How to extract sunflower oil

Updated February 21, 2017

Sunflower oil is one of the more popular oils in the North American market. While it is readily available in supermarkets, many choose to make their own sunflower oil at home. Home-pressed sunflower oil is much richer and more flavourful than commercial sunflower oil. It is also quite easy to make. All you need is a manual oil press, an oven and perhaps a little help for shelling all of those sunflower seeds.

Shell the sunflower seeds. Discard any seeds that look damaged or insect infested.

Dry fresh sunflower seeds to 10-percent moisture (if you are using dried sunflower seeds, you may skip this step). Weigh the shelled sunflower seeds. Spread the seeds on a baking tray. Bake at 149 degrees Celsius for one hour. Let the seeds cool and reweigh. Divide the weight lost by the seeds by the original seed weight. Multiply that decimal by 100 to get the moisture percentage. Continue to bake your seeds at 149 degrees Celsius for one hour intervals until they reach roughly 10-percent moisture.

Place a dark, sealable glass container underneath your press' spout.

Deposit the hot sunflower seeds directly into the reservoir in the top of your hand press.

Turn the hand press' handle to extract the oil.

Seal the glass jar. Store the sunflower oil in the refrigerator.

Things You'll Need

  • Manual oil press
  • Food scale
  • Oven
  • Baking tray
  • Food thermometer
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About the Author

Based in Houston, Texas, Meg Butler is a professional farmer, house flipper and landscaper. When not busy learning about homes and appliances she's sharing that knowledge. Butler began blogging, editing and writing in 2000. Her work has appered in the "Houston Press" and several other publications. She has an A.A. in journalism and a B.A. in history from New York University.