How to Open Young Thai Coconuts Easy (Brown Ones Too!) – The Renegade Health Show Episode #504

Friday Feb 12 | BY |
| Comments (59)

After yesterday’s episode, we got a lot of requests for us to explain how to open young Thai coconuts…

So today, we went to the supermarket and got a while bunch of different types of coconuts and show you how to open all of them.

There are plenty of techniques to use, some are easier than others, but I think you’ll enjoy this tutorial. 🙂

Take a look…

Your question of the day: What other health “How To’s” do you want to see from us?

Click here, scroll down to the bottom of the page and leave your comments now!

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.


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  1. Awesome show guys. I didn’t know how easy it was to open the brown coconuts, thanks for the tip.

    Here’s something I’d like to learn: how to make raw noodles from coconut meat, jicama or other things (other than kelp).

    That would be awesome.

  2. RW says:

    At the top of my list of how to do it shows would be ‘how to build the best organic garden’?

  3. Brenda Rex says:

    Although I know how to open up a coconut I did like the that you showed how to open one of them on the sidewalk! Amazing Video!! Very Helpful.

  4. how to properly pick fruits, like pineapple, papayas, melons, etc. i often eat them when they’re still unripe because i can’t tell if they are or not.

    how to grow my own greens… or gardening tips.

  5. suzanne says:

    Video the produce section in a grocery store pointing out different greens, their tastes, how to select, etc.
    How to shop when on the road when organic greens, fruit (berries, apples, bananas, etc.) are not available.

  6. Sarah says:

    How to grow a successful organic garden…. soil health, natural remedies for pests, etc. That sounds amazing!!

  7. Genevieve says:

    I knew how to use a knife but hadn’t heard of cracking them on the sidewalk either. Fun!

    You guys would have laughed at me a few days ago. We were down in Fort Lauderdale visiting my husband’s family and as we walked around I saw LOTS of coconuts in the trees. Well, I told my husband about your coconut adventure with Raneesh (?) and bugged him to go find a big ladder and try it too. ha ha He wouldn’t go for it though. S i g h….

    How about showing us the proper way to cut open a pineapple, and how to know which fruits are ripe as someone else suggested. Too often I buy unripe melons, papayas, etc. (in Canada).

    Many thanks.

  8. Susan says:

    Thank you for the how-to. We’re going to give it a try. Cracking a couple of nuts on the sidewalk looks to be a lot more fun (and possibly even therapeutic) than buying the prepackaged processed coconut in the stores.


  9. Karen says:

    Thanks for this coconut show. I had never even tasted a fresh coconut until you guys came along. Thanks!

    I know you are on the road and don’t have a garden, but I would really appreciate any gardening tips you could impart. We all really need to start growing some of our own food.

  10. john says:

    Excellent video on how to get to the juice and meat of coco-nuts.I liked the drill-bit to grow cherry trees,persimmons,almonds,figs, dates,blueberries,berries of all types. I guess I have a sweet tooth.

  11. Hi Kevin and Annemarie

    If you get an more tropical fruits while in Florida that people would not have any idea how to eat them or what to make with them, that is something I’d like to see.

    Also, visit my blog and read about my 42 day cleanse that I finished mid-January and I have also written about my transition back to food. I continue to write about health related topics and post daily (off on weekends). To read about my cleanse from day 1, click on December 2009. Share this with others who may be interested and I love to receive comments.

    Chef Mindy aka Ageless Raw Beauty

  12. Betsy says:

    How to make almond butter please.
    I do have rosemary and Tea tree in my garden.
    Please briefly explain in words how to make rosemary oil and tea tree oil to apply on body. Thank you.

