How To Open A Coconut!

Are you looking for easy instructions on how to open a coconut? Well, before you learn how to open a coconut, you’ll probably want to know how to pick a good one out! Right?


Picking Out a Fresh Brown Coconut

1. Look for one without any cracks, damp spots or wet spots - That means its cracked and leaking coconut water. Once its cracked mold will be growing inside.

2. Make sure there are no white-ish, green-ish or grey-ish spots - Usually found around the eyes. That would also indicate mold.

3. Shake it - A good brown coconut will have coconut water sloshing around inside. If not . . . or there’s only a little bit . . . it is too old . . . don’t buy it.

4. Keep it refrigerated once you get it home. The older it gets the more chance you’ll have of it going bad.


Before You Open a Coconut

I like to empty the coconut water into a glass first . . . so before you crack open a coconut this is how you can drain out the coconut water inside.

1.  Look for 3 marks on your coconut that resemble a face.

     One mark (the mouth) will be softer than the other two (the eyes).

2.  Find the soft mark and pierce a hole.

     You can use an ice pick, a cork screw, scissors, even a hammer and      a nail.  Whatever works the easiest for you.

     (If you want the water to drain faster, pierce a second hole in one        of the other harder marks).

3.  Drain the water. 

    (It's easy to set the coconut on top of a glass to let it drain).

4.  Make sure the water is fresh and tastes good.  If not . . . discard          the water.

     If it’s good, you can:

    • Drink it
    • Freeze it
    • Use it to make coconut milk
    • Add it to your favorite smoothie

So . . . now that you know how to pick out a good coconut and empty it, here are a couple of different ways how to open a coconut and get the meat out.  


How to Open a Coconut - Using the Oven

If this is your first time opening a coconut . . . here’s an easy way to help crack the shell and loosen the meat:

  1. Turn the oven on 400 degrees.
  2. Place your drained coconut on a cookie sheet.
  3. Bake it for 20 minutes.


After you take it out and it is cool enough to touch:

       4.  Find the face of the coconut

           In between the two eyes you will see a line that runs from the               front to the back.

       5. Hold the coconut in the palm of your hand (or on a hard                     surface)

           Position the eyes on top but facing away from you.

       6. Strike the coconut

           Hit the coconut on the line to crack it open. It should crack               into 2 halves in the opposite direction of the line.

           Strike it with the backside of a cleaver, a large knife, a hammer,            even a rock will work!

(Yes, when my husband and I visited the Maui Tropical Plantation they simply used a rock to crack the coconut open!)

       7. Pry the meat from the shell with a sturdy flexible knife                          (a table knife will work).

       8. Trim off the brown skin using a vegetable peeler. (Optional)

       9. Rinse


How to Open a Coconut – Without Heat

Don’t want to put your coconut in the oven?

1.  Find the face of the coconut

     In between the two eyes you will see a line that runs from the              front to the back.

2.  Hold the coconut in the palm of your hand (or on a hard surface).

     Position the eyes on top but facing away from you.

3.  Strike the coconut

     Hit the coconut on the line to crack it open.  It should crack into 2         halves in the opposite direction of the line.

4.  Put the coconut in the freezer over night

     As it freezes, the meat will expand.  When you thaw it out it will            contract and the meat should naturally pull away from the shell.

5.  Pry the meat from the shell

     Stick a butter knife in between the meat and the shell, working your       way around until the meat pops out.

6.  Trim off the brown skin with a vegetable peeler. (optional)

7.  Rinse


After You Open a Coconut

Once you open a fresh coconut . . .

  • The pure white meat should have a nice mild scent and taste.
  • A spot or two of brown, yellow, or green is a little bit of mold. You can cut it out and throw the bad spots away.

If there’s a lot of discoloration . . . smells odd . . . or tastes bad . . . it is bad . . . throw it away.

Your fresh coconut meat should last:

  • Up to 6 days in the refrigerator if you store it in an airtight container.
  • Up to 6 months in the freezer.

I like to freeze it so I have it on hand to make the best tasting coconut milk or to add some fiber to my delicious smoothies!

And . . . now that you know how to open a coconut you can do the same!



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