How to Make Coconut Bacon

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This coconut bacon features wide strips of coconut that are infused with a smoky flavor. Sprinkle on your favorite salad or sandwich for the perfect meal!

Coconut Bacon Recipe | A Couple Cooks

Let’s get real: we’re not about to bash bacon. Many of you reading have intense love for the stuff, which is A-OK in our book. Bacon has a intoxicating smoky flavor that adds a unique intensity to everything from salads to gourmet doughnuts. Since we eat *mainly* vegetarian, we do allow ourselves a bit of bacon every once in a while (and it tastes even better than we remembered). But most of what we cook at home is vegetarian, and it’s incredibly hard to imitate that unique flavor that bacon can add to a dish.

Enter: homemade coconut bacon. It might sound odd, and we generally stay away from anything resembling a meat substitute. However, after experimenting with this concept, it is definitely worth a try. Wide strips of coconut are infused with a spicy, smoky flavor that both crisps in the oven and maintains intermittent chewy parts, reminiscent of the crispy and fatty texture of bacon.

While its shape and size are not a substitute for bacon strips on a breakfast plate or in a BLT, it works perfectly sprinkled in a salad or on one of those fancy gourmet doughnuts. Oh, and for snacking. (Pop them in the freezer for a quick fix of smoky, salty goodness; they thaw in a few seconds.)

Coconut Bacon Recipe | A Couple Cooks

How to make coconut bacon

Making vegetarian bacon is a surprisingly straightforward process and requires only a handful of ingredients. The base of this recipe is unsweetened coconut flakes—make sure you aren’t using shredded coconut, as it won’t give you the right consistency. You also should double check that your coconut flakes are unsweetened, since that would drastically change the flavor of this bacon!

Besides coconut flakes, you’ll also need olive oil, Sriracha hot sauce, soy sauce, and liquid smoke for this coconut bacon recipe. Unfortunately, there’s no good substitute for liquid smoke, but it’s fairly easy to find at the grocery store and online. (If you’re vegan or vegetarian, it’s a nice ingredient to have on hand for faux meat recipes like this one!).

To make this coconut bacon, simply stir all the ingredients together and bake for 10-14 minutes, stirring halfway through. Coconut burns quite easily, so you’ll need to keep an eye on your vegetarian bacon near the end of the cook time. The coconut bacon will continue to crisp up as it cools, so don’t fret if it’s not perfectly crunchy when you pull it out of the oven!

Coconut Bacon Recipe | A Couple Cooks

Looking for more easy vegetarian recipes? 

This recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan / plant-based, gluten-free, and dairy-free.

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Coconut Bacon


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (4 votes, average: 4.50 out of 5)

  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 14 minutes
  • Total Time: 19 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups 1x

Description

This coconut bacon features wide strips of coconut that are infused with a smoky flavor. Sprinkle on your favorite salad or sandwich for the perfect meal!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cups large unsweetened coconut flakes (not shredded coconut)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon liquid smoke
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a medium bowl, gently mix all ingredients until the coconut is coated.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then spread the coconut in a thin, even layer on top. Bake 10 to 14 minutes, stirring once and flipping the pan halfway through, watching carefully towards the end of the cooking time to ensure that it doesn’t burn. Remove when bacon is browned and allow to cool; the bacon will crisp up as it cools. Eat immediately, or store leftovers in a sealed plastic bag in the freezer (this keeps the bacon crisp, and it comes back to room temperature quickly).

Notes

Inspired by Cookie and Kate

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: coconut bacon

 

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

15 Comments

  • Reply
    Elyse
    August 17, 2015 at 9:04 am

    i am lucky to have a vegan food truck that makes and sells wicked coconut bacon. I am in no way a vegetarian but don’t think eating meat all day everyday is good for anyone so this stuff is just the ticket. I love it sprinkled on some crunchy slaw in a wrap for lunch on the go. Just don’t add the coconut bacon till the last minute- you want crunchy not soggy! Might have to give it a try myself now with this fab recipe.

  • Reply
    Amy @ Parsley In My Teeth
    August 17, 2015 at 11:08 am

    Ever since I saw Kathryn’s recipe for coconut bacon, I’ve been intrigued. Now you’ve inspired me to give this a try!

  • Reply
    Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough
    August 17, 2015 at 11:57 am

    I just learned about coconut bacon this weekend and I’m so intrigued by it! I love bacon and coconut so I’m sure I will double-love this. :)

  • Reply
    Sarah | Well and Full
    August 17, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    Oooh I really like your recipe here! I’ve seen a lot of variations of coconut bacon but it’s usually a tamari + maple syrup + paprika combo of some sort. This is very original!

  • Reply
    Erica
    August 17, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    So excited to see what you guys do with this! Definitely something I’m going to try out. Your recipes bring out the vegetarian side of me!!

  • Reply
    Lauren Gaskill | Making Life Sweet
    August 17, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    Oh my sweet goodness. Coconut Bacon? Why hasn’t anyone thought of this sooner. Simply genius!! Pinning. :)

  • Reply
    Golda
    August 17, 2015 at 10:17 pm

    I’m not vegetarian but I’m down to try anything bacon inspired.

  • Reply
    Gabriel @ The Dinner Special podcast
    August 18, 2015 at 1:54 am

    I love coconut. I love bacon. To discover that they can become one? THIS I need to eat.

  • Reply
    Julie @ Cooks with Cocktails
    September 13, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    This is so awesome! I love those coconut chips marketed as “hippie snacks” and these look just like them only a different flavor. Im not a vegetarian and I love my bacon, but this looks awesome in its own right.

  • Reply
    Rfrozy
    September 18, 2015 at 7:43 am

    What if you used bacon grease instead of soy sauce?

  • Reply
    Danita
    January 22, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    I just discovered this blog via Annie’s Eats. I am very intrigued by this recipe.
    We are also “mostly” vegetarian and additionally I can’t cook bacon in the house because the smell (which lingers for days) gives my husband very bad headaches. I can’t wait to try this.

    • Reply
      Sonja
      January 31, 2016 at 10:27 pm

      Thanks for visiting! That is very interesting about bacon headaches — I’ve never heard of that! This faux bacon is pretty delish, even for people not fond of faux meats (us!) — let us know if you tried it out!

  • Reply
    Laura
    September 15, 2017 at 6:19 am

    How long does it last in the freezer?

    • Reply
      Sonja
      August 23, 2018 at 9:00 pm

      It can last several months in the freezer!

  • Reply
    Nicole M Callen
    August 23, 2018 at 5:48 pm

    Oh my, I love it, love it, love it!!!!

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