Homemade Coconut Milk

Homemade Coconut Milk Recipe from Wellness Mama Simple and cheap Homemade Coconut MilkCoconut Milk is a wonderful alternative to pasteurized cow’s milk or to rice, soy or other processed milks. Unfortunately, the cans of most store bought versions of coconut milk are lined with BPA. New refrigerated carton varieties are somewhat better, but can be expensive and many have added sweeteners or preservatives.

Fortunately, making coconut milk at home is simple and very inexpensive. From my calculations, homemade coconut milk costs less than $1 per batch, and it can be used in smoothies, recipes, or just to drink by itself. It can also be flavored with natural vanilla, strawberries, or cocoa powder.

Coconut is packed with medium chain fatty acids and lauric acid. It has many health promoting benefits and is especially good for kids. Try this inexpensive way to make coconut milk:

5.0 from 35 reviews
Homemade Coconut Milk
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Homemade coconut milk from shredded coconut for a healthy and inexpensive milk alternative.
Recipe type: Drinks
Serves: 4-6
  1. Heat water, but don't boil. It should be hot, but not scalding.
  2. Put coconut in blender or Vitamix and add water. (If all water won't fit, you can add the water in two batches.)
  3. Blend on high for several minutes until thick and creamy.
  4. Pour through a mesh colander first to get most of the coconut out, and then squeeze through a towel or several thicknesses of cheesecloth to get remaining pieces of coconut out.
  5. If you have to split the water, put all the coconut that you strained out back in the blender, add the remaining water, and repeat.
  6. Flavor options- add in after all coconut has been strained out: ½ tsp vanilla extract, ½ cup fresh or frozen strawberries, 2 tsp cocoa powder + ½ tsp vanilla.
  7. Drink immediately or store in the fridge. Should be used in 3-4 days after making for best flavor and texture. Since there are no preservatives or fillers, the "cream" of the coconut milk may separate on the top if stored in the fridge. Just shake or stir before using.

Ever made coconut milk before? Planning to try sometime? Offer your favorite tips below!

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Reader Comments

    • paula says

      I made my first batch of coconut milk last night and put it in my fridge. In the morning there was a 1/2 inch of hard stuff on top that would not mix in. Is this coconut oil? and can I just take it off the top? It would not blend in and stayed all chunky.

        • Richard Brooke-Powell says

          The coconut oil is exceedingly good for you… if you do not want to remix it .separate and save…you can use it for ‘oil pulling’ your bacteria from your mouth. you can take it as a supplement and antibacterial .. two tablespoons a day.

        • Lesley says

          Noooo! Don’t remove the coconut oil. This is the part of the coconut that is so good for you. If you let the coconut milk get to room temperature (unless your place is cold) it will melt/soften enough and then you can stir it back in. But depending on what you’re using it for this may not be necessary. If you’re using the coconut milk for cooking, it will melt. If for smoothies, it will be incorporated. Etc…..

          I ferment it by making coconut milk kefir. It keeps very well in the fridge and doesn’t really seperate. The oil sort of becomes a thick “whipped cream” layer at the top that can be stirred back in, or used as whipped cream. Kefiring the coconut milk enhances all of the already great nutrients in it. If you cook with it the beneficial bacteria and yeast (probiotics) will die, but it is still good for you. I mostly use it in smoothies and an occasional iced coffee.

          • Kara says

            hey there! its so funny there are 2 K(C)aras looking for the same recipe. A friend of mine introduced me to kefir not that long ago and im really not very familiar with it. I am however continuing to feed it and change it out every 3 days but I don’t know what to do with it all. so my fridge is quickly being consumed with kefir, lol. anyway, I am curious what your process is for the kefir and how you include the coconut milk. and how many different ways can I use it, lol. does cooking it diminish any of its properties? thank you so much!!

        • Tina says

          Is it healthy to drink homemade coconut milk daily? I’m concerned with the fat content. Do you know how many calories in 1 8oz glass.

          • Elysia says

            It’s a very healthy source of fat. Calorie counting is not reliable and not something most of us on here would recommend. For instance, coconut oil, while technically high in calories, had been proven to boost metabolism and help you lose weight!

          • Dave says

            “Calorie counting is not reliable. ” That is an out and out lie. Calorie counting is the only sure way to lose weight. It works for everyone and is how I have been able to stay the same weight as I was in high school, 20 years on.

          • Krista says

            KEEP the leftover white powdery stuff…you basically have coconut flour!! Just a few more steps:

            1. Squeeze the coconut milk out of the pulp
            2. Spread the pulp on a cookie sheet
            3. Use a fork to break up the chunks

            4. You have many options for drying the pulp:
            a. You can leave it out to air-dry (24 hours)
            b. Put it in the oven on the lowest setting until dry (4 hours approx)
            c. Put it in the oven with the light on (overnight)

            5. Once it is dried thoroughly, throw the coconut pulp into a food processor or blender
            6. Tada! Now you have COCONUT FLOUR! :D
            7. Store in a airtight container, Lookup coconut flour recipes, and enjoy!

        • vava says

          If you warm it up just a little bit, it will dissolve immediately. Coconut oil/pure coconut milk hardens at below-room temperature. I use lowfat coconut shreds to avoid oil collection..

      • Joe says

        It’s the oil. It’s solid below 75 degrees and liquid above that. Just heat in a tub of hot water until liquid and then blend. You can also drink the oil for health. Much cheaper than buying coconut oil!

      • LINA says

        you could make your own coconut whip cream with it! just put that part in your blender and add 1tsp of organic sugar to it!

      • Sol says

        Coconut oil congeals in cold temperature, or mixed with cold liquids. If you separate it you will be taking away the best part of this shampoo. Instead, melt it to mix again, but to keep its properties DO NOT heat it on the stove or in the microwave, since the heat will kill the proteins and good properties of the oil. So, to fix this situation bring the container to a bain-marie (double boiler = a pan with hot water, then put the shampoo container inside, just covering it half way. If it’s in a plastic container, do not leave the burner on, or the bottom of the container will start to melt when touching the bottom of the pan, which is too hot. So, heat the water, turn the stove off, and dip the container in the hot water. Keep holding it and stirring the shampoo, until totally melted again. The hot temperature of the water will melt the mix, without boiling or simmering it, and it will be ready to use and still fully nutritious for your hair.

