Moist, soft, and sweet, this glazed coconut bread is perfect with a cup of tea or coffee! A simple quick bread that comes together in minutes, with no mixer required.
I’m so excited to share this coconut bread with you today!
Just stir a few dry ingredients together, add a few liquid ingredients, pour it in a loaf pan and boom.
Incredibly delicious treat.
Table of Contents
- What is coconut bread?
- What’s great about this recipe
- What does it taste like?
- Special equipment
- How to make coconut bread
- How to serve coconut bread
- Expert tips
- Frequently asked questions
- A few more of my favorite quick bread recipes
What is coconut bread?
I suppose coconut bread could mean more than one thing, but in this case, it’s a slightly sweet quick bread that’s bursting with tropical coconut flavor!
We’re using coconut milk, sweetened shredded coconut, and coconut extract, so there’s no doubt about it! It’s all coconut.
Quick breads are leavened with baking powder and baking soda, and they also follow a specific method: combine the dry ingredients, then the liquids, and mix together.
This recipe is drizzled with a thick, sweet glaze to make it extra yummy, and topped with toasted coconut flakes. Just gorgeous!
What’s great about this recipe
- Tastes amazing: If you like coconut, you’re going to love this recipe!
- Easy to make: This tasty treat takes only 20 minutes to prep.
- Versatile: Enjoy this for breakfast, dessert, or an afternoon snack. It’s especially good with coffee!
What does it taste like?
There is coconut in every bite of this coconut bread recipe!
The bread itself is made with coconut milk and sweet shredded coconut is swirled in. A touch of coconut extract ups the tropical flavor even more, and the icing on top mirrors all the same flavors.
I’ve got a bunch of marshmallow, coconut, and/or pineapple desserts here that I think you’d love:
- Coconut Cake
- Snowball Cupcakes
- Blackberry Coconut Cupcakes
- Coconut Cream Pie
- Almond Joy Muffins
- Lemon Macaroon Cheesecake
- Pina Colada Cupcakes
- Pineapple Creme Brulee
- Pineapple Cream Cheese Sweet Rolls
- Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
These are all fan-freaking-tastic, but if you’re in kind of a last-minute situation, I think this coconut bread is the way to go!
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this recipe.
All-purpose flour is my go-to, but you can swap it out for any kind of whole-grain option if you like. You may need slightly less if you go that route.
A gluten-free flour blend that can sub 1:1 for regular flour should also work just fine, if you’d like to make a gluten-free coconut bread.
You can use all sweetened or all unsweetened if you like. It’s up to you and your personal taste!
Sugar adds sweetness (obvs!) but it also aids in browning and keeps things moist, since it’s hydrophilic (this means it loves water, in other words, it draws moisture in).
Regular white sugar is fine, or sub for another type of sweetener if you like. As long as it swaps 1:1 for granulated sugar it should work.
This coconut quick bread recipe utilizes baking powder to leaven (or “lift”) it.
Baking powder is a double-acting leavener, so it starts things rising both when liquid is added to it, as well as when it hits the hot oven.
Baking soda will not work in this recipe because there isn’t enough acid to activate it, whereas baking powder has a little bit of that acid built in.
Salt carries the flavors and intensifies them. The end result won’t taste salty, but it will make everything so much more flavorful!
I like kosher salt best because it doesn’t have any additives (table salt usually contains iodine which can leave a bitter taste), so the flavor is pure. It’s also inexpensive and easy to find in a regular grocery store.
Look for full-fat, unsweetened coconut milk in a can. You can usually find this in the ethnic foods section of your grocery store. I like the Thai Kitchen brand. You can also order it online: coconut milk.
Melted butter keeps this coconut loaf bread moist and adds richness to the taste.
I like to use unsalted butter because it lets me control the amount of salt in the dish. Different brands of butter can contain different amounts of salt, so this way you get a more consistent result.
For a vegan or dairy-free coconut bread recipe, use plant-based butter that can substitute for dairy butter 1:1.
Egg acts as a binding agent and provide structure to the loaf.
It also contributes to its moisture and tenderness.
Use a large chicken egg here, or a plant-based egg replacement than subs 1:1 for chicken eggs.
It’s best if the egg is at room temperature, but I don’t find this to be critical.
Powdered sugar is the basis for the sweet topping.
It melts smoothly into the coconut milk, creating a thick, velvety icing.
Here are the kitchen tools you will need.
