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Sarma Melngailis’s Raw Coconut Lime Cookies

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It is DAY 2 of "Raw Food Recipes with Excalibur", and after opening with supermodel Carol Alt we continue our celebration with another RAWKSTAR beauty, -- the inspiring co-founder and owner of Pure Food and Wine, and CEO of One Lucky Duck in NYC, Sarma Melngailis. To say this lady was building a raw foods empire would be an understatement.

After ditching her life of mergers and acquisitions in corporate America, and training at the French Culinary Institute in NYC, Sarma was introduced to raw food at a chance dinner with a friend. After experimenting with, thriving on, and embracing this new lifestyle, Sarma abandoned her idea for a Morrocan eatery, and instead opened a raw foods restaurant with then partner Matthew Kenney in 2003.

For the first few years, she was the executive chef in the kitchen at Pure Food and Wine. However, after launching in 2005, and then splitting with Kenney, her life took on more of a business development role. After hanging up her full-time kitchen apron, she has been growing the sensational One Lucky Duck brand in spectacular fashion ever since!

Sarma's impressive brand comprises the Pure Food and Wine raw foods restaurant (which I visit every time I am in NYC), two One Lucky Duck salad and juice bars in Gramercy Park, and Chelsea Market (where I have breakfast every morning I am in NYC), as well as a thriving online raw foods store, where you can purchase raw food ingredients, prepared raw treats, natural skincare, kitchen accessories, books and more. Who knows what is next for this savvy lady?

Whilst we excitedly await the next installment, you can read all about Sarma's healthy journey in Sarma's two books: RAW FOOD REAL WORLD and RAW LIVING FOODS. Her first book, co-authored with Matthew Kenney, is one of my favourite raw foods books of all time! It just makes raw food SEXY! I have made every single recipe in that book, and keep coming back for more flavourful information. I didn't think Sarma could surpass the wonders of that book.

But with LIVING RAW FOOD, she swoops in with what I can only describe as "lucky duck magic!" This book is SENSATIONAL with TONS of delicious raw food recipes; great ingredient and prep information; shopping sources and guides; Pure Food and Wine stories with staff and friends; personal advice and confessions; and STUNNING food photography. If you order your copy of the book from the One Lucky Duck shop, Sarma will even sign it for you!

In this fantastic book, Sarma shares her famous Cilantro-Pineapple Shake, which is TO DIE FOR; her easy Cucumber Mint Gazpacho; Pure Food and Wine's mouthwatering Chanterelle and Kalamata Olive Ravioli; a Raw Thanksgiving Dinner; and many other fabulous live delights. And the Cherry Nectarine Timbales...! Oh, that just might be where s'blended piggies and lucky ducks fall in love! 

Another thing that makes this book unique is how Sarma has organized the recipes into the degree of difficulty and length of preparation. So, at a quick glance, you can choose a recipe based on your level of knowledge and time constraints. This makes the book particularly useful for raw food "newbies" or people who are less confident in the kitchen. 

Another thing I love about this book (besides the amazing food, digestible information, and GORGEOUS photos and layout) is the honest, "hold-nothing-back" storytelling style. My favourite thing about Sarma is that she doesn't pretend to be anything other than what she is in every moment; and inspires us to do the same. What makes her books and blog so appealing to me, and perhaps to a mainstream audience, is that she isn't preachy or fanatical about raw foods. She shares her struggles maintaining a raw foods lifestyle, and doesn't sugar-coat the challenges that come with it. She is honest about her flexible diet, that sometimes includes conventional cooked foods. I really believe that is the secret to her success. That, and business acumen, charisma, and electrifying persona. 

Sarma is sharing her delectable raw vegan lime coconut cookies today. In her book, LIVING RAW FOOD, Sarma says about this recipe, "Before the restaurant opened, I spent a lot of time at home experimenting with recipes. One of my favorite desserts was a lime-mousse tart made with a base of avocados, which we never had on the menu at the restaurant (you can find the recipe in RAW FOOD REAL WORLD). The tarts were made with a coconut-macadamia crust, and when I had extra dough I’d form cookie shapes and put them in the dehydrator." 

