These dark chocolate coconut clusters are packed with toasted coconut flavor, rich dark chocolate and pops of flaky salt. The crystallized coconut shreds add an extra layer of crispy texture and caramelized flavor that is just so perfect.
Let me start by saying these aren’t your average coconut clusters. You don't really need a recipe for that kind of thing. Just mix some sweetened shredded coconut with melted chocolate, dollop it onto a pan and call it good.
But I strive to create something extra special out of ordinary recipes. I always ask myself how I can elevate a dish so it is remembered for years to come.
I wanted to develop a coconut cluster recipe that my kids beg me for every year, that our neighbors clamor for, and, of course, that I am super proud to share.
So I reimagined the cluster and started from the beginning:
- I used unsweetened shredded coconut and caramelized it on the stove. This process is actually very quick, and the results are so darn good. The coconut transforms into a crunchy, crispy, and deeply toasted treat.
- I mix in a good measure of flaky salt to help the flavors pop and to balance the sweetness.
- Then we mix up those caramelized coconut shreds with a big pour of tempered chocolate and scoop it out onto parchment.
The result is a coconut cluster that is packed full of coconut flavor, bitter chocolate and crispy-crunchy texture. Good luck stopping with one!
Read on to learn how to make these coconut clusters and all kinds of fun ways to make them your own.
coconut clusters ingredients:
- unsweetened coconut (shredded or flaked!)
- dark chocolate
- flaky salt
how to make coconut clusters:
- Cook sugar and water in a large skillet until a thick syrup forms.
- Stir in unsweetened coconut (shredded or flaked) and stir until deeply toasted and crunchy.
- Stir in flaky salt and let cool.
- Stir caramelized coconut with tempered dark chocolate.
- Scoop tablespoon-sized dollops onto a sheet pan and let set.
Make sure to read up on how to properly temper chocolate so these coconut clusters can be stored for weeks at room temperature and still look chocolate-shop perfect.
Tempered chocolate means you can pile these high on paper plates for gifts without them melting together and hold them in your hand without melting. It changes the homemade candy game!
how to store them:
Store dark chocolate coconut clusters in a cool, dry place for up to 1 month. Keep them in any closed container: ziptop bag, tupperware, cookie jar!
Tempered chocolate will protect the candied coconut from absorbing moisture in the air and getting sticky. No refrigeration is necessary, and in fact, it will cause the chocolate to bloom and lose its shiny, smooth, beautiful appearance.
are these coconut clusters keto?
This is a super common question. Unfortunately, this coconut cluster recipe is NOT keto. If you use dark chocolate with at least 70% cacoa, or sugar-free chocolate, and toast the coconut but don’t caramelize it with sugar, then I’m told: Yes! These will be coconut keto clusters!
But I know nothing about keto requirements. So if you’re really serious about keto, chances are you know best how to modify this recipe to your needs.
make these chocolate coconut clusters your own:
This recipe is so simple. And that means it is a really great framework for designing your own custom coconut clusters. Make them keto (see above), mix in dried fruit or finely chopped nuts, go with white chocolate-- the limit really is your imagination. Here are a bunch of add-in ideas that would be delicious in these dark chocolate coconut clusters!
- white chocolate lime: use in place of dark chocolate, and mix in zest of 1 lime
- chopped dried cranberries: mix in ¼ cup with the chocolate
- nuts: add ¼ cup finely chopped pistachios, cashews or pecans and toast with the coconut
- chipotle: mix ¼ teaspoon ground chipotle powder into the caramelized coconut along with the flaky salt
- chia seeds: mix in ¼ cup with the chocolate
- milk chocolate: use in place of dark chocolate
- candied ginger: mix in a few tablespoons of chopped candied ginger with the chocolate
- strawberry: stir in ¼ cup- ½ cup crushed, freeze-dried strawberries with chocolate
- banana: stir in ¼ cup- ½ cup crushed, freeze-dried bananas with chocolate
- marbled chocolate: stir in half white chocolate and half bittersweet chocolate. Stir until just combined but still swirled, then scoop and let harden!
more homemade candy recipes to try:
chocolate covered caramels with sea salt
dark chocolate covered almonds
sea salt caramels (soft and chewy!)
the best butter toffee recipe (buttercrunch)
the best chocolate peanut clustersPrint
These dark chocolate coconut clusters are packed with toasted coconut flavor, rich dark chocolate and pops of flaky salt. The crystallized coconut shreds add an extra layer of crispy texture and caramelized flavor!
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: 16
- Category: Candy
- Method: Stove
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Gluten Free
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 3 tbsp water
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (can also use unsweetened shredded coconut)
- 5 oz tempered chocolate
- ½ tsp flaky salt, plus more for sprinkling
- Combine sugar and water in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir until sugar dissolves. Boil until syrup thickens and is reduced by half, about 3 minutes.
- Stir in coconut and continue to cook, stirring and smashing coconut clumps with a spoon to break them up, until coconut is deeply toasted and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Stir in flaky salt and pour onto a baking sheet. Spread out into an even layer and let cool to room temperature.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Transfer coconut to a large bowl and stir in just enough tempered chocolate to coat the coconut, about 5 oz. The mixture will resemble wet sand. Mix until well coated and, working quickly before chocolate sets, scoop tablespoon-sized clusters onto prepared sheet pan. Sprinkle with flaky salt and let sit until fully hardened, at least 30 minutes.
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 98
- Sugar: 9.1g
- Sodium: 82mg
- Fat: 6.1g
- Saturated Fat: 4.7g
- Unsaturated Fat: 1g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 11g
- Fiber: 1.2g
- Protein: 1g
- Cholesterol: 2mg
Keywords: coconut clusters
Leave a Reply