If you know me, even a little bit, you would know that I love carbs. I have a sweatshirt that proudly proclaims me a carb lover because it’s so very, very true. If I had my way and lived in a world where calories didn’t count, I would happily live on carbs only, all day, everyday. Give me ALL the carby foods: potatoes, noodles, rice, and oh yes, especially BREAD.

I love all bread but Japanese shokupan is my absolute favorite. So much so that back when traveling was a thing, Mike and I regularly went on shokupan hunts while in Tokyo. Bread and toast is on another level over there. Every time we flew home I would bring a loaf, tucked into a carry on bag that I would keep in my lap just so I could have shokupan at home. Those were the days!

Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com

Of course now travel is out for the foreseeable future. Which makes me sad on so many levels. Will I ever eat REAL fluffy, squishy Japanese shokupan again? I’m hoping with all my heart that the answer is yes. In the meantime, I’ve been baking this simple squishable loaf. It doesn’t have a yudane (a boiling water and flour roux) or a tangzhong (a cooked water and flour roux) the two most common additions to shokupan. Even without, it is still a very soft and fluffy loaf with the added the bonus of not having to think about making bread the day before.

A lot of bread recipes (sourdough especially but even soft sandwich loaves) are a two day affair. I like this loaf because you can think to yourself in the morning, I would like some soft and fluffy bread and then make it and have it the same day.

Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com

It comes together very simply: you proof your yeast, mix up your dry ingredients, add the egg to the yeast, then mix the dough. Once the dough comes together, you slowly knead in the butter. The key to a soft and fluffy shokupan is in the kneading so make sure you take the time (a mixer with a dough hook is the right choice here) to reach the window pane stage. One your dough is soft and extensible, you can expect a soft and shreddable loaf.

I really liked this loaf, simply toasted with butter or spread with some cream cheese and jam. But, it’s still not the level of bread I love from Japan so I’m going to be doing some more experimenting. Please let me know in the comments if you have any favorite Japanese shokupan recipes, I’m always up for trying new ones!

Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com

A note on size and shaping

This was made in a 4.5 inch pullman cube which holds about 1 lb of dough. You can also make it in a regular sized loaf pan in which it will be rounded on top like a regular loaf of bread. If you are making it in a regular loaf pan, you’ll want to divide the dough into two equally sized balls before shaping. I’ve included the bakers’ percentages below as well so you can size according to your pan.

  • 120 grams water 48%
  • 2 grams active dry yeast .8%
  • 250 grams bread flour 100%
  • 30 grams sugar 12 %
  • 1.5 grams salt .6%
  • 28 grams egg 11.2 %
  • 25 grams butter 10%
Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com

Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe

Serves 1 loaf
4.91 from 22 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Proofing Time 2 hours
Total Time 1 hour


  • 120 grams water warm, see note
  • 1 tsp active dry yeast
  • 250 grams bread flour
  • 30 grams sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 large egg lightly beaten, about 1.5 tbsp (28 grams)
  • 25 grams butter room temp


  • Sprinkle the yeast onto the warm water/milk. Let proof while you complete the next steps.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • In the bowl of your mixer, stir together the flour, sugar and salt.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Whisk the egg into the yeast mixture, then add to the dry ingredients. Use a wooden spoon to mix until it comes into a ball and then switch to a dough hook and knead until the dough pulls away cleanly from the sides.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Add the room temperature butter and continue to knead, about 10-12 minutes, until very supple and the dough reaches the windowpane stage – take a piece of dough about the size of a golf ball and stretch it out between your fingers and thumbs. If you can stretch it without the dough breaking, you’re good to go. Transfer to a clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Place in a warm spot and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Take the dough and tip it out onto a lightly floured surface. Punch down lightly then roll out into a large oval.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Bring the two sides of the oval towards the middle.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Then roll up.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Place in a pullman loaf pan (I used a non-stick pan, lightly oil or butter your pan if it isn’t non-stick), cover and let proof until 1 inch below the top, about 40 minutes to 1 hour. Heat the oven to 355°F after the dough has been proofing for 30 minutes.
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com
  • Slide the lid on the pan and bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour or until the bread is golden and cooked through. Remove from the pan immediately and cool on a wire rack. Slice and enjoy!
    Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com


I wanted this to be a milk shokupan so I used 80 grams water + 40 grams milk, you can go ahead and use all water or a mix of water and milk depending on what you prefer.

Japanese Shokupan Bread Recipe | www.iamafoodblog.com


  1. Sarah says:

    So excited to try this recipe! Quick question: If you are using regular loaf pans do you get two loaves? One for each dough ball?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi sarah,
      if you’re using a regular loaf pan you’ll still get one loaf. just divide the dough into two balls :) dividing into two balls will help the loaf get taller since the pan is longer

  2. Dee says:

    Where did you get your loaf pan?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi dee,
      mine is from japan, but this one is essentially the same!

  3. Hillary says:

    I really recommend incorporating a tangzhong. The gelatinized starch really helps make a, dare I say, moist, squishy loaf :)

    1. Stephanie says:

      my next loaf will have a tangzhong or yudane for sure :)

      1. Alan says:

        I would prefer the yudane over tangzong because it keeps longer especially if making a larger version.

  4. H S Rajput says:

    Hey what a descriptive blog.I love to cook and was looking for this recipe.Your post really helped me.I like the way u represent all the small to smallest details.Hope to see more from you.

  5. 5 stars
    Wow, looking at the picture makes me relate to the French toast in Japanese style. I’m quite surprised you have the whole bread made. The texture looks perfect!

    1. Stephanie says:

      thanks so much luna :)

  6. Carla says:

    Your bread is too low hydration. You should use 72% hydration for shokupan.

