Opening a Coconut in 7 Simple Steps

Whole coconuts are insanely cheap right now.

Until recently, I believed that if you didn’t have a machete at home, breaking open a coconut was next to impossible.

Thankfully, I’ve landed on the easiest way to break open a coconut with the tools you have around your home and in 7 simple steps.

Y’all ready for this?

Step 1: Poke a hole in your coconut

There are 3 holes at the top of the coconut. One will be weaker than all the others. Poke each one with the tip of a sharp knife. When the knife inserts easily, you’ve found the weakest link! Poke a hole with your knife.

Step 2: Drain [and reserve] the coconut water

Flip the coconut over onto a cup or bowl and allow to drain. Reserve the water and whip up a batch of fresh electrolyte filled lemonade {1 cup coconut water, 1 cup filtered water, 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, pinch stevia}

Step 3: Place your coconut in the oven

Preheat your oven to 375F and place your coconut on a baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes, or until you see a crack developing, like this one.

Step 4: Wrap your coconut

Remove your coconut from the oven and allow to cool for a couple of moments. Then, wrap it in a tea towel and throw it into a black garbage bag.

Step 5: SMASH the life out of your coconut

Go outside to a front step or concrete area. Lift the coconut over your head and BASH it into the concrete. Do this a couple of times until you feel the pieces break, or until you feel your stress wash away from you. It’s a therapeutic experience ;)

If there are observers, open the bag to reveal the coconut pieces before you go back into the house. This will avoid awkward conversations with the neighbors later.

Step 6: Separate the shell from your dear coconut

Wedge a knife in between the flesh and the hard shell to separate the shell from the meat.

Step 7: Peel the fiber away from your coconut

You’ll be left with white meat covered in a light brown fiber. Peel away the fiber with a vegetable peeler, as you would a potato.

You’ve now successfully opened your first coconut. Dig in!

Or… wait for tomorrow’s recipe ;)

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Comments | Leave Your Comment

  1. I’m grateful for this…I can buy coconut cheaply, but my own attempts to open it were hilariously unsuccessful and I just gave up. Til now! Thank you!

  2. Thank You very much. I am going to try it. It sounds plausible.

  3. Thanks for the tutorial on how to crack a coconut – I love fresh coconut meat (some how that term sounds just wrong) but cracking one open was just too much work. The humour was also appreciated.

    Thanks for the info and the chuckle.

  4. There’s an easier way to open the coconut once the liquid is removed. Hold the coconut with both hands while pounding against the edge of a brick or concrete block. Keep moving the coconut so that you are hitting around the center axis. Eventually the coconut will break in half. Place the two halves in a freezer bag and freeze overnight. Let the coconut thaw completely and the meat will pry out easily with a spoon or knife. I live in Hawaii and open a lot of coconuts!

  5. Hi,
    I bought a coconut for the holiday, determined to get to coconut without slicing my fingers, losing my patience, as I have generally done in the past. (I buy one every year or two).

    This tutorial was perfect. After baking the coconut, my daughter took it to the front steps, and after two whacks it was ready. NOTE: No neighbors were watching so we skipped that step. :)

    Absolutely brilliant!!

    Just returned from the liquor store with the ingredients to make a ‘Key Largo Chill’ ( In fact, just bought a 2nd coconut.

    Thank you.

  6. I may sound a bit funny, but i just opened my first coconut and this is also the first one that i see in my life (opened). So i thing there must be something wrong with it: i can t peel and finish step 7, and also the ”meat” is crunchy, i don t think i can use it in a cake…this means my coconut is too …raw? :) Can i do something with it now that i have it?


    • Hi Alexandra – you bought a regular coconut… and not a young one. That’s fine, that’s what I use, too. It should be crunchy. Are you preparing it for a specific recipe? Did it call for a young coconut? Their flesh is a lot softer. I like to make pie with the crunchy coconut. Here’s the recipe, if you’re interested:

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