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Coconut Manna

April 20, 2011

coconut-manna

What the heck is coconut manna? It’s like coconut butter, but the company that makes it, Nutiva, thought it was more special somehow, so they called it manna. From Nutiva’s website:

Our Coconut Manna is definitely in the “Coconut Butter” family of products, though we felt that its superior flavor warranted a new name.

Organic whole coconut is the only ingredient, so I guess it’s coconut in a jar. From the label:

“Creamy Whole Coconut: Coconut Manna is a delicious whole food, made of pure, dried coconut flesh.”

At first, I was puzzled as to what to do with it – it seemed like it’d be the perfect spread for toast – rendering it useless to me. Suggested uses are smoothies, sauces, dressings, desserts, icing, and oatmeal. At $9 a jar (445ml), it seems too pricey to add to sauces or dressings. And icing? What do they think I am, vegan?? Nutiva’s product line does actually seem geared towards vegans, considering their other offerings listed on the jar, hemp oil, hempseed, and hemp protein.

Funnily enough, since I couldn’t think of a use for it, I told the cashier I’m passing on it, but she absent-mindedly rang it through while I was distracted by reading the ingredient labels of various goodies by the cash register. I figured it was meant to be, and ended up just eating it with a spoon, straight from the jar.

Upon tasting it, my first impression was, WOW. My 2nd was, “it tastes like peanut butter, but better.” And like peanut butter, you have to stir in the oil at the top when you first open it, although you’ll probably have to heat it first, as it’s completely solid – I put the jar in some hot water.

I think it makes for a decent treat. It’s very tasty, and only has the one ingredient. Since it doesn’t claim to be raw, I’d assume there was some sort of high heat processing involved, and so I question how nutritious it is, or if it’s any good for you. But those are some pretty minor concerns for something that falls in the treat category. I’m curious to compare it to a coconut butter, specifically the one that was on the shelf beside it, Artisana’s Organic Raw Coconut Butter – to see if this Nutiva stuff is any more special.

Have you tried coconut manna or butter? What did you think?

Update: I have since done a comparison with Artisana’s Coconut Butter.

***UPDATE*** I have since made my own coconut butter. If you’re curious about it, you should try making your own batch at home, it’s super easy!

nutiva-coconut-manna

Shared with Food Renegade and Real Food Wednesday.

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{ 66 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy April 20, 2011 at 2:38 PM

I eat Artisina’s organic coconut butter with a spoon all the time and it is fabulous. I am strict on my paleo, so I can usually tell when I have eaten something I should not have, and I always feel great after eating coconut butter. It is pretty filling, so I don’t tend to eat huge portions of it, which is probably good. Too much of anything nut or coconut related can have negative affects.

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admin@primalist April 20, 2011 at 8:56 PM

Amy: I find the coconut manna really filling, too. Which is great, because it does keep you from overeating it – all I need is a couple of spoonfuls at the most.

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alison May 12, 2011 at 1:33 PM

i just had two huge spoonfuls of manna.
and have a huge belly ache,
i kn ow it is good for athletes, and i am one, but i think i over did it.
anyone else have this effect?
i would like to continue, but i think i have PTSD:)

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admin@primalist May 12, 2011 at 2:00 PM

Interesting. I’ve never had a stomach ache after it. My incident with it though was when I had 2 huge spoonfulls one after the other. The stuff’s pretty dry, and I felt like I might choke – could feel it as it progressed down to my stomach. In hindsight, not the brightest thing to do :p

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Hamsa Vicerra June 9, 2011 at 5:07 PM

I absolutely love coconut manna I eat it from the jar too, but just a bit at a time, so I’m not trying to swallow a whole spoonful all at once. I try to get it pretty melted in my mouth before I swallow it. I think there are probably some recipe suggestions on Nutiva’s website, or at least I’m hoping there are-i don’t think you’d need more than maybe a few teaspoons for a salad dressing, so I don’t think that would be any more pricey than eating it straight. I’m hoping it’s raw-their oils are unrefined, the co.’s dedicated to sustainability, & I just read an enthusiastic article about the product itself being produced totally sustainably.

