Best Coconut Water: We’re Coconuts for the 6 Best Coconut Waters

The best coconut water tastes like you cracked open a fresh coconut and poured that sweet, sweet juice directly into your mouth. We tried 11 of the coconut water brands on the market and these were the ones that tasted the most like a tropical island.

I once heard that coconut water was very similar to human blood. In fact, I heard it was used in place of blood in emergency blood transfusions during World War II. And, while a quick Google will let you know that such a rumor is not true (though, per NPR, one man was successfully given coconut water intravenously in the Solomon Islands one time), I like to think about it whenever I’m drinking the electrolyte-packed beverage. Why? It feels nourishing. Let’s leave it at that and not pull at that thread any more. (Cut to me LARPing as a vampire with an IV bag of coconut water.) 

All that aside, I don’t want my coconut water to actually taste like blood. But I do want there to be some salinity to balance out the sweetness. If it’s too sweet, I can’t pretend I’m drinking something that’s good for me (like blood). Give me a little tinge of salt, of vegetal earthiness and I’ll feel like I’m doing my body good.

The Sporked team poured out tetra pak after tetra pak of coconut water to find the best coconut water on the market. Here are the best tasting coconut water brands out there.

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best coconut water: C20

Best of the Best

C20 Coconut Water

C20 is more coconut than water. It is a bold coconut water. It’s full of flavor and full bodied. It has that coconutty sweetness but also an intriguing savory quality that keeps you coming back for more. “Imagine a world where I had a yard,” Sporked writer Danny Palumbo said. That’s where he would sip this refreshing, balanced beverage. It’s a summer crusher for sure. And it’s also powerful enough to hold its own in a cocktail (shake it with rum and lime juice for a lighter take on a Daiquiri) or cooked into a dish like curry. The branding may not be as sexy as some other bottlings, but trust me, it’s the best coconut water out there. 

Credit: Paula Kunatee / Amazon

Rating:

10/10

Sporks

best coconut water: cocojoy

Best Sweet

Coco Joy Natural Coconut Water

Coco Joy is, indeed, coco joy. Sporked social media manager Mark Catangui said it tasted like “purely coconut flavor.” Danny agreed, saying it was, “Pure, extracted coconut flavor—not overly sweet.” Even staff writer Jordan Myrick couldn’t get enough. “Yum yum,” they said. “Now we’re talking.” If you don’t think you like coconut water, this is the best coconut water for you to try. It’s sweet but not sugary. So you can get your fix without feeling like your chugging liquid coconut candy. And its packaging is very pleasing, as well. It would pair well with your bright white string bikini as you lay out on a pristine beach.

Credit: Paula Kunatee / Walmart

Rating:

9.5/10

Sporks

best pink coconut water: harmless harvest

Best Pink

Harmless Harvest Organic Coconut Water

Why is some coconut water pink? Oxidation, baby! If you slice an apple, it turns brown. If you leave coconut water to come in contact with the air, it turns pink! So why isn’t all coconut water pink? Because most coconut water has been processed. Harmless Harvest is less processed, which means it maintains its pink color. So it’s not just a pretty drink. It’s also more pure. And it’s just plain good. “This is a post-workout drink,” Danny said. “It gets your blood flowing.” Harmless Harvest is on the sweeter end of the coconut water spectrum, but it’s reliably crisp and chuggable. And, of course, it’s the best coconut water that happens to be pink.

Credit: Paula Kunatee / Target

Rating:

8.5/10

Sporks

best coconut water: el mexicano

Best with Pulp

El Mexicano Coconut Water with Pulp

If you really do want a sweet, sweet, sweet coconut water, then El Mexicano is the best coconut water for your money. It straight up tastes like a melted coconut popsicle. Plus, it comes with pulp—tasty little chunks that add chew to your beveraging experience. “The chunks feel exciting,” said Jordan. “I love the texture and love the flavor.” And that’s coming from someone who absolutely does not like coconut water. Jordan’s fellow coconut water skeptic, Sporked editorial assistant Naajia Shukri, agreed. “It’s great,” she said. “I don’t know how much sugar is in here—and do I care? No, I do not.”

Credit: Paula Kunatee / Amazon

Rating:

8/10

Sporks

best coconut water with aloe: taste nirvana

Best with Aloe

Taste Nirvana Coconut Water with Aloe

Looking for a sweet treat? Keep on moving. Taste Nirvana is the best coconut water for savory savorers like myself. It’s extremely refreshing, soothing, and cooling. It’s aloe after a sunburn. And, appropriately enough, it also contains jiggly aloe cubes. They’re not for everyone, but if you’re a boba fan or just someone who likes stuff in their drinks, this is a great option. I was a bit nervous about the addition of aloe but I thoroughly enjoyed sipping down the wobbly chunks. If that sentence didn’t creep you out, you need to try this drink.

Credit: Paula Kunatee / Walmart

Rating:

7.5/10

Sporks

best coconut water: kirkland

Best Water Alternative

Kirkland Signature Organic Coconut Water

Kirkland Signature’s coconut water—the one you buy at Costco—is like water+. It’s not too sweet but also not too coconutty. It’s water—but with some flavor. And that’s a good thing. It’s extremely refreshing, so it’s the best coconut water to drink as a workout beverage or as something to drink on a super hot day. It’s also great if you like coconut—but you don’t love it. There is just a kiss of coconut flavor in this coconut water. I liked it. I continued to drink Kirkland coconut water throughout the day, actually. But Jordan, who, as I mentioned before, does not like coconut water, really disliked this one. “This tastes like old yogurt,” they said. To each their own.

Credit: Paula Kunatee / Amazon

Rating:

7/10

Sporks

Other coconut waters we tried: Simple Truth Original, Nature’s Nectar, 365, Trader Joe’s, Vita Coco Pineapple, Vita Coco Coconut Water, Goya Coconut Water with Pulp 


About the Author

Justine Sterling

Justine Sterling is the editor-in-chief of Sporked. She has been writing about food and beverages for well over a decade and is an avid at-home cook and snacker. Don’t worry, she’s not a food snob. Sure, she loves a fresh-shucked oyster. But she also will leap at whatever new product Reese’s releases and loves a Tostitos Hint of Lime, even if there is no actual lime in the ingredients.

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  • My family did a whole taste test with something like 8 or 9 coconut waters a few years ago and preferred Harmless Harvest, but I think a lot of it is based on what flavor you’re looking for, and the way a lot of them bleed together into “vaguely cereal-like for some reason.” Might have to give C2O another shot.

    Reply
  • Wasn’t tested here but my favorite is Vita Coco Pressed. Much better than the regular Vita Coco.

    Reply