I use coconut milk a lot. In curries, creamy sauces, my daily smoothie bowl, for baking, in dressings, in my coffee…. You get the picture. There are plenty of options for coconut milk in the store and some of them are actually a pretty good deal. I can get a 1-quart carton of So Delicious unsweetened coconut milk at my Wal-mart for $1.98. But the price isn’t what’s driving this DIY post.
Pretty much every brand of coconut milk has some type of thickener or “gum” added to make it that thick and creamy milk we all enjoy. Some brands have even worse things added but I avoid those. While the So Delicious brand is good, it still has guar gum added and while in small doses guar gum isn’t horrible, too much can cause some gastrointestinal issues.
Since I use coconut milk pretty much every day, I decided to try making my own. You guys, this is like the easiest homemade alternative milk that I have ever done. Nut milks aren’t super hard to make, but if you don’t have a fancy blender it can be time-consuming. Coconut milk is quick, simple, and pretty much any blender can handle it. Even an immersion blender. Oh yes, I tried it.
Even better, it’s also a cheap way to make coconut milk especially if you can buy your coconut shreds in bulk. So if you’re looking for a simple way to make coconut milk, look no further!
Just a heads up, though, you will need a nut milk bag or cheese cloth but that’s the only “special” equipment required for this milk. You could even get away with using a mesh sieve or strainer.
Homemade Coconut Milk
- 1 package unsweetened coconut shreds, 8 oz
- 4 cups boiling water
- 1-2 tsp sweetener of choice, optional (I left it unsweetened)
- Get out a large bowl and layer your cheese cloth or nut milk bag over it. Boil the 4 cups of water.
- Meanwhile, measure out 8 oz of coconut shreds and put them into your blender. Pour the boiling water over the coconut and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes to soften up.
- Blend everything together. If you have a high-speed blender (jealous) this will take you literally 30 seconds maybe a minute. My blender took about 2 minutes. It won’t be completely smooth but you want a thick consistency.
- Pour the milk into the bowl with the bag or cheese cloth. Squeeze out all of the milk (careful if it’s still hot from the boiling water part) and transfer the milk to a pitcher or other container. It will keep in your fridge for 3 to 4 days.
Two things to note, DON’T throw away the coconut pulp! You can dry it out and use it in baking or cooking. Also, the milk will get a hard crust on it while it’s in the fridge. That’s totally fine. Just break it up and stir or shake the milk and it will be good to go!