  13. Fay says:

    A safer way to open brown coconuts – done this all my life – is to find the 3 eyes at the top and dig with a sharp knife into each till you find the one or sometimes two that are soft. Screw the knife in till a hole opens up, turn the coconut upside down onto a measuring jug or other small receptacle and allow the juice to flow out. Then I place the coconut onto a hard cleaned surface [ie: concrete floor/surface] and whack the coconut with a hammer to get smaller pieces. It’s then easy to use a blunt knife/instrument to insert between meat and shell, to prize off the meat. I then whizz the little pieces in a liquidizer with filtered water and leave to soak in fridge overnight. The next day I pass it thru my twin-gear juicer – produces wonderful milk/cream – great for your health, and the left over pulp is wonderful for gluten-free baking or to sprinkle on salad or muesli. You can freeze the milk in ice-cube trays for later use and the pulp also freezes really well for later use.

  14. June says:

    This show opening coconuts is fun!!! I saw once someone open a brown coconut in different way: In the top of the coconut are 3 marks with shape of the circle, and you punch with a punch holder(it looks like screw driver but pointy) each circle, and only one of them is very soft, hit it hard, and you take the water out; to open it hit it on the sidewalk (or concrete floor) like Kevin did.

    I want to have an organic garden in my backyard and would like to now how what to use that is natural for making my compost.

    I enjoy your show… you are a cute couple, funny an friendly


  15. Connie says:

    I’d like to learn how to make things like tinctures, salves and teas from scratch.

  16. Mary Ellen says:

    never thought about using a drill. sure liked that tip. thanx.

  17. Catherine says:

    There are good online links to cutting Mangoes and Kiwi. I stupidly used to peel the Kiwi’s, until I saw that all I have to do is cut them in half and scoop out with a spoon. So easy. I still find Mangoes a bit challenging.

    I love your show. I’m taking the course at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition this year (, and I feel like I have a real jump on things from all the education I’ve gotten from you. Thank you for all you two do!!!

  18. Barbara W. says:

    Thanks. I really enjoyed these last two shows on coconuts. If anyone else out there is still hesitant to open young thai coconuts like I was, here is yet one more method to consider demonstrated by Matt Monarch with a rubber mallet and chisel.

  19. Sue says:

    I open brown coconuts by first piercing one of the three round marks at the end with a screwdriver and letting the water drain out, then I put the coconut in a plastic carrier bag and take it out to the patio and swing it onto the ground – it easily breaks and the pieces stay clean.

    I second Sarah’s request for information on creating a good organic garden – particularly on soil preparation.

  20. Tahnee says:

    How to make coconut butter?

  21. Frances says:

    Thanks for the tips; very helpful to see it “in action” (I’ve seen still pictures).

    I’d like to see more of how pick and prep some of the more “exotic” fruits and veggies. And if you show almond butter, could you cover making tahini as well?

    Thank you so much for all the info you provide. (Y’all are such a cute couple, too! (Yep, that’s y’all as in Texas, even if the contraction might be written differently. he he!))

  22. kt says:

    Great show! It should have been titled Going Coconuts! Fun stuff, really. As for the question of the week….For those of us who live in colder climates, how do we pick out exotic fruits at their peek freshness? For example, how do you tell when kiwi, starfruit, or even a coconut is good? I bought a coconut at a local grocery store and didn’t realize it was already cracked and when I opened it, YUCK! It definitely was not any good, didn’t think coconuts could go bad, but definitely not a good experience.

  23. Leanne Almeida says:

    Hi from Down Under, I love your videos, thanks for sharing your info, you guys are great…..Do you know if any suppliers of nutritional yeast & irish Moss export to Australia….I’m having a hard time finding them here………thanks again….

  24. RJ says:

    Thanks for the great “how-to” on opening the many forms of coconuts!

    I’ve cut my hand many times buy simply using a scissor, for various projects. Seems it’s always the distractions in my mind or distractions in my surroundings that cause me to carelessly cut my fingers.

    To help save an Extremely Expensive Emergency trip to the hospital, I now protect my hands with heavy leather gloves when opening a coconut. For those who dislike using leather, you could just any heavy glove (or simply use your totally focused mind)… then again, one could look into purchasing, or researching metal mesh gloves…

    I’d LOVE to see a “how-to” on the use of that yoga contraption that Annmarie was hanging upside down from. I tried researching it online and found way too many products like that available. I’m sure you both did the research that was needed before you purchased that cool tool. Please go into more depth about hanging upside down and give us a general workout using that cool tool. Where did you purchase it?

