Differentiating coconut products
I did do a search through previous posts and could not find one post that dealt with this; hope this isn't a redundant issue, but I'm a newbie and need some clarification.
What is the difference between coconut manna, coconut oil, and coconut butter? I saw the coconut manna today at the health food store and it looked just like extra virgin coconut oil to me (Is the manna the contents of young coconuts? What is it?). I thought the term "butter" indicated it was just the fat, so is coconut butter really coconut oil?
Are there health benefits to using one over the other?
Manna is coconut flesh with the oil. Sometimes the oil separates to the top, you have to heat the jar in warm water for a bit and then stir the manna and it all goes back together again. It's delicious! You can eat manna with fruit, in smoothies or just with a spoon. To me manna is more of a treat type of thing, but it's good because it's only coconut, it's a whole food. Coconut oil is just that, oil, and it's supposed to be a great source of MCT's, very good for you. Most people use it for cooking (like, to cook your eggs or sautee veggies), some put a spoonful in their coffee or tea. Now coconut butter I'm not sure about. I have seen it but I looked at the ingredients and there was a lot of stuff in it that isn't Primal friendly. The idea I got from it was that it was sort of a spread, like to put on toast or what not. I do not use it and I won't because of the bad stuff in it. There is also coconut milk which comes canned. Thai Kitchen brand is the best brand I've been able to find. No preservatives and comes in organic. I use that over fruit and in my coffee.
I've never come across coconut butter with additives--I'll have to check labels carefully if I ever change brands. Our Whole Foods sells Nutiva brand coconut manna, and Artisana brand coconut butter. I've used both and see no difference. They are whole coconut flesh ground up very finely. Yum. I use it to make "candy bars" by warming it to liquid, then pouring a thin layer into the bottom of a plastic dish. When it's cold, you can twist the dish to release the coconut butter and break it into pieces. I just keep it in the fridge to eat as a treat. It's supposed to be very good added to curries, also, and I know I've read you can use it with water to substitute for coconut milk (though it will be a bit grittier).
The one I've never been able to figure out is "coconut cream concentrate." Is this the same as manna/butter? Or is it just like the thick part of a can of coconut milk?
I've never heard of coconut cream concentrate......interesting. I will have to try the idea of pouring the manna in a dish and letting it get cold and breaking it, that sounds fantastic!!! Quick and easy little treats right out of the fridge!
Omg, melt some dark chocolate under that first and make dark chocolate coconut bark!! I'm so doing that when my Whole 30 is over, lol!!!
I've tried it all: Coconut Manna from Nutiva, Coconut Butter from Artisana (containing just 100% coconut), Coconut Cream Concentrate from Tropical Traditions, Aunt Patty's Creamed Coconut (from "Glory Bee Foods")... all of these are just different names for a whole-food product made from 100% coconut. They've all seemed pretty similar to me- I love 'em all. But I try to track down whichever one seems most economical at the time... Nutiva had a great deal on a five-pound bag for awhile- too bad they couldn't keep that up!
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