[VIDEO] How to Make Coconut Milk

Today we are making dairy free milk for thos lookimg for a non-dairy substitute. We are giving the spotlight to Coconut Milk. There are different options in the market when it comes to non-dairy substitute. The most common ones are Oats, Almond, Cashew, Soy Milk and Coconut Milk. I had always been curious with the non-dairy milk substitute in the market. My curiosity prompted me to try it and so I bought an Almond Milk. To my surprise, I did not like it at all. It was almost like water and when I read the ingredients, there are ingredients there that I cannot even understand what it is. On that day, I told myself I will try to make non-dairy milk susbtitute at home to see how it compares.

Guess what? The homemade version is a lot better than store-bought. I made Oats, Almond and Cashew already and they all turned out better rhan store-bought. The Coconut Milk is the last in my list to make, and so I made it. Just as expected, I like the homemade better. It is not as waterdown as the store-bought and I like the natural coocnut taste. It is not strong but it was nice. Nothing tasted artificial. I used it for my oatmeal, beverages, cereals and I like it. It was very light and subtle, sometimes I just need something like this.

Coconut Milk By SweetNSpicyLiving

I have a mission to try to make different kind of non-dairy milk substitute. I had done the Oat milk and Almond milk, today the spotlight is on Coconut milk. Here

Oat Milk

  • Taste: It doesn’t have as much taste even with using less water. Normally, the recipe calls for 4 cups of water to 1 I used 3 cups of water to 1 cup of rolled oats
  • Price: Cheaper and budget friendly. I large bag of rolled oats coast about 3.00 CAD and if I am lucky, they sometimes have it On sale for 2 for 5.00 CAD. That’s a lot l oat milk in 1 bag of oats 
  • Serving: I bag (1kg) of rolled oats yields about 33 cups of Oat Milk for a price of 3.00 CAD
  • Consistency: The consistency of oat milk is lighter, not as creamy as cashew milk but it is good enough as non-dairy milk substitute 
  • Preparation: Oat milk can turn out to be slimy of not prepared properly, but it takes few minutes to make it and you can do without soaking. No need to a lot too much time in making and waiting for it to be available for use.
  • Usage: Oat milk are sensitive to heat so using it for cooking in direct heat is not recommended 
  • Calories: 1 cup contains about 129 calories

Almond Milk

  • Taste: Almond Milk tasted really great especially with a little vanilla flavoring and light sweetener. It taste 100% creamier and better store-bought Almond milk which tends to be watery.
  • Price: Almond is a LOT more expensive than rolled oats. The one that I bought was 9.99CAD per lb (1 kg will be about 20.00 CAD) as compared to 1 bag (1 kg) of rolled oats for 7.00 CAD. 
  • Serving: I kg of raw Almonds yield about 21 cups of Almond Milk for a price of approximately 20.00 CAD
  • Consistency: I find that the consistency is a LOT creamier than oat milk. It’s creamy and milky. 
  • Preparation: This requires more preparation time as Almond needs to be soaked at least 8 hours to overnight to get it really soft. You need to plan ahead when making Almond milk. I had the Almonds soaked overnight before using it. There is no shortcut to this, you MUST soak it.
  • Usage: I tried heating this up directly on stove top to make homemade hot chocolate and it did stand the heat. The mixture did not get thick like when heating up oat milk. I also find it a more satisfying milk substitute that I can drink on its own and feel happy about it.
  • Calories: 1 cup contains about 230 calories

Coconut Milk

Now it’s time to make Homemade Coconut Milk and see how it compares to Oat and Almond Milk. I was extremely please on how this Coconut Milk turned out and here is my feedback 

  • Taste: it taste really great especially with a little vanilla flavoring and light sweetener. It taste 100% creamier and better store-bought cashew milk which tends to b watery.
  • Price: Desiccated Coconut is bit more expensive the oats. I bought a 454g for xx CAD
  • Serving: For a pack of 454g, I was able to make about 10 cups of Coconut Milk
  • Consistency: I find that the consistency is a lot lighter compared to oats. Almost close to Almond milk but less creamy.
  • Preparation:
  • Usage: Great for use in beverages, oatmeal and baking.
Easy Homemade Coconut Milk

What are the Ingredients for Homemade Coconut Milk?

  • Desiccated or Shredded Coconut –  This is the main ingredients for this homemade coconut milk. Choose a desiccated coconut that is moist (if possible). The more moist it is, the more coconut milk you can squeeze from it. If you have access to fresh grated coconut, that would be a better option. Fresh grated coconut will produce a lot more creamy coconut milk.
  • Water – To get the coconut mixing and grinding, you have to add a liquid, and that is water in this case. A very cheap, almost no cost ingredient. 
  • Vanilla Extract – although optional, I really like the taste that the vanilla extract adds to the coconut milk. Feel free to omit it if you don’t like the coconut milk flavored. If you decide to use one, make sure to use only pure vanilla extract for a nice strong flavor. 
  • Sweetener – I used honey if I want to sweeten it. If I used sweetened coconut, I add less sweetener. Sometimes I do not use any and just add the sweetener when I use it for the recipe

How to Make Coconut Milk

Homemade coconut milk is the easiest non-dairy milk to make at home. Unlike the nut variation, making coconut milk doesn’t require any lengthy soaking time, most of the time no soaking time at all. All you have to do is to pour warm water in the coconut blend it, pour it in a nut bag or use a cheese cloth and start squeezing it.If you want to soak it, leave it for about 3 – 5 minutes in the blender. Whether you soak it or not, it works. I use nut bag to squeeze out the coconut milk, but a cheese cloth will work just fine. If you do not have nut bag or cheese cloth, pass the mixture into a fine sieve.