        P.S. I’d suggest you make small batches like 8oz at a time, and leave teh container in the shower. No need to refrigerate it.

    • Ella Frank says

      Been making this for a bit and tweaking the ingredients. I like to add a date or two for mild sweetness, a few drops of pure vanilla, and a pinch of salt. Very good!

  1. Amy says

    wow, you weren’t kidding about this being simple and inexpensive. It seems too good to be true–can’t wait to try it! I’ve been trying to find an alternative, healthier drink for my kids, other than cow’s milk with chocolate, and this just might be it!

    • says

      Cow’s milk is fine if your kids aren’t allergic to it, especially if you can source grass-fed dairy, or milk that is low-temp pasteurized, assuming raw milk is not legal where you live.  (It is in some states.)  It is pointless to drink lowfat or skim milk, though–the fat helps with vitamin and mineral absorption.

      Chocolate milk tends to be iffy though.  I’ve seen recipes for homemade chocolate syrup before, but they were pretty mainstream with sugar and everything.  I don’t know if anyone’s tried for an alternative with a healthy natural sweetener (I have my reservations about whether *any* sweetener is healthy, but I suppose the ones with minerals still in them are at least less toxic).

      • Helen Ellsworth says

        um, do a research on cows milk, please. I have, and results are not good, in fact, it should be banned. I cant consume dairy it makes me sick, along with millions of other’s, I drink Almond milk, I see it’s good for the skin and benificial for the body.

        • Laurie says

          Many who have experienced dairy allergies or intolerances had them disappear when they switched to raw milk. Pasteurization creates free radicals which cause many damaging effects to our bodies and destroy the living enzymes found in raw milk. There is an effect called a pasteurization allergy. I myself experience painful cramping and bloating with pasteurized but nothing with raw. Raw milk can be beneficial in moderation.

          • Karis says

            Interestingly, I can’t drink raw milk, but I can drink it pasteurized. I used to buy it raw but would have to cook it before I could digest it.

          • Moore says

            Cows are pumped full of hormones that keep them in estres & lactating. These hormones are harmful to human beings if used extensively over a period of time. Furthermore, the human body does not process dairy as well as you may think. Between 7-10 pounds of unprocessed dairy product can be found in the intestines of the deceased.

          • Christi says

            Raw milk has lactose AND lactase in it.. the lactase aids in the breakdown of lactose and in paturized… or even worse ulta pasturized (which every organic milk i’ve found is) its heated to a temperature that kills the lactase, leaving the lactose without its buddy to help it break down in our system… thus many lactose allergies or intolerance that are often remedied when switching to raw milk or low temp pasturized milk. And while you should of course check your source for their practices, but if a company is going to the extent to ensure all of those nutrients are in there, knowing the values of their clientele, i can’t imagine it would be good business to be pumping their cows full of any hormones… also if you are looking for grass-fed anything make sure it is truely grass-fed, because it could be greass-fed its whole life, but if its is grain finished your not getting any of the benefits of the grass-fed, but paying that astronomical price. Its sad all of the hidden dangers in seemingly healthy foods we’ve trusted for years, well i use to any way. its much easier to make everythign from scratch than research what goes into it any more.

        • Ann says

          There is a great website to for Raw Milk answers. Specifically, you can check out this article:


          Pasteurization is also used on Yogurt, Kefir and Kombucha which removes the beneficial nutrients these live cultures provide would normally provide you. Manufacturer’s re-add the cultures after the pasteurization process. These are likely a shadow of what the real culture provides you.

          Federal Government requires Milk to be pasteurized which is tragic given the amazing nutrients in raw milk coupled with that of the live active cultures in yogurt and kefir.

          Thankfully, these can also be made with nut milks and kefir has a water version. Kombucha is made with sweet black tea. Make it yourself and benefit from real nutrients that Uncle Sam would keep from you.

          Well, that kind of spiraled off to something completely off topic, but there you have it.


          • Arina says

            It’s not only the pasteurization. Read the label on your milk and you will be surprized how many other things are in it. Antibiotics and other stuff. You can’t even make yogurt with it. Comes out some gross stuff. Basically natural milk should become sour when goes bad and still has the good bacteria and can be consumed as sour milk. I know this as I grew up with real milk. The stuff you buy in stores is anything but milk. Turns into some stinky gross looking thing when starts to go bad.

        • Terry says

          Um, that’s not how to make coconut milk :) You shred the coconut in small pieces,You warm some water as if to 3-2 Minutesput the coconutin .. Then you put them out 0f the pot :) so now we’re gonna Get some room temperature water and try to sweetenit :) then you put the coconuts In then give it a quick wisk put in freezer For couple hours then enjoy :)

          • Barbara says

            This is how we make coconut milk. shred or cut in small pieces and blend in a blender with water for a few minutes. Strain and you got coconut milk. To make coconut oil, put the milk to boil. This will take a while for all the water to evaporate leaving pure oil and the solids we call custard. Most of the custard will stick to the pot. let it cool and strain. the custard is delicious as a butter substitute on bread or crackers, or cooked in meats, rice etc

        • Gretchen says

          Almond milk is good but be careful of the brand you buy. A lot of them have carrageenan in them which, if not a carcinogen (there’s some controversy about this), it is definitely not something good for you. You can also make your own almond milk. I haven’t tried it yet but I do plan to.

          • Nysia E says

            I recommend making your own. I used the recipe on this blog to great result, and it was so easy! :) Going to try this coconut milk next. Anyone know if you can use this in place of canned coconut milk?

          • Chantel says

            To add to your comment, there are also plenty of other unhealthy ingredients in processed Almond milk, coconut milk, ect (even organic) like synthetic vitamins for example. These are very harmful to our health and should be avoided if possible.

        • Angel says

          Actually, Almonds have the same thyroid troubling issues as kale. It makes me nervous seeing so many women thinking consuming so much of it is good for them.

