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How To Make Coconut Milk

DIY coconut milk

Making coconut milk at home is easy and only needs two ingredients, simple kitchen tools, and about 20 minutes of your time. The end result is creamy, rich plant-based milk with no gums, artificial flavors or sweeteners.

DIY Homemade Coconut Milk Recipe

Ingredients for coconut milk

It can be difficult to find coconut milk that’s free of additives, stabilizers, and gums (I’m looking at you carrageenan!). All you need to make this homemade version is:

  • 1 cup dried unsweetened coconut
  • 3 cups boiling filtered water
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • High speed blender
  • Cheesecloth, tea towel, or nut milk bag
soaking coconut in hot water

How to soak coconut flakes

Place the shredded coconut in a bowl of water. Stir and encourage the flakes to be submerged. They will naturally absorb some of the hot water during soaking, which will break down the flakes to a creamy goodness.

how to make coconut milk

Blending coconut flakes

The #1 appliance in my kitchen is my blender. I use it to make a daily green smoothie, homemade hummus, pancakes and yep, even coconut milk. A high speed blender will break apart the coconut the best, and gets you the most nutrients possible. I recommend checking out our blender guide if your blender isn’t up to the challenge.

Vitamix container golding shredded coconut and water

Having a two-layered strainer will get you the creamiest results. To do this, I use a mesh strainer and a nut milk bag for this. Just place a strainer over a bowl and line with cheesecloth or a nut milk bag.

do it yourself coconut milk

Gather the cloth at the top, twist and gently squeeze as much coconut milk from the solids as possible. The remaining coconut pulp should be fairly dry. (The pulp can be added to baked goods and smoothies for extra fiber.)

Carafe holding non-dairy milk

How to store coconut milk

Transfer to an airtight jar or bottle and refrigerate until ready to use. The milk will keep 3-4 days, maybe a little longer. Shake before using. The milk will separate into layers. The top most layer is the coconut cream. It can be spooned off for recipes calling for full-fat coconut milk.

Rawkstar Tip!

Less water can be used for a thicker, creamier coconut milk.
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DIY coconut milk

Coconut Milk Recipe

  • Author: Jen Hansard
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x
  • Category: Beverage
  • Method: Blending
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Any easy recipe for homemade coconut milk without any extra fillers or gums. The cleanest coconut milk you’ll find.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried unsweetened coconut (preferably unsulphured (can use shredded or flaked))
  • 3 cups boiling filtered water
  • Pinch of sea salt

Instructions

  1. Place coconut in a pan of boiling water, and allow coconut to soak for a minimum of 10 minutes. 
  2. Add to blender and blend until smooth
  3. Place a strainer over a bowl and line with cheesecloth, tea towel or pour into a nut milk bag, and allow the coconut milk to drop down into the bowl.
  4. Gather the cloth at the top, twist and gently squeeze as much coconut milk from the solids as possible. The remaining coconut pulp should be fairly dry. (The pulp can be added to baked goods and smoothies for extra fiber.)
  5. Transfer to an airtight jar or bottle and refrigerate until ready to use. The coconut milk will keep 3-4 days, maybe a little longer. Shake before using. The milk will separate into layers. The top most layer is the coconut cream. It can be spooned off for recipes calling for full-fat coconut milk.

Notes

Note: less water can be used for a thicker, creamier coconut milk.

Keywords: Homemade Coconut milk

Tags: , , ,    /   Categories: Plant-Based Meals, Recipes 

By: Jen Hansard | Updated: 8.27.2014 | COMMENTS: 162

COMMENTS
162

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  1. Ana lúcia torres says:

    Dicas muito boa adorei.

  2. joao vieira says:

    Very detailed.

    It was easy to do and the final result was simply delicious.

    My son just loved it.

  3. Claudia says:

    Adorei a receita, muito saudável e fácil de preparar, farei hoje mesmo. Muito obrigada!

  4. amanda says:

    Delicious milk, very goooood!

  5. Bruna says:

    I love coconut milk, thanks for the recipe, much better do at home than buy

  6. Alugar Casa em Ribeirão Preto says:

    I love coconut milk, I’ll try it at home, thanks to your recipe, thank you!

  7. Carol Capel says:

    Delicious milk.

  8. Appeared do North says:

    Jen, I loved this! I’ll make this to my family tonight. It seems to be delicious and plus healthy!

