Coconut Chocolate Coffee Smoothie

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The dazzling smoothie I present to you today is the lovechild of my finest coffee beverage creations. But I wasn’t always the joe-blending pro that I am today.

Vertical image of a dark chocolate beverage in front of bananas with a bowl of cocoa powder and a blue towel in the background.

The warm, smoky aroma of coffee leisurely dripping into a pot brings me back to childhood mornings at my grandparents’ house.

I was always the late sleeper of my family. Particularly while in New Jersey to visit my dad’s parents, I was often the last to wander into the sunlight after an extended snooze. Hey, I was the baby.

Also, it wasn’t my fault that my sister and I stayed up on our pull-out sofa bed eating leftovers and binging cable TV until 3:00 a.m.. They shouldn’t play back-to-back episodes of Law & Order all night.

Wait, I take that back. It’s so necessary.

As I rose from my sloth-like slumber, the pungent perfume of freshly-brewed dark coffee would creep down the hall through the back bedroom and into my nostrils.

It stirred me. It soothed me. It even occasionally made an appearance in my dreams.

Vertical close-up image of a cocoa smoothie topped with toasted coconut flakes in front of a bowl of cocoa powder and a blue towel.

But mostly, it beckoned me to the kitchen where my dad and grandfather quietly read their respective sections of the newspaper and slurped steaming mugs of fragrant French roast.

I wanted to be just like them. And I didn’t even like coffee yet.

My grandfather has been gone for well over a decade now, but when I journey back to Jersey, I still follow the smoky smell of coffee in the morning through that one-story house (wallpapered with family photos) and expect to see him sitting at the table.

All of this to say that growing up, I adored the bold, complex scent of the breakfast beverage.

It wasn’t until I was in my twenties that I began to fully appreciate coffee’s powerful punch to the tongue. Once I realized how compatible the bitter profile was with my taste buds, I gazed lovingly into the starry eyes of Starbucks® and never looked back.

Weak stuff wasn’t for me, and I soon found that strong, concentrated coffee cut with ice, milk, and something slightly sweet zipped my palate straight to paradise. I then went through a pretty heavy frappé phrase and began fooling around with the concept at home.

Vertical image of a cup with a breakfast beverage topped with toasted coconut flakes next to a blue towel and yellow fruit.

Even in the midst of winter, I would wake up craving a cool caffeine fix, and into the kitchen I would go with my blender to play barista.

I manifested icy mocha mouthfuls where sultry dark hues of chocolate sauce tinted chilled espresso roast. I fashioned fruity potions where a Sumatra brew, bananas, and coconut syrup united to form a cohesive tropical-inspired concoction.

Today’s breakfast smoothie stars the best elements of these experiments that I meticulously taste tested along the way.

Although I religiously keep half-and-half on hand for regular coffee, there’s no match for the nuttiness of non-dairy milk in this rich, silky puree.

My recipe skips the three usual suspects (almond, soy, and oat) and instead calls on creamy coconut milk. Its sweet, floral flavor is brought to the foreground when you taste it alongside airy slivers of toasted coconut.

Vertical image of a dark brown beverage with froth on top and a coconut chip garnish next to bananas, a blue towel and bowls of garnishes.

Using the golden-brown flakes as a garnish gives the drink a little something extra, a profoundly crunchy texture you’re totally going to thank me for. And seemingly out of nowhere, you’ll feel as if you’re suddenly on island time.

Cocoa powder lends intense chocolate notes, while a few spoonfuls of honey balance the bitterness. Sugar or simple syrup will also do the trick, but the choice of sweetener is up to you. Banana’s mild sweetness rounds out all the flavors, and adding frozen fruit means you can use a little less ice to create that frothy consistency.

If you’ve got a busy morning and can’t manage the time to chug down a cup of joe and a nourishing breakfast, this thick, delicious treat delivers fresh fruit and a hit of caffeine all in one slurp.

So whether you’re an early riser or someone who sleeps in after a long night of reruns, this buzzy bev is sure to brighten up the start of your day – whenever that may be.

