Japanese Milk Bread

Japanese milk bread is all the rage right now. You've probably seen it on your favorite influencer's Instagram feed and salivated over it. Similar to French brioche, it's delightfully soft, fluffy, and perfect for sandwiches. Whether you're making a simple PB&J or a classic BLT, this bread is the perfect canvas for all your sandwich dreams. Admittedly, it's a bit more labor-intensive than you might be used to, but it's worth it!

You'll Need:

For the roux:

  • 2 tbsp flour
  • ⅓ cup water

For the dough:

  • 2¾ cups flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp dry milk
  • ½ cup warm milk
  • 1¼ tsp active dry yeast
  • ¼ stick butter, softened


  • loaf pan
  • plastic wrap
  • egg wash mixture (1 whisked egg + 1½ tbsp milk)

Here's How:

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F and prepare the roux. Combine the flour and water in a saucepan over low heat and once the mixture has reached a creamy consistency, cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4-6 hours. It's best to prepare the roux one day in advance so it has plenty of time to cool.

2. In a bowl, mix the salt, egg, dry milk, and sugar. Make sure to reserve about 1 tsp of sugar for later.

3. In a second bowl, combine the active dry yeast with 1 tsp of sugar and warm milk.

4. Add the flour to a third bowl and add the ingredients from the other two bowls. Knead the dough for about 15 minutes by hand or with a mixer. 

5. Now introduce the softened butter to the dough. Knead for another 10 minutes, put the dough ball in a greased bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise in a warm place for about 90 minutes.

6. Divide the dough into 3 equal pieces and knead each individual piece. Cover each piece of dough with plastic wrap and proof for another 15 minutes.

7. Roll out each piece of dough with a rolling pin and fold back together. Roll out flat again and then roll into spirals.

8. The spirals should be about the same width as your loaf pan. Put the three spirals into the greased loaf pan and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise for another hour.

9. Put the loaf pan in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Brush the loaf of bread with the egg wash mixture and bake for another 30 minutes until golden brown.

This bread is EVERYTHING! Nothing beats the smell of your own loaf of Japanese milk bread baking in the oven. And if it ever goes stale, just imagine the incredible French Toast you can make with it!

You can find the recipe for the Homemade Chocolate Croissants featured in the bonus video here.


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