Coconut Bacon made with smoky flavors and naturally sweetened with pure maple syrup bakes up savory, crispy and is SO easy to make. It’s healthy, oil free and a tasty guilt-free vegan bacon!
What Is Coconut Bacon?
Coconut Bacon is made with large coconut flakes tossed in savory and sweet flavors, then baked in the oven until golden brown and crispy. I find it pretty amazing that you can replicate a baconish flavor and crispness with coconut flakes. It’s savory, crispy, ready in no time at all and is a perfect vegan ‘bacon’ for those looking to replace the other bacon with a cute face!
Now, I’m not going to fool you into believing this tastes exactly like bacon, but if you can appreciate it for what it is, and that it’s still full of flavor and makes a pretty darn good plant-based bacon replacement. Well then, I think you’re going to love this coconut bacon recipe as much as I do!
This coconut bacon recipe is great to have on hand and can easily be doubled. It’s also easy and fairly quick to make. You’ll be enjoying your homemade vegan bacon in about 30 minutes. Plus, it’s gluten free, grain free, and can be made oil free!
What Type of Coconut Should I Use For Coconut Bacon?
Large flaked coconut with it’s wide, oversized flakes are perfect for making coconut bacon! I buy my large flaked coconut from the bulk section at my local Sprout’s, but you can find it on the shelves or online (affiliate link).
Tip: When purchasing your coconut flakes, make sure it’s all white, with no yellowing on the flakes – yellowing is a sign that it’s old or has not been properly stored.
Coconut Bacon Seasonings
- Tamari: To add saltiness and flavor, tamari, coconut amino’s, or soy sauce will work wonders! For gluten free coconut bacon, use tamari or coconut amino’s. If using coconut amino’s, be sure to add a little extra salt since it isn’t as salty as tamari or soy sauce.
- Pure Maple Syrup: Use more or less maple syrup to suit your taste. I like the maple flavor and usually add a heaping tablespoon. Omit it if you don’t want any maple flavor at all.
- Liquid Smoke: There are different flavors of liquid smoke – hickory, mesquite, etc. – use your favorite. For a more intense smoke flavor, add up to 1 tablespoon more of the liquid smoke of choice. Since liquid smoke can be a little controversial, feel free to omit it. I’ve made coconut bacon without liquid smoke and it’s just as delicious, you may like to add a little extra smoked paprika instead.
- Smoked Paprika: The smoked paprika added a wonderful layer of warmth that I fell in LOVE with, and I highly recommend adding it to your coconut bacon seasoning.
How To Make The Best Coconut Bacon
- Mix: In a large mixing bowl, combine the tamari, liquid smoke, maple syrup and paprika, making sure to break up any clumps. Add coconut flakes and gently toss to coat each flake well, about 45 seconds or so.
- Layer: Scoop seasoned coconut flakes onto a lightly greased, or parchment paper lined, rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle lightly with a bit of mineral salt if desired. Tip: The key will be to stir during baking to cook evenly, so don’t worry if the coconut flakes aren’t spread out perfectly even.
- Bake: Place in the oven, on the center rake, and bake for 15 minutes. Every 5 minutes stir the coconut flakes (you can see the progress in the above photo). Remove when coconut has a nice browned and caramelized color (pictured below). Tip: If you need to bake longer than 15 minutes, keep close and watch as the coconut bacon can burn very quickly at this point.
- Cool: Let the coconut bacon cool, it will get crispy as it cools.
How To Store Coconut Bacon
Once completely cooled, store leftovers in an airtight container and keep in the pantry for up to 2 months. If it softens a bit, re-crisp in the toaster oven on medium for a few minutes, or under the broiler for a few seconds, keeping an eye that it doesn’t burn.
Can I make Coconut Bacon Oil-Free?
How To Use Your Coconut Bacon
- make the classic B.L.T. sandwich or wrap.
- add it on top of Split Pea Soup, Crisp Apple & Coconut Bacon Salad, Cobb Salad, Sweet Potato & Yukon Gold Home Fries , tofu scrambles or pizza.
- top it on stuffed or mashed potatoes, roasted veggies like brussels sprouts or other cooked vegetables, beans and/or legumes.
And don’t forget the sweets
- this would be great on these Butterscotch Cupcakes from Post Punk Kitchen
- or these Maple Bacon Donuts from Phoney Baloney’s
There are so many possibilities for its uses and I have no doubt that you will find all kinds of ways to add this quick and tasty tidbit to your meals!
Don’t want to make your own? No worries, you can purchase packaged coconut bacon right here: Phoney Baloney’s Coconut Bacon.
If you try this vegan bacon recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.Print
Coconut bacon – a healthy vegan ‘bacon’ alternative with all the flavor. Use on top of soups, salads, tofu scrambles, home fries. Make the classic B.L.T sandwich or wrap. Lot’s of ways to enjoy this simple and easy recipe!
- Prep Time: 5 min
- Cook Time: 15
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: Makes 2 cups
- Category: Side
- Cuisine: Vegan
- 2 tablespoons tamari, coconut amino’s or soy sauce
- 1 tablespoons liquid smoke, optional
- 1 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 2 cups large flaked coconut
- mineral salt for sprinkling, optional
- coconut oil for greasing, optional
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Mix: In a large mixing bowl, combine the tamari, liquid smoke, maple syrup and paprika, making sure to break up any clumps. Add coconut flakes and gently toss making sure to coat each flake well, toss for about 45 seconds or so.
Layer: Using a slotted spoon, scoop seasoned coconut flakes and place onto a lightly greased, or parchment paper lined, rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. The key is to stir during baking to cook evenly. Sprinkle lightly with a bit of mineral salt if desired.
Bake: Place in oven and bake for 15 minutes. Set the timer for intervals of 5 minutes and stir each time making sure to rearrange all pieces by bringing the center flakes to the outside, and the outside flakes to the center for even cooking. If making a double batch and using two cookie sheets, you may even like to change the position of the sheets in the oven after the second interval, moving the top sheet to the bottom rack and vice versa. Remove when coconut has a nice browned and caramelized color.
If for some reason you need to bake longer than 15 minutes, keep close and watch as the coconut bacon can burn very quickly at this point. I really babied my coconut bacon towards the end, it’ll be worth your while if you do too so it doesn’t burn.
Cool: Let cool, it will get crispy as it cools.
Store: Once completely cooled you can store leftovers in an airtight container and keep in the pantry for up 1 to 2 months. If it softens a bit, re-crisp in the toaster oven on medium for a few minutes, or under the broiler for a few seconds, keeping an eye that it doesn’t burn.
Makes 28, 2 tablespoons, servings.
Use more or less maple syrup to suit your taste. I like the maple flavor and usually add a heaping tablespoon. Omit it if you don’t want any maple flavor at all.
Keep in mind there are different flavors of liquid smoke – ie, hickory, mesquite, etc., use your favorite. For a more intense smoke flavor, add up to 1 tablespoon more of the liquid smoke of choice.
If not using liquid smoke, add 1/2 teaspoon more smoked paprika and a dash or two more of tamari.
Keywords: coconut bacon, vegan bacon