As dietitians committed to recipe makeovers, we tend to shy away from foods rich in saturated fat. So we’ve never cooked much with coconut milk (though we do like the light variety) or coconut oil. Coconut oil is high in saturated fat, but it turns out that the kind of saturated fat in coconut oil — lauric acid — can actually help to raise HDL cholesterol, the so-called good kind. Our trusted interns, Yvonne and Tashia, are currently doing some research on coconut oil and milk (the canned and refrigerated varieties), and we’ll be recording a podcast on the topic some time in May. In the meantime though, we decided to start dabbling with the oil and recently cooked up this easy, flaky, and delicious biscuit recipe that uses coconut oil instead of butter or shortening.
Made with coconut oil and light canned coconut milk, these biscuits are ideal for vegans whose diets eliminate the usual cow’s milk and butter.
The recipe we found on the Whole Foods website calls for refined coconut oil, which is mild in flavor and better suited for high heat cooking compared to the deeper-flavored virgin coconut oil.
Coconut Oil Biscuits
Makes 12 Servings
This recipe comes from Whole Foods. We changed it up slightly. For starters, we swapped the 2 cups all-purpose flour for 1 cup AP flour and 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour. We also used kosher salt instead of the fine sea salt called for in the recipe. We had leftover coconut milk which we froze and plan to use later for our Pint-Size Pina Colada Smoothies.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup solid refined coconut oil
- 3/4 cup canned light coconut milk
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole wheat pastry flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Cut in coconut oil with a pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in coconut milk just until a dough forms. Pat together and flatten on a lightly floured work surface to a rectangle about 1/2-inch thick. Cut into 12 squares and arrange on the prepared baking sheet, about 1½ inches apart. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes. Cool slightly before serving.
Nutrition Information per Serving (1 biscuit): 170 calories, 11g fat (9g saturated), 150mg sodium, 16g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 2g protein
Whole Foods suggests some interesting variations:
> Savory herb variation: Stir 3 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs such as chives, cilantro and/or parsley and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper into the flour mixture before cutting in coconut oil.
> Sweet variation: Increase sugar to 2 tablespoons. Just before baking, brush biscuit tops with 1 tablespoon light coconut milk, then sprinkle with 1 teaspoon sugar.
Melissa Clarke from the New York Times wrote an interesting article on coconut oil last year, so you may want to check that out. In it, she shared a coconut-oil roasted sweet potato recipe that looks amazing. Could be next up on our list of must-try recipes