Experience the taste of the tropics with chewy Coconut Cookies. These delightful treats are packed with the lush flavor of coconut, offering a sweet, chewy texture that’s sure to transport you to island shores with every bite. Whether you’re a coconut lover or just looking for a delicious new cookie recipe to try, these cookies are a perfect choice.

I’ve always loved the rich, tropical flavor of coconut. It reminds me of sunny days and sandy beaches. Inspired by this, I crafted a cookie recipe that not only satisfies the sweet tooth but also brings a bit of island magic to your kitchen. These chewy coconut cookies, with their blend of sweetened and toasted coconut, are my way of sharing a slice of paradise. They’re perfect for gatherings, gifts, or a quiet moment.

If you love coconut like me, you need to also try my Coconut Cake and my Coconut Cream Pie. You will be living the paradise coconut dream!

Freshly baked coconut cookies

The Chemistry of Coconut Cookies

The delightful texture and flavor of these coconut cookies stem from the careful balance of ingredients and baking chemistry. The unsalted butter and brown sugar are whipped together to create a light and airy base, while the eggs bind the mixture, adding moisture that helps form a chewy texture. Coconut extract amplifies the tropical flavor, and the combination of sweetened and toasted coconut flakes adds not only a depth of taste but also varying textures that enhance the eating experience. The finishing touch of turbinado sugar provides a slight crunch and a sparkle that makes these cookies as appealing to look at as they are to eat.

Can I substitute coconut oil for butter in this recipe?

Yes, coconut oil can be used for a more intense coconut flavor and slightly different texture. Use it in a solid state, similar to the consistency of softened butter.

How do I prevent the cookies from spreading too much during baking?

Ensure your butter is not too soft before mixing, and chilling the dough before baking can help maintain the shape and texture of the cookies.

Freshly baked coconut cookies

What is turbinado sugar, and can I substitute it with another type?

Turbinado sugar is a coarse sugar with a slight molasses flavor. If unavailable, you can substitute it with dermerara sugar or regular granulated sugar for topping, though the texture will vary slightly.

Why use both sweetened and toasted coconut flakes?

Using both types of coconut enhances the flavor complexity and texture. Sweetened coconut adds moisture and sweetness, while toasted coconut provides a nutty, crunchy contrast.

Freshly baked coconut cookies

What is in coconut cookies?

Unsalted Butter

It is always important to use unsalted butter when baking. If you use salted butter, you have no way of knowing how much salt you are adding to your dough or batter and it will result in an overly salted treat.

Butter adds fats to your dough or batter which helps with moistness, flavor and texture. Butter melts at body temperature, which creates a ‘melt in your mouth’ sensation.

When baking with butter the temperature is important. If the butter is too warm your treat will melt down too fast and overspread in the oven, leaving you with a greasy, flat mess. If your butter is too cold it will have the opposite problem and not melt down enough, leaving your treat too thick.

Brown Sugar

Is granulated sugar with a little molasses mixed in. Molasses is a somewhat smoky flavored natural sweetener, which makes brown sugar a bit sweeter than granulated sugar. Brown sugar draws more moisture into your treat, keeping it softer for longer. It’s also more acidic, which means it will help activate your baking soda.

Eggs

Adds both a protein (egg whites) and fat (egg yolks). The egg whites help with rising because, when foamed, little air pockets get trapped inside the egg white mixture. The water content in egg whites encourages steam while baking, which helps with gluten formation, resulting in nice and thick treats. Egg yolks have emulsifying properties that bring batters and doughs together and help them from collapsing. Unless otherwise specified, always use large eggs.

Coconut Extract

Adds a sweet tropical flavor to your treats.

All-purpose Flour

Builds structure as it absorbs liquids and expands. All-purpose flour falls in the middle of bread flour (high in gluten) and cake flour (low in gluten). It’s exactly what it is named, all-purpose, the most universal flour that can be used in most baked goods.

Baking Soda

Elevates the pH level of your batter or dough. It increases the spread in your treat and encourages browning, which gives the crispy outside and soft inside texture that everyone loves. Baking soda needs both an acid and a liquid to react. Things that will activate your baking soda are: vinegar, fruit juice, molasses, brown sugar, tartar, buttermilk and sour cream. Baking soda only reacts once, which is right when it’s mixed into your batter or dough. The soda creates little air bubbles all throughout your treat. When the air bubbles get heated up in the oven, they expand.

Fine Sea Salt

Enhances flavor, adds balance, masks any bitter flavors. Salt is the most powerful and oldest preservative. Always make sure to use fine sea salt so it melts down at the right speed in the heat of the oven. If you use larger granule salt, it will not melt down fully when baked and will leave salt crystals throughout your treat, making it crunch like you dropped it into sand.

Turbinado Sugar

This is raw sugar and have very large granules. It will not melt down in your oven like granulated sugar, so I do not recommend using it as a substitution for sugar. This is best as a topping.

Sweetened & Toasted Coconut Flakes

Offer a delightful mix of sweet and toasty flavors, adding to the cookie’s complexity.

Freshly baked coconut cookies

Storage Tips

Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week. To keep them chewy, place a piece of bread in the container to help maintain moisture.

Freezing Options

You can freeze the cookie dough balls after rolling them in a toasted coconut and turbinado sugar. Place them on a baking sheet to freeze individually, then transfer to a freezer bag and store for up to 3 months. Bake directly from frozen, adding an extra minute or two to the baking time.

Making Ahead

The cookie dough can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days before baking. This not only saves time but can also enhance the flavors as they meld together.

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Why make coconut cookies?

Baking these homemade treats that are both simple to make and incredibly satisfying, perfect for transporting your senses to a tropical paradise with every bite.

Recipes You May Love

Coconut Cookies

Author: Madison Reid
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 9 minutes
Servings: 20 large cookies
These chewy coconut cookies are packed with real coconut flavor. They are chewy and sweet and give you island vibes.

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp coconut extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/2 cup toasted coconut flakes
  • 1/2 cup turbinado sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  • In a standing mixer combine butter and brown sugar. Mix until combined. Turn the mixer on high and whip for 1-2 minutes, stopping every 30 seconds or so to scrap down the bowl.
  • Add the eggs and extract and mix until combined.
  • Add the flour, baking soda, salt and sweetened coconut. Mix until the dough forms.
  • In a small separate bowl combine the toasted coconut and Turbinado sugar. Set aside.
  • On light metal cookie sheets that have been lined with parchment paper, scoop large 2tbs scoop size cookie dough balls out. Roll the tops of each cookie dough ball in the toasted coconut mixture.
  • Bake for 9-10 minutes.
  • Remove and allow the cookies to sit on the pan for 5-10 minutes to set.

Nutrition

Calories: 278kcal Carbohydrates: 42g Protein: 2g Fat: 12g Saturated Fat: 8g Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g Monounsaturated Fat: 3g Trans Fat: 0.4g Cholesterol: 41mg Sodium: 145mg Potassium: 80mg Fiber: 1g Sugar: 29g Vitamin A: 307IU Calcium: 27mg Iron: 1mg

Have you tried this recipe?

I’d love to see it! Follow @_mrs.madi_ on Instagram and tag your photos with #mrsmadi.

Freshly baked coconut cookies