Like most pastries, turnovers can be variant friendly when it comes to fillings and shapes. From sweet to savory, almost anything can be used to fil this puff pastry. Popular variants are filled with fruit or jam. However, a lesser known variant is filled with something more on the tropical side. Coconut turnovers are a staple of the Caribbean islands that got its start on the beautiful island of Barbados, which also happens to be this writer's neck of the woods. Today's recipe serves to bring coconut turnovers into more households and will require croissant pastry for its leavened consistency, though regular puff pastry will do fine.

Although the involvement of either pastry makes this recipe sound anything but simple, it actually is. Read on.

Why it's easy

Puff pastry and yeast-leavened pastry have opened many doors for pastry chefs. The sheer variety of pastries and their yield produced from this French patented pastry have been beneficial to the food industry. However, it all comes at a cost. Producing these pastries can be awfully time-consuming as they consist of layers that require a great deal of butter to be folded and rolled into the dough several times before use.

Fortunately, the industry isn't shy about selling ready-made pastry to consumers and fellow businesses. People can pick up puff pastry and yeast-leavened pastry (aka croissant pastry) packaged in sheet form at their local grocery stores.

The following recipe calls for such a convenience, though this doesn't mean that anyone following this recipe can't substitute their own homemade pastry if they already know how to make them.

The coconut filling for this pastry is also pretty easy on the chef; it doesn't even require cooking. Below is the recipe for the coconut turnovers that is pretty simple to make.

However, although, nothing is required to make the pastry dough since it's being bought ready-made, it will still require some more rolling for shaping before it is baked. Hence, a rolling pin and some flour.

The recipe


  • 1 sheet (12 oz) puff pastry or croissant pastry (see recipe here)
  • 4 oz grated coconut
  • 1 pinch cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • Flour and brown sugar as needed


  1. Preheat the oven to 215°C. Remove the puff pastry from the refrigerator and let it rest in a warm place until it reaches room temperature.
  2. Combine the grated coconut, sugar, cinnamon and almond extract in a mixing bowl until all the sugar is dissolved and the coconut is discolored.
  3. Using a rolling pin, roll out the warm pastry to at least 2.5mm thick on a flat surface dusted with flour.
  4. Using a 4" fluted cutter, divide the pastry into circular discs.
  5. Use the rolling pin to expand the disks, but make sure to keep the center of the discs thin while their edges remain thick.
  6. Place a heaping spoonful of the filling in the center of each disc.
  7. Brush the edges with water and fold one side over the other evenly. Gently press down on the layered sides with fingers to seal.
  8. Wash the folded pastry with water and dip into brown sugar.
  9. Place on a clean baking tray lined with parchment and let rest for at least 30 minutes.
  10. Bake in an oven for 20 minutes or until the turnovers turn crisp and golden brown. Transfer to a rack and cool for 15 minutes.

Serves: 8