      • Ellie says

        The China Study shows that it doesn’t really matter whether raw, pasteurized, hormone free or what not–casein is in most dairy products, and particularly high in things like fat free Greek yogurt. Even if you feel great drinking milk and eating dairy products, I have come to believe that these food items should be minimal. Turning on your cancer receptors with casein just doesn’t sound that good to me. Forks Over Knives further explains that drinking cow’s milk is a perfect food–for baby cows–but causes metabolic acidosis in humans, creating an acid environment in which a calcium withdrawal from our bones neutralizes the effect. Crazy stuff. It does make me want to quit following nutritional trends and looking at the science (that is ethically funded).

        And Wellness Mama–thank you so much for this amazing recipe!!! So excited to try it!!

        • Maureen says

          In a recent large study in Scandinavia on the effect of dairy consumption on osteoporosis, it was found that not only did 3 or more glasses of milk not increase bone density, but that (and this was completely unexpected by researchers) drinking at least 3 glasses of milk resulted in the deaths of a large number of these women.

        • Maureen says

          In a recent large study in Scandinavia on the effect of dairy consumption on osteoporosis, it was found that not only did 3 or more glasses of milk not increase bone density, but that (and this was completely unexpected by researchers) drinking at least 3 glasses of milk resulted in the deaths of a large number of these women. Fermented dairy products (cheese, kefir, yogurt, etc.) did not have this effect and in fact did increase bone density.

      • Anna says

        I’ve made a very simple chocolate syrup with coconut sugar instead of cane. Turned out beautifully…lot’s of caramel favor .

      • Maureen says

        Read article in NYT about osteoporosis and dairy products. Fermented dairy products were found to increase bone density. This was a study with many participants. Researchers were dumbfounded to find, though, that women who drank 3 or more glasses of milk per day, not only did not have increased bone density, but were dying at much, much higher rates than everybody else. I am very sad about this because I love regular milk and fermented milk products give me migraines (probably because of reaction to histamines).

    • says

      Either one will work. Shredded dried coconut will work, as long as
      the milk hasn’t already been extracted. Fresh is best, if you can get
      it, but dried or frozen work great too!

      • Ad says

        Frozen is best. Fresh is only fresh if it just fell out of the tree. The fresh coconut you buy in the grocery store is a long way from fresh. A long way.

        Freezing properly preserves the meat, and stops the oxidization/ripening process, and usually means that a gas preservative wasn’t used to treat the nut, in order to extend it’s life (death) cycle.

        Go frozen unless it lands on your toe.

    • says

      If this works anything like herbs, if you use fresh coconut instead of dried, you will need to use about twice as much.  Drying plant matter condenses it because there is no longer fluid plumping it out. 

  2. Clearisa says

    I’m very curious as to your source of shredded coconut, and how you come up with less than $1 per gallon.


    • says

      lately, I’ve been ordering the bags of shredded coconut from Tropical
      Traditions. A 2.2 lb bag is $8.50 right now. With the way I’ve been
      making coconut milk lately, one bag makes 8-10 gallons or more. I’ve
      also gotten shredded coconut from a local co-op and it was even
      cheaper, I just like the taste of Tropical Traditions a little better.

      • Josh demille says

         your recipe calls for 2 cups of coconut for 4 cups of water, to make one quart of coconut milk… how are you getting 8-10 gallons out of roughly 16 cups of coconut in the 2.2lb bag? by my calculations you’d need to use 8 cups of coconut per gallon of milk and that gets you 2 gallons per bag, at 4 bucks per gallon. are you adding more water in the end?

      • Clarisa says

         Hmm…that would make it $1/quart. Which would still be far cheaper than the current price of canned coconut milk, right?


      • Mazi says

        All these comments about how she got $1 per gallon… she never stated $1 per gallon.  She stated $1 per BATCH!  Based on the ingredients, the batch is one quart. 

        • ja says

          I agree that’s still pretty expensive. Yes, its cheaper than canned, but its not the same consistency. You wouldn’t drink coconut milk straight out of the can. I don’t know it could take place of canned for a bechemal sauce. I use a recipe from crunchy betty where you use only half a cup coconut, blend with 4 cups of water, one cup at a time, strain, repeat.. but it definitely doesn’t have the nice white color pictured here… and beyond tasting better I’m sure your recipe has a lot more nutrition packed in as well. The 1/2 cup I use produces a surprisingly large amount of coconut oil when left in the fridge to separate.

          I’m not sure if wegmans is a national store, but they have a self serve dried goods/nuts/beans etc. section and I got a 16 oz container of organic unsweetened large coconut flakes for $1.50…. so cheap! My daughter loves plain coconut and the large size is less of a mess. Unsweetened is near impossible to find and if you can, its really expensive or its “reduced fat” meaning they took the liberty of take out the expensive and highly sought after oil to line their pockets then proceed to over charge you for their dried left over waste even more.. so nice. Ha!

        • Jodie says

          LOL. Such a spark over the PRICE. Buy coconut in bulk and your price is reduced. I made my first batch of coconut milk yesterday, cost me about $1.41 using organic coconut. I got 4 2/3 cups. I won’t ever need to buy another can or carton! And I make flour with the remaining pulp! NOW that’s cheap for coconut flour!

          • Becky says

            Jodie – after making the milk, how do you prepare the coconut for flour? I’ve made coconut milk and thought it’s such a shame to throw out the pulp. What else could the pulp be used for? And how many times can you make milk with the 2 C coconut? Thanks for any replies.

      • stephanie urban says

        Wow. I get a 1 lb bag of organic shredded coconut from our local grocer for only $3.00. I’ve been making coconut milk and then dehydrating the pulp to make flour for some time now. I didn’t know our prices were so cheap. Good to know!

  3. says

    I’d really like to try this as my eldest son is dealing with sensory integration challenges & my youngest is lactose intolerant. Thx for the recipe!

  4. Josh demille says

     what brand of shredded coconut do you use that it only costs you a dollar per gallon? your recipe makes only 4 cups of milk, for a gallon you need to quadruple that recipe, 6-8 cups of shredded coconut is about a pound per gallon.

    • Josh demille says

       disregard this comment… i saw your reply to the brand you use on another comment and posed my question there instead. 