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Horizontal image of a cup with a frothy dark chocolate beverage next to a blue towel, a bowl of toasted coconut chips, and a yellow banana

Coconut Chocolate Coffee Smoothie


  • Author: Fanny Slater
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x

Description

Skip the standard cup of joe and blend this frothy coconut chocolate coffee smoothie instead. It’s the morning buzz you’ve been missing. Get the recipe now.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup coffee or cold brew, chilled or cooled to room temperature
  • 11 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut milk beverage (not canned), divided
  • 2 teaspoons honey or your choice of sweetener
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 ripe bananas, frozen
  • 1 cup ice cubes
  • 2 tablespoons toasted coconut flakes, for garnish

Instructions

  1. In a high-powered blender, pulse the coffee, 1 cup of coconut milk, honey, cocoa powder, bananas, and ice cubes until frothy and smooth.
  2. Check the consistency and make sure the smoothie is pourable. If it’s too thick, add a little more coconut milk a few tablespoons at a time and blend again. You can also thicken the smoothie with more ice cubes.
  3. Divide among glasses, garnish with the coconut flakes, and serve.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Smoothie
  • Method: Blender
  • Cuisine: Beverage

Keywords: chocolate, coconut, coffee, smoothie, coconut milk

Cooking By the Numbers…

Step 1 – Toast the Coconut

You can toast unsweetened shredded or large-flake coconut, or use a store-bought product like Dang Coconut Chips (available on Amazon) for the garnish. If you’re toasting the coconut yourself, follow these instructions:

Horizontal image of toasted coconut flakes in a skillet.

Place a small dry skillet over low heat and add the coconut flakes. Cook, shaking or stirring often to promote even toasting, until golden-brown. This will take about 3 to 5 minutes.

As soon as the flakes turn golden-brown, remove them from the pan and set them aside on a plate. If they stay in the hot pan, they’ll continue to toast and become bitter.

Step 2 – Prep the Remaining Ingredients

If you’re using regular coffee, make and chill 1 cup. Using hot coffee will melt the ice cubes and water down the overall flavor.

Horizontal image of assorted ingredients in bowls next to two bananas on a blue towel.

You want to use a stronger, more concentrated coffee for this as opposed to a lighter blend that has a weak flavor. I use French roast or Italian dark roast, with a higher bean to water concentration that I’d normally use. Cold brew concentrate also works well here.

Measure and set out the remaining ingredients. Make sure you are using coconut milk beverage, and not the cans of coconut milk.

Take out the frozen bananas.

Step 3 – Add Ingredients to the Blender

In a high-powered blender, add the coffee, 1 cup of coconut milk, honey, cocoa powder, bananas, and ice cubes. Feel free to use a different type of sweetener if you prefer.

Horizontal image of wet dark brown ingredients and ice cubes in a blender.

Adding lighter ingredients closest to the blade and heavier, more dense ones (like the frozen bananas and ice) further from the blade helps to puree the smoothie thoroughly.

Coconut milk has very little protein, but you can make this more of a filling breakfast by adding chia seeds or protein powder. If you use chia seeds, just soak them first for about 15 minutes in coconut milk or water (1/4 cup seeds to 1 cup liquid) until they gel and take on a chewy texture.

Step 4 – Blend, Garnish, and Serve

Pulse until frothy and smooth, checking to make sure the smoothie isn’t overly thick. If it isn’t pourable, splash in more coconut milk a few tablespoons at a time, and blend again.. You can also thicken the smoothie with more ice cubes.

Horizontal image of a breakfast smoothie with a purple straw next to bananas and a bowl of cocoa powder.

Divide among glasses, garnish with the coconut flakes, and serve with a straw and/or a spoon.

Joy For Java

If you’re as nuts about the combination of coffee, bananas, and coconut as I am, this ridiculously easy recipe is going to be a homerun in your home kitchen.