These cookies are DEAD EASY to make, taste incredible, and can be enjoyed completely raw or dehydrated. Read Sarma's comments about this in the recipe section. I don't know about you, but the combination of lime and coconut is as perfect as chocolate and hazelnut. I just can't get enough! 

As Bridget from One Lucky Duck said to me, "The hardest part about making these cookies is waiting for them to finish dehydrating!  As with most dehydrator recipes, there's always a few testers that never make it the full time!" After scarfing half the bowl of dough before even pulling my dehydrator trays out of the machine, I happily agree! 

Thankyou to Sarma, Bridget, and Karen from One Lucky Duck for participating in this event. You are inspiring.

*Recipe and excerpts from LIVING RAW FOOD by Sarma Melngailis, and published here with permission from One Lucky Duck.
**Photo taken by Tara Donne 
***Special thanks to Karen McDermott and Bridget Araujo from One Lucky Duck for co-ordinating this feature. 

Learn more about Sarma Melngailis at One Lucky Duck.
Follow on her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Sarma Melngailis’s Raw Coconut Lime Cookies

  • 2 cups raw unsalted macadamia nuts
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded dried coconut
  • 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime
  • 1 Tbsp lime zest 
  • 1/4 cup raw agave nectar
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp non alcoholic vanilla extract
  1. Place the nuts in the freezer to chill for a few minutes.
  2. Once chilled, pulse the nuts, coconut, and lime zest in a food processor until the mixture is well combined but still a bit chunky. Be careful not to overprocess the mixture or it will become oily (chilling the nuts before processing helps to prevent this).
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, add the remaining ingredients, and combine well.
  4. Using a small ice cream scoop or a big tablespoon, spoon rounds of dough onto a Teflex-lined Excalibur dehydrator trays and flatten them into round cookies, about 1/2-inch thick.
  5. Dehydrate at 115 degrees for about 24 hours or until the cookies reach the desired consistency.
  6. Makes about 3 dozen cookies. YUMMO! 
  7. Sarma says, " You can dehydrate the cookies for less time if you like them chewier, or a longer time for crunchier cookies. Also, if you don’t have a dehydrator or you’re just impatient, you can simply form the dough into cookie shapes, place them between pieces of parchment, and put them in the freezer to harden for a chilled, crunchy cookie snack. Either way they’re remarkably yummy."

*Recipe and excerpt from LIVING RAW FOOD by Sarma Melngailis, and published here with permission from One Lucky Duck. 
**Photo taken by Tara Donne 
***Special thanks to Karen McDermott and Bridget Araujo from One Lucky Duck for co-ordinating this feature. 
Learn more about Sarma Melngailis at One Lucky Duck.
Follow on her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Tip: freeze fresh lime juice in ice cube trays for later

Fresh limes can be really expensive when they are not in season. To ensure you always have a stash of fresh lime juice, freeze juice in ice cube trays and defrost them as you need them for recipes. These ice cubes also make fantastic additions to flavour water, mocktails and smoothies.

I visited Sarma’s Pure Food & Wine for the first time on my 40th birthday a few years ago, and now it is a regular stop each time I visit Manhattan!

My favorite treat there is the Malomars, but I can’t wait to make and taste these easy and delicious sounding cookies!

Thanks so much to Tess & Sarma for this informative & inspirational post!

xo - Penni
Raw Food Rehab


Oh, I LOVE that….
Yes, I went for by birthday lunch last year, and never go to NYC without stopping in there and One Lucky Duck.
Thanks for your incredible support during this event Penni. You are just AMAZING.