    1. Nafisah Ahmad says:

      Has anyone tried tis bread? Is d amount of water stated enough? Tq..

  7. Ammen says:

    5 stars
    Does the milk need to be warmed to mix with the water? If so is there a recommended temperature?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi ammen,
      try to get the milk and water to 110-115°F :)

  8. Ying says:

    Hi Dee,

    What size is your loaf pan?

    1. Stephanie says:

      i’m not dee, but my loaf pan is 4.5 inches by 4.5 inches :)

  9. Tina Street says:

    What size is your loaf pan, please? Looking for one on Amazon and they are all different sizes. I so want to try this!

    1. Tina Street says:

      So sorry…just read post above! Can you double the recipe?

      1. Stephanie says:

        hi tina,
        yes, just use the “serves” part and change it from 4, to 8 :)

  10. Arianna says:

    The end product looks amazing! I’m so excited to try this recipe. :)

  11. Arianna says:

    The end product looks amazing! I can’t wait to try this recipe. :)

  12. lieyliee says:

    first of all sorry if i say anything wrong! As found the ingredients is same with normal bread nothing different why it call Japan bread ? May be you can share more in details the ingredient

    1. Stephanie says:

      it’s called japanese because the japanese popularized this method of making this bread with these ratios. it is very similar to pan de mie or brioche, but the ratios are slightly different :)
      of course, if you have ingredients from japan, it would make it japanese bread!

  13. Alex says:

    5 stars
    Beautiful results. May I ask what brand and type of bread flour you’re using? Thanks!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi alex,
      i actually used regular all purpose flour (robin hood) and added vital wheat gluten to it to get a 12.5% final protein content :)

  14. E.H says:

    5 stars
    I made this with 200g of bread flour + 50g of spelt flour and baked uncovered in a glass loaf pan for about 25mins till top was golden brown, it was good :) (my bread did rise a little lopsided-ly which i think could be due to my oven’s hotspot issue)
    Bread had a good texture – soft yet firm enough to slice without crumbling the next morning.

    I am wondering for my next try if I could use 1 whole small egg instead of half a big egg (to avoid having leftover egg)? Will that affect the outcome negatively?


    1. Stephanie says:

      so happy you liked it!

      you can definitely use a small egg – it will just make the dough a bit richer. if you want to be very precise about it, weight out the egg and if it’s more than 28 grams, just minus the extra from the water :)
      hope that helps!

  15. Sarah Schneider says:

    5 stars
    I got a big pullman pan (13 x 4 x 4) for Christmas, so I tripled this recipe, and it came out great! I’m so pleased. Thank you for doing all the legwork and sharing the process! I feel like your recipes have made me a more confident baker!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi sarah,
      so happy to hear that you loved this recipe and that you’re becoming a more confident baker!

  16. E.H says:

    Hi! I followed your suggestion using 1 whole small egg (50g) and minus the extra from the 120g of water/milk. This time i baked for 20mins only in my glass loaf pan and it turned out just as good as my first try :)

    Do you think I can turn this into a wholemeal shokupan? Or jazz it up with some raisins & seeds?

    1. Stephanie says:

      i think you can, i haven’t quite experimented with wholemeal or whole grains, but it will definitely be able to take raisins and seeds!

  17. ClUdia says:

    Question is this saltednor unsalted butter?

    1. Stephanie says:

      unsalted :)

  18. Samm V says:

    My family and I absolutely love this bread! Would you happen to know of adjustments for high altitude? Thank you!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi samm,
      unfortunately i have not tried baking at high altitude so i don’t have any insight :(

  19. SC says:

    5 stars
    I bake this using a pullman tin and i divide the dough into 2 balls. But the bake did not get a retangle bread as it could not fill the top 4 corners. I wonder why cos I only bak it when it is level with the tin opening. Any tips?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi, how big is your pullman pan?
      you can try dividing the dough into 3 balls, which might make it rise a bit more because the dough will have something extra to cling to or you might need to adjust the recipe with a bit more dough. it could also be the oven spring – have you tested your oven temperature?

  20. Auorra says:

    Hello! I’m excited to make this, but my Pullman loaf pan size is 13x4x4. How should I adjust the measurements? Appreciate your help – thanks!!

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi! do you know how much dough your pan holds? if it’s a 2 lb pan, you can double the recipe :)

  21. S. Chan says:

    5 stars
    This is the cutest delicious thing I’ve made. Recipe works perfectly. Everyone goes nuts for this.

  22. Kristen says:

    5 stars
    Some pandan paste spread across the oval before folding makes amazing pandan bread.

  23. Adedoyin says:

    Can I omit egg and just increase water quantity.

    1. Stephanie says:

      hello, you can but it won’t have quite the same texture or flavor.

  24. yuuto says:

    I like using the yudane the tanzhong is more of a Chinese thing. Although yudane and tanzhong both mean water roux in Japanese and Chinese respectively .

  25. Amy says:

    If you’re using a 8×4.5×4 Pullman pan can I just double it or do I need to change everything differently…. Sorry first time and so far every time I have tried other recipes it comes out so dense or doesn’t fill the pan

    1. Stephanie says:

      to clarify, your pan is 8x 4.5 x 4?

  26. Lisa Tan says:

    5 stars
    This is now my recipe for weekly sandwich bread. Loved by the family, friends n colleagues

  27. Lisa Tan says:

    5 stars
    Exceptionally easy n consistent each bake if u follow e recipe closely.
    I m using this recipe very frequently n added crushed 70 grams walnuts which is heavenly!

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Thanks for reading as always!
-Steph & Mike