Since coconut water is power-packed with nutrients, it is considered to be one of the best drinks for energy and hydration. Its natural sweetness makes it a desirable option when the scorching heat hits. Additionally, it protects one from kidney stones, skin conditions, etc. But like other energy drinks, it might not be readily available at all times.
In such cases, you might have to go the extra mile to look for other substitutes. If you want to skip that process, we suggest going through the following article, where we discuss the best alternatives.
For those who want a quick answer- maple water, birch water, or watermelon juice are the best substitutes. The following article has several other alternatives to help you substitute coconut water with the next best alternative.
Best Substitutes for Coconut Water
The following alternative options of coconut water work as a drink and addition to cocktails or mocktails. You can choose the one suitable for your taste buds and refresh your senses.
1. Maple Water
You might have enjoyed pancakes with a generous amount of maple syrup, but have you tried maple water?
Maple water is rich in nutrients, with 46 bio-active compounds. It contains zinc, potassium, calcium, and manganese, which help with bone strengthening. In addition to that, maple water improves digestion, prevents inflammatory diseases, and stabilizes blood sugar.
Since it only contains 2% sugar and 98% water, it is a wonderful alternative to coconut water.
Maple water is obtained from the pure maple tree sap. The sap is pasteurized to prepare maple water.
The taste of maple water is clear with a subtle sweetness. It leaves your taste buds with a fine maple finish. You might feel that sugar has been added to it, but let us assure you that pure maple water does not contain any traces of sugar.
You can add it to cocktails, fruit punches, or even work it as a slush topping.
2. Birch Water
Birch water is obtained from several types of birch trees like Betula pendula, Betula alba, Betula lenta, Betula fontinalis, and Betula papyrifera. This water is also known as birch sap.
Since birch trees are found in the Northern Hemisphere, it is highly popular in China and Northern Europe. However, it is also gaining traction in the United States as well.
It contains around 1% sugar and other nutrients like calcium, manganese, magnesium, and zinc.
Even though birch water is used in manufacturing cosmetics, it can be consumed on its own or by mixing with beer, syrup, wine, or mead.
It has a sweet flavor with a transparent appearance. Since it is thinner than maple syrup, it might be difficult to add it to recipes.
Moreover, it must be noted that birch water must be kept away from people allergic to birch pollen.
With its high proportion of manganese, adults must limit themselves to 3 servings of birch water a day, while children must only be given a single serving.
You can easily find bottled birch water online and even in supermarkets. It must be consumed as soon as possible since it will start fermenting after a few days and become more acidic.
3. Watermelon Juice
If you are tired of drinking different types of water but still want something as nutritious and healthy as coconut water, we recommend watermelon juice.
As evident from the name, watermelon juice is prepared by adding the cubed fruit to a blender. Some people like to add sugar, lemon juice, and mint leaves as well.
This drink feels like a slice of heaven on hot summer days. Since it contains 92% water, this naturally-sweet drink is one of the best replacements for coconut water.
It is filled with antioxidants, potassium, and Vitamin A, B5, and C. Apart from working as a refreshing drink, watermelon juice reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Even though watermelon juice is available online as well as in any local market, it is not difficult to make it at home. It all comes down to choosing the right kind of watermelon.
For starters, the watermelon should be heavy. Secondly, go with watermelon with a yellow tone. This denotes its ripeness. Lastly, the stem must look yellow and dark.
These factors will help you get your hands on the juiciest watermelon.
You can add watermelon juice to prepare a smoothie or a slush. If you want something for a party, you can prepare cocktails by adding watermelon juice to gin or vodka as well.
4. Almond Water
We would not blame you if you had a blank expression after reading “almond water” as a substitute for coconut water. We were in the same state before we did some research, so hear us out.
Almond water can be obtained by blending almonds with water. The nutty flavor derived can easily substitute coconut in several recipes and cocktails. You can also add it to your morning coffee or make cute popsicles with it.
While its aroma might come off as gummy, its taste is something that you will absolutely love.
Generally, it has around 15g of sugar per 8-ounce serving. The higher sugar content might also make it taste exactly like sugar water.
5. Orange Juice
If you want something sweeter than coconut water, we cannot help but include orange juice in this list. This juice is one of the staple drinks, not only in summers but around the year. People of all ages enjoy it due to its high nutrition and tangy-sweet taste.
Orange juice is one of the most potent sources of Vitamin C. In addition to that, it contains folate, potassium, and magnesium, which help strengthen the immune system. Folate promotes better fetal development.
Since orange juice is sweeter than coconut water, you can easily add it to your cocktails or summer drinks without having to rely on sugar. Children will also love orange juice popsicles or slushies.
Some of our favorite orange juice cocktails are mimosa, screwdriver, tequila surprise, madras, and hurricane cocktail.