Same for me Penni and Tess! Each time I go to New York, Pure Food & Wine is my first food stop. I fell so in love with her Hemp Seed Burger! I could eat them every day. I always buy a bunch of cookies at One Lucky Duck, just because they are the best. So I will definitely try these tempting zesty ones tomorrow! (Sunday is my raw- kitchen- play-day)

I know. aren’t they the BEST?!
You will LOVE these cookies. SO easy and really hard to quit eating :)

Thanks for the recipe and travel trip.  I will definitely be visiting these spots when in NYC - might see you there.


Pleasure. Yes! Definitely check these places out next time you are in NYC.
Meeting up! That would be FUN…....

I am making these TODAY!  I love the coconut and lime combination.  I am going to use maple syrup instead of agave.  Thanks for sharing the recipe Sarma and Tess!  I love my dehydrator (I have a 9 tray Excalibur and it is worth every penny and more)!  Look forward to tomorrow’s recipe!


They are SO easy and SOOOO good.
Thanks for supporting this event with such enthusiasm and love. I really appreciate it.

Wow! I can’t believe how easy this recipe sounds. I’m definitely going to make these. Coconut, lime = yum! Love all these great new ideas to play with in my dehydrator. :)


Yes! These are SOOO easy and taste INCREDIBLE. Can’t wait to hear what you think :)

Yum yum and double yum! Although I consider myself proficient in the kitchen, I am wondering what lime zest juice is? Lime zest, yes…lime zest juice? Is it zesting the lime and pressing juice out of the zest? xo


SORRY! Typo on my part.
It is lime zest. AND the more the better in my opinion. These cookies are TO DIE FOR!

These sound delicious, nutritious, EASY and LOVE that they are gluten-free!


Lisa, these are FANtastic!
SO easy and, yes, gluten free! Yipppeeee!

I can’t wait to make these! They look incredible, GF and Vegan, my kinda cookie :-)


Yep!!! My kinda cookie too! These are SOOOO good!

What temp do you set the dehydrator on?


I’m sorry! You dehydrate them at 115 degrees. I was so tired when I wrote this post, I forgot to include that.
Enjoy! These are so easy and so good!

My Excalibur is humming with Sarma’s cookies! I can already tell they are to DIE for! I tasted the dough and wow! Very zesty recipe and I can’t wait to put my teeth into my first one :-)


LOL! Yes! Not very many made it to my dehydrator sheets in the first batch! These are SOOO good! Enjoy :)

I’ve read Sarma Melngailis’s Raw Food Real World and I would love to read her other book as well! I love Raw Food Real World, it is something that really got me started going on a really healthy life. I absolutely LOVE raw food and although I do not consider myself a 100% raw foodie, I would love to become one someday. In Minneapolis/St. Paul MN, there is a super yummy restaurant called the Ecopolitan which is a raw vegan and organic restaurant. I absolutely LOVE it! But I cannot wait until I have the privlege to go to Pure Food and Wine. I love all of Sarma’s recipes and all of yours as well Tess! Thank you both for all of your help on my eating to better myself, the planet and others, it means a lot and I couldn’t have done it without you two!


Thankyou Aubrey for taking the time to leave such a lovely comment. I am so glad you have found the recipes so helpful. I would LOVE to visit Ecopolitan one day. It sounds AMAZING. I also can’t wait to hear that you have enjoyed a meal at Pure Food And Wine. Sarma’s recipes and books are AMAZING and have certainly been an inspiration to me as well. Enjoy :)

I was really excited to make these and just put the mix into my dehydrator.  I had a REALLY hard time getting the cookies to stick.  They were crumbling all over.  Then I made them too high to allow the drawer to close.  I wonder if they will combine better after cooking. Any advice?


Sorry it has taken me so long to respond to you. I would try processing the mixture a bit longer to release more of the natural oils from the macadamias that help these to bind. Also, make the cookies flatter so they fit. You could also add just a tiny by more sweetener or a bit of coconut oil. I hope this helps.

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