Young Coconuts For Kids

It's a shame that JUICE has such a bad wrap in the parenting world. And I get it. Water is so much healthier and unfortunately standard kids boxed juices contain refined sugar or concentrates, food dyes and often aren't organic. 

But fresh juice!!!!! What a treat. Fresh squeeze your own citrus fruits or get the juicer out. I see so many great instagram pics of people juicing with their kids. Kids love to get involved {and we are always looking for stuff to keep them busy, no?}. Push a few apples through the juicer, add some ginger and lemon. Or just keep it simple with cucumber and apple? There are so many fun combos and they don't have to be green or bitter. My son is obsessed with carrot juice! He drinks 16 ounces a week. 

An even more fun treat is a fresh ripe young coconut! Who doesn't love them {unless you're allergic to coconuts of course}? Put them in the freezer and get them slushy, add a straw, have fun with it. My kids love coconut water. And the ones you crack open are so much healthier than their canned and boxed alternatives. 

We recently invested in a coco-jack. What a great way to quickly and efficiently open a young coconut at home. We now buy the coconuts by the case at around $2.50 per coconut. Sounds expensive, but if you use the meat as well, it's really worth it. And you get a lot of juice. 

On my instagram account I posted a photo of my coconut jerky. It got a lot of people talking and asking if I had the recipe on my blog. I in fact do have this recipe here on the blog and you'll need a dehydrator to make it. However, it's from years ago and needs updating {pictures are terrible}. It's a real treat around here! Our kids freak out over it; I can't control myself when it's around; and my husband secretly stashes some in his own tupperware for later. The entire batch is usually gone within 15 minutes.

Today I decided to share a recipe I made up in the oven, so that those of you who don't have a dehydrator can still enjoy some similar coconut treats.

Only this time, I used coconut sugar and sea salt to mix up the flavors a bit.  There are so many uses for coconut meat. You can use it in smoothies. Don't just drink the water and let the meat go to waste! Need some inspiration? Check out Pinterest for tons of ideas

BAKED SWEET COCONUT MEAT RECIPE

2-3 young coconuts

1/2 Tbls coconut sugar per coconut 

coconut oil, for greasing your pan

sprinkle of sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

  • Using a coco-jack or machete open your coconuts. Drink the water or save it. {I actually drink one coconut at a time and save the meat for when I'm ready to make something}. 
  • Using a spoon or special tool, scrape the inside of the coconuts to get all the soft meat. As with any fruit or plant in natures, each coconut will vary. Sometimes the meat is too hard to scrape out. In that case, do your best to get as much meat as possible and adjust your recipe accordingly. You'll want the thinest slices you can get. 
  • In a bowl mix the sugar, sea salt and coconut meat together until thoroughly coated. 
  • Spread the mixture onto a cookie sheet style pan. 
  • Bake in the oven until coconut is browned but not burned {about 20 minutes}. Since all ovens vary, you'll want to keep an eye on it. You'll want water to evaporate and meat to become dry and chewy or even crunchy. 

ENJOY warm!