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      YAY!! I hope you love this recipe! Reach back out + let me know what you thought! 🙂

  9. Nicolle says:

    All I needed to know! Thank u for sharing this, i’ll make this recipe today!

  10. Darryl B says:

    I’m very happy to learn from you, thank you.

  11. Anny says:

    All wonderful, I’ll test.

  12. como ganhar dinheiro vendendo salgados says:

    Nossa, sensacional sua receita! Parabéns! Minha mulher costuma fazer o oleo de coco para passar no cabelo.

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      We love coconut oil too! Learn more about our favorite uses here…

      https://simplegreensmoothies.com/coconut-oil

  13. Danilo Pineda says:

    Thank you so much for these tips I just learned from you.

  14. Antônia Batist says:

    Can I use this same recipe to make cakes and a special recipe for cupcakes?

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      Hi Antonia,

      Of course you can! But make sure and check what type of coconut milk the recipe is calling for. Full fat, low-fat, and coconut cream all have different consistencies and water content. Learn more about coconut milk here…

      https://simplegreensmoothies.com/recipes/green-meals/coconut-101

  15. Antônia Batist says:

    I’m from Brazil, more precisely from Bahia, and I was looking for a recipe for natural coconut milk. Well I want to use it to make a delicious fish moqueca with shrimp, very Brazilian.

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      Hi Antonia,

      YAY! So happy you came across our Coconut Milk Recipe in this busy digital world. I’d love to hear how your recipe turned out! Reach back out!

  16. Maria Lúcia says:

    I’m going to do it because my son is allergic to cow’s milk. And coconut milk can be used to make shakes. Tanks Anita

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      Hi Maria,

      Coconut milk can be a great substitute for a dairy allergy. Some other yummy options are almond + hemp milk! Learn more about our favorites here…

      https://simplegreensmoothies.com/liquid-base

  17. Bozan Gurok says:

    I liked it very much … we need to take care of the body and everything that natural certainly does very well.

  18. Flavia says:

    I was looking for this recipe! I saw in japanese channel but never find again! Thank you very much! Great post! Loved the content!

  19. Eunice says:

    Parabéns pelo conteúdo do site gostei de como fazer o leite de coco, que delicia.Obrigado

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      Hi Eunice,

      YAY! I’m so excited to hear you loved this recipe + making you’re own coconut milk! Thanks for reaching out.

  20. Salgados para vender says:

    Great recipe! I tried it and it worked.

  21. Lazaro Silva says:

    From now on I never again spent a penny buying coconut milk ready, thank you very much for sharing this delicious coconut milk recipe, I already did and it was very good, perfect.

  22. casamento says:

    very good

  23. Manollo says:

    I really like natural foods. Our body thanks! Thanks for sharing!

  24. Rian says:

    I loved the recipe! It seems very easy to do and besides everything looks very natural. I will make!

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      Rawesome, Rian! Reach back out are you’ve given it a try! I’d love to hear your review!!

  25. Rana says:

    Im making my coconut milk, but it makes a mess :/

  26. Anne says:

    Wow what a delight, I love coconut milk, here in Brazil this recipe is a success, as a child I drink at least once a week.

    • SGS Rawkstar Amanda says:

      Hi Anne,

      YAY! So happy you could enjoy this recipe + start re-living your childhood days! 🙂 Thanks for blendin’ with us, all the way from Brazil!

  27. John Oliver says:

    Hellooo! Very nice tips! Thanks for share!

  28. Soluções que Renovam says:

    I’ve never seen anything like it. Very good!

  29. Peter says:

    look delicious

  30. Bianca says:

    Wonderful recipes congratulations

  31. Marco Aurélio says:

    Muito interessante (:

  32. Bruna Rodrigues says:

    Really good this recipe I loved. I’ll do it today, thank you.

  33. Juliana says:

    Milk is life!!!

  34. Joceli says:

    Very good, thank you

  35. Segredos dos Brigadeiros Gourmet says:

    Very good article.

  36. Juan Pablo says:

    very very very good this content, congratulations!
    amazing post!

  37. Cathi de Vriend says:

    I’d love to have a go at this as it sounds amazing. I have a large bag of Organic Coconut Flakes that i have to use up. Can I make it with this, and if so, will it require extra soaking time?

