How to Make Coconut Milk

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Wood cutting board with dates, salt, and coconut flakes

Creamy, homemade coconut milk made with 2 ingredients in 10 minutes! Let me show you how.

Blender filled with coconut and water for showing How To Make Coconut Milk

Straining homemade coconut milk through a nut milk bag into a large bowlPouring homemade coconut milk from a glass measuring cup into a milk jug

How to Make Coconut Milk

A quick, 2-ingredient recipe for homemade coconut milk! Creamy, naturally sweet, and the perfect dairy-free alternative to milk!
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Pouring homemade coconut milk into an old-fashioned milk jug
4.48 from 17 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 6 (1/2-cup servings)
Course Beverage
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 5 Days

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (~160 g) shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 3-4 cups (720-960 ml) water (use less water for thicker, creamier milk!)
  • Pinch salt
  • optional: 1 date or 1 Tbsp (15 ml) maple syrup for sweetness
  • optional: 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • optional: 2 Tbsp (10 g) cocoa or cacao powder for chocolate "milk" or 1/4 cup fresh berries for berry "milk"

Instructions

  • Add coconut, 3 cups (720 ml) water, salt, and any additional add-ins (optional) to a high-speed blender. Top with lid and cover with a towel to ensure it doesn't splash. Blend for about 2 minutes or until the mixture seems well combined.
  • Scoop out a small sample with a spoon to test flavor/sweetness. Add more dates, salt, or vanilla as needed. Add remaining 1 cup (240 ml) water if too thick.
  • Pour the mixture over a large mixing bowl or pitcher covered with a nut milk bag, a very thin towel, or a clean T-shirt. In my experience, it benefits from a single strain either through a very thin towel or nut milk bag. You can save pulp for baked goods or to add to oatmeal, smoothies, or energy bites.
  • Transfer to a sealed container and refrigerate. Will keep in the refrigerator up to 5 days (sometimes more). Enjoy cold or hot and shake before use, as it can separate in the refrigerator (due to no preservatives!). Can be used in smoothies, with granola, for golden milk, for matcha lattes, or for baked goods.

Video

Notes

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate for 1 of 6 (1/2 cup) servings calculated with 3 cups of water and the leftover coconut pulp nutritional content subtracted.

Nutrition (1 of 6 servings)

Serving: 1 half-cup servings Calories: 53 Carbohydrates: 2.3 g Protein: 0.5 g Fat: 5 g Saturated Fat: 4.4 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 7 mg Fiber: 1.4 g Sugar: 0.9 g

Liked this recipe? Check out our Guide to Dairy Free Milk for 5 more dairy-free milk recipes!

Reader Interactions

Comments

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jason, we haven’t tried it, but if you do, we’d suggest using less water so that it is thicker. Let us know how it goes!

  1. Andrei says

    I made this recipe with a twist:
    1 raw coconut (about 200g of raw chopped coconut)
    1 tbs honey
    1 tsp ground pink Himalaya salt
    1/2 vanilla extract with seeds
    1 litre of water

    I was wandering if anyone knows if it’s possible to keep/use the coconut that is left after draining the water?

    Awesome recipe, thank you!

  2. Nikita Chouhan says

    I want to prepare the milk for someone suffering from ulcerative colitis. So I can not add dates in the milk. Is there any alternative to it or not using the dates would not affect the milk taste?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Nikita, you could omit it for a less sweet milk or sub another sweetener such as maple syrup. Hope that helps!

  3. Adriana says

    Hello! I love your blog.
    I made the recipe with fresh coconuts, stored it in a pitcher (no top), a few hours later the milk smelled/tasted wrong. Do you have any suggestions?

    I added 3 cups water and 1 cup of the coconut water inside. Maybe that could have been it? Or the storage? Any other suggestions?!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Adriana, it sounds like there may have been some sort of bacterial contamination. We’d suggest storing it covered next time.

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Thanks so much for the lovely review, Marina. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  4. Christiane M. Arnaert says

    I made this coconut milk and used one date and 1 tsp of vanilla. I forgot the salt. Next time I will just use the coconut and water. I don’t particularly want my coconut milk to be sweet, but it is delicious. Definitely recommend this.

