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In my pantry, I have a bag of dried & shredded coconut. I want to use it, but all recipes I come across ask for sweetened coconut. That coconut also looks a lot more moist than mine.

Is there a way I can change my dried coconut? I was thinking of letting it soak in water/sugar-solution, but I have no idea how much sugar I would need to add, how long I should let it soak and if this would even work at all.

Does anyone have a suggestion?

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Also, most recipes that ask for sweetened coconut add additional sugar. If my coconut can't get sweetened, I can add some extra sugar. – Mien Mar 29 '12 at 20:21
up vote 3 down vote accepted

According to this step-by-step set of instructions from Livestrong, you can definitely make sweetened coconut from dried coconut.

Things You'll Need:

  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 tbsp. powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. canola oil
  • 2 tsp. water


  1. Blend dried coconut and powdered sugar with a whisk in a medium-sized bowl until the mixture is uniform.

  2. Combine the canola oil and water in a small bowl, stirring until the ingredients are well blended.

  3. Pour the liquid ingredients over the sugared coconut. Stir them to thoroughly coat the coconut.

  4. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes, or until the coconut absorbs all the liquid. Stir the mixture once or twice to turn it over.

  5. Use the moistened, sweetened coconut immediately for best results. Alternatively, place it in a plastic freezer bag for short-term storage in the refrigerator or long-term storage in the freezer. While sealing the bag, press out as much air as possible.

Tips and Warnings:

The vegetable oil moistens the coconut and helps the powdered sugar adhere better. If desired, increase the amount of water in the recipe to 4 tsp. and eliminate the oil. Likewise, substitute the canola oil for safflower or sunflower oil. Don't use olive oil, however, as its saltier flavor will mask or diminish the sugar's sweetness. The recipe calls for a small amount of coconut because it's best to use homemade, sweetened coconut as you make it. You can easily double or triple the quantities of each ingredient to make larger batches. Sweetened, shredded coconut will stay fresh for about a month in an airtight container stored in a cool, dry place or the refrigerator.

If the instructions don't work out for you, I'd suggest re-hydrating your coconut in a bowl of room temp water, draining the water out of the bowl, blotting the coconut until damp, and then adding the sugar.

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Thanks! Looks like what I needed :) – Mien Mar 29 '12 at 20:44
@Mien: Do come back and let us know how it works; Livestrong is a bit of a content farm, with articles of mixed quality. – Jefromi Mar 29 '12 at 21:56
@wanderingscribe, I went ahead and edited you answer by adding in the instructions from the site. For future reference it is good practice to add relevant information in quotes so the information is preserved in case the site or article goes down or the URL is changed. – Jay Mar 30 '12 at 13:20
@Jay Thanks. I appreciate the edit and will remember your reference in the future. – wanderingscribe Mar 31 '12 at 16:45
I just tried this for making macaroons and it worked fine. I used 150 grams of dried coconut (3/2 cup) for 3 Tbsp of powdered sugar and 4 Tbsp of water. I drizzled a bit of peanut oil over the top in the end. I'm not sure if it was wet enough (I don't know how wet it should be). – Mien Jul 15 '12 at 22:09

My recipe is a little different. I use natural cane sugar, water, a dash of himalayan salt, and coconut oil.

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Can you include some measurements and instructions? The OP does ask "how much" and "how long" :) – Erica Sep 19 '15 at 1:01

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