Add these luscious, creamy coconut milk recipes to your meal rotation—everything from sweet to savory!
So if you’re looking for what to make with coconut milk, read this list, keep an eye on #20, and you’ll understand how versatile coconut milk can be.
From desserts with coconut milk like Jamaican Bummies to the best coconut milk recipe for Hot Chocolate, our list has everything you could think of.
So, let’s get the curry out of the way first.
Everyone knows coconut milk is heaven in an Indian curry, especially chicken.
But we promise this list will not be full of curries.
This dish is the only one.
But if you’ve ever had curry, you know it’s one of the tastiest dishes that utilize coconut while remaining savory.
This recipe is flavorful and full of vegetables like bell peppers, onions, potatoes, and honestly, whatever else you want to put in.
2. Coconut Cake
Coconut cake is the epitome of a dessert with coconut milk.
The fluffy, moist layers of the cake perfectly complement the crunchy coconut flakes and creamy frosting.
If you’ve had that can of coconut milk sitting in your pantry forever, this is the perfect treat to use it on.
Whether spring or winter, coconut cake is a beautiful dessert year-round.
Kids and adults love this luscious cake equally, so it’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
And this is the best coconut milk recipe for a moist cake.
Like Cassava bread, this recipe for Jamaican Bammies is delectable and the perfect snack for your kids or friends.
They are similar to potato chips but have way more flavor.
Grated cassava is soaked in coconut milk before being fried for a rich, deep coconut flavor that lays just underneath the crunchy surface.
Have you ever been to Ikea?
Well, these Swedish meatballs blow Ikea’s out of the water.
The secret is coconut milk! It makes it slightly sweet while highlighting the umami of the meatballs.
You can substitute any ground meat in this coconut milk recipe whether you want to use beef, pork, turkey, or even chicken; coconut milk is the star of the show.
The recipe is perfect for a cold night or when you’re in the mood for some comforting food.
Give this a try, and it’ll be your favorite new fall dish.
Are you getting tired of traditional mashed potatoes?
Purple potatoes come from Japan and taste similar to regular potatoes but have a bit of a sweeter flavor.
They add rich color to any dinner plate and a unique flavor profile.
The sweet purple potatoes blend perfectly with coconut milk for a mix of savory and dear that goes perfectly with a grilled steak, steamed veggies, or fried tofu, depending on what mood you are in.
Truly unique compared to many recipes using coconut milk.
If you’ve never had flan before, get ready to be introduced to pudding’s fancy cousin.
Flan is a gelatin dessert usually made with dairy, but you can also use coconut milk to make this exquisite treat!
There are coconut flan recipes out there that use regular cow milk, but the best way to make a flavorful coconut flan is to use coconut milk to infuse the tropical flavor into every bite.
Introduce your family and friends to this Spanish dessert with a tropical twist.
Look no further than this flan recipe if you’re looking for a quick coconut dessert.
Everyone knows ice cream comes from cream, but what if you made it with coconut milk?
This recipe is easy, and soon you’ll be enjoying a big bowl of frosty coconut ice cream.
Coconut ice cream is the best coconut milk recipe to use up that can of coconut milk sitting in your cupboard.
The recipe takes some time because you need to allow the ice cream to freeze.
However, you can make this happen without an ice cream maker.
8. French Toast
If you’re looking to kick your french toast up a notch, substituting coconut milk in place of regular milk is a great way to change up this traditional breakfast food.
Coconut and cinnamon are a match made in heaven, and when you coat some fresh brioche bread in the egg, coconut milk, and cinnamon mixture, it results in a surprisingly refreshing flair on french toast.
Coconut may not seem like an autumn flavor, but it pairs well with fall vegetables like squash, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and yams.
So this pumpkin coconut soup is a warm and delicious recipe that encompasses the feelings of fall while using up that can of coconut milk.
This dish is a very flexible recipe, so you love it if you want to swap out pumpkin for a different fall vegetable.
As mentioned, coconut pairs great with most fall vegetables, so get creative!
Like ceviche, Poisson cru is a Tahitian dish of marinated raw fish that uses coconut milk as the main ingredient.
This dish is great for more adventurous chefs that want to try something new and challenging.
Typically made with tuna, you can also make Poisson cru with salmon, shellfish, or a variety of seafood.
It is creamier than ceviche or poke and highlights the delicious flavor of coconut milk.
11. Coconut Rice
This one is the best coconut milk recipe for rice and results in a creamy, flavorful dish that pairs well with curries and other mains.
The rice comes together in just 20 minutes, making it one of our list’s easiest coconut milk recipes.
