20 Sensational Coconut Recipes

Coconuts are a three-in-one deal, giving us refreshing coconut water, coconut meat, and rich coconut milk. Whether you’re buying these products off the shelf or cracking a fresh coconut and extracting them yourself, try these excellent recipes that use them all

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In Fiji, says chef Louis Tikaram of E.P. & L.P restaurant, in Los Angeles, kokoda is eaten as part of the main course, but because good fish is so pricey in America, he serves it as a starter. Tikaram likes mild yet buttery Baja kanpachi (farmed amberjack), but it’s fine to use other, easier­to­find fish, like yellowtail, albacore tuna, mahimahi, or swordfish.

Recipe: Kokoda

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Thai-Inspired Kokoda

Chef Louis Tikaram often serves this version of kokoda, a mild Fijian-style ceviche, to suit the rest of his Southeast Asian–influenced menu at E.P. & L.P. in Los Angeles. “The original kokoda is so subtle. This spin helps it stand up against those crazy flavors,” he says.

Recipe: Thai-Inspired Kokoda

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Coconut Milk Shrimp

Originally from Brazil, this Sunset reader conveys the flavors of her native land through this easy, excitingly spicy recipe.

Recipe: Coconut Milk Shrimp

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Cashew, Coconut, and Squash Curry

When you’re craving a deep, rich, soulful stew without meat, this vegan dish is what you should fix.

Recipe: Cashew, Coconut, and Squash Curry

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Shrimp Skewers with Coconut and Lemongrass Marinade

Bold and rich, like a Malaysian coconut-milk stew, this marinade gives shrimp fast flavor.

Recipe: Shrimp Skewers with Coconut and Lemongrass Marinade

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Thai Chicken and Noodle Curry

Here’s an ideal recipe for a chilly winter weeknight: It uses storebought curry paste and comes together in well under an hour.

Recipe: Thai Chicken and Noodle Curry

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Curried Carrot Coconut Soup

Naturally sweet carrots are a great pairing with the warm spices of curry. A simple drizzle of yogurt is all this dish needs for a satisfying topping.

Recipe: Curried Carrot Coconut Soup

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Halibut Parchment Packets with Coconut-Almond Rice

Reader Renée Davis of Seattle originally made this recipe with her favorite fish, opah, when visiting Hawaii, but she also makes it with halibut, which is easier to find.

Recipe: Halibut Parchment Packets with Coconut-Almond Rice

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Thai Chicken Coconut Soup

Often called tom kha gai, this coconut milk based soup is a rich and flavorful alternative to traditional chicken soup.

Recipe: Thai Chicken Coconut Soup

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Pineapple Satay with Coconut Caramel

Who says skewers have to be savory? These fruit wedges, grilled till smoky, are eaten with a thick, rich sauce of toasted sugar and coconut milk.

Recipe: Pineapple Satay with Coconut Caramel

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Raspberry, Lime, and Coconut Pie

Sweet and tangy, crunchy and creamy—this recipe delivers a perfect combination of flavors and textures in each bite. A touch of gelatin in the lime curd helps it set enough to slice cleanly.

Recipe: Raspberry, Lime, and Coconut Pie

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Coconut Cupcakes

Chef Amber Bonny Burhans tells us these buttery cupcakes are one of her signature dishes. We think they are a safe bet to sweeten any gathering.

Recipe: Coconut Cupcakes

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Coconut Brown Rice Pudding

If you’ve never liked rice pudding, give this recipe a try. And if you’re already an R.P. fan, it’ll make you weak in the knees. Coconut milk and brown sweet rice combine to make a rich, silky dessert that isn’t cloying. Tangy-sweet dried apricots on top give it a brightness and intensity.

Recipe: Coconut Brown Rice Pudding

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Coconut Nest Cookies

You can make these cookies up to 1 week ahead; cover airtight and store at room temperature.

Recipe: Coconut Nest Cookies

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Rum Coconut Water

Coconut water’s delicate sweetness comes to the fore in this simple drink. Chef Louis Tikaram, of LA’s E.P. & L.P. restaurant, likes to use vanilla­-scented Fijian rum— “It’s the flavor I grew up with,” he says—but suggests you use just a little, because the liquor can mask the coconut flavor.

Recipe: Rum Coconut Water

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Coconut Eggnog

Try this rich Puerto Rican–style treat with or without the rum.

Inspired by Mike Siwek, Phoenix

Recipe: Coconut Eggnog