  5. Lauren says

    I just recently started making my own coconut milk and I LOVE it!  I use whole coconuts and it’s even cheaper!  (and the benefits of the coconut water are worth the effort of cracking it) And I let the oils come up to the top and then break it up and jar it.  Coconut Oil!  Then I turn the squeezed out meat into coconut flour.  I have yet to use it, but it’s there.  So many purposes to one little coconut!  

    • Candace says

      Lauren, I’d love to hear how you make your own coconut flower from the coconut meat!  Do you just dehydrate it and then process it in a food processor or something?

      • Tinna says

        Once you have squeezed out the milk from the nutbag, take the remaining solids and spread them out onto a baking tray and bake for about 45 minutes at 200 degrees. At this point, it will be a bit lumpy so break it up in your food processor for about 30 seconds. And VOILA! You’ve got coconut flour!!!

        • shelly says

          thank you!!!! I was at a loss trying to figure out how to NOT WASTE the pulp. Yay!
          So basically one could stop buying coconut oil, coconut milk and coconut flour by just using fresh coconut for milk and oil and pulp (for flour). So cool!

        • Amy says

          I have made coconut milk several times this week and have been drying out the used coconut flakes in the oven like you suggested.

          But I am not having success grinding the dried coconut flakes fine enough to use as flour. I have tried the blender (can’t afford a high-end blender), food processor, and immersion blender. So far the immersion blender got it the finest, but still not on par with coconut flour that I purchase at the store.

          I made some cookies with the coarser coconut flour. They were still good, but definitely grainy.

          Any suggestions on how to get the flour to the right consistency?


          • Elizabeth Wormer says

            The best method for finely grinding anything, from sugar to make powder sugar to rice to, obviously, make rice flour, sesame seeds for tahini, and dried coconut or oats to make flour out of them, is to use a small electric coffee beans grinder. They are inexpensive, versatile, and last a very long time. They also have the added bonus that you can grind smaller amounts such as caraway or aniseed, coriander and cardamom, etc.
            The cons are that you only grind about half a cup at a time, but a small electric coffee grinder is very powerful, and seeing one usually doesn’t need more a a few cups of ground ingredients such as flour, the grinding is done within a mere few minutes!! (been meaning to try grinding my own chickpeas for gram flour too). Cupboard space in most households doesn’t lend itself to the storage of whole and ground stuff, plus I like being able to regulate how fine or course my flour is. So far, whenever I have made oats, soya or coconut milk, I have mixed it straight away with dried fruits, or cocoa powder, maybe brown sugar or molasses or maple syrup, whatever else there was around (nuts, over ripe fruit,etc) and popped it into the over spread out on a cookie tray- I am never without something healthy to snack on). I also use the left over coconut, finely ground, to thicken cocoa sauces (gently boil coconut or soya milk and brown sugar and coconut fat, add a mixture of spices- cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger,etc and cocoa powder and some oats flour, and stir until really thick. you can obviously regulate everything to your liking. this makes a great base for pie filling, truffles, sandwich spread, or snacking squares). The flavour of the coconut flour as a leftover from making milk is so gentle it can be used to slightly thicken curries, chocolate milk, make pancakes, etc. Hope this helps. These are my findings on my way to becoming a vegan, and a healthier human in mind and body. Good luck with your road!

    • sara says

      i have never cracked a coconut in my life. i would love a step by step of how you get the oil, milk and flour out of it

  6. Mary says

    When I was a kid we used to stop and roadside juice stands. I would order either a fresh squeezed orange juice or a coconut milk. What I want to know is what I used to get made by mixied coconut powder mix into a glass of milk. That is what I am looking to find. I just want soem coconut powder to stir in a glass of milk. What I remember was there were pieces of coconut in it. It was soooooo good. Any suggestions of what I can buy and where to find it ?

    • Laila says

      I don’t know if they have it at regular supermarkets, but if you go to an Indian grocery store they should have it. Its called Maggi Coconut Milk Powder.

  7. Zina says

    My friends and I use a painter’s paint strainer bag to separate the coconut and the milk.  They are very inexpensive and do a great job.  Just wash well first.  

    • Kamila Straker says

       There is also a “nut bag” that I purchased. It’s very fine plastic bag to squeeze out all the milk from.

    • Zina says

      OH Gosh, don’t toss it, dehydrate it, and use it as flour.  It is all I use these days.  There are some great recipes out there.  Tropical Traditions has a bunch on their web site.  I have a pumpkin one my family loves.  good luck.  

      • Lan Nguyen says

        What do you do after dehydrating it? Pulse it in the food processor? Can it be used in place of store-bought coconut flour in recipes – is the taste and texture different? Thank you!

  8. Andrea Roane says

    I just tried making this. I have been on the no poo method for a small amount of time. I tried the boxed milk and it made my hair feel weird (maybe because all of the additives?). I will be trying the homemade milk. I will let you know how it goes with making my own milk for the shampoo. Thanks!

  9. Peter Hardy says

    Stevia is the hype, but i’m using it more and more often.  Make sure you get an organic brand, as the big food manufacturers will spoil this lovely sweetener sooner rather than later (and probably already have).  Instead of a cup of any sugar as per conventional recipes, a tablespoon of stevia does the same sweetening trick.  I use the white Stevia, as the green stevia is maybe better, as in ‘less processed’, but the strong aftertaste of licorice root put me off.

  10. Mural says

    Use a nut bag to squeeze out the coconut milk into a bowl! Then dehydrate the coconut either in a food dehydrator or oven at a low temp for about a half an hour.

  11. April says

    If I use homemade coconut milk for your shampoo recipe, does it only last 3-4 days (in this post you say homemade coconut milk is good for 3-4 days in the fridge).  Would shampoo made with canned coconut milk have a longer shelf life?  thanks!

    • Jane says

      I am also wondering about the shelf life of the shampoo with fresh coconut milk.  Does it still not need to be kept in the fridge?  How about if you use the store bought refridgerator coconut milk? It says to keep it in the fridge. How long will the shampoo last?  Does it spoil or have you had anyproblems with that issue? Thanks! sounds like a great idea for me and my kiddos!

