We decided to personally put a few of the different coconut brands to the test and see which one was the best. We looked at the taste, cost, health and ingredients. While at it we also decided to explain why the different brands taste different and how to choose the best coconut water. We even made a live video review of the test you can view below. But first, we answer the question: What is the Best Coconut Water Brand?
The best coconut water brand is UFC Refresh Coconut Water. It is pure 100% coconut water sourced from coconuts in Thailand with no added preservatives or sugar, just straight coconut water. The taste is very sweet and the nutrients are well preserved in a vacuum-sealed carton.
So, that’s our number one pick, but now we will delve into each brand one by one and explain the reasons why we choose UFC Refresh as our number one coconut water brand, which I happen to use exclusively every day in my smoothies.
- Best Pasteurized Brands of Coconut Water
- Best Cold Pressed Brand of Coconut Water
- Best Microfiltered Brand of Coconut Water
- Why Do Different Brands of Coconut Water Taste Different
- The Very Best Coconut Water You Can Buy
The criteria we looked at was the taste, cost, ingredients and which one we felt was healthier for you. Some are cold-pressed, others are pasteurized while others use UHT or Ultra High Temperature to pasteurize and allow the coconut water to stay fresh for longer. UHT means that the coconut water is heated to 140°C for two seconds and then packaged in a safe way free from microbes. The higher temperature will kill more bacteria along with heat resistant enzymes then regular pasteurization does.
Cold-pressed is the better option. The process works by submerging the plastic bottles in a water tank, after which a few tons of pressure is applied for a brief time of a few minutes. During this pressure process, the harmful bacteria are inhibited to grow any further, however, the vitamin, minerals and the important enzymes all stay intact and alive. It is also called HPP which stands for High Pressure Processing.
The better brands are now using a process called Microfiltration.  Which maybe even better than cold-pressed. It works by passing the liquid, in this case, coconut water through a membrane which removes any contaminants, effectively sterilizing the liquid while keeping its nutrition, including the much-desired enzymes, and taste unaffected.
Where Pasteurization through thermal processing destroys the natural flavour and nutrient content, HPP and Microfiltration keep most of the nutrient content including the enzymes and natural flavour intact.
It’s preferable to have coconut water that is not pasteurized in any way as the enzymes are what make most juices so nutritious for you. If you want a 100% pure unpasteurized coconut water than check out suggestion at the end of this article, it’s even better than UFC refresh brand.
For the coconut water ingredients, we wanted a brand that was 100% pure coconut water and not reconstituted from concentrate. It had to have no added sugar and no added preservatives, just 100% pure coconut water.
The taste had to be sweet and refreshing in our opinion and full of natural electrolytes which makes coconut water so healthy for you, and finally, we looked at cost.
So now let’s see how each one performed:
#1 UFC Refresh Coconut Water
Our number 1 choice for pasteurized coconut water and best tasting coconut water by far is UFC Refresh. The taste is sweet and the cost is among the cheaper brands.
It is 100 % pure coconut water with a good amount of nutrition, however without the enzymes. See the table below.
They received 2 Golden Stars at the Superior Tastes Awards from International Taste Institute, Belgium in 2018 and 2020.
Nutritional Information per 100ml UFC Refresh Coconut Water.
Cons: The only downside we can find with this brand is the UHT pasteurization process. It improves shelf life and kills harmful bacteria but it also destroys the enzymes and good bacteria as well. Cold-pressed, frozen or micro-filtered is way better and if they could get a non-thermal treated product out there it would win hands down.
Is UFC Coconut Water Good for You?
UFC Coconut water is good for you as it contains no additives, preservatives or added sugar. Being 100% pure coconut water, it contains only the benefits and nutrition that natural coconut water contains.
The natural electrolyte balance means that it can quickly rehydrate you, especially after exercise and sweating.
The only downside again is the UHT treatment or Ultra High Temperature Treatment, which destroys the enzymes.
#2 Oqua Organic Coconut Water – Ceres Organics
This was our second most expensive coconut water; however, the taste was refreshing. It had a sourer sweet taste that certainly didn’t taste watery like some of the other brands. It is not as sweet as UFC Refresh but it was sweet enough to enjoy and make it to number 2 on our list.
At present I can’t find any information on how the coconut water is treated, whether it is pasteurized, cold-pressed or some other process.
Nutritional Information per 100ml Oqua Organic Coconut Water.
#3 Cocofuel Coconut Water
Our third-place pick is Cocofuel, which has a sweet taste but not as sweet as UFC Refresh and it tends to be more watery. I don’t know if this is due to the type of coconuts used or something else. I have read that some coconut water brands used old coconuts and then double pasteurize the water. If old coconuts are used as the source then this would explain why its not so sweet. You need to use young coconuts to get the sweetest taste, which is what UFC Refresh do.
In saying that they mention on their packaging that their coconuts are harvested from farms in Thailand. Which tend to have the sweeter varieties of coconuts in my opinion.
Nutritional Information per 100ml Cocofuel Coconut Water.
#4 Woolworths Coconut Water
Our number 4 placing has gone to Woolworths Coconut Water Brand. They source their coconuts from the Philippines. It is definitely not as sweet as Thailand sourced coconuts above, but they do confirm that they have no added preservatives and sugar, just 100% coconut water.
