Four different corn oil samples including stripped (SCO, Control), refined (RCO), stripped corn oil enriched with rosemary extract (SCO+ROS) and ascorbyl palmitate (SCO+AP) were exposed to microwave (MWH) and conventional heating (CVH). For both heating methods, peroxide value (PV) and conjugated dienes increased at up to 230 degrees C, at which temperature hexanal (HEX) and conjugated trienes started to increase instead. Kinetic analysis revealed that PV and HEX formation were first ordered and the reaction rate among the samples was as follows: Control > SCO+ROS > RCO > SCO+AP for PV and SCO+ROS > RCO > SCO+AP > Control for HEX. The unsaturated fatty acid contents of CVH and MWH treated samples showed 9.5 and 12.9% reduction in SCO, while they were 2.9 and 7.7% in RCO, 3.6 and 6.1% in SCO+ROS, and finally 4.0 and 4.8% in SCO+AP. It was concluded that MWH led to a more severe deterioration and that the antioxidant activity of ROS was superior to that of AP for both heating methods.