Besides adding flavor and texture to dishes, coconut also has some health benefits like improved digestion, weight loss, and a low-calorie count, which only gives you more reasons to include it in your recipes. If you want your kids to benefit from the richness of coconut as well, you can add coconut flakes to trail mixes, cereals, ice-cream, and even consume it as it is, but in moderation. However, there are factors to keep in check when buying coconut flakes, and this guide will help buyers make the right choice.
The Variations: Flakes, Chips, and Shredded Coconut
It is quite common for buyers to mistake coconut flakes for shredded coconut, and even though both look alike, they are different. Flakes are wide and long coconut pieces and are more suitable for adding texture to desserts like cakes or pies. On the other hand, shredded coconut includes much thinner and smaller strips, which is an excellent choice for stuffing and can be added to nuts and chocolates. Another variation is coconut chips, which are just the flakes but crunchy in texture, a healthy snacking option that has been widely popular among diet followers.
Which to Choose: Unsweetened or Sweetened Flakes?
Buyers are more likely to find unsweetened coconut flakes, but few are sweetened or at least lightly sweetened. If you are on a healthy path and trying to cut down on your sugar intake, then going with unsweetened coconut flakes is better as it has added sugar and preservatives. Added sugar also makes the flakes moist, while unsweetened flakes are dry. However, if you plan to use coconut flakes for baking, it is better to go with the sweetened option for a rich and enhanced flavor. But if using it for other dishes like Thai curry, unsweetened flakes are more suitable.
Ingredients and Packaging
Even though coconut flakes are good for you, it is always best to check the ingredient list. Buyers should prefer natural or organic flakes, free of artificial flavors, preservatives, additives, non-GMO, and gluten-free. If you buy coconut chips, then there are vegan, dairy-free, and soy-free options as well. Another thing to consider is the packaging, and it is better to go with packs that can be resealed, so the coconut flakes stay fresh if you don’t use it all at once.
Categories Simillar to Coconut Flakes includes Corn Oils, Olive Oils and Vegetable Oils