The best coconut water brands are Taste Nirvana, ZICO, Wai Koko, Vita Coco, 365 Everyday Value, Harmless Harvest, Amy & Brian, C20 Pure, MOJO Pure, and Coco Joy.
A significant number of my clients have jumped on the coconut water trend with glee. After all, it is a pretty tasty drink and the advertised health benefits make it all the more enticing. As I have told them, though, not all coconut water brands are alike.
In fact, there are a lot out there that are as bad as sugar-laden fruit juices. And, it is my job as a nutritionist to help you avoid these and instead make the healthiest possible decisions. On this note, this post contains a list of the top brands out there. I have also included some tips on how to evaluate coconut water when shopping for yourself.
Let’s get started!
Best Organic Coconut Water
Now, let’s get down to selecting the top coconut water brands on the market!
Taste Nirvana coconut water is promoted as a premium product. And certainly, when we tasted it, we had to admit that it did offer more in terms of taste than many other brands.
This coconut water has a fuller body and even boasts a subtle nutty flavor. It is also surprisingly sweet, despite not having any added sugar in it.
The sweetness can be attributed to the fact that the water is sourced from young Thai coconuts.
There is also an undeniable taste of freshness to this juice. This makes sense considering that the coconut water is packaged soon after it is sourced.
We especially like it poured over ice.
Be warned, though, this drink is for a more discerning palate. So, if you are looking for something a little subtler or lighter, you may not appreciate the taste.
Overall, the beverage is quite healthy. It only contains natural ingredients and is free from trans fats. We also liked that it had a good amount of potassium – 400mg.
What we enjoyed most about ZICO is its authentic taste. Unlike many of the other brands that we tested, this drink wasn’t overly sweet.
Rather, the natural flavors were all evenly balanced. So, even if you aren’t a huge fan of coconut water and are drinking it for health purposes, you will like what the drink has to offer.
Another point that we appreciated was that this drink is chock-full of electrolytes. It has appropriate amounts of sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus.
So, if you are looking for a way to replenish your electrolytes after a workout, this will be an excellent pick-me-up.
At the same time, the drink has fewer calories than sports drinks. A bottle has just 90 calories while a single serving of 8 fl. ounces (240ml) has just 45!
The one caveat that we would like to mention is that this drink doesn’t taste all that great at room temperature. So, make it a point to toss it into the refrigerator for a while before drinking it.
The company has certainly gone all out with the can for this coconut water. It is fun and gorgeous, adding to your experience quite a bit.
Despite the heavy emphasis on Hawaii, the coconuts are sourced from Thailand. Thus, the resulting beverage is actually quite sweet.
What we were really intrigued by, though, is the creamy taste and texture of this drink – it is quite delicious!
At the same time, it is a bit of a mystery as the drink only contains 100 percent natural coconut water. If you are looking for a different kind of coconut water, though, this should do the trick.
For the most part, this drink is all about rehydration. This is why it contains an impressive amount of potassium – 552mg.
However, the sodium content is on the lower level. So, if you are trying to get your electrolytes up after a heavy workout, this may not be the best drink for you.
On the other hand, if you are looking to get your potassium levels up and want a delicious alternative, Wai Koko may be the best bet for you.
Vita Coco is arguably one of the most popular brands of coconut water around. In fact, the company was responsible for much of the hype surrounding the drink.
So, how does this coconut water actually fare in an unbiased review?
Well, the first thing to note is that this coconut water does contain added sugar. Now, this would be a much bigger strike against it except for a couple of points.
One, despite the added sugar, the drink is relatively low in calories. Two, even with the additional ingredient, the overall sugar level remains on par with some of the other brands.
Considering its popularity, Vita Coco is surprisingly affordable. This, however, might have something to do with the mild taste.
There is nothing wrong with the drink, but the additional sugar does make it quite sweet. Therefore, if you are on the lookout for coconut water that tastes more natural, you may be disappointed.
There is no denying that coconut water can get pretty pricy. So, although you may want a great tasting drink, you can’t exactly afford to pay for the premium stuff either.