    Here’s a Special Valentine for little JohnnyFive…

    Thank you for the wonderful Valentine recipe gift, Kevin & AnnMarie 🙂

  25. gina says:

    Great show- I can’t wait to open up a coconut (never done it!). 🙂 I’ve heard David Wolfe mention consuming wild greens and I’d love for you to do a show on how to spot wild greens that are safe to eat. I would also love a show on organic gardening and also what fruits and veggies you can grow inside (besides wheatgrass and sprouts). I’m all for cutting down on grocery shopping! 🙂

  26. Joyce Braun says:

    i WISH i had a whole foods near me! I’ve never had a young coconut 🙁

    i always use a drill and a hammer to get into the old ones 🙂

  27. Ladan says:

    How about how to grow your own wheatgrass if you live in an apartment!..theres some vids on the net that show the how to’s of wheatgrass but i’d like to see how you guys would go about it and if u have any cool tips…thanks for another fun show.

  28. Irina says:

    Great show! Thank you for the tips, guys! Now, I want that coconut! Heading coconut shopping tomorrow.

  29. Wind_Dancer says:

    Love a show on how to reduce inflamation using natural methods. I have Fibromyalgia and have had to quit teaching yoga because the swelling and pain are so bad. Tried many alternative treatments. Looking for relief so I can back to what I love doing.

    Also a show on how to make organic mayo and some sort of cheese (recently gone Vegan)that has no animal products. Soy is 99% GMO so I am leery of soy cheese.

  30. Pasithea says:

    Thanks for that great show! My first time posting a comment, but I have been enjoying and benefiting from your videos for about 6 months. I so much appreciate your enthusiasm, common sense, honest approach, chock full of condensed yet easy to grasp health info. You’re both totally awesome and inspiring!

    Question: I have access to lots of coconuts for free (when in season). Could I somehow preserve the coconut water…maybe freeze it, or can it in jars for year round use? Thanks again!

  31. Christie says:

    Hi! I just noticed you are advertising for Garden of Life VItamin Code/”Raw Vitamin D”. I work at a health food store, which sales Garden of life and have received training’s on the products. I am skeptical of the motives behind this company. Although their products are “raw” they are not vegan, as the initial starter culture from the vitamin D is from sheep lanolin. (However it is the most removed you will find) They seem all around very commercial and sales driven. I would love to hear if you guys back this company? (I received the “Raw Cleanse” and am wary of trying it)



  32. ginger says:

    i agree with the following requests from others:
    1)how to select ripe fruit in the stores
    2)how to cut up mangoes without making a big mess
    i’d also like to add the following:
    1)how to dice one onion without crying (or having to wash a processor for such a small job)
    2)how to find a vegan, organic version of omega-3 EPA and DHA.
    3) the best way to wash the grit off leafy vegetables and fresh herbs without using so much water. and the easiest way to dry them afterward without becoming limp or crushed.

    thanks. you people are so helpful!

  33. Michael T. says:


    Did you know that there are special tools for opening green coconuts? They are basically augers. All you do is pop the cap off the coconut, insert the auger, tap it in, twist a few times, and the coconut is ready to drink.

    Check out this youtube video demo:

    No need for knives or machetes, until it’s time to cut the coconut in half to get the meat.

    Michael T.

  34. Steve says:

    K & AM –
    Besides showing us how to tell when organic foods are ripe, I’d also like to know the best way to store foods so they last longer and still have all their nutrition. Dehydrating?, freezing?, Tupperware ?, plastic ?, glass jars ? Those “green” prodruce bags ?, which works best for what types of foods ?
    – Thanks for all you do !
    Travel safe,
    – Steve

  35. Marie1225 says:

    Hi Kevin and Annmarie,

    I would love some new smoothie recipes. Maybe a how to on using pots to grow vegetables.

