Here Are All The Ways You Can Use Coconut In Desserts

If you love buko, these are the dreamy coconut desserts you should be making.

IMAGE Kai Huang

We totally understand if you are obsessed with coconut. From ice cream made of coconut cream to a show-stopping coconut-flavored cake that's covered in coconut shavings, the buko has a lot to do with making many desserts delicious. 

Coconut is one of these ingredients that are incredibly versatile. It's the secret ingredient to making desserts that are fit for vegetarians (and even vegans!) to consume, and it's also the ingredient that takes normal desserts over the top with its warm, creamy flavor. It's even the substitute milk product you can use to amp up the flavor of your plain vanilla dessert recipe. 

Whatever the reason for your love for the coconut, we stand by with these dessert coconut recipes that will make you want to have a coconut available all the time. (It is available all year so no worries that it's a seasonal ingredient.)  

From fresh young buko to that batch of dried up niyog after all the coconut cream and milk has been squeezed out, here are the coconut recipes you can continue craving for: 

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Photo by Riell Santos

1 Coconut Macaroons Recipe 

We have to start with this classicly Pinoy dessert: coconut macaroons. Formerly just called "macaroons", we have to make the distinction ever since the introduction of the French macaron to the world. These are very different from our childhood coconut snacks. Made with egg whites, condensed milk, and freshly grated coconut (usually the by-product of freshly squeezed and extracted coconut cream and milk), these are sweet, milky, and coconutty mounds that you can eat three of in one sitting.  

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Photo by Riell Santos

2 Coconut Macaroon Cookie Recipe 

There's a difference between these macaroon cookies and a coconut macaroon in those cute mini cups you can find at your favorite bakery. These hold up on its own without needing that little mini cup holder. That means these have more heft, are chewier, and contains less condensed milk than your mini cup version. That doesn't mean these are any less delicious and addictive. You can even add a fruity but equally tropical flavor like pineapples to jazz it up. 

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Photo by Bianca Laxamana

3 Pan de Coco Recipe 

It may not be technically a dessert, but these are definitely the sweet, dessert-like bread that you have permission to eat for breakfast without any judgement from anyone. Plus, who said you have to eat these at breakfast? In-between meals are also a perfect time for these bread rolls as after your main meal for other desserts.  

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This leche flan gets its creamiest boosted from coconut.
Photo by Majoy Siason

4 Coconut Leche Flan Recipe 

Of all the local desserts available, you can't deny that the leche flan has a soft spot in your dessert-loving heart. That's about to change because this is the leche flan recipe that is after your coconut-loving heart, too. This a great example of how you can tweak an existing dessert recipe you already love into a coconutty one just by switching out the milk or some of the milk with coconut cream or milk.  

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Photo by Bianca Laxamana

5 Mango Tapioca in Coconut Milk Recipe 

Coconut milk desserts don't need to be fancy to be delicious. In fact, you can plop in some delicious fruits, stir in some tiny little white pearls, and sweeten the coconut milk even more to make a dessert. Sounds easy? It is. We even have the recipe video to prove it below. 

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6 Fluffy Coconut Cupcake Recipe  

If there was ever a cupcake recipe that is more simple or this flavorful, we have yet to see it. This uses your standard cake mix and upgrades it into this fluffy coconut-topped confection. You can even top it with toasted coconut for a more nutty flavor. if you've got more time, make it from scratch! 

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Photo by Riell Santos

7 Ube Cupcakes with Coconut Buttercream Recipe 

If you're looking for how you can change a recipe with just the frosting, this easy coconut buttercream should do the trick. Topping soft, delicious cupcakes, the coconut cream is swapped for the fresh milk, making it the perfect complement to these ube-flavored cupcakes.       

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Photo by Riell Santos

8 Coconut Ice Cream Recipe 

It's perfectly okay to swap out fresh milk or even all-purpose cream with coconut milk and cream! That's why it's such a great ingredient to have on hand! Here, even the milky texture of homemade ice cream is made just as delicious and addictive using coconut cream as it would be if you used the traditional ingredients. Plus, ube and coconut are natural food pairing so it's just right that even that prettily-hued ice cream gets a flavor boost from coconut. 

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9 Maja Blanca Recipe 

Corn may be the main ingredient in this recipe but the other ingredient that makes this dessert delicious is all the coconut milk that's added to make it into a gelatinous-like consistency that jiggles as you eat it. You can even make a version that's even jigglier in the form of the Italian panna cotta

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Jul 20, 2015

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Just look at the gooey texture of this kakanin called inutak.
Photo by Bianca Laxamana

10 Inutak Recipe 

Kakanin is made of rice, but what you may have failed to notice is that most kakanin recipes incorporate gata in one or another into those same recipes, too. Take this fabulous recipe sticky kakanin from Taguig and Pateros. It's made of rice flour, sugar, and gata. Three simple ingredients create this one-of-a-kind dessert that best served with ice cream. You can even add in some ube like we did here, maybe langka, buko pandan, or even just keep it plain with coconut.

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