Young coconuts are known for their wonderful, healthy, sweet, electrolyte water. We hear so much about the coconut water but what about the leftover "meat" (or flesh) inside there? You know, the creamy white stuff that sticks to the sides of the shell!
We buy so much of the water in cans and boxes these days that we almost forget that coconuts also have healthy meat inside full of good fats. I have made this recipe before but have spruced it up a bit today for you guys.
Think beef jerky meets coconut bacon? That's kind of the idea. A little liquid smoke and some red chili peppers adds a peppy flair and the natural sweetness of the coconut rounds out the saltiness.
It's actually the texture that I love the most. Because it's dehydrated the soft coconut meat becomes chewy and leathery after the water evaporates.
Clean plant-based eating at its finest right here. Grab the coconut jerky as a healthy snack for those long baseball games or stick them in your child's lunchbox. I prefer to eat it as a pre or post workout snack; easy to grab and the healthy fats keep you feeling satiated.
Add tons of fresh or dried herbs to the marinade before you cook the coconut meat for added natural flavors. I am excited to make tacos with this dehydrated coconut meat. Add some sour cream or guacamole with fresh cilantro, tomatoes and chives. Delish!
If you don't remember how to open up the young coconuts at home then check out my old post from a few years back or you can always ask the grocery guys/gals to open the coconut for you before buying them. Make sure they cut the top big enough though to get a spoon in there or else you will have a difficult time getting the meat out.
Or, you can buy the coconut meat already cut up in the freezer section at your local grocery store. Our local Gelson's market had it available - which made the job really easy for me this time around.
Spicy Tamari Coconut Meat Jerky Recipe
Yields 2 dehydrator trays full or about 4 cups
- 5 fresh young coconuts, flesh only (or 2 frozen bags of 17 ounce bags of fresh coconut meat already cut up)
- 1/4 cup fresh herbs, chopped (i.e. mint, cilantro, basil, rosemary, dill, tarragon)
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp tamari or soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp liquid smoke (optional) you can also swap this for smoked paprika
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp olive oil or other oil
- 1 Tbsp red chili flakes
- If you are using fresh coconuts, follow my instructions for opening them up at home. You will not be using the coconut water for this recipe, just the meat, but please drink or freeze the coconut water for smoothies, etc. (do not throw it away; it's so healthy and flavorful). Using a spoon, scoop/scrape the inside of the coconut (the thick white stuff) out with a spoon into long pieces. Scrape out as much meat out as you can. Discard the coconut shells.
- Set all the coconut meat into a separate bowl as you scrape it.
- In that same bowl (or in a large ziplock bag) add the rest of the ingredients and toss the coconut flesh well. Let sit in the marinade, tossing often, for about 30 minutes. Note: I prefer the baggie method for best marinating results.
- Next, when ready, you'll want to spread the marinated coconut meat onto the teflex sheets of your dehydrator trays. Spread the coconut strips/pieces evenly (don't overlap too much).
- Dehydrate at 115 degrees for at least 8 hours. When the coconut meat is ready it will be dry and it will shrink in size. The pieces shouldn't be "wet" anymore.
Like this on Instagram and if you make the recipe and love it please leave me a comment with your thoughts! I'd love to hear from you!