  36. Laura says:

    Thanks guys. Kevin, it was cool to see you working with the food directly. 😉

    That video was quite entertaining as well as educational.

    I would like to see how to open and cut a mango. I seem to always make a big mess of them and don’t seem to be able to get the “meat” away from the pit.

    Thanks again.


  37. Em says:

    Coconut Kefir!


  38. Mary says:

    I use this method to open my Thai coconuts that I found at the Body Ecology Diet. There is also directions for how to make kefir (which has tremendously helped my autistic son’s gut!!)
    Basically, you cut the bottom of the coconut off until you get to the shell and then there is a soft spot that you poke through with a carrot peeler or a small knife and drain. Not as much danger to cut something by banging on it with a large knife.
    How do we choose coconuts so that when I open them they aren’t pink? One of the last cases I opened had 5 bad coconuts in it. One of them had red water. YUCK!
    Happy St. Valentines Day, though you both always look like every day is Valentines!

  39. Cherie says:

    I love the drill method. Maybe I will go get a coconut and see what they tase like.

    How do you choose a good coconut?

  40. Elaine says:

    Really liked the show on cost cutting methods and reading bloggers ideas. I know you sell many items in your own store but maybe a show on how to find other items that are hard to locate in different areas of the world, and ideas how to find the best local foods.

  41. Sheila says:

    Love your show. I’ve always wondered how to cut open a coconut. I’d also like to see how to cut open a small pumpkin.

  42. Veronika says:

    How to build an organic garden for people in apartments! How to use balcony space, planters, etc. And how to mineralize the soil to get the most nutritious soil – I think you had a video about a certain type of rock (like from creeks) that you put in the soil to make it better?

  43. Veronika says:

    Oops, I meant “the most nutritious food”.

  44. Janie says:

    Hey Annmarie and Kev,

    *HELP* with sea veggies, and irish moss…I just don’t know what to do with them…and how to incorporate them into a raw meal.I have a bag of dulse I picked up and some seasoning of dulse…but then I don’t know anything at all about other sea veggies and what to do with them, how to prepare them, and recipies.

    Also, homemade chocolates that are like a chocolate truffle…with like a recipe. Most chocolate recipes are including like nuts and nutbutters…just want a simple cacao recipe for chocolate truffles.

    And some good raw ice cream recipies…from start to finish…

    You guys are the best! Thanks so much!

    Ella Jane F.

  45. Janie says:

    Oh…and growing herbs inside…and how to keep pests out of your garden outside..How to grow your own organic garden…the process to get it ready!

    Thanks so much again!
    You guys are so awesome!

    Ella Jane F.

  46. Lisa says:

    Thank you folks for the great demo. I like Veronikas suggestion.

  47. Be careful with the white coconuts–many of them have been bleached, at least the ones we can get in Colorado at the grocery store.
    My father used to use a hammer and nail to open the brown ones—just pound the nail into the “eyes” (two of them), drain the water, and use the hammer to break the shell in small pieces.
    I too would like to learn how to make tahini!

  48. Chris & Sara says:

    I think a How To on small space gardening would rock. Looks like lots of people want to see that, too.

    Hey do you guys have any fresh herbs or tomatoes growing in the RV? That would be great and easy. Not to mention Yummmy… 🙂

    Kev, we heard from our CoCo guy here that the Thai Cocos that are imported are GMO’d, that is why they’re sweeter???? Im going to look into it.

    Thanks again for a wonderful show today!

    Happy Valentines Day!! We love you guys!!


  49. Cindy (Sydney, Australia) says:

    Hi Guys,
    Do you know how coconut oil is made and if it is possible to make it yourself.
    I would also like to know how to make nut butters, and natural ways to keep pests off homegrown produce like basil, tomatoes.
    I’d also like a rundown on what vegetables can/cannot be eaten raw, especially when it comes to skins etc like eggplant, potato’s, sweet potato’s (i think you call them yams.
    Thanks and have a great day.