      • says

        I haven’t had any trouble with it spoiling, but I make it in small batches and we, as a family, use it up in a couple days. If you use fresh I’d either make only a couple days worth at a time or keep in the fridge for good measure :-)

  12. says

    I was sent this recipe from someone in a Facebook group and I just made it. Thank you, it was WONDERFUL and very simple. My dd is on a GF/CF diet and we were getting rice milk but other than being expensive it had a lot of junk in it that wasn’t good for her or us. I decided to try a glass of raw cow’s milk and see what happened but her behavior was terrible 10 minutes after drinking it so I needed something else. Thank you again for posting this.

  13. Jeanine says

    Maybe there has already been an answer to this, but wondering if you can freeze the coconut milk so it keeps longer?

  14. Kristen says

    We just made this and it’s delicious and easy!  Thank you!  Can you re-dry and re-use the coconut meat after?  Thanks!

  15. says

    I bought a big pail from tropical traditions with the intentions of making my own but the problem is it was watery. I like the cans for that cream top that you find. If I could replicate that that would be awesome. I should probably just buy an icepick and start buying coconuts lol.

  16. Gail Henry says

    I bought two coconuts, drank the water, used a hammer to crack, put the cracked pieces in the oven at 350 for 15 minutes so as to release the meat. I did not peel the brown left on the coconut. I shredded in my food processor, then added the 4 C of hot water. Then I used an immersion blender, which worked beautifully. This was very labor-intensive, but I enjoyed it and have about 4 C of the coconut milk, which I will freeze for use in making more shampoo. Haven’t used the shampoo as yet. Thank you thank you thank you.

  17. Gail Henry says

    Use a hammer and nail to put holes in the three indentations in the top – only two holes are necessary, then let it drip out – or shake it, as I did – into a glass.

  18. says

    I cracked open an used a fresh coconut for this tonight. Looking forward to trying it once it’s cold! I’m dehydrating the coconut that was strained out for coconut meal for baking. Yay!

  19. Kristen Halverson says

    This was fantastic. Looking for ideas (simple, fast) for what to do with the leftover coconut meat afterward–too good to toss!

  20. Jenee Sterling says

    Is it normal when putting the coconut milk in the fridge for it to separate and the top be hard like coconut oil would be in the fridge?

  21. Duncan says

    I knew this would be good, but OH MY!! Got my first bag of coconut from Tropical Traditions, so this was the first thing on my list. Made a small batch in our Ninja (best small appliance ever!)… just enough to make my first batch of your shampoo, and devour the rest with just a touch of raw honey. I was wondering if there’s anything to be done with the remaining coconut? Compost bin was our first thought, but we’re not quite there yet. Anywho, this was a delightful treat and I can not thank you enough!

  22. Ro says

    Hi Katie,

    I do this with whole, off the shelf, coconuts. Cracking them and getting the meat out is super fast after you do your first 2 or 3.

    I’m looking for a solution for the fact that I end up with a separated half coconut milk, half water blend in my pitcher. I only want the coconut milk, not the water I added in order to get it extracted. I generally use a ladle to separate them but you need the hands of a surgeon to get this done effectively.

    Wondering if you or any of your readers have tried to separate the two and how you did it?


  23. Andrea says

    I made this recipe last night with great results, but this morning when I woke up all the fat had separated into a hard layer at the top and after several minutes of stirring it still wasn’t smooth again. Any advice? Did I do something wrong?

    • Andrea says

      Also – I only mixed the coconut with water one time. I had read somewhere that after getting the milk out you can mix the coconut with water again to get out more milk. Do you recommend this for getting a higher volume?

  24. MallieJane says

    Hi! Coming late to this discussion… I haven’t found a dried coconut that still has all the vitamins. Tropical Traditions makes it impossible to see the nutrition label on the website. Can you tell me what percent of the vitamins are in the bag? I am planning to try to crack whole coconuts, but I’d love to find a more sustainable (for my busy life) process. Making for a toddler with multiple food allergies, so I really need all those vitamins!

  25. Angela Cowan says

    Ive been using this recipe and it is great. I purchased my coconut from amazon @ $58 for a 22 pound bag. So its only about $1.50 per gal for me. I also found it a little cheaper through azure standard for next time. Plus you can turn around and make flour with the pulp. Very cost effective ;) Thank you for sharing. Another quick FYI Amazon sells a nut milk bag that works excellent for the straining process.

  26. Sherry Lynn England says

    I just made the coconut milk and I have to say it is so much better than the Native Forest brand I had previously bought. Am looking for ways to use the leftover coconut. Thanks so much Katie!! It was very easy to make. hugs

  27. Xelene Hecate says

    It was quite hilarious to see this! I will definitely be trying this out soon. But where I come from..Coconut Milk is used exclusively for cooking! BUT, we on the island have been using coconut oil for our hair for years!!!

  28. Emily Fitzgerald says

    Can you post a picture of the nutritional info for the shredded coconut? I’m curious about the fat content. Trying to replace my sons goat milk. Seems he’s having a bad reaction now. The website wouldn’t show nutritional info

  29. Emily Fitzgerald says

    I just did this and it doesn’t seem nearly as thick and fatty as the canned stuff. How much pulp do you usually have left.

  30. Davilyn Eversz says

    I would suggest you use organic coconut. About a decade ago the coconut trees in Malaysia and other Asian countries started getting a fungus which kills the trees. They tried simply everything which did not work. They finally resorted to injecting the trees with formaldehyde which they found killed the fungus. The use of this method is not allowed in organic production.

  31. Nicole Rod says

    Made this last night and refrigerated overnight – this morning the cream is solidified on top! What would you do? let it come to room temp and shake? leave it at room temp?

  32. Jacinta says

    Hi, I put mine in the fridge, however I ended up with large lumps in it when I pulled it out of the fridge… Is this normal? If so how do I get rid of the lumps?

  33. Diana Redfearn says

    Yes , you can make a delicious kefir with this.
    Make it as you would milk kefir. Remember it takes a few batches for the grains to become accustomed to a new type of milk.
    If you plan to make a constant supply from grains they need to go back in milk every week to feed. Another way around that is to use organic dried lactose(found with the sweeteners) at a rate of 4 Tablespoons per 5 Cups coconut milk. That will allow the grains to feed, grow and multiply. Remember the lactose is changed to lactic acid during the fermenting process. ENJOY

  34. Ashleigh says

    the taste of home made is outstanding. This was my first time making it with my new Vitamix. Burnt my hand a bit on the very hot slush that came out into my Nut Bag….first timer that I am I am sure it wont happen again! Used this milk to make Coconut Creme Brule! MAGIC!!

