The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Coconut Bread

NZBaked's picture

Coconut Bread

Here is my quick yet delicious sweet coconut dough recipe.

White bread flour 75%

Dessicated Coconut 25%

Water 35%

Coconut cream 35%

Sugar 7%

Compressed Baker's yeast 2.5%

Butter 2.5%

Salt 1.2%

Improver/Softener optional

1. Add all ingredients to your mixer and mix until well developed.

2. Place dough on bench and divide into desired dough pieces and round.

3. 5min rest.

4. Flatten out dough pieces and shape into desired shapes.

5. Proof to height.

6. Bake @ 180degrees celsius

7. Glaze with sugar water as soon as removed from oven.

8. Icing as desired.

For scrolls I use a vanilla butter icing and raisins as a filling.


dabrownman's picture

to see what they taste like!  The sure look grand!  Well done and Happy baking 

Yippee's picture

Hi, NZB:

Your breads make me drool because I love coconut! Thanks for sharing!

May I ask:

How much dough do you use for each type of bread and bake for how long?

Sugar: water= ? And what's the purpose of this glaze?

If use instant yeast, what % would you recommend?



NZBaked's picture


Thanks for your comment and sorry for my late reply.

In regard to using a sugar glaze, it's just a runny mix of sugar and hot water. Glazing like this is common on sweet dough's as it gives a little extra sweetness to the outside, softens the crust and gives a nice extra sheen to your breads.

As I work at a bakery I always have compressed bakers yeast available so never have to use it myself.

That being said, the amount is not overly important, it will just affect proof time on a short ferment recipe like this.

I would recommend you as a Baker's percentage you go for 1% instant yeast.

As for dough piece weights.

70g for buns

750g for loaves

Scrolls arent weighed out as your sheet the dough as thin as you can then roll it up and cut Pieces 2.5ish cm thick.

For bake time, your bread will always tell you when it's ready. As a guide approx 15min for buns and scrolls, 25min for loaves.


Yippee's picture

I have lots of shredded coconut at home. Do it work as desiccated coconut? And what dough improver can I use? AA, as the guys are talking about in the forum?


NZBaked's picture

Hi again,

Shredded coconut will work fine.

Bread improvers are a combination of a few different things each with their own purpose. There are general bread improvers and specific ones. 

They are definitely not required for a recipe like this but will increase softness and shelf life.

Here's a break down on what you'll find in a bread improver(you could find one at a bulk food store)

Oxidizing agents - Ascorbic acid(vitamin c): Improves the gluten network by creating more disulfide bonds through oxidation. Faster development and proofing.

Emulisifers: A few different ones, e471 and e481 being the most common. These reduce the surface tension of water and which allows water and oil to mix more readily.

These improve gas retention by decreasing cracking during baking. This is not required in a recipe like this that already contains hard fats(butter).

Slows reduces starch retrogradation(staling). To put it simply it coats the starch in fats and helps it retain moisture and slows down the crystalization process.

Increased softness of finished product. Similar to the reason above.

Reducing agents: This is not generally in a bread improver but will be in a specific, purpose designed one. Things like protease enzymes are added to increase pan flow and dough extensibility for products like burger buns.

Enzymes: Enzymes such as amylases are added to speed up the break down on starch into simple sugars. Reduces proof time, the need for an autolyse, increases mallard reaction and caramelization.

Hope this helps.

BTW- Please make sure to attach some photos of your bake here.

Yippee's picture

Will share photos when done.   It reminds me of a couple of breads that I'm obliged to blog but still have done so. Posting photos only is easier to comply.

Did you prove the 6 buns in a pan? If so, what size is the pan? Thank you again.


NZBaked's picture

Loaves were proved and baked in shallow pans, but not the buns.

Sit them nice and close together so they support each other as they proof.

Yippee's picture

Hi, NZB:

Do I need to use steam in baking buns/this type of dough? I haven't baked for almost half a year, so I'm a bit uncertain about the procedures.  Thank you.


P.S. The coconut aroma in the mixed dough is so tempting that I almost eat the dough! 

NZBaked's picture

Sorry for the late reply,

Steam will never hurt, but if it's in the too difficult basket, your bread will still be awesome.

Yippee's picture

Hi, NZB:

I made your bread today and took it to a party while it was still cooling.  The aroma of the bread was heavenly.  One of my friends grabbed my bread and wanted to eat it even before I put the icing on.  As soon as I finished icing,  the buns vanished within a few minutes!  I want to let you know ASAP how well received your bread was.  And I will upload some pictures tomorrow.  Thank you!


NZBaked's picture

Great, it is always nice to hear that a recipe has gone down a treat.

Hope there was enough left for yourself!


Yippee's picture

Thank you, NZB!  

I only got to taste a quarter of a bun. They were gone fast!

BTW, I used coconut cream for all the liquid, 1% instant yeast, and 10% sugar plus icing. Other ingredients were per the formula.















Looked like mochi. I almost ate the dough!







How could I have avoided "square" buns???







Why was the surface of my buns so wrinkly and not as smooth/tight as yours? Did I do something wrong?





Even made coconut cream icing but it melted quickly on the warm buns.





The appetizer I brought to the party which also vanished within minutes.


NZBaked's picture

Nice, looks delicious.

Square buns = a bit too close together, perhaps a little over developed and proved outwards more than upwards. Also possible not enough surface tension from your rounding.

By the looks of what you describe as wrinkles, I'd say two possible things contributing to this.

1. Your shredded coconut is in long strands and the strands stand out in the dough whereas in mine you can only see small pieces(maybe it could of done with a quick blitz first).

2. A little rough on the shaping = not a smooth surface.

In some bakeries we say if your rounded dough looks like an old man's ball sack you have been too rough and over handled it.

Great first attempt.

Yippee's picture

Will try again with fine shredded coconut.

How do I judge when the dough is over-developed, or prevent over-developing the dough? Thank you.


Yippee's picture

by using super fine shredded coconut, leaving more space, and paying attention to shaping and handling.


Thank you, NZB!




Less bumpy surface.



Reserved more space between dough balls.



Still a bit too close but I get the idea now.




A perfect birthday gift for another baker.

Will upload pictures of icing and crumb if I get a chance to take them.





Finally, not having to share a bun with anyone else. 

Love this bread whole-heartedly.

A crowd pleaser that will definitely be my "party bread" in the future.






 The mouth feel is similar to the Mexican buns but with more 'bite' from the coconut.



NZBaked's picture


You must have really enjoyed it to have baked it again already!

You can see in your first photo the top right dough piece has a very nice smooth surface that looks visibly tight. In the finished product photo that bun is flawless.

One little tip(but each to their own)- if you proof and bake them as groups of 4 or 6 you will be much less likely to get the square look.

In regard to determining if a dough is over developed it will have lost a lot of its elasticity. As to where perfect development lies is a grey area that is different between Baker's and what they are trying to achieve. It is something that is extremely difficult to tell from your dough but noticed in the finished products faults.

If you are using a spiral mixer to develop your dough, as it starts to climb the spiral and looks nice and smooth it's getting very close. At this stage I would perform a window test and see how thin I get the gluten film. If you can stretch it out to the point that you can see your fingers through it and single pieces of coconut suspended in it - you are developed

I would repeat this after every minute or so of mixing until I am happy with the development.

Once you have baked with the same recipe and same flour a number of times you will get a good idea of how much work/time it will take to develop. 

As you are using all coconut cream and no water(at the same Baker's percentage) it is likely that your dough is a bit under hydrated. Try adding an extra 5% water next time and go from there(it may need up to 10%).