Coconut Bacon Recipe, Raw or Cooked

by Gena on October 14, 2013


I used to assume that a vegan interpretation of bacon was pure folly. So much of the texture and flavor of bacon is undeniably “meaty,” and besides, it’s such a beloved ingredient that there are T-shirts that loudly proclaim “vegetarian…except for bacon.” Fortunately, eggplant bacon swooped in and changed my mind some time ago, and now coconut bacon has entered the stage as well.

I’ve had coconut bacon at raw eateries before. The ones I’ve tried were made with young coconut meat, but to me, that’s such a special and precious ingredient that I hated the idea of overpowering it with a marinade. When I found coconut flakes (basically like shredded coconut, but with much larger pieces) recently, it occurred to me that they’d work every bit as well. Plus, they’ve already got a crumbled texture, so they’re perfect for sprinkling onto salads or atop baked potatoes–a vegan interpretation of “bacon bits!”


Coconut flakes can be tricky to find. I stumbled on them (they’re made by a company called Edward & Sons Trading Co.)  at a health food store and later found them on Amazon, though right now they’re only being sold in 12-packs, which isn’t very convenient unless you plan on making a whole lot of coconut bacon :-) That said, regular shredded coconut will also work, and deliver the same amount of flavor. If you can’t find coconut flakes, just look for a shredded coconut with larger flake size.


Above, you’ll see my toasted version of coconut bacon. Though a dehydrator works perfectly here, I wanted to give both a raw and cooked version for this one, so I tested it both ways. They’re both really good. The slightly toasted (or even burnt) edges of the oven version are particularly tasty!

coconut bacon

Coconut Bacon Recipe, Raw or Cooked


  • 2 tablespoons tamari (I use low sodium tamari)
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut flakes (or shredded, unsweetened coconut)


  1. 1. Whisk the tamari, vinegar, and syrup in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the coconut and mix it around until it's all evenly coated. Allow the coconut to absorb the marinade for at least thirty minutes.
  2. 2. To prepare in a dehydrator, spread the coconut on a Teflex lined dehydrator sheet and dehydrate for 8 hours, or until crispy and dry. You can mix it around a few times to make sure it dehydrates evenly.
  3. To prepare in the oven, preheat the oven to 325 degrees Farenheit. Spread the coconut evenly over a foil or parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the coconut is golden and smells fragrant.
  4. Sprinkle the bacon on salads, over baked potatoes, stuff it into wraps, or mix it into cooked grains/legumes. Enjoy!

My current favorite use for coconut bacon is this:




Layer a couple of romaine leaves with tomato slices, avocado slices, and coconut bacon. Such a perfect, satisfying snack or lunch component!


Hope you give this flavorful recipe a try. And I wish you a happy start to the week.


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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

jill October 14, 2013 at 3:20 pm

This sounds yummy, I think I’d add a few drops of liquid smoke too.


Brittany October 14, 2013 at 3:23 pm

Oh man, I made coconut bacon recently and was obsessed. It’s so good and quite addictive. :)


Tami October 14, 2013 at 3:26 pm

Liquid smoke is probably worse for you than bacon.


Victoria October 14, 2013 at 3:44 pm

You can get those coconut flakes at the Tenleytown/Friendship Heights Whole Foods. And at the Yes! Organic Market in Cleveland Park. Love them!


Elisabeth October 14, 2013 at 4:39 pm

This, along with some chopped dried figs, would make a hearty and delicious topping for oatmeal. I’ve always shied away from making coconut bacon because most recipes require hacking into a fresh coconut, which I can never find at the grocery store. Thanks for providing this easier option!


janae @ bring joy October 14, 2013 at 4:53 pm

Umm, there’s a comment up there about liquid smoke being worse than bacon? Not so sure about that. From what I know, I could be wrong, but liquid smoke has nothing to do with animal products & is a good way to add flavor to barbecue-style foods & when I’ve used it I use 1/8th of a tsp. for a whole pot of beans. Do you know much about this, Gena?

Also, love this concept! I remember when I first went vegan & Coleen Patrick-Goudreau saying in one of her podcasts that we don’t crave meat itself, but what meat is, which is texture & flavor. If you can replicate that in the plant world, well then, perfect replacement (& nobody had to die in the process!).