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Cathi,

      We love using coconut flakes in this recipe. As long as they’re dried and unsweetened you’re ready to rawk!! Simply follow the directions above.

      Cheers!

  38. Guia Brasil says:

    I love coconut milk.
    I will do it today!
    Cheers

  39. Jimmy Silva says:

    I love coconut milk, thanks for the recipe

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Jimmy,

      We do too!! Have you made your own coconut milk before? If not, make sure and let us know what you think after trying this recipe!

  40. carol says:

    very good this content, congratulations!

  41. Receitas Light says:

    Thanks! Love the recipe

  42. saudesuperdicas says:

    Wow!!! very cool , I live in Brazil here has much firmer now will delight me with this totally natural recipe! thank you so much.

  43. Gabriela says:

    I made this recipe last week, but i Don t like the results…. I will try one more time. Tx SGS

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Gabriela!

      Thanks for reaching out! We know one recipe won’t please everyone, but definitely feel free to experiment with this recipe to have it suit your personal taste :). A couple options are adding less water for a creamier consistency, or adding a little vanilla extract for extra flavor!

      Hope that helps! Thanks for being a part of our community :).

  44. paulo jose says:

    Hello loved learning how to make coconut milk, I live in Brazil and have a lot of coconut here. I loved the blog, has many healthy recipes that can do at home.
    Thank you

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi!

      Thanks so much for reaching out + for your kind words :). I’m so envious of your abundance of fresh coconut! What a treat!

      Thanks for being a part of our community :). Cheers!

  45. Lauren says:

    If you are going to use the coconut milk only for making smoothies, can’t you just skip the straining process and leave any remaining pulp in it for extra fiber in your smoothies?

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Lauren,

      Of course! Plenty members of our community have shared that they keep the pulp in their coconut milk. It’s all about your preference!

      Cheers 🙂

  46. Pascal says:

    Hi team, I usually buy whole coconut, I use the water and meat for my smoothie. But I have also some left over coconut meat which I have frozen. Can I use the left over coconut meat to make the milk? If yes please advise will it be the same process?

    Thanks

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Pascal,

      Great question! You definitely can use the remaining coconut meat to make your own coconut milk! Simply skip boiling + blend filtered water with the fresh coconut meat!

  47. Taishan says:

    It looks easy, but I am no cook

  48. Eri says:

    Hi!
    I´m new, from Argentina, absolutely in love with your site!
    Here´s my question, do you recomend freezing this home made milk in ice cubes? Could I use it frozen in smoothies? Thank you

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Eri,

      Yes! Freezing coconut milk is a great way to store your homemade milk and is perfect for green smoothies!

  49. Katie Fairbank says:

    I love seeing this! It brings back memories of when my teenager was a baby and I made homemade Almond milk for her since she was allergic to milk and soy. Almost the same process. So much less expensive to do it yourself and you definitely know whats in it! Love this website!

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Katie,

      We love making our own plant-based milk options!! Have you seen our DIY almond milk recipe? Is it the same method you’ve used?

      https://simplegreensmoothies.com/healthy-eating/diy-almond-milk

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Katie,

      We’re right there with you! We love making our own plant-base milks and knowing exactly what we’re putting in our bodies.

      Cheers to health + happiness!

  50. Dyah Prameswarie says:

    Hi,

    Can I use a fresh coconut? In my country we use a fresh one and I can easily buy it at traditional market. Thanks

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Dyah,

      Of course you can! You will just need to adjust the amount of water you add, to take into consideration the water naturally occurring in the fresh coconut meat.

      Cheers 🙂

  51. Marina says:

    Hi! Can I use desiccated coconut? It is quite dry… Thanks! Love the recipe.

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Marina,

      Thanks for reaching out! Desiccated coconut is perfect for this recipe, just make sure it’s unsweetened!

      Happy Blendin’!

  52. Anna says:

    I love coconut milk, thanks for the recipe, much better do at home than buy.

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Anna,

      You’re so welcome! It can be so difficult to find coconut milk that is free of additives, stabilizers, and gums. Making it at home is as easy as can be and we love that it only contains two ingredients!

  53. Anita says:

    Has anyone tried cashew milk as a base for smoothies?

  54. Jen says:

    Hi SGS Rawkstars! Just wanna ask if i can use fresh grated coconut to make coconut milk? Thanks.

