Well, World Coconut Day (Sept. 2nd) may be over for this year, but I don’t know anyone who feels beholden to enjoy coconut-infused products only one day a year. Do you?
Coconut is a sweet ingredient that can be worked into everything from snacks and drinks to side dishes and entrees. And it has some pretty beneficial health benefits, too. Coconuts are full of fiber, vitamins, minerals, calcium, magnesium, potassium and amino acids.
Coconut oil is all over the place in the media right now. Everyone seems to be cooking with it or using it in a wide variety of dishes and personal care products. One I’ve been using for awhile now is Carrington Farms® Coconut Cooking Oil. It stays in liquid form at room temperature and is a great alternative to vegetable, olive, canola, and corn oil when cooking, sauteeing or using it in other recipes.
Shown here is an unflavored bottle, which is great to use for everything. I also have two other varieties: Garlic Flavor and Sriracha Flavor which I use when sauteeing and also when browning or frying meats or making stir fry (for extra flavor).
Why is Coconut Oil Good For You?
Coconuts are high in fat, but it’s considered to be one of the best fats you can ingest for all the health benefits that can be reaped from them. Coconut oil is naturally high in saturated fats which increase “good” HDL cholesterol as well as help convert “bad” LDL cholesterol into the good variety. Increasing HDL in your body also has heart health benefits, increasing overall heart health and lowering the risk of heart disease.
I tend to go back and forth between using coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil when preparing meals because I like both. I like Carrington Farms Coconut Oils because of the variety of flavors and uses but also because they are non-hydrogenated and free of harmful saturated and trans fatty acids.
No time to cook? No problem. You can get the benefits of coconut into your daily routine with pre-packaged quick and easy snacks when you’re too busy to prepare a meal. How about a cookie? Not just any old, tiny, dried-up looking healthy cookie (we’ve all seen those unappetizing snacks, right?) The Munk Pack® Coconut White Chocolate Macadamia Cookie is huge!
I wish I’d thought to take a picture of it sitting in my hand for scale. However, this dessert plate measures 6-1/2 inches across, so I figure that means that this cookie is around 4 inches from side to side (give or take). And the best part about it is that it… is… big! Think big-juicy-hamburger thick and you’ll get the idea.
Just one of these is enough to satisfy any sweet tooth that needs a quick, sweet snack. And with 18 grams of protein, it will go a long way toward tiding over hunger pangs till your next meal. I don’t love nuts in my food, personally, but my daughter tells me that she really liked the taste and texture of it and that it was pretty filling. It’s also non-gmo verified, vegan, and gluten-free. Other flavors: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Double Dark Chocolate, Oatmeal Raisin Spice — all of which sound delicious and sinful. My favorite kind of cookie!
Another snack option that is great for anyone with an on-the-go lifestyle (or little ones who get hungry every time you leave the house) are these Munk Pack® Raspberry Coconut Oatmeal Fruit Squeeze pouches. They can be eaten straight from the pouch for a no-mess snack anywhere your day takes you. They are also ideal for campers, hikers, runners or anyone who participates in an outdoor activity who needs easy to carry and nutrient-dense food options for lasting energy.
They are non-GMO verified, whole grain, vegan and gluten-free making them a healthy snacking option. And they taste pretty good, too. My kids always got bored of the same old peanut butter crackers, fruit snacks, dried fruit, and granola bars that I kept in the car for them. It will be great to have an option like this to put more variety into our snack bags.
My girls are always buying Sparkling Ice® naturally-flavored, caffeine-free sparkling water drinks when we go to the grocery store and often look for new flavors. I drink them on occasion, too, though not as often as they do. I love pineapple-flavored drinks, so I am definitely enjoying this Coconut Pineapple variety. It’s cool, refreshing, and tasty and the bubbles making it feel like I’m drinking a soda.
Like many, I’m guilty of drinking way too many soft drinks, so this is a great non-soda option to keep around the house. But, sometimes I get bored with the same old flavors. That’s one reason we like Sparkling Ice® beverages, there are plenty of flavors to choose from. A few of my personal favorites include Black Raspberry, Strawberry Watermelon, and Black Cherry.
Ginger ale is another drink I am partial to. As a matter of fact, I picked up a three-variety flavor case of it at a local box store recently to have at home. I had not heard of the Brooklyn Organics™ brand before, but always up for trying something new, I was really excited to try it.
It’s a craft ginger ale, which sounds fancy! It has the bubbles I love and a light, crisp coconut flavor. Like regular ginger ales, it’s slightly sweet but not too sweet. Also, health-wise it’s organic, non-GMO, has zero sugar and is caffeine-free. Aside from the Coconut flavor it’s available in Classic Ginger Ale, Cola, Guava, and Acai. Cola Ginger Ale? That could be pretty awesome! I’m gonna have to try that one next.
Both of these drink options are a perfect alternative to sweeter sodas when you want that bubbly feeling without all the sugary flavor that regular sodas have.
So, fellow-coconut lovers, which of these products do you use (or would like to try)? Leave a comment and share which ones you’d be interested in tasting or let us know what coconut-flavored food or beverage products you love!
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