Melonpan Recipe (Japanese Melon-Shaped Bread Covered with Sweet Cookie Dough)

Melonpan are Japanese sweet buns covered with a thin layer of cookie dough. They take many steps to make but freshly-baked Melonpan are scrumptious!

Melonpan (Japanese Melon-Shaped Bread)
Votes: 43
Rating: 4.44
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Course Dessert
Cuisine Japanese
Cook Time 90 minutes
Time for chilling cookie dough, fermenting and resting bread dough are not included in cook time.
Servings
pieces
Course Dessert
Cuisine Japanese
Cook Time 90 minutes
Time for chilling cookie dough, fermenting and resting bread dough are not included in cook time.
Servings
pieces
Votes: 43
Rating: 4.44
You:
Like this recipe? Leave a 5 Star Rating! 🙂
Add to Meal Plan
Add to Meal Plan:
This recipe has been added to your Meal Plan
Ingredients
Bread Dough
  • 140g Bread Flour
  • 25g Johakuto or Powdered Sugarsee the note below when using regular granulated sugar
  • 1/3tsp Salt
  • 5g Non-Fat Dry Milk Powderif dry milk powder is not available, use lukewarm milk instead of the lukewarm water.
  • 3g Instant Dry Yeasta little less than 1 tsp (3g)
  • 1tbsp Beaten Eggs
  • 70ml Lukewarm Water
  • 15g Butter
  • Bread Flourfor dusting
* The ingredients contain Amazon affiliate links.
Instructions
Bread Dough and 1st Fermentation
  1. Let's make the bread dough next. Add the sugar, salt, non-fat dry milk powder and instant yeast to the bread flour. Whisk the flour mixture well. Dilute the beaten egg with the warm water. Gradually pour it into the flour and stir with a spatula until evenly mixed.
  2. Clean the spatula with a scraper and place the flour mixture on a pastry board. Gather the crumble flour mixture and form it into a ball. Briefly knead it with your hands.
  3. Throw the dough on the pastry board, fold it away, grab the side of the dough and throw it again. Gather the dough with the scraper. Knead the dough with your hands using your body weight. Repeat this process until the dough is less sticky.
  4. Flatten the dough and spread on the butter. Gather the rim of the dough toward the center and knead in the butter. When the butter is mixed in, gather the dough with the scraper and form a dough ball.
  5. Like shown before, continue to throw the dough on the board. Knead the dough on the board and throw again. Repeat this throwing and rolling process for 10 minutes. The dough is now smooth and glossy.
  6. As shown in the video, shape the dough into a ball and replace it in the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit in a warm place for 40 minutes. This conventional oven can keep its inside warm for fermentation.
  7. The dough has now risen by 50% in volume. Remove the plastic wrap. Dip your finger in bread flour and make a hole in the dough. If the hole quickly disappears, the dough needs more fermentation. Measure the dough to get the total weight.
  8. Dust bread flour on the pastry board and put on the dough. Flatten the dough and remove the gas inside. Roll the dough into a long cylinder. Divide the pre-measured dough into 5 even pieces. Make sure they are equal in weight.
  9. Spread the dough toward the other side of the cutting surface. Shape each dough piece into a ball. Make sure the bottom is tightly closed. Line up the dough balls on the cooking tray dusted with flour. Cover with plastic wrap and let them rest for 20 minutes at a room temperature.
2nd Fermentation and Baking
  1. Let's shape the dough into Melonpan. Reshape each bread dough into a ball, cover with the cookie sheet and adjust the shape. Hold the dough upside down and stretch the cookie sheet up to the center.
  2. Pinch the bottom of the bread dough and dip the cookie dough in sugar. Hold the Melonpan on your palm and make a diamond pattern on top with the scraper.
  3. Line up the Melonpan on the baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  4. Let the Melonpan sit in the warm place for the second fermentation. This conventional oven can keep the inside at 37 °C (99 °F). After 40 minutes of the second rise, the Melonpan are almost doubled in volume.
  5. Let's bake the Melonpan. Preheat the conventional oven at 170°C (338 °F) and bake the Melonpan for about 12 minutes. When each Melonpan gets slightly brown on top, remove the baking sheet from the oven. Cool them down on a cooling rack and they are ready to serve!
Recipe Notes
  • If johakuto or powdered sugar isn’t available, grind granulated sugar with a blender or food processor. If you don’t have the equipment, you can also use regular granulated sugar but mix until the mixture doesn’t have a grainy texture and it is combined thoroughly. We used johakuto sugar in this recipe. Johakuto is the most commonly used sugar in Japan and has a slightly moist texture.
  • When making the cookie dough, remove the butter remaining on the balloon whisk thoroughly, and add it to the bowl. This process is important to keep the measurement accurate.
  • Be sure to bring the egg and butter to room temperature (approx. 20°C/68°F). When you push the butter with your finger, it should be soft enough to form a dent.
  • The fermentation time depends on its temperature so be careful not to over-rise the dough. You can also let the dough rise in a styrofoam box filled with warm water. In that case, cover the bowl with a plastic bag and make sure the steam won't wet the dough.

