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Super Simple Homemade Coconut Milk

Making your own coconut milk is both super easy and very delicious! This highly nourishing milk works in smoothies, porridge and baking!
Sep 27, 2013 | Joy McCarthy

Hello my joyous readers and happy Friday!

I've just come back from my honeymoon in Italy. I'm now officially a "Mrs.", woot! Our wedding day was magical and our honeymoon was memorable and full of adventure. You are more than welcome to see a few pics if you follow me on instagram. :) The common feedback I heard from our friends and family who attended was that the food was epic (SCORE!) and the band was AMAZING (I must have burned a thousand calories on the dance floor)! My personal favourite part of the whole day was just being present with Walker at our ceremony and indulging in the feeling of pure and absolute joy and love. I've replayed it in my mind a thousand times. Best day of my entire life, hands down.

Even though I'm not a coffee drinker, I enjoyed a few espressos while we were honeymooning. Coffee and I have a love/hate relationship. Years ago I would abuse this relationship and use caffeine purposely to keep me awake so I could survive long hours at the office (not good for stress levels or digestion). As you will see in this video, there are pros and cons to coffee. My advice to you? Use your best judgment. If you suffer from anxiety, have a lot of stress in your life then definitely do not drink caffeine.

Early this morning as I was dreaming of my Italian adventures -- especially my visit to Cafe Sant' Eustachio (best espresso in Rome) and Casa e Bottega (cutest cafe ever in Positano where I purchased that lovely espresso cup and saucer from) -- I decided to whip up this macchiato with coconut milk. Well, truth be told I didn't personally make it, Walker my hubs did. ;)

I instagrammed the photo and instantly people were asking me what brand of coconut milk I use. Most store-bought brands are either in a can and contain BPA (no thank you!) or they have a long list of additives including carrageeanan, guar gum and far too much sodium. Now if you have coconut milk from a can or carton once in a while as an emergency that's totally fine. If, and that's a big if you don't suffer from ill-effects of doing this and you don't do it on the regular then there's no reason to freak out about it. But I do want you to know there is a far better, tastier and healthier version!

Because of the fact coconut milk is SO easy to make, I thought I would share a super simple homemade coconut milk recipe with you. In my book, I share a similar recipe, plus hemp AND almond milk. You are going to love them!

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  • 4 cups filtered water
  • 2 cups unsweetened, unsulfured coconut flakes
  1. Heat water, but do not boil.
  2. Combine with flakes in a blender and blend until smooth.
  3. Filter out the chunks and small bits of coconut with a cheese cloth, nut bag or wire collander.
  4. Store in fridge and keep 4 days max.

The health benefits of coconut products from oil to butter to milk are endless. Coconut is high in saturated fatty acids (this is a good thing -- do not be alarmed!) and medium-chain triglycerides, which you body will utilize very easily as a source of fuel rather than storing it as fat. This type of fat is super duper easy for your digestive system to manage making coconut products an excellent choice. There are a small group of people however do not digest coconut products well. Simply listen to your body for cues.

Be joyous!


Ps. Wondering what a macchiato is? It's simply espresso with a small amount of steamed milk added. In this case, coconut milk!

Sep 27, 2013 BY Joy McCarthy
Lyndsey   •   September 30, 2013

Hi Joy. Congrats on your marriage. I saw a few pics on Instagram :-) I was wondering, regarding your coconut milk, if there is a simple way to make it using fresh coconut? It is near impossible to find unsulfured coconut flakes here. Thanks in advance. Lyndsey


Maija   •   November 2, 2013

I was just grocery shopping and thought I'd switch from almond milk to coconut milk as my new dairy-free substitute. Partly b/c I've read that coconut milk is a good source of calcium. I bought the SILK brand and then came home to make lunch, and read your blog, and wow there is a post about why you SHOULDN'T buy coconut milk.....I don't think that I will dump the carton this time, but maybe next time try making my own. Shame, I fell for the marketing gimmicks! Where do you purchase unsweetened unsulfured coconut flakes in Toronto?


Hilary   •   November 9, 2013

Hi Joy, I just made this coconut milk (had it in a latte - yum) and it was amaaaaazing. Thanks for the recipe! The only unexpected thing was that when you put it in the fridge the whole top hardens and separates from the liquidy part. I am assuming this happened to yours as well - do you reheat it every time then? Any ways around this? Thanks! Hilary


Samantha   •   March 25, 2014

I made this coconut milk from the recipe in your book on the weekend, and when I steamed it for my latte, it curdled! Any idea what I might have done wrong? It still tasted ok, but not really that appealing. It sure didn't look nice and foamy like your photo above...

Joy McCarthy   •   March 26, 2014

Gabriela   •   August 29, 2014

HI Joy, Where in Toronto do you find unsulfured coconut flakes?

Joy McCarthy   •   August 29, 2014

Tania   •   April 13, 2015

Hi Joy, I love this recipe. Do you have an idea how many calories are in a cup of this home made milk? Thanks :) Tania

Kate McDonald Walker   •   April 15, 2015

Serena Moon   •   August 20, 2015

Can I use coconut butter in this recipe?

Joy McCarthy   •   August 22, 2015

Saskia   •   August 23, 2015

Hi Joy, I made the recipe found in your cookbook. There is a fair bit of separation that occurs after it goes in the fridge. After refrigerating do you just stir it all together before serving? Or is the top part what you remove for coconut butter? Thanks in advance! Saskia

AshleyL   •   August 26, 2015
Michelle   •   October 11, 2015
Michelle   •   October 11, 2015

Benjamin Weingarten   •   January 15, 2016

Hi Joy! Very important recipe of how to make coconut milk at home. It is very simple to prepare and it also looks so delicious and yummy. I will try this soon. Thanks for sharing with us.


kiren   •   February 18, 2017

Hi there I made the recipe from the book and found it too blender broke so I made it in the food processor. ..wondering if that might be why. Also same question as above what do you use the coconut that is filtered out for and does that last only about five days in the fridge as well? Thanks!

Rachel   •   February 21, 2017

Kiren   •   February 20, 2017

Hi there, I made the recipe from the book and it turned out too watery - not sure what happened; I still tried to froth it in my milk frother but was not to be. My blender broke and I made it in my food processor; wondering if that's waht might have happened? Also, how long does the filtered out coconut last in your fridge? Thanks


Rachel   •   February 21, 2017

Hey Kiren, I just left you a note in our comment above :) How long did you froth the milk for after? It's all about finding that balance between lightly steamed and not steaming too much - it can be finicky like that :) Rachel - Joyous Health Team


Reema   •   October 7, 2017

Just made this and I'm so proud of myself !! Goodbye store bought non dairy 🥛

Rachel Molenda   •   October 11, 2017

Jackie   •   December 2, 2017

Hi! I just made this milk - it’s delicious. Added in a date for some sweetness. I’m wondering what I can do with the leftovers after squeezing the extra liquid?

Rachel Molenda   •   December 4, 2017

Kelly   •   December 17, 2019

Could you give an update on coconut milk? Recently I’ve been hearing that new studies have shown that coconut has a lot of cholesterol/artery clogging affects. I love it

Joy McCarthy   •   December 17, 2019

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