Is Coconut Milk Keto-Friendly?

Coconut milk has become increasingly popular among those following a Healthy Keto™ diet. But is coconut milk truly keto-friendly? Let’s delve into the details to find out why coconut milk is a delicious addition to your keto journey, as long as you make the right choices.

Coconut milk keto

Understanding the Keto Diet

Before we explore the keto-friendliness of coconut milk, let’s have a quick refresher on the ketogenic diet. The main goal of keto is to maintain low carbohydrate intake while increasing fat consumption, which helps regulate insulin and blood sugar levels. By doing so, your body enters a state of ketosis, where it burns fat for fuel instead of glucose. A well-executed ketogenic diet supports overall health and promotes safe weight loss.

Exploring Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is a milky-white liquid made from the grated meat of mature coconuts. The process involves soaking the grated meat in hot water, followed by blending, squeezing, and draining to extract the milk. It’s important to differentiate between coconut milk and coconut water. While coconut water is found inside immature coconuts and is high in carbs, coconut milk is a keto-friendly alternative.

Coconut milk is widely used in Indian and Thai cuisine, particularly in soups, curries, and a variety of other dishes. It can also serve as a dairy-free substitute for cow’s milk in coffee, shakes, smoothies, stews, casseroles, dressings, and sauces. The versatility of coconut milk makes it an excellent ingredient in many delicious keto recipes.

Types of Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is available in various forms, including cans, cartons, and drink bottles, each offering unique flavors and nutritional profiles. Let’s explore the most common types:

1. Canned Unsweetened Coconut Milk

Canned unsweetened coconut milk is the optimal choice for keto. It has a higher concentration of coconut, as it contains less added water. This results in a richer flavor and texture, making it perfect for coconut curries and other savory dishes.

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2. Canned Light Coconut Milk

Canned light coconut milk has a lower fat content compared to other canned varieties. Most of the creamy fat is removed, leaving a clear, watery liquid. Although it may lack some flavor and nutritional benefits, it still remains keto-friendly due to its low carbohydrate content.

3. Fresh Coconut Milk (Carton Varieties)

Fresh coconut milk, typically found in carton varieties like Silk coconut milk, has a thinner consistency similar to two-percent milk. It’s commonly used in smoothies, shakes, and espresso drinks. However, be cautious of brands that add sugars and preservatives. Always check the label to ensure it’s unsweetened and unflavored.

4. Coconut Milk Beverages

Coconut milk drinks often contain added water, sugar, flavors, and preservatives. These additives reduce the nutritional value and may hinder your keto progress. Always scrutinize the label for any hidden ingredients that could disrupt ketosis.

Coconut water vs coconut milk

Evaluating Carbohydrate Content

Unsweetened coconut milk is low in carbohydrates and high in healthy fats, making it an excellent choice for keto. However, it’s crucial to avoid coconut milk varieties with added sugar, as they can quickly surpass your daily carb limit.

Let’s take a closer look at the nutritional content of different coconut milk options:

Canned Coconut Milk (1 cup):

  • Fat: 58 grams
  • Net Carbs: 8 grams
  • Potassium: 631 milligrams

Light Coconut Milk (1 cup):

  • Fat: 15 grams
  • Net Carbs: 6 grams
  • Potassium: 40 milligrams

Cartoned Coconut Milk (1 cup):

  • Fat: 4 grams
  • Net Carbs: 1 gram
  • Potassium: 310 milligrams

Keto weight loss

The Benefits of Coconut Milk on Keto

Coconut milk offers numerous benefits when incorporated into a ketogenic diet. Here are five compelling reasons to include coconut milk in your weekly shopping list:

  1. Naturally Low-Carb and High-Fat: Coconut milk naturally contains low carbs and high healthy fats, making it a perfect addition to beverages and dishes without interrupting ketosis.

  2. Rich in MCT Oil: Coconut oil contains lauric acid, a form of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). MCTs are invaluable on a keto diet as they boost ketone production, provide sustained energy, and promote satiety between meals.

  3. Abundant in Electrolytes: One cup of canned coconut milk contains a substantial amount of potassium (631 mg), equivalent to approximately four servings of vegetables. It also provides essential minerals like magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus.