You need a rice cooker for this recipe so make sure you have one if you plan to make this!
Take a trip to the islands with this trembling, sweet treat that is fun to eat and will have all your friends asking for the recipe.
Also called Tembleque de Coco, this pudding is beautiful and a quick coconut milk dessert.
13. Tom Kha Gai Soup
Tom Kha Gai is a soup from Thailand that combines coconut milk, broth, ginger, boiled chicken, green onion, mushrooms, and lemongrass.
This soup is one of the best coconut milk recipes because it isn’t a substitute or addition.
You cannot make this soup without coconut milk, and it is the dish’s essence.
To step out of the box, you can try this coconut milk recipe that makes unique cream corn.
Corn is a delightful vegetable enhanced by the creaminess of the milk.
Cream corn is typically just aside, but if you want to make it the whole dish, add some chicken or potatoes to beef it up and enjoy a bowl of sweet coconut cream corn.
15. Chai Lattes
Chai lattes are excellent, especially with the leftover coconut milk in your cabinet!
This recipe tells you how to make homemade chai concentrate which you can then mix with coconut milk for a refreshing afternoon latte.
Chair lattes usually have dairy milk, but substituting for coconut milk is a great way to add some extra flavor and use your can of coconut milk.
Stir fry is an easy dish to make at home and gets a kick of flavor when you use coconut milk to saute the meat and vegetables.
Stir fry typically uses a soy sauce as a base, but if you switch this out for coconut milk, you get a slightly sweeter, creamier stir fry than ever before.
An exciting twist on the classic comfort beverage, coconut milk in hot chocolate, gives it a slight sweetness that you don’t get in traditional hot chocolate.
Adding coconut flavoring just isn’t the same as swapping out the milk, so thank goodness you have that extra can in your cabinet.
The recipe is super easy since it’s just hot chocolate, and this can be a great hack if you’re looking for a quick coconut dessert on a weekday.
18. Coconut Satay
Satay is a popular Thai dish consisting of skewered meat sauteed in coconut milk and served with a peanut sauce.
Like many Thai dishes, coconut milk is necessary for the flavors to come together.
The meat becomes incredibly tender from being sauteed in coconut milk, and the slight sweetness pairs perfectly with the spicy Thai peanut sauce on the side or drizzled over the top.
For all the vegans out there, coconut milk is an excellent substitute for dairy when baking.
Unlike savory recipes, coconut milk doesn’t throw off the flavors in most baked goods.
If you love buttercream frosting but have said goodbye to dairy and animal products, you can still get that creamy, delicious flavor just with a hint of coconut.
Use this coconut milk recipe to top off your vegan cupcakes or cake, so you don’t have to miss out on the buttercream you’ve been missing.
20. Pina Coladas
A classic that we simply couldn’t leave off the list, pina Coladas are the essence of a tropical vacation and can transport you to the Bahamas in one sip.
You don’t need a blender for this recipe, but a perfectly blended cocktail is hard to replicate without one.
A splash of pineapple juice and a squirt of lime juice bring this popular rum drink together in just minutes.
Look no further than the timeless tropical drink if you don’t know what to do with leftover coconut milk.
Meringue is a fluffy topping for pies that creates a rich yet light flavor.
The flavor profile is similar to coconut, so they pair well to create a satisfying, dreamy dessert.
Meringues are usually for lemon pies, but this will show how underappreciated meringues are in the dessert world.
The quick coconut milk dessert comes together quickly and will be a great treat to bring to a party or enjoy after a long week.
The bottom line
Many of us have had a can of coconut milk sitting in our pantry for ages.
It can be daunting to come up with something to use it for since it can seem rather specialized.
However, coconut milk recipes are in abundance and more creative than one may expect, as this list has exemplified.
Next time you spot that can of coconut milk in your cabinet, don’t be dismayed, and instead, get inspired to try out one of these fabulous recipes.
- Coconut Chicken Curry
- Coconut Cake
- Jamaican Bammies
- Swedish Meatballs
- Japanese Sweet Purple Potatoes
- Coconut Milk Flan
- Coconut Ice Cream
- French Toast
- Coconut Pumpkin Soup
- Tahitian Poisson Cru Fish
- Coconut Rice
- Caribbean Coconut Pudding
- Tom Kha Gai Soup
- Coconut Cream Corn
- Chai Lattes
- Coconut Chicken Stir Fry
- Coconut Hot Chocolate
- Coconut Satay
- Vegan Buttercream Frosting
- Pina Coladas
- Coconut Cream Meringue Pie