Within the baking industry, coconut flakes are an important ingredient that are used in any number of different products and recipes – adding a little aroma and sweetness to any baked good or cake.
However, when it comes to properly preparing them – such as when toasting – it is necessary that you know what you are doing, especially if you want the best results possible.
But how do you toast coconut flakes properly?
What Are Toasted Coconut Flakes Used For?
Toasted coconut flakes are a great way to add a little crunch, flavor, and sweetness to any form of baked goods or cake.
For example, they are commonly sprinkled on top of cupcakes to give a perfect finish to this popular dish. They can also be mixed into pastry cream for pie fillings, giving a little extra sweetness, and texture to an already delicious dessert.
The Best Way To Toast Coconut Flakes
When it comes to perfectly toasting coconut flakes, there are a couple of methods you can use to get the desired results.
On The Stove Top
The first method you could use to easily toast your coconut flakes is on the stove top.
This allows you to keep a close eye on the condition of the coconut flakes as they cook, and means that there is generally less chance of you becoming distracted, and allowing them to burn.
This works best for small batches of coconut flakes – roughly 1-2 cups worth – and the first thing you should do is to pour the coconut flakes onto a dry skillet, and allow them to brown over a medium to low heat.
Be sure to keep a close eye on them, and stir them around regularly to ensure an even finish. When the coconut flakes are done, they should be a golden brown color, and begin to give off a nutty smell.
In The Oven
Of course, the other great way to toast coconut flakes is in the oven.
This is probably the most common method that people tend to use, and is certainly better if you are using larger portions of coconut flakes – generally meaning anything above 2 cups.
To make this work, you will need to lay out the coconut flakes on a sheet pan – being sure to apply them in a thin layer, to get the best and most even finish.
Generally speaking, the best way to do this is at around 325 degrees fahrenheit (163 degrees celsius) for approximately 5 minutes – being sure to continually check the progress of the coconut flakes as the time progresses.
Once again, the sure fire way of telling that they are done is to look for the golden brown finish, and the nutty smell that should be released when they are ready.
Is It The Same For All Varieties?
The most common kinds of coconut flakes are sweetened and unsweetened, and regardless of which variety you have purchased, the same methods apply – as do the same signs you should be watching out for to indicate they are ready.
Are Coconut Flakes Healthy?
Generally speaking, coconut is a healthy and beneficial food to consume, but the problem with coconut flakes is that they are generally a processed food that go through all manner of different stages before they are released.
However, the best way to get your hands on healthy coconut flakes is to either shred and dry some yourself, or purchase organic, unsweetened coconut flakes – however, the latter might not be available in all grocery stores.
As a rule though, most baked goods are already less than healthy, and the coconut is still probably the healthiest ingredient on the list – but for those who are looking to either watch their figures, their health, or otherwise lead a cleaner lifestyle, there are plenty of choices out there.
What Are The Benefits Of Using Coconut Flakes?
There are of course many benefits to using coconut flakes in your recipes however, ranging from flavor profile, to healthiness.
When done right – i.e. with minimal added sugar and processing – coconut flakes can be a great way to add a little natural sweetness to your baking, which can be beneficial for those with health problems such as diabetes.
The flavor of coconut flakes also generally has a richer flavor profile than standard white sugar, which means that your baking will have a much more complex and endearing flavor overall.
This makes it a great addition to any form of baked goods – especially those that require a little something to really make them stand out.
Easy To Make
They are also really easy to prepare and toast – meaning you can have all of the great taste, aromas, and texture that coconut flakes can bring, without going to too much trouble or effort.
It is certainly true that coconut flakes play a large role in baking, and have all manner of applications across numerous different baked goods.
However, as this article highlights, without the proper knowhow and techniques, this dream ingredient can soon become a nightmare.
So if you are looking to properly toast coconut flakes without burning them, then be sure to follow this handy advice. Something tells me you won’t regret it!
Frequently Asked Questions
Now that we know a little more about coconut flakes, and the best ways to properly toast them, it is now time for us to answer some frequently asked questions that you might be interested in.
Are Coconut Flakes Expensive?
No! One of the perks of using coconut flakes is that they are not expensive – although there will be some variation with regards to brands and pricing.
Are Coconut Flakes Easy To Come By?
While they might not be easy to find in local grocery stores, most larger supermarket chains should have everything you need.