You are currently viewing Corn Syrup Vs. Corn Oil: What’s The Difference?

Corn Syrup Vs. Corn Oil: What’s The Difference?

Corn is cereal plant that is so versatile and can be used in cooking several recipes.

It can be boiled, baked, and roasted. Corn can also be processed so as to obtain several important products and by-products including animal feed, cereals, corn syrup, corn oil and bio-fuel.

The products, corn syrup and corn oil are both viscous fluids that are obtained from processing corn.

Corn syrup is obtained from the starchy endosperm of corn kernels, while corn oil is extracted from the germ of the corn kernel.

They each have different properties, and are used in different ways for preparing food.

Here are some of the differences between corn syrup and corn oil.

What is corn syrup?

Corn syrup is also known as glucose syrup.

It is made up of carbohydrates particularly glucose.

Corn syrup is produced from the endosperm of corn kernels, which is largely made up of starch. The corn starch is broken down through the use of dilute acids or enzymatically through a process known as hydrolysis

The corn syrup is a sweet tasting syrup often used to make table syrups.

Corn syrup can either be dark or light corn syrups.

Light corn syrup has a clear color and vanilla flavor, it also does not crystallize when heated which makes it good for making candies. Light corn syrup is also used for baking.

Molasses alongside caramel is added to dark corn syrup which gives it a caramel flavor. Dark syrup has a dark brown color.

Dark corn syrup is often used as a component of table syrup.

Corn syrup is different from high fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

High fructose corn syrup is made from corn syrup, this is through a process whereby a large proportion of the glucose in corn syrup is enzymatically converted into fructose.

What is corn oil?

Corn oil is one of the commonly used cooking oil.

It has a high smoke point and a neutral flavour which makes it good for frying food.

Corn oil is pale yellow in color but becomes darker when it is used in cooking.

Like other cooking oils, corn oils contains different types of fats.

A large portion of the fatty acids in corn oil is made up of linoleic acid which is a polyunsaturated fatty acid and also an essential fatty acid.

Corn oil is gotten from the germ of the corn kernels.

The germ makes up a very small portion of the corn kernel and it is obtained by milling.

The corn oil is then extracted from the germ mechanically under high pressure. Additionally, the oil could be extracted using hexane.

Corn oil could also be refined to remove impurities. The processes involved in refining corn oil include winterization, degumming, and deodorization.

This oil could be used for frying food and for making salad dressing. They could used in making margarine. Corn oil is also used in making cosmetics and as lubricants

Difference between corn syrup and corn oil

They come from different part of corn

The Corn kernels which are the fruits of the corn are composed of three parts, an endosperm, germ and pericarp. From each of these parts, several products including corn syrup and corn oil can be obtained.

The starchy part of the corn kernel is known as the endosperm. The germ makes up a small portion of the corn kernels, It is rich in nutrients and contains genetic information. The pericarp forms the outer protective covering of the corn kernel.

Corn syrup is obtained from the endosperm of the corn kernel, while corn oil is gotten from the germ.

Corn syrup has a different taste from corn oil

The flavor of corn syrup and corn oil used for cooking vary largely. Therefore, they can also be differentiated by their taste.

The taste of corn oil and corn syrup also determines how they are used in preparing food.

Being very high in glucose, corn syrup has a very sweet taste and it is usually used in baking or making candies.

On the other hand, corn oil is a neutral oil. This means that corn oil doesn’t have a strong flavor.

Neutral oils like corn oil are used when you don’t want the oil to affect the flavor of the dish.

Corn oil has a different color

You can tell corn syrup and corn oil apart by their color .

If the corn syrup is light corn syrup, then it would be clear or colorless, but if it is dark corn syrup, it would have a dark brown color because of the molasses and caramel added to it.

However, corn oil has a light yellow color.

They also vary nutritionally

Corn syrups are made up of the sugar glucose, this give it a sweet taste.

Corn oil contains triacylglycerols, which are esters of glycerol and three fatty acids molecules.

The fatty acids in corn oil are mostly polyunsaturated.

Corn oil also contain vitamins such as vitamin E

They are used differently

Corn oil is used as cooking oil. They can be used for frying food or as a salad dressing. Asides for preparing food, corn oil can also be used for making cosmetics

However, corn syrup is used to bake, it is used for table syrups and to make candies.

Comparing corn syrup and oil

Corn SyrupCorn oil
SourceEndosperm of corn kernelGerm of corn kernel
TasteSweetneutral taste
ColorColorless or dark brownlight yellow
UsesFor candies and as table syrupCooking oil


Britannica: Corn syrup

Masterclass: Corn oil