Horizontal image of a cup with a frothy dark chocolate beverage next to a blue towel, a bowl of toasted coconut chips, and a yellow banana

Honey is purely optional here, and it can be substituted with agave or maple syrup. With no sweetener, just keep in mind that your smoothie may be on the bitter side.

I also love to boost the flavor with a dash of spicy cinnamon or nutmeg – and nothing beats a homemade pumpkin spice mix at any time of year!

In a pinch, granola will work like a charm if toasting your own coconut flakes seems like a hassle on busy mornings.

How will you create a little crunch? Share your favorite toppings for texture in the comments below! And don’t forget to give this recipe a five-star rating if you loved it.

Still got smoothies on the brain? Give these other blended breakfast recipes a try:

Photos by Fanny Slater, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published by Jennifer Swartvagher on August 14, 2012. Last updated on March 4, 2022.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

About Fanny Slater

Fanny Slater is a home-taught food enthusiast based in Wilmington, North Carolina who won the “Rachael Ray Show” Great American Cookbook Competition in 2014, and published her cookbook “Orange, Lavender & Figs” in 2016. Fanny is a food and beverage writer, recipe developer, and social media influencer. She was a co-host on the Food Network series “Kitchen Sink,” was featured on Cooking Channel’s longtime popular series “The Best Thing I Ever Ate,” and continues to appear regularly on the “Rachael Ray Show.”

28 thoughts on “Coconut Chocolate Coffee Smoothie”

  1. Oh, this sounds utterly divine. It would be perfect to take along with me on weekend mornings. The only ingredient I’m missing is the coconut milk, so I should pick some up ASAP and try this out. Can’t wait! Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  2. Goodbye, energy drinks.. Hello, coconut-coffee shake! As a sleep-deprived college student, I’m always looking for new ways to wake myself up. So far, excessive amounts of taurine seem to be the only effective fix, but perhaps the added banana and coconut will provide me with that extra boost that I need.

    Reply
  3. That looks extremely delicious and easy to make. I can’t wait to try it out! It’ll help wake me right up, in the mornings. Also because it’s sweet, I won’t need my usual chocolate bar I have in the mornings.

    Chocolate, banana, coconut, coffee…sounds extremely yummy! Thank you very much for sharing!

    Reply
  4. This looks lovely. I don’t think my digestive system can handle coconut/cconut milk, chocolate, coffee, and bananas in one go though. I’m pretty sure it would be upset honestly haha so I’m a little hesitant to try.

    Reply
  5. The mixture of coffee and cocoa is simply divine!
    Also it’s a great way to use up older banana’s.
    We always freeze the banana’s when they are getting brown with the intention of making breads from them.
    We never seem to be able to make and eat enough of the bread, so this is a great way to make use of them.
    I actually didn’t have cocoa the first time I made it, but I did have chocolate milk.
    While not a perfect substitute, it was still good!

    Reply
  6. Wow, Jennifer! This looks like heaven in a cup! Do you think this would work with light coconut milk?

    It does look awfully rich. But that won’t deter me from such a celebratory pick me up!

    Reply
  7. Oh! This is so similar to a drink I like to make on summers. Instead of coconut milk I use vanilla yogurt (I sometimes add some milk to make it lighter) and only use coffee if it is for breakfast. Never tried coconut milk with this, but I’ve used coconut flakes with almost every drink because this smoothie is great to have along with homemade “alfajores de maicena” which use those flakes. So I’ll try this combination and recommend you to eat some alfajores.
    Cheers.

    Reply
  8. This looks like utter perfection. It combines three of my absolute favorite things! I would have never thought to make this and I am so glad I came across this recipe. Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  9. I have to admit, this look absolutely amazing. I can’t wait until I have all the ingredients to try this out. By any chance, could I replace the coconut with anything else that would still make it taste good? And preferably a healthy alternative?

    Reply
  10. I’ve always loved the way coconut and chocolate tasted together, this recipe will definitely be one I’ll be trying soon. The banana added to it will not only be a boost of flavor, but also a great contributor to my protein intake. I could even see this recipe working great in my pre workout routine, as the caffeine would give me an extra boost.