  5. Marci says

    Quick question…can you turn a can of coconut cream into coconut milk? If so, how might you suggest it be done using a high powered blender and the ratios that you’d use. Appreciate it!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes! I do that all the time by adding to a large jar and then topping with water (amount depends on how thin / thick you want it). Then shake or whisk until combined!

  6. Cléa says

    Hello,
    I’m wondering what the nutritional values are for the recipe made with 4 cups of water ?
    Thank you :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Cléa, the values would all be slightly less. We’d suggest calculating with nutrition software such as cronometer for specifics. Hope that helps!

  7. Ciera says

    Loved this recipe! It was quick, simple, and all natural (which I love most)! I used half of a date since my date was rather large and I know that dates have a high sugar content. It turned out great! I am keeping the pulp to use for a facial mask, add back into a smoothie or dry and use as coconut flour! Thanks for the great recipe!

  8. Sophia says

    Hello! Great simple recipe. Have you tried making this with hot water? I followed your recipe and was super thrilled to see the coconut fat slightly build up against my blender container. I was wondering if heating the water slightly would allow to keep all the coconut fat inside the milk during straining?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Sophia, we haven’t tried it with hot water, but would use caution depending on your blender! Maybe warm water though? Let us know if you try it!

  9. Katie Gallagher says

    I’ve watched and listened to many of your videos and I love what you are about! This recipe for coconut milk is SO delicious. I will never want to buy it from the store again. Plus, you know exactly what is in it and fix it to your liking! The sweetness from the date was simply perfect and the vanilla made it taste just like regular dairy vanilla milk! I love thicker and creamier milk so I did 1 cup coconut flakes to 2 cups of water, 1 date, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract with a pinch of salt! This recipe made 3 1/2 cups of coconut milk! Thank you again! I will be following your recipes closely! Love what you put out!

  10. Chelsea says

    Hi! This sounds delicious! Can’t wait to make it. By the way, I love the bottle in the photograph. Where did you buy it?

    Thank you!

      • Tessa says

        Is this really 53 calories a gram? In that case it would be a days worth of calories in a cup. Could you clarify the nutrition information?

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Hi Tessa, thanks for alerting us to the error. That is for a half cup serving, not 1 g serving. We’ll make that modification.

  11. Prak says

    Could this coconut milk be used for chia pudding? Wondering if it might thicken up in the fridge overnight.

  12. Vicky says

    Hi, I made it and it’s delicious, thanks!
    How do you know when it’s gone off? Mine separated and the top went very thick and like jelly. It didn’t smell but it put me off – should I just shake to mix and carry on?
    I don’t want to waste it so any advice appreciated!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Separation is normal- just shake and mix! You’ll know if it is off by the smell/taste.

  13. Danitza says

    Is it possible to make yogurt with this milk? I was having issues trying to make it with homemade coconut milk.
    Thanks

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Danitza, you may need to use less water for a creamier consistency, but it should work!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Inder, we use shredded coconut in this recipe rather than fresh coconuts as they can be more tricky to find, especially in certain parts of the US.

  14. Laura says

    Wow! There’s so many great comments here – lot’s to scroll through! I was wondering if you would recommend a method or ingredient that would help slightly thicken the milk (say to be used in a curry, but not as thick as yoghurt).
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge!

  15. Jenn says

    There is no comparison to coconut milk from the store in a carton. This milk tastes so fresh and yummy, thanks so much for the recipe.

  16. Christine Allard says

    Hi!
    I’ve made the exact recepe and I put it in my fridge.

    For some reason, it froze… it looks like a hard coco oil.
    Is this normal?
    Thank you!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      It does get a little solid on the top when refrigerated. But it shouldn’t look frozen. Try shaking it in a sealed jar and that should help!

  17. Erin says

    You always have the best music in your videos! Are they actual songs or just accompaniment made for video clips? (What’s the song played here?)

