people.

Whether he’s cooking or baking, Chef Mikel prefers the versatile1, neutral flavor2 of cottonseed oil. Dive into these three delectable dishes created in collaboration with Cotton Incorporated to find out what makes this ingredient an indispensable tool in his culinary arsenal.

Chicken Caesar Salad With Cottonseed Oil Dressing

 It’s no wonder the timeless chicken Caesar salad made Chef Mikel’s short list of favorite recipes, and it’s just as appropriate that he reaches for cottonseed oil to sear, toast and dress the ingredients for this classic dish. As he puts it, “You can’t go wrong with a scratch Caesar salad!”

Before the salad’s assembly, Chef Mikel uses cottonseed oil to sear the chicken and toast the croutons. The oil’s high smoke point allows it to withstand high heat levels during these processes without breaking down or compromising the flavor or quality of the ingredients it’s cooking.3 This is especially helpful to Chef Mikel as he achieves the delicate, crispy exterior and wonderfully tender interior of a perfect chicken breast to top the salad.

The savory, crunchy croutons are tossed together with crisp romaine using a creamy Caesar dressing composed using cottonseed oil. Since it is so light in flavor due to its neutral flavor profile, cottonseed oil allows the fresh ingredients to shine through.2 Garnished with finely grated Parmesan cheese and the tender, pan-seared chicken, this truly is a perfect salad.

Cottonseed Oil Lemon Cake With Fig Compote

On the sweeter side, Chef Mikel specializes in a decadent cottonseed oil cake paired with a flavorful fig compote. Thanks to its plasticity, cottonseed oil is helpful for baking the cake so it turns out nice and moist.4 But that’s not the only thing he uses it for in this recipe.

After combining ingredients for a delicious lemon cake batter in a stand mixer, Chef Mikel greases his pans with cottonseed oil. He then gently cooks chives, lavender and fresh figs together with a bit of oil to create a gorgeous compote full of distinct and delightful flavors.

The final product is true artistry, bringing subtle, sweet, luscious and complex flavors together in perfect harmony.

Heirloom Tomato Toast

You might have read the word “toast” and assumed that the base of the recipe would be bread. However, the real star of this dish is Chef Mikel’s garlic confit, a combination of roasted garlic and cottonseed oil that is simple to make yet hard to forget, and the most amazing spread to top a freshly toasted slice of sourdough.

Cottonseed oil’s job isn’t quite done there since Chef Mikel prefers the savory, golden-brown outcome of toasting his bread in a pan to the results of a conventional toaster. Topped with the vibrant colors and flavors of fresh heirloom tomato slices seasoned with fresh black pepper and flaky salt, this is not your average slice of toast.

Rich dollops of whipped cottage cheese and a few fresh basil leaves help to complete his masterpiece.

Why Cottonseed Oil?

As many of us know, one ingredient can make or break a recipe. For Chef Mikel, the allure of cottonseed oil lies not only in its ability to enhance flavors but in its versatility across various types of recipes. In his test kitchen, cottonseed oil has officially earned its place as a trusted ingredient.

Learn more about the many ways to use cottonseed oil at