    Reply
  11. Chocolate and coffee are my two favourite things, so this obviously makes the most ideal drink for me. It sounds so simple and quick, something I can make before starting my day. I think the coconut milk is the only thing I need to go buy, the rest is already in my fridge. I think this would be a much better (and tastier) alternative to energy drinks. Thank you, Jennifer!

    Reply
  12. This is basically my go to protein shake in the morning…just add a little protein powder. I also have found that adding kale can really give an energy boost to those who find themselves sluggish in the morning. I love drinking my breakfast as well as my veggies….these are great for little kids who refuse to eat veggies as well. I just hide it within the decadent ingredients and they never know.

    Reply
  13. Yes please! This sounds delicious, I love anything with coconut milk and adding chocolate just makes it that much better 😉 Usually when I make smoothies I stick to the standard fruit and yogurt varieties, but adding coffee is such a fun idea and sounds really tasty. Anything that lets me have chocolate and coconut for breakfast is a win in my book, especially when it’s also caffeinated! 🙂

    Reply
  14. Oh we have a lot of coconut in our country. We generally use it in different dishes. But this is really the first time I’ve seen coconut milk used this way. It’s pretty interesting. I’m very curious how this turns out. It is indeed a great alternative to the usual hot coffee. I’ll definitely give this recipe a try as soon as I buy a new blender. Mine just got busted. 🙁

    Reply
  15. Mmmm! WOW! That is a very scrumptious looking smoothie. Quick question though Jennifer. Is there a substitute that could be used for the bananas? Unfortunately, I’m highly allergic to bananas, and one sip of this tasty looking smoothie would send me straight to the ER. I’m in love with this recipe. It looks so easy to make. I’ll try the banana free version in the meantime. I know it will surely taste delicious. What a great way to start the morning!

    Reply
  16. Oh my goodness! This looks so delicious. I am a huge lover of cold coffee, bananas, and coconut. So, this would make a gorgeous afternoon shake for me. It looks super easy to make. The only thing you would need is a great blender. The closest drink I’ve had compared to this recipe was a coffee smoothie. It had vanilla flavored ice cream, vanilla coffee, and milk blended together.

    Reply
  17. I’ve recently started drinking my coffee regularly and I have been wondering what I’ll do when summer comes around. I’ve never enjoyed an ice-based version much but this sounds so delicious! I can’t wait to give it a shot!

    Reply
  18. Not a big coffee drinker but this looks like it would be a great tasting drink. Also the mix of banana, coconut and cocoa gives you a good amount of healthy nutrients. A great morning drink!

    Reply
  19. I’m a HUGE fan of smoothies and this particular one has all the flavors that I like. It’s funny that I found this article now since I’m actually planning to make something once I get off the computer which has a couple of the flavors you talk about. It’s just a much lazier version. I have some leftover chocolate ice cream in my freezer so I’m just going to blend that with some coffee. Quick and easy!

    Reply
  20. Yummm!! This recipe looks so yummy and really easy! I love making smoothies and then freezing them for the kids. This one will definitely be pinned for hubby and me for when spring comes around to SA. Would it be possible to freeze this as popsicles or will the bananas make this difficult?

    Reply
  21. Yes, I found a drink for early mornings (finally, an alternative to the usual coffee). I think it’s just me, but it seems like this could be paired with waffles, pancakes, or biscuits. I’m not sure which type to choose, any suggestions?

    Reply
  22. This sounds heavenly, only I would omit the bananas. I’m not a huge banana fan. But the coconut milk and coffee combination sound delightful. To make it a bit fancier I was thinking of adding a little Bailey’s Irish Cream for a mid afternoon drink poolside.

    Reply
  23. This sounds absolutely, unspeakably, outrageously delicious! We are also lucky enough to have a local grocer that gives us their slightly ‘past their sell by date’ bananas at a discount, and I always keep some in the freezer in case I get the urge to make banana bread or banana ice cream – they’re not going to make it past breakfast time tomorrow that’s for sure! Thanks for the lovely idea!

    Reply

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