Les October 14, 2013 at 9:42 pm

Yeah exactly – you use like two drops at a time. I believe it is processed in such a way that it doesn’t contain any carcinogenic properties of actual char/smoke. I made coconut bacon a few months ago and the recipe was the same as here except plus liquid smoke and paprika. Realllly good. Oh also I was going to say… that if you can only find a twelve-pack of coconut flakes you could always blend them up in a high-speed blender for coconut butter… every bit as good as store brands for 1/3 the price. :D


Lauren October 14, 2013 at 7:28 pm

Yum! I’ve been wanting to try!!


Suzanne @ hello, veggy! October 14, 2013 at 8:23 pm

The best sandwich I’ve ever had was smoked coconut BLT at Tori’s Bakeshop in Toronto. They even make their own bread; heaven!


Gena October 16, 2013 at 8:28 am

That does sound like heaven!


Les October 14, 2013 at 9:46 pm

Ok, my problem with these is that I make a batch to use as salad toppers but the whole batch of them becomes my dinner instead. I’m probably going to make them again anyway though because I saw this post… lol. Ah I can see the bag of coconut flakes in the pantry right now. Yep, there they are.


Jenni October 14, 2013 at 10:24 pm

How is it possible I’ve never heard of this before? It looks amazing! I’m getting closer and closer to investing in a dehydrator. We’ve been learning about raw foods in my health coaching program (lots of David Wolfe lectures) and now I’m inspired to get creative with raw dishes!


Liz S. October 15, 2013 at 1:19 am

I’ve only ever had tempeh bacon… this coconut bacon sounds WAY more appealing and better to make (and eat)!


Mizpah @ The Raw Food Solution October 15, 2013 at 1:20 am

Yum :) That’s my idea of a simple yet satisfying raw vegan lunch.

I’ve also tried that brand before and it is my favorite of the dried coconut available.

I am surprised you didn’t use liquid smoke or smoked salt. But I also like the idea of your “cleaner” version.


Gena October 16, 2013 at 8:27 am

It was mostly laziness and lack of prepared-ness — no liquid smoke at home! But it was totally delicious, as is.


JennF October 15, 2013 at 8:39 am

Looks amazing, can’t wait to try it!


McKel Hill, MS, RD, LDN | Nutrition Stripped October 15, 2013 at 5:35 pm

I’ve heard of this and can’t believe I haven’t tried it yet. I love this concept though, compassionate and delicious ;)


Gena October 16, 2013 at 8:26 am

Hope you enjoy it!


Kait October 16, 2013 at 9:46 pm

I’ve also found “coconut chips” (flakes) at the big Hispanic market up in Mount Pleasant (I’m totally blanking on the name but its right next to where they have the Saturday Farmer’s Market).


Ttrockwood October 18, 2013 at 11:13 pm

Costco in california actually sells organic coconut flakes this size. But i’m in nyc- i found some at fairway for a decent price (organic, less than whole foods)

I’ve made coconut bacon a few times now, but always with the liquid smoke-i seem to put it on anything and everything! I added some to my dried fruit/nuts/crackers snack mix and it was a revelation…..


Gena October 19, 2013 at 6:40 am

Yum! Good to know.


kimmythevegan October 20, 2013 at 10:15 am

Oh man that looks SO GOOD! I have been enjoying coconut bacon at restaurants lately, but haven’t tried making it myself yet. This recipe looks super simple and sounds tasty =)


Really Raw November 13, 2013 at 5:41 pm

That coconut, maple and tamari is NOT raw. Maybe you should just call it “partially cooked”? Sounds good though!


voyance December 16, 2013 at 6:28 pm

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Andrea January 6, 2014 at 10:38 pm

That’s spelled Fahrenheit. (-:


Vegan Coyote January 9, 2014 at 5:40 pm

Toast 2 slices of a good whole grain bread like Killer Dave’s, then generously coat one slice with natural, unsalted peanut butter. I prefer crunchy but smooth is okay too. Top with a nice layer of coconut bacon and a layer of fresh basil leaves. Top that with a generous squeeze of Siracha sauce an the other slice of bread. Siracha-mayo works well too. Just blend your Siracha with your favorite vegan mayo to your desired taste. I make mine about 50/50. This is delicious
Yes, I too add liquid smoke. I’m going to try the paprika.


Jenn January 14, 2014 at 5:05 pm

I’ve made this 2x in a little over a week…really tasty and a new household favorite, even for my non-veg husband :)


Gena January 17, 2014 at 7:43 am

Jenn, I’m so happy that your family loves the coconut bacon.


Douglas March 2, 2014 at 1:09 am

Black strap molasses can be used in lieu of liquid smoke.


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