Hamsa

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admin@primalist June 9, 2011 at 7:01 PM

I figured out pretty quickly/painfully that I can’t eat too much of it one gulp :P You’re probably right about not needing as much in a salad dressing. I should check out some recipes, too. Right now I’m still simply enjoying it by the spoonful. From their website forum / comments I read that unfortunately, it’s not raw. Which makes me question the processing..

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Connie June 17, 2011 at 8:26 AM

I like it in my oatmeal.. I like it mixed with a little lemon juice and make “lemon coconut treat” like bonbons.. I like it straight out of the jar.

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admin@primalist June 17, 2011 at 8:50 PM

Interesting – I hadn’t heard of combining it with lemon juice!

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Debra June 19, 2011 at 5:26 PM

Artisana’s coconut butter is raw, so if Nutiva is not, maybe Artisana is a better choice. I make coconut “energy” squares with it: Warm it so it is mixable, mix in your choice of chopped nuts, dried fruit (a little), chia seeds, other seeds you like, raw cacao nibs (love these), shredded coconut, etc. Add some sweetness if you like with raw honey. I usually use several drops of stevia extract. Spread out in a layer about 1/2 inch thick on a sheet of parchment or waxed paper and let firm up. When firm but not too hard, cut into small squares (1 inch). Wrap individually in waxed paper. I take one to work almost everyday for a snack. They are energy powerhouses! (P.S. They will melt in your bag or pocket if they get too warm, so watch this.)

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admin@primalist June 22, 2011 at 5:49 PM

Hi Debra – thanks for sharing your recipe, sounds yummy! I still haven’t gotten around to trying the Artisana, but I plan to sooner or later. Wondering how it compares taste-wise. It’s something like $14 for the jar though, so was hoping to catch it on sale sometime.

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Melanie July 22, 2011 at 3:42 PM

I am using this stuff to lose weight, in combination with exercise and a low carb diet. I eat less food at mealtimes when I’ve had a spoonful of coconut butter beforehand, because it is so filling. It contains fat (medium chain triglycerides), protein, and fiber, all of which help slow your digestion, helping you avoid blood sugar spikes which stimulate insulin production and make you fat. I got the idea from my uncle who is diabetic and eats peanut butter with every meal to help his blood sugar stay steady. It is also similar to the Dukan diet’s “two tablespoons of oat bran per day” theory, except ground coconut has four times the fiber of oat bran, and it tastes much better. I’ve lost 30 pounds in six months, and I hope to lose 90 more pounds. Yeah, I’m a big girl, but not for much longer. Wish me luck!

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admin@primalist July 28, 2011 at 3:34 PM

Congrats on your weightloss! And good luck going forward! Coconut manna beats both oat bran and peanut butter in terms of healthiness, and it’s obviously working for you, so that’s great! It’s pretty filling stuff..

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pat October 30, 2014 at 10:26 AM

Insulin does NOT make you fat. Eating too much of ANY kind of food does. Also ingesting carbs is not the only way to cause your blood sugar to spike and stimulate insulinto be released.

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Genevieve July 27, 2011 at 7:56 AM

I just make my own coconut butter, it is so simple and much cheaper. Just put unsweetened shredded coconut in your high speed blender or food processor and let it run for a few minutes (pushing down and scraping the sides if needed). A $15 dollar bag of raw coconut from my health food store will make me around 3 full jars of coconut butter.

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admin@primalist July 28, 2011 at 5:35 PM

That’s great! How does it compare to the store bought stuff?

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Liberty July 27, 2011 at 9:28 AM

I heart coconut butter – it’s a makes a great treat on a spoon…or yummy in ice cream!
Will have to try the coconut manna…
Blessings!
LIB
http://bit.ly/p0AyAb

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admin@primalist July 28, 2011 at 5:37 PM

I’ve never tried it with ice cream.. I don’t eat much ice cream any more, but even if I did, I don’t know if I would’vd tried that pairing! Although I have been meaning to experiment with some home made ice cream for a while now..

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Melissa @ Dyno-mom July 27, 2011 at 7:22 PM

Manna? Wow, the word says it all. Thanks for the review. Stopped over from Real Food Weds, but the way!

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admin@primalist July 28, 2011 at 5:38 PM

Thanks for stopping by!

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Julie Sutton October 19, 2011 at 5:33 PM

I love it! My favorite use for it is simply eating a spoonful straight from the jar when I am hungry but don’t know what I’m hungry for, or just need a little something to make me feel sufficiently full. That’s what it does for me: it stops me from craving more of “something”—it’s really satisfying! I also love to spread it on toast along with some blackberry jam or whatever, for breakfast.