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Jen, that’s even better! If you find the coconut milk to be too watery because it wasn’t dried previously, you might just need to adjust the amount of water you’re adding. Enjoy!

  55. Matt says:

    My apologies if I end up with a double post, but I tried to ask a couple of questions and do not see them.
    First, when I place the coconut into the boiling water, do I keep boiling it for 10 minutes? If so, do I then let it cool before blending?
    Also, when do I add the salt.
    These questions may seem obvious to a pro in the kitchen, but I’m learning and want to do things properly.
    Thank you in advance for your reply…..

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Matt,

      My apologizes if you didn’t see our response…

      To help answer some of your questions, boil the water separately, remove from heat, and then add coconut. After waiting 10 minutes, which will give the mixture plenty of time to cool, blend for about 2 minutes, or until smooth.

      I like to add salt once I’ve added the coconut-water mixture to the blender, prior to blending.

      I hope that helps! Please let us know if you have any other questions!

  56. Matt says:

    Hi….. I wanted to make sure I understand the recipe before starting. When I put the coconut into the boiling water, do I continue boiling for the 10 minutes and then put the coconut and boiling water into the mixer? I have a VitaMix 5200 with the tall jar and am concerned about putting boiling water in it without causing damage or leeching some awful chemicals out from the high heat.
    Or…. do I turn off the heat when I put the coconut into the water let it sit 10 min and then put it into the blender.
    Sorry for the lengthy question but I do not want to damage my pretty new blender….
    At what point to I add the salt?
    Thanking you in advance for your help.

    • SGS Rawkstar says:

      Hi Matt,

      To help answer some of your questions, boil the water separately, remove from heat, and then add coconut. After waiting 10 minutes, which will give the mixture plenty of time to cool, blend for about 2 minutes, or until smooth.

      I like to add salt once I’ve added the coconut-water mixture to the blender, prior to blending.

      I hope that helps! Please let us know if you have any other questions!

  57. Sue Hunt says:

    I made a mango, banana and mixed salad greens smoothie with a large spoonful of coconut flour this morning. It tasted delicious, but was quite chewy. I suspect that you could use the flour to make coconut milk, with boiling water to soften it.

  58. Miranda says:

    My homemade coconut milk separates as you said, but the top layer is not spoonable. It actually solidifies over the liquid watery layer. I have to break it up to get “milk” but then it’s not very smooth after. Am I not squeezing too hard or something?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Miranda,

      Thanks for reaching out, sounds like that is the healthy fats solidifying in your coconut milk, give it a shake and they should go away. 🙂 If it doesn’t, for sure when you blend it. 🙂

  59. KIM says:

    Where are you getting dried unsweetened coconut? Even at Trader Joe’s all they have is sweetened!!!!–thanks!

  60. amy says:

    I’m using dried shredded coconut that is extremely fine and practically grated. Do I still need to blend?

  61. Sasha Barritt says:

    Hi there,
    I’ve just started buying the fresh coconuts from the supermarket & once I’ve drank the water out of it, what is the time frame that the coconut left inside has to be eaten or used by? Thanks.

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Sasha.

      I am not sure of that answer. I would imagine if you are storing it in fridge, it should last a few days. Next time you are in the store, ask the produce manager, they could give you a more exact time frame.

      • Shashi says:

        We use lot of coconut in our indian cooking.how we store coconut is, grate the coconut and freeze it in ziplock.it stays for months.whenever you want to make coconut milk, just blend the grated coconut with warm water, it prevents the milk from curdling .Filter the milk. Leftovers can be used for your coconut cookies, salads and soups as a topping

    • Rachel says:

      I can keep my fresh coconut in a little water in the refrigerator for about 5-6 days. After reading how to make your own coconut milk though, I am going to try shredding then dehydrating it myself.

      • SGS Rawkstar says:

        Rachel,

        Rawsome! Let us know how it turns out, or if you have any questions along the way!

  62. jan says:

    can coconut milk be made from coconut flour?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hi Jan.

