How to Open a Coconut




This instructable will show you how to open a coconut with just a hammer the stylish way. I learned this method last year on a sailing holiday.

With this instructable i want to say thank you for the nice sailing trip through the Yasawa Islands in Fiji.

This is my first instructable so please be gentle with me. I'm also a non native english speaker so please correct me where i use inappropriate words.

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Step 1: Gather Your Materials

All you need is a hammer and of course a coconut. The screwdriver is not needed. (Picture 1)

If you got the coconut in a store it probably comes already "bare" so you can skip the "peeling" step.

I got mine from directly under a coconut palm, so i had to peel the bast off (Picture 2, it is the Blue lagoon, yes the one where they made the film)

Step 2: Peeling the Coconut

The Coconut is surrounded by a large cover of bast which we must get rid of before we can open the coconut.

To do so hammer thin slices into the bast hood of the coconut (picture 1). The bast hood is really strong so make your slices thin.
If you finished hammering your slice rip it off (picture 2 and 3).

Repeat the hammering/ripping steps until your coconut is completely bare.

You'll be surprised how small the coconut is compared to the bast cover, at least i was (picture 4).

Note: To rip the bast cover off you can also use a chopping knife or something bigger, but I love my fingers (all ten of them) and this would also add another tool to our material list.

Step 3: Top Off

This is the main step: Opening the coconut in an easy and stylish way.

Before I learned this method all opening methods involved excessive power (which means destroying the nut in any way) or the use of tools you can't carry around with you (like putting the coconut in an hot oven to crack the nut).

This new method can be done by anyone, even children (if they know how to safely use a hammer) :
  • Take the bare coconut in one hand and the hammer in the other.
  • Easily hammer around the nut, describing a circle around the top of the nut. There is no need for hammering strong.
  • After a few circles of hammering the coconut will begin to crack open just under the circular line you have hammered (picture 2).
  • After 2 or 3 more hammering circles the top of the coconut will pop off and you can open it (picture 3)
  • Now you can drink the coconut milk and eat the white meat (is it called so?) from the top of the coconut.

Step 4: Further Steps

The circular hammering method works also fine for breaking the coconut into more rings. So you can easily access the rest of the coconut meat.

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    99 Discussions


    12 years ago on Introduction

    > ...the white meat (is it called so?) I think it's more frequently called the "flesh" but your instructions are pretty clear. I just need to find myself a coconut, now.

    19 replies

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Meat is the most common term I've heard for it. ...I once got a coconut so I could make the horse hoof things from monty python.

    Yea, meat is the word that I've heard from English speaking Phillipino and Indian people. I was first thinking of the word "Copra", but that's the dried meat.

    Wikipedia says the following in the article about coconuts:

    "Adhering to the inside wall of the endocarp is the testa, with a thick albuminous endosperm (the coconut "meat"), the white and fleshy edible part of the seed."

    And I rather call it meat than "Endosperm" which in at least my ears sounds very disgusting ;-)


    Reply 3 years ago

    Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha.Best kinda-off-topic comment ever!!!

    Because my teenage grandson(whom I've raised since he was 3 months old) loves everything coconut I decided a fresh coconut might be interesting. In seconds he had poked a hole in the end and shook the water into a glass which he drank with gusto. I suggested using a machete, he declined and opted for tapping along the circumference with the back of a heavy knife(no sense of adventure) luck so far...I'm thinking my rock hammer might be just about perfect ^.^ Wish us luck...


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Not to mention the color, and it's sort of slimy when it's fresh... Coconut is like the best food ever though, it can be used as medicine, weapon (lol), not susceptible to bugs or pests, prolly not disease either, won't go bad til you open it for a few days, and where it grows in the jungle, you'd want the laxative effect it gives because of all the weird diseases and stuff there...


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Except that coconut, being a nut, is extremely rich in calories.. Mind you, you did the hammering and the peeling as exercise ;)

    *end scene* *CLUNK!* Bring out your dead..." *CLUNK* "Bring out your dead..." *CLUNK!* "Bring out your dead" *CLUNK* "Bring out your dead" *CLUNK* "Bring out your dead" "Got one right here!"
    "I'm not dead"
    "Yes you are"
    "I'm not"
    "He isn't?"
    "Oh, well he will be soon, he's very ill"