  35. Victoria Patterson says

    I just tried this with my blended half full. Got a steam burn when the lid blew off and I was leaning my weight down on it! I am letting it cool (and putting lavender on my wrist)

  36. Victoria Patterson says

    Oops….got company in the middle of the post. I put the milk thru a sieve and added a wee bit of vanilla and stevia. I’m waiting for it to get cold and see how it goes. It looks good …..I don’t think letting it sit until the water cooled hurt it. This was not boiling water…..just very hot. I am really looking forward to trying it.

  37. Rebecca says

    I make it with coconut water rather then the water for the added benefits it works great although it makes it cost a bit more

  38. Annie says

    Thank you!!! I love this recipe. So…my story with the coconut milk is this- I saw your creamy looking picture and at first…I didn’t achieve it. I was using my food processor- I thought our blender was broken…turns out its’ not…Anyways, the food processor did not achieve anything close to really creamy, so I chalked it up (sadly) to the recipe. However, I tried again with my blender and it’s fantastic and is basically as creamy as milk. I use it in my coffee primarily, but have used it for lots of other things, really anything you would use milk for. Thank you!! Also, I just use a paper towel to strain. I am on the verge of buying a nut bag, but haven’t decided if it’s a “need”. I get my coconut in bulk from our local health food store. It’s def cheaper than buying it already done. And, lastly, it’s sooooo simple to do! I was just talking to one of my friends about it, and she started making it and was saying how easy it was. I think this type of thing comes off as intimidating, but just goes to show that homemade doesn’t have to be complicated!

  39. Tracey says

    I have found a much easier way to strain the coconut from the milk…a permanent basket filter for a coffee maker, very tiny mesh and no particles escape! No need to keep straining multiple times because it does it the first time! Love this recipe, making it to drink and also for my shampoo. Thank you so much for all the wonderful recipes!

    • Jill says

      Good idea, except that I’m wondering how you squeeze it if it’s in a coffee basket. Or do you just press it?

      I’ve been using a clean paint straining bag that cost 88 cents at the local paint store. Strains very well and withstands a lot of squeezing and twisting.

  40. Sarah says

    I’ve been making coconut milk from the dried unsweetened kroger brand flakes. I’m wondering about the quality of these, since it is just the store brand. I know it isn’t organic but it seems to be the best I can find around here. Am I even getting the benefits from this?

  41. Stephanie Wilson says

    Finding consistent recipes that are satisfying to 3 growing girls and hungry parents can be a challenge. I welcome all tips. We prefer Paleo or Gaps style of eating! Thanks

  42. Sharon says

    Love this recipe and soooo easy! Thanks!

    Wondering if you have any uses for the coconut after making the milk?

  43. Ann says

    There were some questions on how to break into a coconut & get out the meat. I found a really good video on how to do that–caveat: ignore that he lets the coconut water go down the sink and make sure to capture it yourself. Barring that I found it a good tutorial for getting inside the coconut.
    Here it is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vDpKVY6u3E0

    Also some folks were wondering about the coconut oil/creme that collects on top (what to do with it, how to mix it back in , etc.). Personally, I want that coconut oil for all it’s benefits. I think some people also said it could be used on hair/skin. Anyway, if you have a VitaMix or a HealthMaster, basically a blender that can also gently warm as it runs, you should be able to put the cold coconut milk in there and have the “top” be reincorporated. I haven’t tried this yet, but I will be doing so this week.

    Thanks for all the helpful ideas, everyone.

  44. AJ says

    Great recipe. Much better than the 1.59 per 12 oz can of bph and gums I’ve been buying to finally get off dairy.

    For those using dried coconut – let the flakes sit in the warm water for 5-10 mins before blending to allow them to suck up some of that water and reconstitute. This will help make the milk more creamy after squeezing out the pulp.

    For those interested in using the pulp in recipes, search for paleo recipes. Eating paleo means no grains so we’re always looking for alternative flours. Coconut flour is more absorbent than nut or grain flours so if you are tweaking your old favorite recipes, keep that in mind as you will need less flour or more liquids.

    For those wondering how to separate the thick cream/oil from the water… place in fridge until firm and then pick off the top layer like you would do to the fat on chicken broth/soup.

    • liz says

      I am new to this but find this interesting, is it the cream on top that is used as whipping cream substitute?.I read about that on the Internet but will like to try this out.
      Also what recipes can you use the coconut flour in?

  45. Amber R says

    You mention using this recipe to make coconut milk to use in the natural shampoo recipe – should you leave the oil in or take it out if using coconut milk made with this recipe in the shampoo recipe?

  46. Nat says

    Firstly thank you for this excellent blog and all the information you share with us. It is truly a blessing!! Your post is from so long ago but I’m hoping I can get some clarification regarding the coconut milk which I just made today (thank you). My understanding is that it is good to coconut milk because it is high in good fats. Now the milk gets refrigerated and the oil/cream that others have mentioned is left at top. You have commented and said that they can discard that. Am I wrong for thinking that the coconut milk would therefore no longer have any fat and not be as nutritious? And would the remainder just simply be the water that you had added? Please help me if you can!

  47. Sheri says

    If you are concerned about BPA, please consider only using a glass blender when working with hot liquids. BPA free or not, plastic should not be heated up as it can release its chemical components and/or start to break down the plastic. This has been a major reason I haven’t invested in a Vitamix, but I’ve found my traditional glass blender has worked fine for most projects.

    I’m trying your coconut milk technique tonight. Can’t wait! Would love to be free of canned coconut milk and even the kind that comes in the carton that includes preservatives and additives I’d rather not consume. Thanks for this post!

  48. Sheri says

    **I should add that you need a glass blender that can handle hotter temperatures or adjust the temp of the water accordingly so you don’t end up with a crack carafe.

