The CLT: Coconut, Lettuce & Tomato sandwich

I don’t really miss foods I used to eat pre-veg, but it’s still a lot of fun to recreate the familiar comfort foods we grew up with. So prepare to be amazed: this is one of the best sandwiches ever. It’s a raw take on the classic BLT, but with coconut instead of bacon (ew). I first tried something like this at a vegan restaurant in Montreal a few years ago, and it wasn’t hard to copy the (cooked) recipe at home. I often made mini CLTs for vegan potlucks, and they were always a huge hit. Raw-ifying the sandwich was the next step, and I think this is a damn good approximation.

It starts with raw onion bread — I used Matt Amsden’s recipe from Rawvolution. I made it for the first time the other night, and it’s fantastic! Highly recommend. Top it off with some specially-marinated coconut, raw cashew mayo, tomatoes and spinach, and you’re ready to eat.

Some points to keep in mind: the liquid smoke is obviously key to imparting the smoky flavour that combines so well with the sweetness and crunch of the coconut chips and the saltiness of nama shoyu. If you can’t find it, leave it out, but it adds to the dish immensely. Also, if you’d rather not put the time into making the mayo, you can use sliced avocado for a similar effect. Finally, if you don’t have time to dehydrate bread, you can always roll this up in a big green collard leaf or a sheet or nori.

Here’s the recipe!

Coconut, Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich


1/2 cup coconut chips (not the flakes, but like these)

1 tsp nama shoyu

a few drops of liquid smoke

Toss the coconut in a bowl with the nama shoyu and liquid smoke.


3/4 cup cashews (preferably soaked for 2 hours beforehand)

juice of one lemon

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp agave nectar

generous pinch dry mustard powder

1/2 cup water

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 cup olive oil

Blend all ingredients except olive oil until smooth in a high-speed blender. With blender still running, drizzle in the olive oil in a thin stream until completely emulsified.

Other ingredients

two slices of raw bread

1/2 small tomato, sliced

handful of spinach or lettuce


Spread desired amount of raw mayo on each slice of bread. Layer tomatoes, coconut and spinach on bottom slice, and top it off with the other slice. Enjoy!


10 Responses to “The CLT: Coconut, Lettuce & Tomato sandwich”

  1. Interesting! I never would’ve thought to use coconut that way but it’s piqued (sp?) my interests that I may have to try this sometime. Need a few key ingredients first. 🙂

  2. Wow, this looks great and perfect timing as I’ve been looking for more creative coconut uses lately. Thanks!

  3. As I mentioned, those were the places I used to go to all the time. I was on a student budget so all of those places are very well priced. In terms of produce, it’s got to be Westerly. If you go towards the end of the day they have a huge variety of the organic fruits and veggies that are nearing the end of their prime or have a dent. I never had a problem wtih any of that stuff. It is usually really ripe and juicy and tastes even better. haha! But yeah, as I said, all of those places are really well priced! Live Live is cool but SO expensive!!! I miss Quintessense like crazy! Their crepes, fofu benedict, and tecchinos/yerba mates are to die for!

  4. Yummm…this sounds tasty!!

  5. I’ve been dying to make this bread! Soon, soon.

  6. Wow, this sounds more than amazing. I never liked BLTs, but I know that I’d love a CLT! Thanks for a great recipe.


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