      Great question. I haven’t tired to make coconut flour, but here is a video you might enjoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQ8wxqlUd-c#t=77

    • Sara says:

      Yes, Coconut nut flour is super easy to make.
      Preheat oven to 200, spread coconut pulp on cookie sheet and bake.
      Stir and break up clumps while it is drying in about 2hrs take it out set aside to cool. Place dried coconut into coffee/ spice grinder, give it a whirl and Viola coconut flour! Take a look at how much coconut flour cost and give yourself a pat on the back and the wallet.
      Here is a web version as well. http://homegrownandhealthy.com/how-to-make-coconut-flour-a-tutorial/

  63. Karen says:

    Do you have any tips for using the left over coconut pulp please. I’ve just made my second batch and loath to throw anything away!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Karen.

      How about trying Oh She Glow Coconut bars? http://ohsheglows.com/2013/10/24/3-layer-almond-coconut-chocolate-bars-3/

    • leah says:

      I dry the pulp, by spreading on a sheet of paper and placing in the oven until coconut is dry, I let cool, place into a sealed container, I use it to put in biscuits, ie. Anzac biscuits, any biscuit recipe I can find that uses coconut.

  64. Karen says:

    I’ve just made this coconut milk in my Nutribullet as it’s a real pain to buy it where i live without going out of my way (and it’ a bit expensive). I remember I had some desiccated coconut lurking at the back of my kitchen cupboard and I am thrilled how easy it is to make and tastes so good. I don’t think I’ll ever have to buy the processed one ever again. Thanks for sharing x

  65. laura says:

    How much does this recipe make?

  66. Michelle says:

    I love this. Thanks!

  67. Michelle says:

    Luv this!

  68. Monci says:

    Hi! Can I possibly use freshly grated coconut and follow the same process? if yes, what is the ratio of the fresh grated coconut to water? Thank you very much!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Monci!

      Thanks for the comment. Personally, I have only tried with dried coconut flakes, but feel free to use fresh. 🙂

      Enjoy!

    • rick says:

      Yes you can use fresh coconut. I got this technique from my grandmother. I use to hand grate the coconut and make the milk. I’ve also seen it made with coconut water

  69. Rosa says:

    I just love coconut milk. I will try making fresh coconut milk. I think I will skip step five,because I would love the pulp. Thanks for sharing your recipies.

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Rosa!

      Thanks for joining us! Hope you enjoy our DIY Coconut Milk Recipe and keep us posted on how it goes. 🙂

  70. Sabrina Carlton says:

    I paid $5 to get the 30 day day challenge shopping lists and recipes and I’ve checked my email, spam and trash folders and still haven’t received them. how long does it usually take after paying to get the email does it usually take to get the information?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Sabrina.

      So sorry for the delay on getting back to you. I have resent your purchased October Recipe Cards. Enjoy. Let us know if we can help with anything else. 🙂

  71. Koni says:

    I’m using Nutribullet n I think I need to cool it down before blending! Will give it a try! Thx so much.

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Koni.

      Yes, please let it cool, and leave a little vent to let any hot air escape. 🙂

  72. Miguelito says:

    So what is coconut water? Can it be made by diluting down the coconut milk from this recipe?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Miguelito.

      Coconut water is the clear liquid inside young green coconuts. I think they taste completely different, in a good way. 🙂 I love coconuts.

  73. Jeanne says:

    Which coconut do you use? Young or old ones?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Jeanne.

      I buy the unsweetened coconut flakes from the store. 🙂 (I buy the brand Edward & Sons, Organic Coconut Flakes, Unsweetened.) Hope that helps.

  74. Shannon says:

    I love this! Thank you!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      🙂 Wonderful! I just made another batch of DIY coconut milk 15 minutes ago. My whole family loves it! Glad to hear you are enjoying it as well. 🙂

  75. Ani Lu says:

    Sound good, however can I use fresh coconut meat instead?

  76. Ingrid says:

    Does this need to be strained? I think the coconut in my smoothies would be yummy!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

      Hey Ingrid.

      Straining is STEP 5: Place a strainer over a bowl and line with cheesecloth, tea towel or pour into a nut milk bag. OR if you want a more pulpy coconut milk, feel free to leave it in. 🙂

      Hope that helps.

      • Trev says:

        I believe Ingrid was asking if step 5 was required or if she should skip it to keep the bits of coconut in. And the answer is yes! You can absolutely skip step 5 and leave the bits of coconut in there for your smoothies.

      • SGS Rawkstar Jessie says:

        Thanks Trev. 🙂

  77. Ellie says:

    You can also freeze the remaining coconut and put it in smoothies!

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