  49. Chi says

    Hello Katie, I would like to make whipped coconut cream. Can this coconut cream recipe be used for that purpose? Thanks :D

  50. Karis says

    Some people have asked about sources for coconut. If you live in the west, look up http://www.azurestandard.com, give them a call and see if there is a co-op in your area that orders from them. They have a group and personal minimum of $500 and $50, but it’s worth it. They have so many healthy, natural and bulk products for really good prices. (I don’t work for them, by the way. My husband says I’m a walking billboard.) Anyway, I save up my Azure shopping list until I have $50 worth (does’t take long) and then order with my co-op. It is SO much cheaper when you can buy from them in bulk! If you don’t live in the west, sorry. :( I’ve been there too and sorely missed Azure.

  51. Debbie says

    I just made this and have a question. Is this supposed to be on the thinner side of a whole cow’s milk? Thank you.

  52. Nina says

    Will any blender with a glass carafe work for this recipe? I don’t own one and I plan to buy the cheapest one I can find. Thanks!

  53. sumaira says

    Hi dear, thanks for the helpful info. i had some question regarding nut/seeds and coconut millk. hope you could help me on that

    first , as i eat different type of nut/seeds on daily basis ..Can i also drink milk of different nut or seeds on same day or i have to drink only one per day ??

    also can i drink coconut milk same day while drinking nuts/seeds milk?

    the second question is that can i store the nut/seeds milk without straining them for 3-4 days ?? or the straining is a must ?

    please help me on that i would appreciate your response.Thanks

  54. Bill says

    How much does this provide in calcium? I mean we drink cow milk right now and I was trying to find an alternative and this came up. Can this supply me and my son with enough calcium?

    • Melanie says

      There are many people in the world who can not drink milk and get enough calcium. Here in Holland, drinking cows milk is very normal. I don’t drink it anymore. My doctor told me its not a problem to get enough calcium if you eat at least a minimum of 500grams of vegetables a day. Preferably different veggies. Here i can buy raw milk and raw cheese so i variete with my food

  55. Moira says

    Can you use this homemade milk as an alternative coconut milk to the canned coconut milk for paleo recipes? I am trying to make the jump to at least doing paleo from GF diet that I have been on for three years. Looked at doing SCD but that is a bit more stringent than I can handle until I would master the homemade 24 hour cultured yogurt. I know that Danielle Walker makes coconut yogurt but she uses a canned coconut milk that she gets without the guar or xanthan gum. I saw at my local health grocery that the only canned coconut milk that they carried that did not have the preservatives was three bucks a can – not really any ‘savings’ there but so much of the paleo diet, especially baking, depends on homemade almond milk (i did her recipe of that today and it turned out well – similar to yours here for the coconut except the almonds had to be soaked overnight in four cups of water, then rinsed and put in the blender with four more cups and a tiny bit of sea salt – used it to make her recipe for some vegan mint chip – used my canned coconut milk that did have the guar gum but it still turned out great and way cheaper and more to eat than the six bucks a pint So Delicious brand that my daughter likes – plus I was able to put the soy free dairy free Enjoy Life chips in there) and canned coconut milk without the xanthan, guar gum or carageenan. I bought some dried shredded coconut to try a recipe since I remember Breaking the Vicious Cycle has a similar recipe for making your own coconut milk but yours seems easier. Thanks.

  56. Kori says

    I currently only have an emulsion/hand blender. Will that work just as well as a normal stand blender? Thanks for this recipe!

  57. Cara says

    I made my first batch and the initial taste is delicious but the ending taste is not very good. Any thoughts on why this is? Thanks. Cara

  58. Barbi says

    I just made this last night and we love it! Do you have any recommendations as to what we can do with all that leftover shredded bits of coconut that we sieved out?

    • Coral says

      Give the bits of leftover coconut to the birds or make fat balls for a bird feeder, garden birds love coconut especially the bluetits and other small garden birds we get here in the UK :)

  59. Marcia W. says

    No one has mentioned that most store bought coconut is preserved with sulfites. Be sure to read your labels and look for sulfite free.

    I personally avoid all sulfites because they trigger migraines for me., though I know many people can tolerate them.

  60. Jon ion says

    Bought some coconut today and can’t wait to try this. I’ve been drinking commercial coconut milk for a while and really like it. I see, though, that it contains carageenan =8^O and that even the “unsweetened” variety contains sugar. Also, I wonder what gives it such a looong shelf life?

    May scoop off the coconut oil and try adding some of my coconut water kefir, see what happens. ;-) Or whey (bought some live yogurt today too) May try sweetening it with homegrown stevia. OK, well it’ll be green in color, but.. eh.

  61. Christin says

    Dear Kathie,
    I would like to try your recipe but do not have a blender at the moment. I would like to buy one that does not raise any environmental or health concerns. Do you have a suggestion?

  62. Anita Bringas says

    Just finished making my first batch and am so excited and grateful to have an alternative to store-bought coconut milk! I may just try my hand at coconut milk yogurt next! Thanks, Wellness Mama for your wealth of information and tips on healthy living! One question… do you have any suggestions on how to make use of the pulp after straining?

  63. Angie says

    I quit making this years ago because of the difficulty in squeezing out the hot milk.
    I just made some today, using a sort of potato ricer I found for $2 at a thrift store, brand NIB, and it worked perfectly! It’s made by OXO, white with green rubber on handles, and the package called it a baby food maker.
    I lined the cavity with a piece of fine nylon netting, and the little round cake of solids came out cleanly like a hockey puck (in the freezer it went).
    I couldn’t help gulping down a glass right away. Yum!
    I get the coconut in the bulk bins at Winco. Good enough for me.
    Unfortunately, Trader Joe’s CC milk has carrageenan, so now I can return the 2 cartons I bought last week! :)

  64. Marj says

    Hi katie,
    Is coconut milk safe for 1 year old to drink? And also what is your thought about goat milk? I heard it’s easily digestible than cows milk and has more magnesium.


  65. Frances says

    This is fabulous! I made it to use for coconut yogurt, and ended up drinking some! I recommend saving the coconut pulp to make homemade coconut flour with.

  66. Sarah says

    Does the hot water prevent it from spoiling? I just made coconut milk using a juicer yesterday and it’s now sour after 24 hours. I didn’t use hot water. Just room temperature. Thanks.