  18. Claudia Cantori says

    Hi,
    I just wanted to let you know that your conversion from cups to grams is not correct. Two cups are approx 400 grams not 160.
    This recipe sounds great I am gonna try it straight away!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Claudia, the brand of shredded coconut we buy indicates that 3 Tbsp = 15 g, so we calculated 80 grams per cup and 160 per 2 cups. Mind sharing how you came up with 400 grams? Is it a different type of coconut?

  19. Kimberly says

    Absolutely delicious. I cannot believe I’ve waited so long to try making this. I drink a lot of coconut milk and I am happy I tried this. No additives is making me excited! I tried it warm right out of the blender and YUM! I used a Vitamix for a couple minutes with 2.5 cups of water and it is really perfect, much thicker and creamier than out of the Coco box! Thank you so much for posting this.

  20. Sabryna says

    I tried making this recipe in the past but it unfortunately froze in the fridge overnight. I bought the sulphate free shredded unsweetened coconut flakes from Bulk Barn. Any idea why this happened/how to prevent it? I LOVE coconut milk!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Sabryna, The separation is normal- we recommend giving it a shake before drinking! Alternatively, if it really bothers you, you could try adding an emulsifier (store bought brands often have guar gum). Hope that helps!

  21. rita kumari says

    Our family is managing Celiac Disease, Eosinophilic Esophagitis, Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth, Fructose Malabsorption, over 25 food allergies combined and many food intolerances as well. I used to NEVER cook ANYTHING, but now I cook nearly everything from scratch. I am just learning to do water kefir (which was a HUGE stretch for me), but the alternative milks I had already regarded as too difficult for me and was sure I would ruin it somehow. I told myself it just wasn’t worth my effort and considered it “off limits”. I knew it would be a waste of money because I would miss some crucial, complicated step and just ruin it. I was seriously afraid to even try. My ASD son is also anaphylactic to Carrageenan, among tree nuts, soy, and many other things, and intolerant to dairy. My two daughters have multiple GI conditions and can’t digest fructose. Two of us are Celiac and nutrient deficient as well. We’re a mess, I know! (We’re doing GAPS). My son is not getting enough healthy food options like smoothies, because I couldn’t figure out what to do about this milk issue and the rest of us are getting things we don’t need in our coconut milk and not getting the things we do. Your post has given me the confidence and encouragement I need to take this final plunge. Thanks so much for a wonderful, positive, truthful, you-can-do-this post!

    • Julia says

      You may want to look into nemecheck protocol. I read that it can help with leaky gut and food allergies. Im trying the protocol right now for chronic 24/7 headache that started 5 years ago plus migraines… plus leaky gut. I can hardly eat anything besides some fruit and veggies…. hoping this protocol can help. People who are more sensitive he starts with just the inulin powder before the fish oil…

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We haven’t tried that, but think you could potentially add a supplement to the liquid after straining and shake or blend to incorporate. Hope that helps! If you give it a try, we would love to hear how it goes!

    • Jana Refaie says

      Hello!! I want to try this recipe however I don’t have a raw coconut.. I have coconut flakes. I’m going to try it with that later on. Do you think it’s going to work??

      • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

        Hi Jana, we didn’t use a raw coconut. We used dried shredded coconut. Coconut flakes will also work!

  22. Heather says

    I just made this today because my cute little glass milk jugs arrived. The recipe is super easy and the results are so delicious. The coconut flavor really shines through (unlike storebought milk).
    I’m impressed and can’t wait to have it on my cereal tomorrow morning!
    Thanks! ??

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      For this recipe, we highly recommend shredded unsweetened coconut! Let us know if you experiment with the recipe though. Good luck!

    • Ruja says

      Hi! Where I live there is only dried finely shredded coconut. Would that do? Are the coconut shreds you use fresh? Can I make the milk with dried coconut flakes as well?
      Thank you!

  23. melanie perrone says

    I used this recipe to make coconut milk. I added liquid stevia so I could eat it with my shredded wheat cereal and it tasted perfect! It also tasted very good straight from the glass. I will definitely use this recipe again :)

  24. Danielle says

    Hello!! Just curious, what’s the difference between shredded coconut and coconut flakes? Can I use coconut flakes for the recipe?

