35 Recipes to Make with That Can of Coconut Milk in Your Pantry

Every time I buy a can of coconut milk, I always end up with a half-used can somehow. I put it in a resealable container, but inevitably forget about it in my fridge cemetery (the top shelf). Well, not this week. To help you use up the full can once and for all, we’re rounding up some great recipes with coconut milk. Some call for just a few tablespoons or maybe a half-cup to help you make use of what’s left over, while some put the whole can to work.

Adding some coconut milk to a dish is a great way to mix things up for dinner, dessert, and even breakfast. Just the scent of it freshens things up. Here are 30+ recipes with coconut milk that’ll give you a great excuse to open up a can of unsweetened goodness ASAP.

Sweet Breakfasts

I definitely suggest you kick your day off with something sweet and coconut-rich, whether it’s a morning treat like pancakes or a weekday standard like oatmeal.

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Coconut and Ginger Oatmeal

Swapping your regular milk with coconut milk when making oatmeal is nothing but a game-changer.

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The Best Chia Pudding

We promise no fuss and no slimy texture in this classic chia seed pudding.

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Creamy Soups

A generous splash of coconut milk lends instant creaminess to so many soups. You’ll also get nutty flavor, to boot.

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Thai Coconut Soup

This lightly creamy soup is the perfect way to start a Thai-inspired meal.

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Quick Coconut Chicken Soup

Simmered in a silky coconut broth, diced root vegetables take on heady aromas of ginger and lemongrass in this comforting chicken soup.

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Main and Side Dishes

Keep a can or two of coconut milk handy in your pantry and an inspired main or side dish is never far away. It’s just the thing to turn a regular ol’ chicken dinner into an exciting one.

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Crispy Sesame-Lime Tempeh with Coconut Curry

If you’ve never cooked with tempeh before, you’ll want to give this flavor-drenched, veggie-packed curry a try. The nutty, chunky tempeh is perfectly complemented by a flavorful marinade. Baking it produces a bit of crust without the mess and oiliness of frying.

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Coconut Curry Shrimp

This quick red curry is filled with shrimp, bell peppers, and bok choy, and comes together in a single pot.

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The Ultimate Vegan Mac and Cheese

This vegan mac and cheese is made with sweet potatoes, coconut milk, and nutritional yeast for the finest plant-based comfort food.

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Flavorful Desserts

The natural sweetness of coconut means it’s a naturally winning ingredient in desserts. Whether you’re using it to flavor a buttery cake or swapping it in for cream to make a vegan treat, it never fails.

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Coconut Panna Cotta

This coconut panna cotta is made with coconut milk and cream, gelatin, and sweetened with maple syrup making it a lovely dessert for many different diets.

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Tipsy Coconut Tres Leches Cake

This recipe bumps up the flavor by spiking both the cake and the sweet milky syrup with a drizzle of dark rum and lots of coconut.

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Triple Coconut Poke Cake

This triple coconut poke cake gets its rich coconut flavor from coconut cake, pudding, and fluffy coconut topping.

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Coconut Milk Bread Pudding

This Indian-inspired bread pudding is studded with candied ginger and pistachios and made fragrant with cardamom.

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Chocolate Coconut Cake

Because the only thing better than chocolate cake is chocolate coconut cake.

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Chris Perez

Contributor

Chris is creative director of Left Right Media branding and marketing agency in Austin. As a photographer and former engineer, Chris enjoys covering topics at the intersection of art and science.

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