  67. Sarah says

    I couldn’t find my comment regarding the coconut milk turning sour. Anyway, I used fresh mature coconuts and used a masticating juicer to make it. And yes, the water separated at the bottom and that was sour. How would I know if it has gone bad or just sour?

  68. Lori says

    I have found the hard top is not really a coconut oil that you want to actually use as an oil to cook with, and I’ve tried both real coconuts and shredded coconut, and if you watch the videos on making coconut OIL, you will see the difference, not to discourage anyone from making the milk as I enjoy it, and strain it through a regular mesh strainer and squeeze excess out with my hands no special bags or anything needed. just was mislead in a way when I thought I was going to get real coconut oil to fry things in, although if you don’t mix it in, is great on pancakes.

  69. Julie A. says

    I tried to make coconut milk this morning but all the oil collected on the sides of my blender. Any tips to prevent this?

  70. Tammy says

    I tried this recipe so that I could add the coconut milk to the homemade shampoo from this blog. I also added in some gelatin, as was suggested, to instantly thicken hair. I was very skeptical because I have very fine, thin hair and was afraid my hair would look either oily and dirty, or terribly dry. What I found was that my hair looks and feels quite a bit thicker. I was very impressed. It DOES seem a bit oily so the next time I make it, I will just cut down on the amount of oil that I add. Thank you for sharing this recipe. I am glad I came across it.

  71. Lauren says

    So i have shredded dehydrated coconut. Can i use that?? And all i need is water andsstrawberries and i can make strawberry milk??? Omg i would die to have milk again!!

  72. Sally says

    Boy, thanks for all these dialogues. I admit I am pretty overwhelmed with different suggestions. I just learned I have 5 food sensitivities: gluten, diary, egg, corn and sugar. Oh well… I tried So Delicious coconut milk beverage in soup that surprised me it tasted better than almond milk. I recently used Earth’s Choice Organic Coconut Milk Premium for coffee/chocolate pudding. It seems fine. This experience is still new to me. I hope I am using these products satisfactory. Now someone mentioned about making coconut milk instead of canned. I have a question – canned full fat vs canned light coconut milk, how to make it? Still the same with 2 cups coconut flakes and 4 cups water?

  73. Laurent says

    Hi all,

    Is it possible to make coconut yogurt with this coconut milk? I think the water may be a problem, what do you think?

    Thank you all.

  74. Tracy says

    I just made my first batch. It could be a $1 per serving, if you buy the coconut in bulk. I did not, but I will purchase a large amount very soon. I didn’t have cocoa or strawberries…so I added a spoonful of strawberry preserves, and a tsp of vanilla extract. I can tell that the flavor combinations to try will be fun!

    I’m wondering if this will be thick enough to use on cereal. I know, you don’t recommend eating cereal…it’s not for me, but for someone who is not yet ready to convert! :)

    QUESTION? What are some suggestions for what to do with the leftover shavings, that I squeezed through the cheesecloth? Thanks!

  75. Erica says

    OMG this was delicious! You have just saved me I don’t even know, perhaps a couple hundred francs a year! Thank you!

  76. Bobbi Holmes says

    I made coconut milk today using your recipe–loved it! I can’t drink store bought coconut milk, it’s sickening sweet. But I use it for my coffee, oatmeal and smoothies. This homemade version was delicious to drink and easy to make. No more store bought for me! And I will no longer be buying almond milk. I use to buy it to drink when I craved milk, but I would rather “eat” my almonds. Now when my milk craving hits I can drink coconut milk. I made coconut flour with the pulp. Thanks!

  77. jane says

    Does anyone know if you can freeze this type of coconut milk if you cannot use it within 3-5 days?… and what the results are like after removing it from the freezer…taste, texture, can it then be used in any recipe – like soups, for drinking plain, for smoothies, etc.?
    Thanks so much! Great information!

  78. Marilee says

    This is the tastiest milk next to fresh, raw cow’s. I thought coconut milk tasted bland because I had only tried the Silk brand and it’s very fair, nothing special. I made this for the Coconut shampoo recipe and tasted it warm after straining. It is incredibly creamy, naturally sweet (for organic unsweetened coconut) and the 6 year old and I love it in place of hot chocolate. It’s kind of like a hot vanilla. I’m completely satisfied having it warm in place of a dessert. Sometimes i put a little vanilla, honey, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and a touch of cayenne powder. I’m sure it would be great to make in a custard or in other desserts. It’s by far the easiest to make for something so tasty: take it from me a “keep it simple silly” professional!

  79. Mellany says

    It amazes me how many are are asking the same questions, when they have been answered several times in the comments. Read the comments from the beginning at the end of the recipe, the answers are there.

  80. Tami says

    I used a fresh coconut and filtered water…but I did not heat it. I soaked the coconut to get the brown skin off more easily and then used that filtered water along with the water in the coconut ( and add’l water to make a – 2 to 1 – ratio by volume of grated fresh coconut) in my Nutribullet. It was creamy and yummy! One coconut gave me 1 full quart of coconut milk. It did not separate in the fridge…which I was glad off. I wanted to use it straight from the fridge. My husband…who is PICKY loved it in his coffee!!! Why would you want to add hot water, and deal with the seperation, when filtered tap water provides creamy YUMMY coconut milk without seperation issues! Unless, you are going to extract the oil anyway! Sorry, but Am I missing something? It is still good for me the way I made it…

  81. neisha says

    I am from Jamaica. We use coconut milk all the time but I don’t think we’ve ever thought of using it that way. Must try. We have a snack called coconut drops and all you do is dice the coconut meat in small squares and then boil it down in some brown cane sugar or molasses and add a little cinnamon and nutmeg. Then you simple spoon it out in desired size and let it harden. Its really good.

    The way you talk of doing the coconut milk we do blend it with water but we use the milk in rice and peas, or stewed peas or in baking not for drinking though. So I am going to try your recipe. Xoxo

  82. Christa says

    Why is it necessary to heat the water first? I’ve seen homemade coconut milk recipes on other blogs and some just have you directly pouring room temperature water into a blender with the coconut. Any idea for the difference in methods? Thanks!

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