These homemade coconut cookies have perfect, crunchy edges with a soft, chewy center. The delightful tropical flavor of coconut shines in every bite!

three coconut cookies stacked and sitting on a white round plate

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Eating coconut cookies is like taking a mini vacation to a sunny paradise—and when you can work a vacation into your day without the stress of flying or paying for a hotel room, I say go for it!

These easy cookies have a sweet, nutty flavor with a subtle tropical flair thanks to the shredded coconut. Better still, it’s surprisingly easy to take a cookie vacation since this coconut cookie recipe only takes 10 minutes to whip up!

If you happen to have a spare 10 minutes today, then you should definitely make a batch of coconut cookies—maybe some Almond Cookies and Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies too as long as you’ve got the mixing bowls out?

close up image of coconut cookies sitting on a marble kitchen counter top

This simple coconut cookie recipe only uses a few ingredients and I’m willing to bet you already have a few of them in your pantry. I know I always have plenty of flour, butter, brown sugar, and vanilla on hand just in case the mood for cookies strikes!

I also add one little secret ingredient to my soft coconut cookie recipe: cornstarch. Cornstarch prevents the cookies from spreading as they bake, making them thick and chewy while keeping the edges of the cookies crisp and crunchy. The texture of these delicious cookies is more similar to soft chocolate chip cookies than coconut macaroons and that cornstarch is one key ingredient to making your coconut cookies truly perfect. 

So, whether you’re a true coconut lover or simply looking for an amazing new cookie recipe, these old-fashioned coconut cookies are sure to leave you craving more!

ingredients to make coconut cookies

Ingredients for Coconut Cookies

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions. 

  • Butter – Unsalted butter is best since there is already the perfect amount of salt added to the recipe. 
  • Brown sugar – I like to use light brown sugar for these cookies, but dark brown sugar will work as well.
  • Egg – I always use large eggs when baking.
  • Vanilla extract 
  • All-purpose flour
  • Cornstarch – Cornstarch is key to keeping the cookies soft and thick. 
  • Baking soda
  • Sea salt – A hint of salt makes the sweet, coconut taste of the cookies even more intense. 
  • Unsweetened shredded coconut – Be sure to use unsweetened coconut. Sweetened coconut flakes will add too much sugar to the cookie dough and cause it to spread as it bakes. 


Here are a few ingredient substitutes and variations that will work well in this coconut cookie recipe. 

  • Drizzle the cookies with melted chocolate to make coconut chocolate cookies. You can also mix in ½ cup mini chocolate chips or white chocolate chips to the cookie batter. Chocolate and coconut are a perfect combination!
  • Use two chewy coconut cookies and a scoop of vanilla ice cream to make a coconut cookie ice cream sandwich. 
  • Use larger flakes of coconut rather than shredded coconut. This makes the coconut cookie recipe a little more crunchy and adds an interesting texture. 
  • Boost the coconut flavor by replacing the vanilla extract with coconut extract

How to Make Coconut Cookies 

  1. Prepare: Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Get a cookie sheet ready with parchment paper and set it aside for now. 
  2. Cream butter: Beat the butter and brown sugar in a large bowl until the mixture is light and fluffy. Use a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or an electric mixer with beaters. Don’t forget to scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure all the ingredients are well-blended. Then add the egg and vanilla and mix them in well. 
  3. Add the dry ingredients: Add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt and mix well. Once the flour mixture is blended into the dough, stir in the coconut and mix again. 
  4. Scoop and bake: Use a cookie scoop to make two tablespoon-sized dough balls and place them on the prepared sheet tray. Bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes. The tops of the cookies will look set and they will be golden brown. 
  5. Cool: Once the baking time is complete, move the cookies to a wire rack and let them cool completely.
close up image of a coconut cookie with a bite taken out of it stacked on top of other coconut cookies

Quick Tip

Cookie dough scoops or ice cream scoops are the best tool for making perfectly-sized, professional-looking cookies. They also help make portioning cookie dough very fast. Just scoop the dough, click the button, and pop the dough onto the tray!

How to Store Coconut Cookies

Once your cookies have cooled, store them in an airtight container and keep them at room temperature for about a week. I like to pop a cookie into the microwave for about 10 seconds to make it warm and fresh.

You can also freeze these easy coconut cookies. I like to make the cookie dough, scoop it into balls then freeze the pre-portioned balls in a gallon-sized ziplock bag. Take out the frozen cookie dough and bake exactly as directed to make fresh, homemade coconut cookies anytime. The frozen cookie dough will only take about 1 minute longer to bake. 


Should you use sweetened or unsweetened coconut in cookies?

My coconut cookie recipe uses unsweetened coconut. There is already a good amount of sugar in this recipe and too much will make the cookies spread. Unsweetened coconut has a fantastic flavor without all the extra sugar and will make perfect cookies. 

Are coconut cookies good for health?

Coconut is a nutritious ingredient however, when baked into sweet, sugary cookies, it is not necessarily healthy.

Can I use coconut oil in place of butter?

Using coconut oil would result in greasy cookies so it’s best to just stick to the recipe!

Coconut Cookies

These homemade coconut cookies have perfect, crunchy edges with a soft, chewy center. The delightful tropical flavor of coconut shines in every bite!
5 from 2 votes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Kasey Schwartz
Servings: 18 cookies
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes


  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cup all purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 ⅓ cup unsweetened shredded coconut


  • Preheat your oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet tray with parchment paper.
  • Add the softened butter and brown sugar to a mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
    ½ cup butter, softened, 1 cup brown sugar
  • Add the egg and vanilla extract and mix until the batter is smooth.
    1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt to the bowl and stir into a thick, smooth batter.
    1 ¼ cup all purpose flour, ½ teaspoon cornstarch, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • Stir in the shredded coconut.
    1 ⅓ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • Scoop the cookie dough into two tablespoon-sized balls and place on the parchment-lined cookie sheet.
  • Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes. The edges should be just turning golden brown and the coconut on top will look a little toasted. The tops of the cookies should also look set and not shiny.
  • Let the cookies cool on a wire rack then enjoy!


Calories: 173kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 113mg | Potassium: 68mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 171IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg
Keyword: coconut cookies
Did you make this recipe?Mention @kasey_allthingsmamma or tag #allthingsmamma!

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About Kasey Schwartz

Hi, I’m Kasey, Founder of All Things Mamma – where I am dishing up family favorite recipes that are easy to make with simple, everyday ingredients. Plus – tips and tricks for living your best life!


  1. S.Thompson says:

    5 stars
    Can’t wait to make them!!!! We LOVE Coconut ❤️

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