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Ever wondered how to make Toasted Coconut? Do it THIS WAY! I’ve been toasting coconut for years and have tried all the methods (stove, microwave, oven) and this is the easiest way to do it without burning it. You can toast coconut for any recipe if you use my method.

shredded coconut in a clear bowl.

So many recipes call for “toasted coconut” and that can be confusing if you do not know how to do it. Or maybe you have tried it, but it ended up burnt! This post is here to make sure you never face that confusion, or burn smell, again. I have tried just about every possible way to toast coconut, and this is the best way with the best flavor!

Best Way to Toast Coconut

I’ve tried toasting coconut in the microwave and in the oven, but my favorite way to do it is on the stovetop. I find that cooking coconut (or nuts) on the stove top method makes me pay more attention to them, ensuring that it doesn’t burn. Burned coconut smells horrible so doing the stovetop method is the easiest way to avoid that!

I always start with sweetened shredded coconut. You can use any brand or any type of basic coconut. This is what you buy in the baking aisle (also called angel flake). You can also do this with unsweetened coconut if that’s what your recipe calls for.

How to Toast Coconut on a Stove Top

process shot of toasted coconut being made.
  1. Use a frying pan or large skillet on the stove instead of baking it in the oven. It’s easier to watch and keep it moving this way.
  2. Use medium-low or low heat to cook it.
  3. Stir almost constantly until it begins to brown. Do not walk away from the stove; coconut goes from golden brown to burned very quickly.
process shot of toasted coconut being made.

Toasting Coconut in the Oven

While I don’t like doing it this way because it burns easier, but you can – just place your coconut on a baking sheet (like a cookie sheet or sheet pan) in an even layer. Bake at 350 degrees, stirring often, until light golden. Remove from the hot pan immediately after removing from the oven. Just be sure that you do not walk away from the oven and make sure to stir it often so it doesn’t burn.

Expert Tips

  • Always keep stirring your coconut while you’re toasting it. Otherwise it will burn!
  • Make sure to stir the sides of the pan and keep it turning from the bottom so it toasts evenly.
  • Once it’s brown, immediately remove it from the heat and transfer from the hot pan to a plate or bowl to cool completely to room temperature. If you leave it in the hot pan it will continue to cook and possibly burn.
  • Put this toasted coconut on top of a smoothie bowl, yogurt parfaits, or any pies and cakes that use coconut like coconut cream pie! It is a great topping for any coconut desserts


How to Store Toasted Coconut

It’s best to store toasted coconut in an airtight container or bag. I always put it in the refrigerator as well, which makes it last longer. It will last 3-4 weeks in the refrigerator.

Can you freeze coconut?

You can keep this recipe in the freezer for up to 3 months.

How to Toast Coconut showing coconut in a glass bowl

How To Toast Coconut Recipe

4.41 from 5 votes
Learn how to toast coconut the easy way! Doing it on the stovetop lets you control the heat and keep it moving, which is essential to keep it from burning. With this easy recipe you can have toasted coconut for every recipe!
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Yield 1 cup
Serving Size 1 Cup of Coconut


  • 1 cup shredded sweetened or flaked coconut
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  • Place a small frying pan over medium-low heat. Add the coconut and break up any chunks using a wooden spoon.
  • Cook, stirring almost constantly, until the coconut begins to steam and brown. Turn the heat to low and continue stirring constantly as the coconut browns.
  • Do not walk away – it will go from brown to burned very fast.
  • As soon as the coconut is browned to your liking, immediately remove pan from heat and remove the coconut from the hot pan to a bowl or plate to cool.
  • Use as desired for garnish. Store in an airtight bag or container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

  • Do not walk away from the stove. It will seem like your coconut isn’t browning but then all of a sudden it does and will burn fast.
  • Stir constantly to avoid hot spots that burn.

Recipe Nutrition

Serving: 1Cup of Coconut | Calories: 640kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Fat: 36g | Sodium: 240mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 48g
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
Course Snack
Cuisine American

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Last Updated on May 10, 2024

Dorothy Kern

Welcome to Crazy for Crust, where I share recipes that are sometimes crazy, often with a crust, and always served with a slice of life.

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Recipe Rating



  2. American living in Europe for much of each year. Most of your recipes call for packaged and/or pre-prepared ingredients, not available in most/all European markets. An aside with ideas for substitutes or basic recipes for pudding, cake mix, sauces, etc would be great. Thanks

  3. Today was the first time I’ve ever made toasted coconut (part of a recipe for my dad’s birthday), and this worked perfectly on the first try!! I toasted up about a cup and a half in my cast iron skillet — I had the burner temp on 4-5 (it goes 1-9/High) for the first 4 minutes, which is when I started to see the first beginnings of toasting. I turned the heat down to 4, and kept going for another 5 minutes. I spread & stirred it continuously just like you recommended — perfectly toasted in 9 minutes! Thank you so much!

    *Also, not sure why the person who burnt her coconut in the oven following another recipe gave this recipe 2 stars! Try it, it is SO easy (and I am not a gifted cook)!