Really, the only difference between most good brands is the type of coconut used, whether its an old or young coconut and then what preserving method they use whether it’s pasteurized or cold-pressed. The best coconut water brands will cold press or microfilter with young coconuts.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to find a brand that does both, that uses the cold-pressed method with young coconuts. However, there is a simple solution, just check it out at the end of this article.
Nutritional Information per 100ml Woolworths Coconut Water.
#5 Isola BIO Coconut
This brand is not coconut water. When I bought this brand, it looked like coconut water but its actually coconut milk with coconut water. The ingredient list on the back of the pack confirm this.
Its an Italian brand, and is not 100% pure. It contains guar gum as a stabilizer, although it is sold as organic. As far as coconut milk goes it’s not my favourite brand. In fact, you can easily do a lot better by making your own coconut milk. Check out our article here: How To Make Coconut Milk
We decided not to list the nutrition details as its not a pure coconut water brand.
Here is a table of the comparisons between the Pasteurized Brands side by side.
Nutritional Information Comparison of 100 ml Pastuerized Coconut Water Brands.
|Item||UFC Refresh||Oqua Coconut Water||Cocofuel||Woolworths|
|Energy||22 kcal||19.84 kcal||17.9 kcal||15 kcal|
|Fat||0 g||0 g||0 g||0 g|
|Protein||0 g||0 g||0 g||0 g|
|Carbohydrates||5.5 g||6 g||4.6 g||3.6 g|
|Sodium||60 mg||32 mg||19 mg||32 mg|
|Potassium||215 mg||200 mg||136 mg||175 mg|
Cold-pressed is better than UHT coconut water in that it retains the natural flavour and nutrients of the original coconut water.
The best cold-pressed brand of coconut water is Taste Nirvana. The coconuts are grown in Thailand and they are picked young for their sweet water. The resulting liquid is cold-pressed to retain the natural flavour and enzymes.
Nutritional Information per 100ml Taste Nirvana Cold Pressed Coconut Water.
Micro filtering as mentioned above is the best possible way to sterilize coconut water and extend its shelf life while maintaining all of the nutrients and enzymes. More brands are beginning to jump on board with this method as more consumers are wanting healthier options. After a lot of research and testing, we found one brand head and shoulders above all of the rest.
The best micro-filtered brand of coconut water is harmless harvest. It is organic and 100% pure coconut water, the closest coconut water you will get to nature.
Nutritional Information per 100ml Harmless Harvest Microfiltered Coconut Water.
If you have tried a few different brands of coconut water you will begin to notice that they have different tastes. Some taste like water, while others can be very sweet, yet others only slightly sweet. So why all the different tastes, they are all coconut water so shouldn’t they all taste the same?
Different brands of coconut water taste different due to the type of coconut harvested along with the processing method used. Coconut water made from old coconuts will not taste as sweet as coconut water made from young coconuts. If thermal treatment is used for pasteurization then the result can be a burnt taste. If micro filtering processing is used then the taste will be closer to a real natural coconut water taste.
But if you are worried about the best possible tasting coconut water and best possible nutrition and do not have access to harmless harvest brand of coconut water then you really need to do the following…
The very best coconut water you can buy is straight from the coconut itself grown locally. This will ensure you get all of the enzymes and nutrition and you know there are no additives or added sugar. A young coconut or baby coconut will have the sweetest water.
It’s just how nature intended for you to drink it. Most local supermarkets will sell coconuts when they are in season, even if you don’t live in a tropical country, you can still buy imported coconuts. The health benefits of fresh raw coconut water straight from the coconut is just miles ahead of any coconut water you will buy in a can. There is just no comparison, even if its only old coconuts you can get. To find out an easy way to get the coconut meat out of an old coconut please check out our post: Why is Coconut Meat Hard or Soft? What’s The Difference?
If you are wanting to know how to open a coconut easily then check out our post: How To Open a Coconut Easy – Step by Step Guide with Videos and Pictures
However, if you can get hold of a young coconut, many of them are imported from Thailand, then you will be in for a sweet treat.
If you happen to get an old (brown) coconut then you can also use the coconut meat to make coconut milk. Check out our post: How To Make Coconut Milk
One of the downsides to getting your coconut water this way is the cost. Each coconut will yield around 100 ml of coconut water, but you will pay as much as you would pay for 1 litre of processed coconut water, making it 10 times as expensive, unless you live in a tropical country.
Update: Just been reading that the young Thailand coconuts may be soaked in formaldehyde to give them that white husk look and protect them from mould. Not so bad, as long as the formaldehyde does not penetrate the shell into the coconut water. But there are no guarantees about this.
After more research, we suggest you might also like to look at this brand, FeedingChange Young Thai Coconut Water. It is pure coconut water that is not pasteurized or cold-pressed or even micro-filtered. It is organic and just frozen and delivered in a frozen state preserving its enzymes and nutrition for you to enjoy.
How to Choose the Best Coconut Water
The very best coconut water is grown locally from your own coconut trees. After doing much research it seems that anything imported and processed is either denatured or had some chemical processing, such as young Thai coconuts being dipped in formaldehyde to keep the husk white.
If you are fortunate enough to live in a tropical country then these concerns will not be a problem as you can drink the water from a young fresh coconut knowing that it hasn’t been dipped in any chemical.
 National Institutes of Health: Comparison of the quality attributes of coconut waters by high‐pressure processing
 Journal of Agricultural Engineering and Food Technology: Non Thermal Processing of Coconut Water
 FeedingChange Young Thai Coconut Water
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