    Also to Leanne Almeida (comment 23) in Australia Nutritional yeast is called ‘Savoury Yeast flakes’ and i bought some by a company called “lotus” I live in Castle Hill, NSW and i got them from a local health food store. Lotus Foods are in Victoria Phone number is (03) 95842245. Maybe ring to see where a local supplier is in your state/area. Hope this helps.

  50. rose says:

    How to-

    an easy way to make toothpaste.
    DW mentioned using just coconut oil and neem oil on a toothbrush?

    maybe the addition of fine sea salt?

    i and many are sensitive even to natural toothpastes.

    i saw your previous program on tooth powder, but need something more practicle.

  51. Barbara W. says:

    “Kev, we heard from our CoCo guy here that the Thai Cocos that are imported are GMO’d, that is why they’re sweeter???? Im going to look into it”

    I’d be interested in knowing if what Chris & Sara were told applies to all imported young thai coconuts. Another great show might be a “how to help people in identifying and avoiding GMO’s” Thanks.

  52. Anne Hunt says:

    1. How to do Organic Square Foot Gardens
    2. 5 Sample raw breakfasts including beverages
    3. 5 Sample raw lunches
    4. 5 Sample raw dinners
    5. List of 10 raw snacks
    6. Total skin care routine with how/where to purchase products
    7. How to make berry kefirs
    8. Where to purchase organic hair dyes and how to do them
    9. Where to purchase the best organic cleaning products and how to clean the house/floor/clothes
    10. Is there organic dry cleaners? If so what are they called and how do you find them?

    Thanks for all of the info.

  53. Anne Hunt says:

    11. Resources for organic clothing and bedding

  54. jason says:

    Here are some “How To’s” that I’d like to see:

    1. How to tell if certain nuts are really raw. Pure Jeevan just published a tip about soaked almonds–the skin slides right off of the pasteurized ones. There was also a comment about the fat almond milk not separating if the nuts are pasteurized. I wonder if this is true, and if there are similar tests that can be done with other nuts.

    2. What to look for when buying certain items, to know that they are raw, or at least minimally processed: olive oil, seaweed, sea salt, green powders, etc.

    3. I’ve often heard that we’re supposed to discard seeds that float. Is this true, and why? Same question on foam from fresh juice.

  55. Carol Lani Johnson says:

    Biodynamic gardening!!!! I visited a biodynamic greenhouse nearby (Fields of Gold Beyond Organics Greenhouse in Mills River, NC) & they said that an Israeli organic greenhouse consultant came to the US to give them a consultation & was so impressed with the vitality of their plants he wanted to move here & learn biodynamic gardening. It is fascinating, with homeopathic brews of minerals, etc. added to the soil…alchemy, really. They use a special mixer that creates a vortex, moving a certain direction to mix the homeopathic “tea” to nourish the plants. You have so many people wanting to grow their own produce, please show us how Rudolf Steiner’s biodynamic method adds minerals to our depleted U.S. soil/gardens!!!!

  56. Basia says:

    Aren’t young Thai coconuts usually dipped in a very yucky and unhealthy anti-fungal before they are shipped out? I am not sure if the good outweighs the harm. Any info out there?

  57. Pat G. says:

    A drill? LOL My dad opened and grated many a coconut so my mom could run water through the gratings to make coconut milk for bibinka!!!! My dad is dead, and my mom is 94, so no one’s is making anything, but my memories as a child were when I saw dad on his stool grating like crazy, I’d jump up-and-down and scream, ” bibinka! bibinka! I guess that level of delight is what makes some foods comfortable…:-) Now I miss my dad…

    Next time, I want to see Kevin juggle several… 🙂

  58. SusanJ says:

    I would like to know a lowfat protocol in rawfood so I can lose weight. I have been eating raw food, but not able to lose weight. Bummers! What would one eat everyday and need to do. Love your show and think you are a great couple!

  59. Jill says:

    The drill idea seems a lot safer than using knives, I don’t think I’d be scared to use it lol. I agree with the raw breakfast ideas. 🙂

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