Written by Ivy
Dec 13 2022
This guide explains what sprouted coconut is, the advantages of this type of delicious fruit, and how to cut it easily.
Coconuts are typically harvested at six to seven months for coconut water and at 12 months for coconut meat, but by delaying the harvesting process a few months, the sprouting process can occur. The tiny seed inside slowly fills up the coconut when it naturally falls to the ground by consuming the coconut's water and meat.
A coconut that has sprouted is essentially one that is too mature. It is also known as a germinated coconut. Instead of the coconut containing coconut water on the inside like you are used to seeing with a traditional coconut, "the seed inside the shell has consumed the water causing the interior to become a solid, spongy mass" (as the Specialty Produce app explains). So, when you open the sprouted coconut, you are greeted by a large, edible light yellow mass that is commonly referred to as the coconut "apple". It has a very intriguing appearance!
I believe it is safe to say that coconut apple is one of the best superfoods now that you are aware of its health benefits. With the exception of tropical and coastal areas, it is not widely distributed. Although a few online chains have started to meet demand, it is advised to pick a reliable online or retail source where you can get coconut apples fresh and without preservatives. If you have any friends or family members who own coconut farms or lands, you can persuade them to grow coconuts for you so that you can buy from them and know they are clean and have recently harvested them.
I suppose I could have easily created a tutorial on how not to cut a sprouted coconut! I thought I was ready because before starting, I did some research on how to cut the sprouted coconut. I prepared to cut open the sprouted coconut by moving my sharp knife in a circle around the center of the fruit. Theoretically, this made sense. I did that for far too long to admit it, until I finally asked my friends at Specialty Produce for assistance. They used a different type of knife, so I decided to swap my knives for a less sharp knife, but it was bigger and different-shaped (a Calphalon 7″ Santoku knife – you can find it in this (affiliate link) knife set). The sprouted coconut eventually broke open after about a minute. I'm not sure if it happened that quickly as a result of all of my prior work or if that was simply the result of using the right knife, but I'll start out with the right knife the next time for sure!
Everything is very fascinating.
Naturally, I had to enlist the assistance of the true professionals and convince my children to try it as well (see the video below for proof). Watching my kids consume it, in my opinion, is a very accurate representation. Anabelle was very eager to try it because I made her sit and try to cut it open with me for ten minutes, but she didn't enjoy it once she did. She wanted to spoon me out some more to eat while I was taking pictures of it, though, because she was still so intrigued by it. Noah, on the other hand, really liked the coconut "meat" portion and ate everything I gave him. However, he definitely noticed when I randomly switched it up and added a bit of the coconut "apple." After giving it a few quick swirls in his mouth, he expelled it. I don't believe that means they won't like it in the future, but I do believe it has a lot to do with the new, different texture, which is quite normal for infants and young children. The children might respond differently if they were exposed to that texture more frequently, in my opinion.
Since I'm being completely honest here, I always believe it's a good idea to try new foods, especially if you are getting bored or they look interesting! I would cut open this thing with Anabelle again and again because it was so much fun! Would I want to consume a coconut that had sprouted that many times? Most likely not, but I do believe there is a lot of room for experimentation here, so I'm glad I gave it a shot because it has made me more interested in finding out more about traditional coconuts in general, including how they are cut!
I would like to send a big thank you to Specialty Produce for sending us some delicious treats to try and for keeping me inspired!