  25. Ruthie says

    I’ve just noticed that you are using the big flake coconut. I’m glad I was able to enlarge the photo as I purchased the tiny shredded coconut ;)

      • Lauren says

        That wasnt what she asked and I had the same question! Can you use this milk to make the coconut yoghurt? nothing to do with almond milk! :)

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

          Oh, sorry about that. No, you can’t. We’ve tried it and doesn’t work. The milk never gets thick enough in our experience.

  26. Sam says

    Hey Dana! I was wondering if you could use this milk when making hot oatmeal? Would it thicken up or give an odd flavour? Thanks

  27. Patricia Shipley says

    Can a coffee filter or a fine mesh sieve be used for the straining? Thanks for your recipe. I would love to make it in the morning.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm we have had most success with a nut milk bag, a very thin towel, or a clean T-shirt, and wouldn’t recommend a coffee filter or mesh sieve. If you give it a try though, let us know how it goes!

    • romy stanway says

      Thats not the answer i was looking for. I asked if i could make coconut milk with frozen coconut. I have frozen coconut chunks and decided they are too gridy in my smoothies so can i turn them into milk instead?

      • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

        Hmm we’ve never made coconut milk from frozen coconut so we can’t say for sure! I would think you can? But we haven’t tested (yet)

  28. Natalia says

    Hi Dana. We love your recipes! I was wondering will it work if I used a fresh coconut taking out the water and extracting thr pulp from the shell?

    • julie says

      Hi Natalia! I made it today with fresh shredded coconut and it’s delicious, I used hot or boiling water though, which a lot of recipes recommend for a creamier texture so I figured it couldn’t hurt.

      • Jessi Castro says

        I was wondering the difference between adding boiling water to the coconut and regular water. I’ve seen many people use boiling water. So can it be done with this recipe in particular?

  29. Trish DeThomas says

    I am so happy that you put the nutritional aspects of each recipe! Love knowing calories per servings. No one else does this. Thank you so much!

  30. Tiffany Lobner says

    I have a bag of frozen coconut flesh chunks in the freezer. Could this be used in place of the shredded coconut flakes?

  31. carmen says

    wow, i’ve been making my own alternative milks for like …. 7 years. how have I never made coconut milk?! HOW?! my favorite part of this recipe was not having to plan ahead and soak the coconut shreds. It tastes diiiivine. also I feel like a champ when I make a recipe in less time than the recipe estimates ;-) thanks dana!

  32. jcbiosearch@gmail.com says

    THANK you so much for your recipes! Your ideas have been a boon to me as I transition from Vegetarian into more vegan like. They’re wonderful!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Alyssa! We haven’t tried it so we can’t say for sure. If you do let us know how it turns out!

      • Natalie says

        Homemade coconut milk won’t work for that yogurt recipe. You end up with slightly tart coconut milk. No thickening. Still great in a smoothie, though!

  33. Mariana says

    Hi Dana! I’ve made this recipe a couple of times and find that I cannot store the milk in the fridge because if I do, it separates (fat/cream v water) and the cream on top freezes over. How do I prevent this from happening? I am only able to make it and use it immediately to avoid freezing!
    thank you!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Mariana! Not sure why it would freeze, we’ve never had that problem before! As for the separation, that is normal! Just shake before drinking!

      • Arleta says

        It happens if your shredded coconut isn’t a good quality, the flakes are too dr,y I notice. If I buy a really good organics they never freeze.

    • T Mac says

      I had this problem , and saw that somebody pasteurised there milk ( almond in this case )
      And it stopped separation and allows for longer keep time !

  34. Jessica says

    Hey! Do you have any tips on how to make the “cream” at the top of milk when it’s in the fridge? Every time I make coconut milk is different, sometimes I get it and sometimes I don’t!
    Thanks so much!
    (I am in love with your recipes, made the oatmeal chocolate chip cookies today (all gone) and the quinoa taco meat is in the oven!)

  35. Sara says

    Do you dehydrate the leftover coconut pulp before using for other things? I do this with almond pulp (to make almond flour) but never know what to do with coconut…

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