For people like myself who try to avoid foods containing soy, coconut aminos are a great alternative to soy sauce, tamari, and other soy-based liquid aminos.
Coconut aminos, instead, are made from fermented coconut sap. They’re sweet, savory, and can be a great addition to rice bowls, stir frys, and just about anything you would usually top with soy sauce.
Trader Joe’s Organic Coconut Aminos are available for $2.99 per bottle in the same section where you can find regular soy sauce, ramen noodles, and other Asian-inspired shelf-stable foods. Once opened, your coconut aminos can be stored in the refrigerator or in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
Despite recent rumors that Trader Joe’s Coconut Aminos have been discontinued due to a temporary shortage in 2021, they are once again widely available in stores as of January 2023. If you’re having trouble finding them in stock at your local store, try asking an employee when they will become available again.
Trader Joe’s used to carry a smoky BBQ version of these coconut aminos. However, this flavor was discontinued in 2022 due to a lack of popularity.
Ingredients & Nutrition
These coconut aminos are super simple, made from just three ingredients–organic coconut sap, water, and sea salt.
This product is certified organic by the USDA. It’s also gluten free, vegan, and Whole30 compliant. Trader Joe’s Organic Coconut Aminos are produced in Sri Lanka exclusively for Trader Joe’s.
Some things to be aware of nutritionally when it comes to these aminos is that they’re quite high in both sugar and sodium. In just two tablespoons of TJ’s Organic Coconut Aminos, you’ll be consuming four grams of sugar and 200 mg of sodium. This accounts for almost 10% of the total amount of each of these substances you should consume in a full day.
That said, this is a huge improvement on the sodium coconut of regular soy sauce, which contains almost 2000 mg of sodium in just two tablespoons.
Nevertheless, while coconut aminos can definitely make for a tasty seasoning, it’s best not to go overboard with them. Luckily, the flavor is quite strong, so a few drops goes a long way.
My Honest Review
I had tried other brands of coconut aminos before, so I already knew that coconut aminos don’t really taste anything like soy sauce.
Unfortunately, all coconut aminos are much sweeter than soy sauce (because coconuts naturally contain a lot of sugar).
While the flavor of regular soy sauce can be described as salty, savory, and umami, I would call these coconut aminos primarily sweet and salty with a slight hint of savory bitterness (though the bitterness is very subtle). There really isn’t much, if any, umami flavor as far as my taste buds can tell.
If you are avoiding soy in your diet altogether, then I’d say these coconut aminos are definitely a suitable alternative. However, if you can have the real stuff, I’d definitely recommend just sticking with regular soy sauce.
TJ’s Coconut Aminos are best suited for recipes that call for a little sweetness. I imagine they could be a great seasoning addition to a Hawaiian-inspired burger or anything else involving grilled pineapple. Because of its sweet flavor, it reminds me more of teriyaki sauce than soy sauce, despite having a much different consistency.
Some things I like about these coconut aminos–they’re organic, the recipe is simple, and the bottle has a convenient top that only allows a couple drops out at a time (which is really all you need). I did notice, though, that the dropper top comes off easily and sometimes gets stuck inside the outer lid.
Overall, I would probably buy these aminos again, but considering that I won’t use them very often, it will be quite a while until I’ll need another bottle.