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admin@primalist January 5, 2012 at 8:18 PM

It’s perfect for that – when you just need a little something but don’t know what you’re hungry for..

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J November 4, 2011 at 1:05 PM

I just got a jar of this. There was a coupon when I joined the Nutiva site and ordered a big old bucket of coconut oil. I put a little coconut oil and some manna in a glass with some cocoa powder and melted it all together – oh, and a little cinnamon. Wow! Yum! Crushed my afternoon hunger pangs.

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admin@primalist January 5, 2012 at 8:48 PM

I’ve been meaning to try adding cocoa in.. there are few things (if any) that chocolate doesn’t make better :P

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YumYum December 17, 2011 at 12:28 PM

I am trying it right now! I got some of the solid butter/paste and added some of the oil on top. Then I added powdered Stevia and raw cacao powder. I mixed it all with a spoon to the consistency of a thick sauce and then added chilled blueberries. Because of the cold of the blueberries, the cacao (pure chocolate)/ manna mixture turned solid and now I have something like blueberry fudge! I know it probably isn’t technically raw though (I am a raw foodist). Yeah there are a ton of tasty foods that people won’t try cause they think ‘healthy foods’ are yuck. It’s really a shame!

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YumYum December 17, 2011 at 12:29 PM

oh yeah and it’s not the same as coconut butter. Coconut butter is just the oil and manna has protein and carbs as well! I mean people, just read the food labels! It ain’t rocket science! ;)

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YumYum December 17, 2011 at 12:35 PM

Also, this is so weird cause I am underweight, but I can slurp down numeral tablespoons of this stuff. I guess most people must be bigger because of the carb/ blood sugar thing. Lots of foods are not as heavy as coconut manna but will raise your blood sugar too high! I am used to rich foods and can stuff my face with them without a problem. F0r those who have trouble with their weights, it’s a good idea to eat this in between meals or before a meal as it’s low-glycemic.

admin@primalist January 5, 2012 at 9:09 PM

mmmm fudge :P

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Serena February 11, 2012 at 6:59 PM

Wondering if anyone has compared this to tropical traditions coconut cream concentrate?

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admin@primalist February 12, 2012 at 12:57 PM

I haven’t tried that one myself, though I’d be curious if anyone else has?

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mary rowe October 2, 2012 at 9:45 AM

I’ve never tried Coconut Manna, but just broke open a jar of Tropical Traditions Coconut Cream. I diluted two teaspoons in 8 oz. of water to make a coconut milk with my shakes, and it worked really well. Will have to try the Manna now!

zilep February 23, 2012 at 7:04 PM

I dip a spoon in the jar when the manna is soft coating the spoon, then i put the spoon in the freezer and let it freeze. I have it as desert. Yum!!! sooo good.

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admin@primalist February 23, 2012 at 9:00 PM

Interesting, I’ve never tried it frozen! Hmm, what about then putting some cocoa powder on it, before putting in the freezer? Can you tell I’m a chocoholic? :P

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Sheila March 25, 2012 at 6:07 PM

I love it out of the jar but also as a blended treat. I blend it with milk, ice and trivia…delish! I add bananas for my husband he loves it!

I am concerned is fattening though :( considering how much I like it!

I eat a low carb diet and now that I found this it helps me controlling my sweet tooth (pastries) love coconut manna and hope I am getting benefits instead of fat! :)

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admin@primalist March 27, 2012 at 2:19 PM

Your smoothie sounds yummy! Except for perhaps the truvia, which isn’t truly stevia (incredibly processed). I imagine the manna would do a good job if thickening the smoothie.

Nutritionally, the manna does have 3g of carbs per 1 Tbsp serving, but 80% of its calories come from fat, so as long ad you’re not eating massive amounts , you should be fine carb-wise.

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Marti April 1, 2012 at 3:46 PM

Coconut manna is available at Vitacost.com for 7.65/15 oz.
I also buy Coconut Secret sugar and flour from that website and am very pleased with the prices. Shipping is free when the order reaches $49. It is a great source for all kinds of healthy food products.

