How to Open a Coconut

Round and extremely hard. That describes a coconut, which make many people ask – how do you open a coconut? It’s actually not that difficult if done methodically.

Following is how to crack open a coconut without wasting any of its natural goodness, which is always an important factor.

how to dispose of food scraps

How to Open a Coconut

Crack a Coconut

First, let’s start at the beginning and ensure that you’re starting with a good coconut.That begins with choosing a coconut worthy of the effort exerted to open it up.

How to pick a good coconut:
Choose a coconut that is heavy for its size. Shake it and make sure that you can hear liquid sloshing around inside the coconut. This tells you that the coconut is still young enough to contain moist coconut meat, plus you get to drink the delicious coconut water before dissecting the meat. A coconut without liquid inside is old and most likely dry, or maybe even spoiled.

Now that you’ve got a good coconut, on with how to open this hard round ball.

How to open a coconut easily and efficiently:

1) The first thing to do when opening a coconut is to find the eyes.
The eyes of a coconut are the three dark indentations very close together on the bottom of the fruit. Press each eye with the sharp tip of a wine opener until the softest spot is discovered. Screw the wine opener into the softest eye and then remove the opener, leaving a hole in the coconut.
2) Pour out the coconut water from this newly created hole into a glass and enjoy a refreshing drink.
Hopefully the water is slightly sweet to taste, if it is at all sour then the fruit is past its prime.
3) Place the coconut on a bed of clean towels and grab a hammer.
Strike the coconut at the largest part (its equator). Turn the fruit and strike it again, maybe 2 more times. Stop when the shell cracks open. Done well, the coconut should split in half.
how to dispose of food scraps
4) Place the halves with the white side down onto the towel and gently tap the shell in several places.
Tapping the shell should force the white meat to separate from the brown shell.
5) Use a vegetable peeler to remove the thin brown casing from the edge of the white meat.
6) Shred, cube, dice, slice or peel the white coconut depending on the intended use for the coconut meat.

Although your first attempt may not crack as perfectly in half as this one did, practice does help.
That’s how to crack a coconut!

How to Open a Coconut

Additional Info

To find out how long coconuts last, see our coconut page.

For more information on coconut water, see our coconut water shelf life page and a bit about expired coconut water.

To find out how long other foods are good for, please visit the Dairy, Drinks, Fruits, Grains, Proteins, Vegetables and Other sections of Eat By Date or use the search function below.

SEARCH Eat By Date