Lipid oxidation is a serious problem for oil-containing food products because it negatively affects shelf life and nutritional composition. An antioxidant strategy commonly employed to prevent or delay oxidation in foods is to remove oxygen from the closed food-packaging system. An alternative technique is use of an edible oxygen scavenger to remove oxygen within the food. Ascorbic acid (AA) is a particularly promising antioxidant because of its natural label and multiple antioxidative functions. In this study, AA was tested as an oxygen scavenger in buffer and an oil-in-water (O/W) emulsion. The effects of transition metals on the ability of AA to scavenge oxygen were determined. Headspace oxygen decrease less than 1% in the medium-chain triacylglycerol (MCT) O/W emulsion system (pH 3 and 7). AA was able to almost completely remove dissolved oxygen (DO) in a buffered solution. Transition metals (Fe2+ and Cu+) significantly accelerated the degradation of AA; however, iron and copper only increased DO depletion rates, by 10.6-16.4% from day 1 to 7, compared to the control. AA (2.5-20 mM) decreased DO in a 1% O/W emulsion system 32.0-64.0% and delayed the formation of headspace hexanal in the emulsion from 7 to over 20 days. This research shows that, when AA is used in an O/W emulsion system, oxidation of the emulsion system can be delay by multiple mechanisms.