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Melissa July 4, 2012 at 4:26 AM

You have to try this stuff in your coffee! I was looking for a way to make my morning joe satisfying again after cutting out sugar and milk. Now I put a healthy teaspoon of the manna, a glug of almond milk and a drop of honey in and DANG! Good stuff!

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admin@primalist July 5, 2012 at 1:32 PM

Sounds tasty! Not a regular coffee drinker, but might try it in some black tea.

DebbyK August 15, 2012 at 3:21 AM

Hi there!
Coconut Manna and coconut butter are the same thing. And it’s raw. Made from just pure coconut flakes that are dried. OK, so not sure how they dry them!
I make my own, but it’s much creamier and richer as I’ve found a way to make it run off your spoon like syrup.
It’s so yummy
It’s also an MCT oil, about 65%, which means it’s used by your body as an energy source and isn’t stored as fat.
I also thought it tasted like peanut butter and that’s how I describe it to my friends.
Drizzled on strawberries it’s amazing
Add some cocao to it and some stevia and you’ll be in heaven if you’re a chocolate fan, which I’m not!!
But everyone else digs it!
I could eat an entire jar by myself in minutes!
But I usually limit it to 2 tbsp a day
Also, in your coffee or tea is excellent.
I make Celestial Thai teas and put a tsp in with it. Yummy!
Also a tbsp in some rice is yummy.
I add a drop or two of pure lemon juice to a tbsp and it’s like a lemon drop candy, put it in the freezer on a spoon! Or in ice cube trays with a popsicle stick and you have a mini popsicle treat!
So many ways to enjoy this goodness!
And So Paleo!

Enjoy!
DebbyK!:)

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admin@primalist August 15, 2012 at 11:38 AM

Thanks for all the recommendations! It’s one of the few store bought snacks that you can indulge in guilt-free, so it’s always interesting to hear how people use it. I have yet to make it myself, but will definitely get around to it at some point.

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April September 9, 2012 at 5:57 PM

I know I’m super late on this. I just got my first jar of coconut manna today and put a spoonful over my fruit, I had to find somewhere to rave about it!! It’s so creamy and melt in your mouth sinful…I had to check if it was ok to have following paleo. I am sold! It has that same slide down your throat smoothness as butter. Oh my.

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admin@primalist September 9, 2012 at 9:55 PM

It almost seems too good to be “allowed” eh? :P

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April September 11, 2012 at 7:53 PM

If you like southern desserts, figs and coconut manna tastes exactly like banana pudding. Now if I could only find a recipe for paleo style vanilla wafers I would be in business.

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admin@primalist September 11, 2012 at 9:16 PM

Interesting! Can’t say I’ve ever tried banana pudding, but I do have some figs in my fridge….. hmmmm

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Andrea@simplylivinghealthy.org September 27, 2012 at 8:36 PM

I LOVE Coconut Manna…I’ve tried Artisana Coconut Butter and Tropical Traditions Coconut Cream Concentrate…all three are awesome! I go back and forth but I think that Coconut Manna is my favorite.

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admin@primalist September 27, 2012 at 9:03 PM

Interesting! How does Tropical Traditions compare? I’ve been curious about it…

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Dana April 24, 2013 at 6:45 PM

I absolutely LOVE this stuff! I had no idea how to use it at first and since it was part of an Nutiva Tuesday deal that had other products I wanted, it wasn’t as though I had deliberately set out for the manna.

While it’s great by itself in small doses (half a teaspoon or so…it’s still a saturated fat), I add it to smoothies.
I enjoy this product a lot, but since I have an Omega 8004 juicer and can make coconut products (oil, butter and cream), I may try to recreate this one once the jar of manna is empty. If I do, I’ll come back and let you know how it turned out :)

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admin@primalist April 24, 2013 at 7:25 PM

Saturated fats are healthy :) For the record, I eat it by the heaping spoonful. I can see how it’d make a great addition to smoothies. And that juicer sounds impressive. Definitely let me know how your experimentation goes!

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Tammy May 1, 2013 at 6:55 PM

Someone has probably already posted this, sice this is such an old article. But Coconut butter is made with RAW coconut and coconut manna is made with roasted coconut. That is all I wanted to say.

:)

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admin@primalist May 1, 2013 at 8:34 PM

I would just add to clarify that that’s not the case for all coconut butter, just the Artisana brand (and any other brand that actually does it raw, it’s just not a default)..