Should I Strain Homemade Coconut Milk?

The answer depends on how high powered the blender you are using. A lot of recipe online do not all for straining, I assumed this was because of the kind of blender use when making coconu milk. High powered blender tends to break the coconut into a super fine almost liquid consistency that you do not have to strain it, and even if you do, you will likely get a small amount of pulp. If you are using a not so strong blender,try straining it the first time, if you don’t get much pulp then you can skip the straining next time time you make it. If you get a lot of pulp, then you have to strain in when you make it again.

Nut Bag vs. Cheese Cloth, Which One is Better?

A nut milk bag is basically a specially shaped fabric bag, that you strain your blended raw almond/cashew/coconut/oat milk through to remove any pulp or fiber that remains.

  • Usage: This is specifically designed to strain liquid, and so the weave a really fine thus giving a clearer and smoother milk after straining.
  • Ease of Use: Since this is a bag, it is easier and less messy to use. Just pour the liquid and let it drip without worrying that some liquid will overflow on the side.
  • Price: The only thin is that nut bag are a lot more expensive, I bought mine for 10.00CAD for 3 pieces of different size.
  • Durability: The nut bag have a stronger fabric weave. I find it to last longer in the long run.

Cheesecloth is a loose-woven gauze-like carded cotton cloth used primarily in cheese making and cooking. They come in different grades from from open to extra-fine weave. The finer the weave, the less pulp will come-through when you use it for straining non-dairy milk.

  • Usage: Cheese cloth are designed primarily for cheese making and cooking that requires straining. It comes like a sheet of cloth instead of a bag.
  • Ease of Use: It is not difficult to use cheese cloth, although not convenient as nut bag. You have to make sure not to over fill the cloth as the liquid could come out on the side when you tie it up
  • Price: Cheese Cloth are a lot cheaper and it does the job of a nut bag. I bought mine for 2:00CAD.
  • Durability: The cheese cloth have a more gauze like cotton fabric which I find more prone to wear and tear.

Recommendation: I personally like using nut bag for long term use. But if you find it too expensive, the cheese cloth will do the jib as well. If you do not have a cheese cloth, you can also use a very fine sieve/strainer.

Where to Use the Coconut Pulp?

You’ll have about 1/4 – 1/3 cup of oats pulp after straining it. Do not throw it as you can still use it. 

  • Add it when cooking rolled oats for breakfast, it makes the consistency thicker and creamy, after all it’s oatmeal so why not mix them together. 
  • If you making a creamy soup, or saucy soup or stew, you can use it as thicker, bonus of additional fiber in your meals
  • Blend it with your smoothie. I like to mix it when making any of my Oats Smoothie. 
  • Add it to cookie batter, like when making Oatmeal cookie. It makes a nice soft oatmeal cookie. Sorry, I don’t have the recipe for that.
How to Make Coconut Milk By SweetNSpicyLiving

Where Can I Use Coconut Milk?

I like to use this non-dairy milk for smoothies, chia pudding, rice pudding, oatmeal and baked products like cakes, cupcakes and brownies.

Can I Make it Without Flavoring?

Yes you can. You can make it plain and unsweetened and just add the sweetener when you use it. I personally like adding flavoring and sweetener when making it because it makes a huge difference in taste. My most go to flavoring is pure Vanilla Extract, but sometimes I also use soaked dried dates for a more creamier taste and texture. I also add a pinch of salt to enhance the taste but should not have any salty taste in the milk. If can taste the salt, that means you’ve added to much. A pinch is about 1/8 teaspoon nothing more.

Important Tips in Making Coconut Milk

Use a Nut Milk Bag: Nut milk bag have a very fine texture which catch the oat pulp quite well leaving you only clear smooth oat milk. If you do not have a nut milk bag, second option is a cheese cloth, you might need to strain the oat milk twice to get it to a clear final product.

Gently Squeeze: Let the cashew milk drain slowly without squeezing the nut bag too much.


  • 1 cup Desiccated Coconut (Sweetened or Un-Sweetened)
  • 3 cups Boiling Water ( or 4 cups for thinner Coconut Milk)

Flavoring (Optional):

  • 1 teaspoon pure Vanilla Extract
  • 2 – 3 tablespoon Honey or Maple Syrup (can be substituted with other sweetener but the measurement will vary, adjust as needed)


  1. Blend: Pour the boiling water in the blender and add the coconut, pure vanilla extract, honey/maple syrup (if using any). Blend the mixture until smooth. You will see foam forming in top, that is normal. Taste and adjust sweetness as desired.
  2. Strain: If you are using a high powered blender, you may not have as much pulp. Nonetheless, I always like straining my homemade milk for a smoother texture. If you find your without any pulp, you can skip straining it. Have a large bowl ready to catch the coconut milk. Pour the blended coconut into a nut milk bag and let it drip into the bowl. Squeeze lightly just until the coconut milk is out.
    • Alternatively, if you do not have a nut milk bag, you can use cheese cloth or a very fine mesh strainer.
  3. Chill: Transfer the coconut milk in an air tight container and kept refrigerated up to 2 -3 days.

Nutritional Information was calculated using Veryfitwell Recipe Calorie and Nutrition Calculator. For details about Nutritional Information in this website, please read the Disclaimer page.

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