Well, 365 Everyday Value coconut water helps to bridge this gap. Though it will not be winning any awards for taste, it is still quite pleasant.
So, as long as you aren’t watching out for any subtle hints or notes of flavors, this is a coconut water that will serve you well.
At the same time, this coconut water is all-natural and contains plenty of electrolytes. So, if you are drinking coconut water for your health, this is a budget-friendly way to do it.
Also, since the brand is backed by Whole Foods, you can be certain that the sourcing and processing of the coconut water are completely safe.
Best Organic Coconut Water
At first glance, this coconut water can seem rather off-putting. This is because unlike many other types, their product is actually pink!
There’s no need to worry, though, as it is an all-natural, organic drink. It is just the polyphenols in the coconut water that turn it pink.
We have to say that Harmless Harvest coconut water is one of the best we have tasted.
The company harvests young coconuts from Thailand and send it through a multi-step filtration system. So, what you end up with this 100% pure coconut water.
This natural taste is further maintained by the fact that the coconut water is never thermally pasteurized.
There is no added sugar or preservatives, making it one of the healthier beverages.
The drink also scores high points for its nutrient levels and has considerable amounts of potassium, phosphorus, calcium, and magnesium.
The main downside of this drink is the cost. It is quite a bit more expensive than the other brands on this list.
Thus, you may have to reserve it for a special treat rather than a daily drink.
After just one sip of Amy & Brian coconut water, you are going to want to re-check the label. This is because this drink is incredibly sweet.
However, the taste is apparently deceptive as the coconut juice doesn’t contain any added sugar.
Furthermore, there are no preservatives or any kind of additives included at all.
The company does mention that their young coconuts are sourced from Thailand so this is probably the cause for the additional sweetness.
If you prefer your coconut water to be quite sweet, then this may be a brand you will enjoy. We, however, found it a little too sugary for our liking.
Due to the taste, though, this is a drink that does work well in recipes. Thus, if you need coconut water for desserts or iced drinks, this is a good option.
The coconut water does contain plenty of other electrolytes as well. So, it can work as a pre or post-workout drink.
We will admit that coconut water with the pulp included is a bit of an acquired taste. If this is something you enjoy, though, this brand will be a refreshing change.
In particular, the pulp adds a more distinct coconut-y taste to the drink and thus, C20 boasts a stronger flavor than some of the others on the list.
This will definitely hit the spot if you are a big fan of all things coconut.
It should be noted that the addition of the pulp does mean that the amount of unsaturated fats in the drink goes up.
So, while there are just 60 calories per serving, you are also consuming 0.5g of fat. If you are trying to maintain a healthier diet, then this may not be the best option for you.
This coconut water is a good source of potassium and calcium. And, considering the higher sodium level, it may work well as a post-workout drink as well.
MOJO pure coconut water is what we would classify as being middle-of-the-road. On the one hand, there isn’t anything particularly bad about it.
The coconut water is a little on the sweet side and doesn’t have an overpowering coconut taste. At the same time, we didn’t really feel that this coconut water was spectacular either.
So, if you prefer something milder, this may be a suitable brand for you.
Things do get interesting with this coconut water when you read the labels. Now, this is a single ingredient coconut water so you can be certain that it is pure.
However, it contains an outstanding 17 grams of sugar per serving! This is incredibly high by any standards and we wouldn’t advise drinking it on a daily basis.
Nevertheless, when you take the potassium and sodium concentrations into consideration, it does appear to be quite hydrating.
Thus, if you need to load up on electrolytes quickly, this should become your go-to option.
Although this was not one of the better-known brands, we were pleasantly surprised by the taste of this coconut water.
Although it is not as strong as the original beverage, there are enough similarities for this drink to be refreshing.
The coconuts are harvested during the peak time so that the water is naturally smooth and sweet without the need for added sugars.
The nuts are sourced from the Philippines and Vietnam, so they will taste a little different from the coconuts sourced from Thailand.
Indeed, this coconut water doesn’t have any additives and is preservative-free to boot as well. The only thing we found concerning about this coconut water was the level of sodium. A single serving of the drink had 113 mg!
