If you are on the keto diet, you most likely know that dairy milk is not ketogenic because it contains a form of sugar called lactose that can affect ketosis.
However, giving up regular milk can be tricky. That is why many people in the keto and low-carb community are using keto-friendly low-carb dairy milk substitutes.
Coconut milk is one of the most commonly used dairy milk substitutes. But, is it low enough in carbs to be ketogenic, and can you drink it on the keto diet? Keep on reading to find out everything you need to know!
What Is Coconut Milk?
Coconut milk is a type of plant-based milk that is made from the meat of a mature coconut. It has an opaque, creamy-white color and thick consistency which can greatly vary. The variable consistency of it is the result of the amount of oil content it contains. It has a rich, coconutty, and slightly sweet taste.
Today, it is a popular drink across the globe, but its origins are in South Asia, Southeast Asia, Oceania, and East Africa, as well as tropical Latin America, the Caribbean, and West Africa, where coconuts were brought during the colonial era.
It is widely available in markets and stores, but you can also make it yourself very fast and easy.
How to make it?
There are many recipes out there on how you can make it at home. But, most of them are a variation of the following process.
To make this tasty beverage at home, you are going to need shredded coconut meat from fresh coconut, water, and a blender. Some recipes call for hot water, but room temperature or cold water can be used too.
All you need to do is put the shredded coconut and water in a blender and blend them. After they are homogenized together, you are going to separate the coconut meat from the liquid by draining the liquid through a nut-milk bag, a gauze, or a cheesecloth.
The blended coconut that is left in the bag is coconut flour that can be used as a ketogenic and low-carb alternative to bread crumbs. The creamy, white, thick liquid is coconut milk. You can make it as thick or thin as you like by adding more or less water.
But, what if you don’t have fresh coconut on hand? Can you use dry shredded coconut to make coconut milk? The answer is yes! However, you will need to rehydrate the dry coconut first. You can do that by leaving it in water for a few hours or boiling it before adding it to the blender.
Coconut Milk Nutrition Facts
In the table below we have the nutritional information on 1 cup or 244 grams of coconut milk. Please note that different brands will have different nutritional values depending on how much water and coconut they use. (*)
|Total Carbs||7.12 grams|
|Net Carbs||7.12 grams|
Is Coconut Milk Healthy?
Coconut milk is a very nutritious beverage that contains unique nutrients. It is rich in manganese, copper, selenium, vitamin C, iron, folate, and other beneficial nutrients, however, its most unique nutrient is the fat. More specifically the type of fat that it contains.
It is a known fact that fats play an important role in the process of ketosis and they are important to consume on the keto diet. And this milk has plenty of fat in the form of coconut oil. Out of all the fat content in it, 50% to 60% of it is a type of saturated fat called MCTs or medium-chain triglycerides.
Research shows that MCTs can have a beneficial role in lowering appetite, enchanting the expenditure of energy, improving insulin sensitivity, lowering blood lipids in cases of type 2 diabetes, and more. (*) (*) (*)
It is also rich in a micronutrient called manganese. Manganese is an essential nutrient that has a function of a coenzyme in multiple biological processes such as macronutrient metabolism, free radical defense systems, brain function, bone formation, ammonia clearance, and neurotransmitter synthesis. (*)
Can You Drink Coconut Milk On The Keto Diet?
In one cup or 244 grams of unsweetened coconut milk, there are 75.6 calories, 5 grams of fat, 0.5 grams of protein, 7.1 grams of net carbs, and no fiber.
Saturated fats are usually perceived as the “bad” type of fats, but the saturated fats in it are unique. About 50% to 60% of the fat content in it is a type of saturated fats called MCTs or medium-chain triglycerides, which are a type of fat that has many health benefits including supporting weight loss, lowering appetite, lowering the risk of diabetes type 2 and many more.
It has about 7 grams of net carbs, which even though is not 0, it can still fit into a keto dieters’ daily carb allowance. Overall, it is a great ketogenic and low carb dairy milk substitute.
What does coconut milk taste like?
Coconut milk has a coconutty, slightly sweet taste and a white to cream color. The consistency can vary greatly depending on the fat and water ratio in the milk itself.
It is important to note that some store-bought brands can contain artificial flavors, preservatives, additives, and sugar. To avoid this, make sure you always read the label and always choose the unsweetened type of milk.
If you like to control what goes into your diet, you can always easily make it yourself.
How to use coconut milk on the keto diet?
Coconut has a lot of uses in the keto diet. You can use thicker or thinner milk in sauces and soups, coffee, tea, and other beverages, as well as in pastries and cakes. You can also make breakfast smoothies or chia pudding.
To give you another idea, you can try out our Keto Creamy Baked Turkey Breast with Cheese Sauce. And for those of you that have a sweet tooth, you can try out our irresistible Keto Chocolate Mug Cake and our delicious Keto Hot Chocolate.
If you are baking a recipe that uses dairy milk, you may be wondering how to substitute dairy milk with coconut milk? To replace cow’s milk with coconut milk, a 1:1 ratio works for most recipes. However, you may need to slightly accommodate the dryness of the pasty, so you need to keep an eye on it.
In one cup or 244 grams of it, there are approximately 7 grams of net carbs.
Yes, it is keto-friendly. You can use it in many keto beverage, dessert and baking recipes.
Coconut milk is plant milk that is made from the pulp of fresh, mature coconut. It has a creamy texture, white to cream color, and a fresh, coconutty, and slightly sweet flavor.
Coconut contains many essential nutrients, but its most unique nutrient is the fat it contains. It is rich in fat and the fat in it- coconut oil, is made out of 50% to 60% MCTs or medium-chain triglycerides, which are known to have many health benefits.
It is a keto-friendly dairy milk alternative that is fat-rich and low-carb. This makes it a great addition to a keto or low-carb dieters’ diet.
If you like to have control over what goes into your diet, you can easily make it yourself. However, if you are buying it from a store, make sure you carefully read the label and choose the unsweetened type to avoid unnecessary carbs.
See more: Which is better coconut or almond milk?
*image by KucherAndrey/depositphotos