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green coffee bean extract May 14, 2013 at 4:16 PM

Awesome post.

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luna August 6, 2013 at 6:28 AM

I have a whippet mix who has always been a persnickety eater. when her tummy is particularly urpy, and she turns her nose up at everything, she will ALWAYS eat a spoonful of the manna, broken into teensy pieces. within minutes, no more grumbles. weird, huh?

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admin@primalist August 6, 2013 at 11:06 AM

That’s so strange! I’ve never heard of that before..

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anonymous August 20, 2013 at 6:56 AM

I love homemade toothpaste.

Unfortunately coconut oil is very sensitive to temperature, and so depending on the temperature of the house the toothpaste will either be rock hard or liquid soft.

Do you think Coconut Manna can be used instead and is it orally just as beneficial as the coconut oil?

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admin@primalist August 20, 2013 at 6:13 PM

If you chip away at it, it’ll melt almost instantly once it’s in your mouth. As for the manna, I’m pretty sure you don’t want to be cleaning your teeth with it. Coconut oil has completely different properties than coconut butter.

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Joan October 13, 2013 at 8:06 AM

Thank you so much for writing about the differences (or not) between Nutiva
Coconut Manna and coconut butter. I have the Artisana Organic Coconut Butter and also have made my own. I’ve often wondered what coconut manna is and
now I know. I appreciate this. I think I will just keep making my own. One cupful of flaked coconut gives me a small jar (about 1/2 pint or a little less) of coconut butter and it’s very easy to make, tastes just as good, and is probably cheaper.

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admin@primalist October 18, 2013 at 5:56 PM

I think making your own is a great way to go!

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Sitara November 18, 2013 at 7:10 PM

Loving this article! I am a huge manna fan, I discovered it when I went on a sugar detox (was eating chocolate and desserts and feeling rotten and addicted). The coconut manna is the only sweet thing in my diet now and I’m much leaner, more energized and best of all not craving candy all day! It’s amazing for cravings and I’m happy to hear of the many health benefits. 2 tablespoons is my max a day though because otherwise it feels too heavy in the tummy.
Thanks!

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admin@primalist November 18, 2013 at 9:01 PM

Good for you for quitting sugar and getting over your cravings! :) And I agree about not being able to eat too much of it – which is actually probably a good thing too.

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Jay Walker July 4, 2014 at 7:08 AM

I am almost done with a jar of the stuff. I give it two resounding thumbs up. I love it, like you, straight from the jar by spoon. I also love it in my steel cut oats each morning. I also master fried some shrimp in a sauce with the stuff and it was great. Typical coconut butter cannot compare to the taste of manna. It’s not as concentrated coconut flavor and richness. Nor does it have the same degree of sweetness.

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Using Chia Seeds July 20, 2014 at 5:35 AM

omg, thank you very much for posting this! It is gonna aid me when I get Chia Seeds at the market! Very Mind Blowing!

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Linda August 8, 2014 at 11:56 AM

I bought this by mistake at first, looking for just coconut oil. I love it!!!!! I put it in a smoothie using the following ingredients: a handful of kale, half of a banana, half of a mango, 1/4 of an avocado and almond milk. Kind of like a healthy pina colada.
I think it helps you feel full. I concur, right out of the jar is delicious! I am sure there are a lot of vegan desserts it would work with. I eat a plant based diet and it works well. I bet it would be killer in a rice pudding. The manna gives me that little taste of something sweet that is also satisfying.
I vote yes on it!

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Waheed August 21, 2014 at 5:55 AM

I use it as a Paleo substitute for dairy creamer in my coffee.

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Lynsay October 2, 2014 at 7:35 PM

I love this stuff. I can seriously eat a whole jar in a sitting (luckily I’ve stopped doing that for the most part…but I did eat half a jar yesterday :/)…I feel really bad about how much of it I eat because I’m told that much of anything is not good (and that so many calories aren’t good, either), but I never feel sick or bloated or anything after eating it and I’m maintaining my weight (which fluctuates between 125-130 pounds), and I’ve found that whenever I restrict my fat intake or my fruit intake I just don’t feel satisfied or as energetic

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admin@primalist October 2, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Did it resemble coconut milk?

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