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How to Make Coconut Milk

Making coconut milk is very easy and much more nutritious than store bought. We use coconut milk in a lot of our Clean Cuisine recipes because it tastes incredible but it’s also really good for you.

Nut-based milks in general are far better and healthier than dairy milk. If you want to learn more about why milk does NOT do a body good, check out this top 10 post here.

To learn more about the health benefits of coconuts and why the saturated fat in coconuts is not the same as the saturated fat in animal foods, click here.

Easy Coconut Milk Substitute

I’ll be honest, a lot of times I just use canned organic coconut milk, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But, if you have the time and inclination to make fresh homemade coconut milk it’s definitely the superior choice. We trust Native Forest brand and you can buy it here. If you have some at your local health food store, make sure you look for organic to avoid sulfates.

organic coconut milk

How to Make Coconut Milk

There are two ways to make coconut milk at home. The easiest way is to use organic unsweetened coconut flakes and the more difficult way is using Young Thai Coconuts Both recipes including instructions are below.

#1: Using Coconut Flakes

The easiest way to make coconut milk is using coconut flakes. Using organic raw dried and unsweetened coconut flakes makes is absolutely the easiest and just as nutritious.

You can purchase organic unsweetened coconut flakes from most natural foods stores, Whole Foods Market or online.


How to Make Coconut Milk

Making homemade coconut milk from coconut flakes is super easy.

how to make coconut milk
Save Recipe
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 5 cups 1x


  • 2 cups organic dried and unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 4 ½ cups water
  • Pinch of unrefined sea salt


  1. Soak the coconut in the water, covered for 20 minutes.
  2. Transfer the coconut and water to a high speed blender, add a pinch of unrefined sea salt and process until smooth and creamy.
  3. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer or into a nut bag over a bowl. Press on the strainer with a wooden spoon or squeeze the nut bag to remove all the milk.
  4. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

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how to make coconut milk

#2: Coconut Milk from Young Thai Coconuts

The first is the most obvious and the instructions are super simple.

how to make coconut milk

Where Can You Buy Young Thai Coconuts?

Young Thai coconuts are available in many Asian markets, but they are becoming increasingly popular in health food stores too. Want to learn more about choosing the best young thai coconut, click here for more information.

How to Crack a Young Thai Coconut:

Young Thai coconuts generally come with their husks trimmed, so they sit flat with a pointed top. However, they are not particularly easy to open, so you’ll need a hatchet with a super sharp blade.

To crack, lay the coconut on its side (I like to nestle it in some towels so it won’t roll—do note, I would NOT advise holding it with your free hand!)

Hold the cleaver high and then bring it down sharply near the top of the coconut. The knife should sink down about 1/3 of the way the first whack, so you’ll need to keep whacking it to completely remove the top. Once the top is removed, use the back of a spoon to pry the meat from the sides of the shell. Trim away any shell residue with a small knife.

Homemade Coconut Milk with Young Thai Coconuts

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup young coconut meat

Combine the water and coconut meat in a high-speed blender and process until smooth and creamy.

Ivy Larson

In 2010, Clean Cuisine was launched because Ivy Larson wanted to share her anti-inflammatory lifestyle and delicious recipes using ingredients in their most natural and nutrient-rich state. In 2020, Ivy passed the website to Aimee and Madison. Since then, they have been adding new recipes and nutrition posts while updating old recipes and articles. Thanks for visiting Clean Cuisine!

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Margaret Langley

Friday 3rd of June 2011

Coconut milk so easy to make from the flakes and you know what is in it. I will making this all the time instead of buying cans. Beautiful flavour and lovely in curries. Thank You.

Ivy Larson

Tuesday 7th of June 2011

so glad you liked it Margaret! Thanks for letting me know ;)

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