  4. Anti-Inflammatory and Antimicrobial Properties: The fatty acids present in coconut milk enhance the production of monolaurin in the body, which possesses potent anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antifungal properties.

  5. Lactose-Free: For those with lactose intolerance or dairy sensitivities, coconut milk serves as an excellent lactose-free alternative to dairy products when used in sauces, smoothies, shakes, and more.

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Making Your Own Coconut Milk

Creating homemade coconut milk is surprisingly quick and easy. This keto-friendly recipe requires minimal effort and promises impressive results. Give it a try!

Coconut milk recipe

Keto Coconut Milk Recipe

Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4
Per serving (1 cup): 360 calories, 0g protein, 6g carbohydrates, 58g fat


  • 4 cups of water
  • 1½ cups of unsweetened shredded coconut


  1. Heat water until hot (but not boiling).
  2. Add hot water and shredded coconut to a blender. Blend on high until the liquid becomes thick and opaque (approximately 1 to 3 minutes).
  3. Strain the liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl or cup to remove any large coconut solids.
  4. Squeeze the liquid mixture through a cheesecloth or towel to eliminate the remaining solids.
  5. Pour the homemade coconut milk into a sealed container.
  6. Enjoy immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Remember to shake before each use to ensure a well-combined mixture.

For those interested, you can also make keto-friendly chocolate milk by adding 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract, a small pinch of salt, and Stevia to taste. Slowly add water until reaching the desired thickness, similar to the consistency of 2% milk.

Coconut chicken curry

Key Takeaways

Unsweetened, full-fat coconut milk contains minimal carbs and abundant healthy fats, making it an excellent addition to your keto meal plan. However, steer clear of varieties that contain added sugars. Sweetened coconut milk can quickly push you beyond your daily carb limit.

While low-fat options are still keto-friendly, they lack the natural healthy fats that provide numerous benefits on a Healthy Keto™ diet. Embrace the rich, creamy flavor and health advantages of full-fat coconut milk.

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To discover more coconut milk recipes and explore the diverse applications of this keto-friendly ingredient, visit our keto recipes page!


1. Which coconut milk brands are best on keto? Some keto-friendly brands include Silk, Lieber’s, Native Forest, Thrive Market, Ayam Brand, and Good & Gather (Target store brand).

2. What kind of coconut milk is good for keto? Unsweetened and unflavored coconut milk is safe for keto. Avoid varieties that contain sugar, artificial flavors, and other unhealthy additives.

3. How many net carbs are in coconut milk? Each cup of coconut milk contains six grams of net carbs.

4. Is coconut milk good for weight loss? Yes! Coconut milk is excellent for weight loss on a keto diet. It’s low in carbs and rich in healthy medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) that help curb cravings.

5. Does coconut water stop ketosis? Yes, coconut water is high in carbs, which can push you over your daily limit and disrupt ketosis.

6. Is coconut cream keto-friendly? Yes, coconut cream is keto-friendly. It has a thicker texture and a more creamy flavor than coconut milk due to using less water during the production process.

7. Is coconut milk lactose-free? Yes, coconut milk is an ideal lactose-free alternative for individuals with lactose intolerance. You can use it as a substitute for cow’s milk in various recipes.

8. What is guar gum? Guar gum is a food additive extracted from guar beans. It acts as a stabilizer and thickener and is often used in nut milk products. Guar gum is safe to consume.

9. Is guar gum keto-friendly? Absolutely! Guar gum contains zero net carbs and is nontoxic. Including coconut milk with guar gum will not affect your ketosis.

10. How long can I keep homemade coconut milk in the fridge? Freshly made coconut milk can be stored in the refrigerator for up to four days in an airtight container.

11. Coconut water vs. coconut milk: what’s the difference? Coconut water is a translucent liquid found inside immature coconuts. It’s high in carbs and is not keto-friendly. Conversely, coconut milk is a creamy, opaque liquid derived from the meat of mature coconuts. It is low in carbs, high in fat, and safe on keto.

12. Is Starbucks coconut milk keto? No, Starbucks’ coconut milk is not keto-friendly due to added sugar. Opt for heavy cream as a keto-friendly alternative.

Remember to visit Hook’d Up Bar and Grill for delicious keto-friendly meals and beverages! Hook’d Up Bar and Grill