Published by

Cooking with Dog

Cooking with Dog is a YouTube cooking show featured by a canine host Francis and a mysterious Japanese Chef whose real name is not disclosed.

24 thoughts on “Melonpan Recipe (Japanese Melon-Shaped Bread Covered with Sweet Cookie Dough)”

  1. Hi! I have prepared many of your recipes and they all turned out perfectly every time!! Now I really want to try this recipe next and I was wondering if the quantities of beaten egg are correct…. Is it really 1 Tbsp of beaten egg for the bread dough?? Thanks!

    1. Yes! The quantity of the beaten egg is 1 tablespoon! Be sure to measure all ingredients by weight using a kitchen scale. 🙂 Also check the recipe note. The comments below the recipe will help you make the melonpan too!

  2. I lived here in Tokyo for one year and enjoyed the melonpan so much I want to make it when I get home to the US in a few weeks. I read all the comments. Do you think I should use powdered sugar instead of granulated sugar as suggested in 2 of the comments?

    1. UPDATE
      Use powdered sugar or grind granulated sugar with a blender or food processor. If you don’t have the equipment, you can also use regular granulated sugar but mix until the mixture doesn’t have a grainy texture and it is combined thoroughly.

      If you have powdered sugar, try it instead of granulated sugar. We used Johakuto sugar, and haven’t been able to test granulated sugar in this recipe. m(._.)m

  3. I decided to make your recipe after being interested in seeing what Melon Pan taste like and I have to say your directions were perfect, I had no problems making it even though it was my first time ever baking something and they turned out amazing (and very delicious). I will make sure to come to your website when ever I want to make something Japanese 🙂

    1. Very glad to know that you got an excellent result from our Melonpan recipe! 🙂 Just curious about the type of sugar you used. Did you use regular granulated sugar in the bread and cookie dough? Thank you so much for trying our recipe❣️

    1. Sorry for the late reply. This is just a possibility but how about reducing the baking time next time? 🙂 If the temperature in the oven is too high or the baking time is too long, the moisture is evaporated and the bread will dry out.

    2. I might suggest using an extra (or two) tablespoon of water when making the dough, and measuring the flour really well. When I first tried this recipe the dough was tough, hard to knead and not wet enough, it didn’t even stick to the surface like other dough does! I was taught he weter the dough, the softer the bread, so I dumped it in the trash and made another batch using more water.
      Now, I also had a problem with the cookie dough. I used regular granulated sugar and it never dissolved into the butter so I investigated and japanese use this refined sugar called johakuto that has moisture in it so it dissolves easily, at this point I knew I messed it up for not using caster sugar so I threw it out and made a new batch with powdered sugar as I didn’t have any caster sugar.

      1. Thank you for your feedback! As you pointed out, we used Johakuto sugar in this melonpan. Johakuto sugar is very common in Japan, and the idea that regular granulated sugar might cause issues didn’t come to our mind. We will test the recipe with regular granulated sugar when we have time. We might need to grind granulated sugar with a food processor.
        Another thing we should mention is the egg and butter should be brought to room temperature before combining, and they should be at the same temperature. When you push the butter with your finger, it should be soft enough to form a dent. This process will help dissolve the sugar.
        Thank you so much for trying our recipes. 🙂

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