Cooking With Coconut Oil: Delicious, Healthy Recipes

Why Would I Eat Coconut Oil?

There is growing evidence that a seemingly-bad-for-you food long popular among vegans and raw foodies is actually good for you. That food is virgin coconut oil.

People have long been scared of coconut fat, aware that there's no surer way to pack on pounds than to sip piña coladas or munch on Mounds candy bars. Those two treats are full of processed, hydrogenated coconut oil and coconut fats, and yes, hydrogenated coconut fat is very bad for you indeed.

Virgin coconut oil, on the other hand, which is cold pressed and unrefined, is actually very good for your health and could even help you lose weight. Yes, it seems that coconut oil is good for you.

Some say that as much as 3 tablespoons of coconut oil each day have tremendous health and weight loss properties. You can cook with coconut oil much as you would with any fat, simply substitute the fat in a recipe — the  oil or butter — with coconut oil, or a mixture of the butter and coconut oil.

Coconut oil solidifies at 70 degrees, so you will need to heat and melt it before you cook with it.

Where To Buy Coconut Oil

As the real health benefits of coconut oil become better known, it is becoming easier to find. Most health food stores sell coconut oil. You can also buy coconut oil at most natural food stores, even when they are big chains like Whole Foods. Specialty food stores also sell coconut oil, and it is easy to find online, as well.

Coconut Oil Is Delicious In Raw Nut Milks

If you follow a raw food diet, are lactose intolerant or dairy product avoidant, or if you are doing a detox fast or a juice cleanse like the Blueprint Cleanse, chances are you have a use for nut milks. These can be a healthy source of fat and protein, a tasty treat in a glass by itself, something to add to your smoothies or even the perfect cereal topper.

Cashew Nut Milk

  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked overnight in water
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1½ teaspoons extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1/3 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons agave nectar
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon cardamom

Place the ingredients in a blender and blend until the nuts are totally puréed. This may take a few minutes, and you may need to start and stop the blender a few times. Also be sure to keep your hand on top of the blender lid so it doesn't come off and cause a huge mess! Strain the nut milk through a cheesecloth (or nut milk bag) if you want a pulp-free protein juice; leave the pulp if you want extra texture.


Chocolate Nut Milk

  • ½ cup raw cashews or almonds, soaked overnight in water
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoons raw cocoa powder or cacao nibs
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • (optional: ¼ teaspoon ginger powder)
  • (optional: substitute orange extract or almond extract for the vanilla)

Place the ingredients in a blender and blend until the nuts are totally puréed. This may take a few minutes, and you may need to start and stop the blender a few times. Also be sure to keep your hand on top of the blender lid so it doesn't come off and cause a huge mess! Strain the nut milk through a cheesecloth (or nut milk bag) if you want a pulp-free protein juice; leave the pulp if you want extra texture.

Coconut Oil Stir Fry Recipes

Coconut oil is excellent in stir fries because it gets very hot without burning or smoking, unlike extra virgin olive oil. Below are some recipe suggestions, but since the best stir fries are improvised, play with these to your heart's content!

Basic Chicken Stir Fry

  • 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 1/2 cup sliced carrots
  • 1/2 cup snow peas
  • 1/2 cup water chestnuts or bamboo shoots
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 cup cooked chicken, in strips or small chunks
  • 2 teaspoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

Heat the oil in large pan on high heat. Add the carrots, mushrooms, broccoli and ginger. Cook the mixture until tender, a few minutes. Add the garlic until fragrant — garlic burns easily! — stirring constantly. Add the chicken, hoisin sauce, and soy sauce. Keep stirring for about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the scallions and water chestnuts or bamboo shoots, if you are using them. Cook the mixture about 2 minutes and serve.

The Coconut Oil Miracle
The Coconut Oil Miracle

"The Coconut Oil Miracle" outlines and explains the many health benefits of cooking oil — from reducing cholesterol to easing diabetes to lowering your blood pressure and even treating heart disease and skin conditions. "The Coconut Oil Miracle" also advises readers in easy-to-follow terms on how to tap into the promise of coconut oil for better health.

 
The Coconut Diet: The Secret Ingredient That Helps You Lose Weight While You Eat Your Favorite Foods
The Coconut Diet: The Secret Ingredient That Helps You Lose Weight While You Eat Your Favorite Foods

Do you want to read a book about to incorporate coconut oil into your diet to improve your overall health? Here it is. In this book you will find recipes and information on why coconut oil, a saturated fat, can actually help you lose weight. Oh, and it tastes good, too!

 

Baking With Coconut Oil

Pumpkin Bread

  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup coconut oil (in liquid form, so you will need to heat it)
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 cups pumpkin (easiest if you buy it canned, though you can cook and mash your own)
  • dash of cloves and ground ginger (optional)
  • pumpkin seeds or walnut pieces (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease bread pans with extra coconut oil and flour. Tap out excess flour. Combine all dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add remaining wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Top loaves with the pumpkin seeds or walnuts if desired.

Bake in the preheated over for an hour, or until a skewer or knife inserted into the bread comes out clean.

Makes 2 loaves.

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