This is quite a lot to consume on a regular basis. Thus, it is best to keep this coconut water for when you have undergone an extremely strenuous workout.
So, let’s start by figuring out what you should be paying attention to when picking out coconut water:
Now, this may seem like a rather odd thing to bring up, but it is an important point. Always make sure that the product you are buying is real coconut water.
There are a number of brands that infuse their water with coconut. While this may offer up a coconut-y taste, it certainly isn’t the same thing.
Now, when shopping around, you may come across something called coconut juice – so is this different from coconut water?
No, coconut water and coconut juice typically refer to the same beverage. Nonetheless, it is a good idea to double-check the list of ingredients before selecting it.
You don’t need to be told that each brand sources and processes its coconut water differently.
Furthermore, they will also include various additional ingredients to improve nutritional value, add taste, or increase the lifespan of the beverage.
This is why it is always quite so important for you to read the label when buying coconut water.
Always buy pure coconut water with no additives included in the recipe.
Another reason that you should read the label is to figure out the exact nutrient content in the drink. Per cup, coconut water has the following values:
Thus, you need to make sure that the boxed or canned drink you are buying mirrors these components as closely as possible.
Speaking of healthy, does it make sense for you to only buy organic coconut water? Well, scientists have tested a number of different types of the beverage.
In each case, no discernible amount of pesticides were found in the coconut water. Thus, based on this observation, it isn’t absolutely necessary for you to go organic with this particular drink.
Nevertheless, it still can’t hurt.
Keep in mind, coconut water is sourced from all around the world and it can be difficult to keep track of the farming policies in all these regions. So, to make certain that you are really are getting the safest drink, you may want to select organic coconut water.
Coconut water naturally contains some sugars. Thus, it isn’t really possible to opt for sugar free coconut water.
Rather, what you need to watch out for is added sugar.
For one thing, these brands tend to be higher in calories. Most importantly, though, you need to watch out for your sugar intake.
Consuming too much sugar – especially in your beverages – can cause a whole host of dental and health problems.
Companies will source their coconuts from a number of regions around the world. For the most part, however, they will stick to the Asian region.
Some of the more popular spots include Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam.
So, why does this matter? Well, for one thing, there are various species of coconuts in these countries which automatically means they will taste a little different.
For instance, coconuts in Thailand – especially the green young ones – are known for their natural sweetness. Thus, if you prefer a sweeter beverage, look for coconuts from this region.
Of course, there are other factors that can impact the taste. In many instances, where the coconut trees are grown can also alter the flavor profile of the coconut water.
The answer to this question really would depend on who you ask. As you may have noticed, a larger number of coconut water is packaged in cans.
Thus, you would imagine that it offers up a taste that the general public finds rather pleasing. Well, some experts, have a slightly different take on this.
Understand, in many cases, bottled and boxed coconut water undergoes a process known as cold preservation. In short, it is preserved at a lower temperature.
This ensures that the coconut water maintains its subtle flavors and notes.
On the other hand, canned coconut water utilizes a high-temperature process that takes a lot less time to complete.
Unfortunately, the warmer temperatures can destroy the taste.
Now, if you have ever taste-tested a couple of coconut water brands, you will have already realized that many of them differ in taste.
Some are sweeter, others have stronger sour notes, and there are those that are downright salty. Is there one taste that is better than the rest?
Well, all else being equal (quality, ingredients, nutrients, etc.), it is up to you to determine what tastes best to you.
After all, each person has their own preference when it comes to the specific flavor they are looking for. All that matters is that you enjoy your drink.
The final question you may have is just where you can get coconut water from. Well, if you are lucky, your grocery store should have what you need.
Nonetheless, depending on where you live, this may be a bit of a niche product. What’s more, there is no guarantee that your local store will have the best brands.
Thus, you may find that it is often easier to buy what you need online. In many cases, this can yield better discounts and even give you the opportunity to buy your favorite drink in bulk.
So, there you have it – the top coconut water brands on the market. These should appeal to you regardless of what your taste preferences are.