6. Apple Juice
We cannot add orange juice while leaving behind apple juice. While you can prepare apple juice at home, the process can get complex and costly. So, it is best to get the commercially-available apple juices to replace coconut water.
The juice is procured by pressing the apple with equipment. The juice obtained is treated by centrifugal and enzymatic clarification to remove the pectin and starch. This is pasteurized and packed in a glass container or sent for further dehydration.
Apple juice contains vitamin C, K, copper, and fiber.
Since it is 88% water, it promotes hydration. Moreover, it improves heart and brain health.
The best apple juices taste sweet but not as sweet as candy. It is transparent with a smooth texture since it is devoid of any pulp or sediment.
As apple juice is high in calories, it is best to stick to one cup for children as well as adults.
You can prepare a sweet beverage by mixing apple juice with water or honey. You can also prepare a delicious apple milkshake.
For adults, vodka works like magic with apple juice. Give it a try!
7. Cactus Water
The natural beverage market is filled with coconut water, maple water, and birch water options. But the latest addition comes from our prickly friend who lives in the desert. Yes, you guessed it right. We are talking about cactus water.
Cactus water turned out to be more nutritious than we’d anticipated. For example, it is rich in potassium and magnesium. It also contains electrolytes that can quench your thirst in an instant.
Cactus water and coconut water share several similarities in terms of antioxidants and other nutrients. But our cactus friend is healthier since it contains almost half the amount of calories and sugar.
As coconut water is obtained from the pink fruit of prickly pear or cactus, it is pink in color.
It has hints of watermelon flavor, followed by a slight taste of bubblegum. Athletes and sportspeople can drink this as their after-workout drink instead of coconut water with its high amount of nutrients.
Lastly, cactus water can also help treat stomach ulcers and inflammation due to its high magnesium proportion.
You can add it to cocktails and smoothies. Along with its tangy taste, the pink hue will make your drinks more visually appealing.
8. Aloe Vera Juice
We all love aloe vera for our skin, don’t we? The minute we get acne on our face, we run to the nearest aloe vera plant.
But did you know that we could also integrate aloe vera juice into our daily diet for better health and nourishment?
Aloe vera juice is a thick liquid obtained from the flesh of the aloe vera plant. Once you have removed the aloe gel, rinse it to remove the bitterness. Put it in the blender along with water to get aloe vera juice.
Generally, the juice is yellow with a clear texture. It has a citrusy yet slightly bitter taste. You can add honey or any other sweetener to improve its taste. We also recommend blending it with lemon juice or any other fruit.
Aloe vera juice contains antioxidants that reduce the chances of heart illness, diabetes, and even cancer. Since it is a potent source of Vitamin C, this substitute for coconut water will also improve your skin.
You can also add it to smoothies or cocktails. Some people prefer adding it to make gelatin instead of coconut water.
9. Coconut Milk
You can also use coconut milk to prepare coconut water. Add water to coconut milk in the proportion of 1:2. In other words, if you are using one cup of coconut milk, add two cups of water.
The final product will have a nutty taste with hints of sweetness. If not, you can add the sweetener as and when required.
This DIY coconut water can be added to smoothies or consumed on its own. This will work well as a treatment for a hangover as well.
10. Plain Water
If you find yourself with none of the aforementioned substitutes, the best option is to choose plain water.
Even though it will not give you the same taste as coconut water, you can add it to dilute several types of beverages and smoothies. Moreover, it also works in making a cocktail or any savory dish.
However, keep this option as your last resort, especially if you want that flavorful taste of coconut.
How to Store Coconut Water?
If you want to retain the freshness and taste of coconut water, you can store it for future uses as well. The following tips will help you do the same:
- Transfer the coconut water to an airtight container and place it in the freezer without any lid for 30 minutes. After that, place the lid and transfer it to the refrigerator.
- You can also transfer the coconut water into the ice cube tray to freeze and use it for months.
1. Can diabetics drink coconut water?
Coconut water is highly recommended for people with diabetes since it contains essential vitamins and minerals. Along with that, it has natural sugar with a low glycemic index, which will not spike blood sugar levels.
Nonetheless, consumption of coconut water must be monitored, and it is best to stick to 1-2 cups a day.
2. Does coconut water help with hangovers?
It is quite ironic that coconut water is not only added to cocktails, but it can also help get rid of coconut water. It contains natural sugars and potassium that hydrate the body. This helps in treating a hangover in the most natural way possible.
It might be challenging to replicate an exact nutty flavor as coconut water with any other option. If you want something exactly like it, we recommend diluting the coconut milk. If not, you can have fun with maple water, water lemon juice, or orange juice in making cocktails.
Lastly, if nothing seems to be going your way, plain water will work just fine!
Gina P. Shudnow is the brain behind all our scientific research. She is a Registered Dietitian who has been in the field for over ten years. Her nutrition tips have helped several people overcome health issues in the past. She strives to make everybody healthier without compromising on their food diet.