- Measuring cups and spoons: To measure the ingredients.
- Medium mixing bowl: For mixing up the batter.
- Large liquid measuring cup: In which to combine the liquid ingredients.
- Whisk: For blending everything together.
- Silicone spatula: So you can get every last drop!
- Loaf pan: This recipe makes a standard-sized loaf, so look for a 5-cup capacity, 9x5x5-inch loaf pan.
- Small saute pan: For toasting the coconut.
How to make coconut bread
Let’s walk through the recipe step-by-step!
Step 1: Combine the dry ingredients
Flour, shredded coconut, sugar, baking powder and salt all go in a medium mixing bowl.
Give them a quick whisk, just to get them combined.
Step 2: Combine the liquid ingredients
Melt the butter in a large liquid measuring cup, and add the coconut milk, egg, vanilla, and coconut extract.
Whisk these ingredients together as well.
Step 3: Make the batter
Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry, and fold everything together until just barely combined. It’s totally ok if the batter looks lumpy!
You don’t want to overmix the batter, or the bread could come out tough.
Step 4: Bake
Transfer the batter to a greased loaf pan, and slip it into a preheated oven.
You’ll know the bread is done baking when it’s starting to become golden around the edges and it’s puffed up and springy to the touch. A toothpick inserted in the thickest part should come out clean or with a few moist crumbs.
Step 5: Garnish
Toss the coconut flakes around in a dry pan over medium heat. They start to brown pretty fast, so keep them moving!
I’ve used the unsweetened kind, to balance the sweetness and also just because I love the look of those big curls!
Whisk the powdered sugar, coconut milk, and coconut extract together to create a thick glaze, and drizzle it over the top of the loaf once it’s cooled. Then sprinkle the toasted coconut flakes onto the icing while it’s still wet, so they adhere.
How to serve coconut bread
This makes a great breakfast, brunch, or afternoon snack, and it’s moist and just sweet enough, with a buttery richness and plenty of tropical coconut flavor.
You can enjoy it pretty much any time you’re craving something a little sweet.
And it goes great with a cup of coffee, tea, or hot cocoa! Or a tall glass of milk!
Don’t overmix: It’s really important not to overmix the batter. If you do, your bread could come out tough.
Don’t overbake: Keep a close eye on the bread while baking and avoid overbaking it. Overbaking can lead to a dry cake. A few minutes before you think it will be done, flip on the oven light and view the loaf through the window. If it doesn’t look wet in the middle, crack open the door slightly and give it a feel. If it’s springy, give it the toothpick test. If it comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs, the cake is done.
Frequently asked questions
Can this be made ahead?
It’s a good idea to make this an hour or two before you plan to serve it, so it has a chance to cool. It will slice much more easily if it’s fully cooled.
Can I make the batter ahead of time and bake it later?
I would not advise it. The chemical reaction of the baking powder starts the minute the liquid ingredients go in. And it doesn’t last for any extended period of time. The baking powder will eventually poop out, and your batter will deflate.
If you want to get a jump on the prep, I’d measure out the dry and liquid ingredients separately, then wait to combine them until no more than 10 minutes before you’re ready to bake.
How long will this last?
As long as your bread is wrapped tightly it can keep at room temperature for a day or so.
In the fridge, it should last at least a week.
You can also freeze it! It will keep in the freezer for a couple of months at least. Thaw it at room temp or in the fridge, and warm it in the toaster, oven, or microwave until heated through.
What is the serving size?
The serving size is for one slice of coconut bread, if you cut the loaf into 8 equal slices.
If you’ve got overnight guests coming this holiday weekend, make them this coconut bread! It makes a perfect breakfast, brunch, or afternoon snack.
A few more of my favorite quick bread recipes
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For the coconut bread:
- 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups (135 g) sweetened shredded coconut
- 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon (12 g) baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon (3 g) kosher salt
- 1 cup (240 g) unsweetened coconut milk, (the kind in a can)
- 1/4 cup (56.75 g) unsalted butter,, melted
- 1 (50 g) large egg
- 1 teaspoon (4.93 g) coconut extract
- 1 teaspoon (4 g) vanilla extract
To make the coconut bread:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and mist a loaf pan with non-stick spray.
- Place the flour, coconut, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and stir to combine.
- Place the coconut milk, melted butter, egg, and extracts in a large liquid measuring cup, and whisk to combine.
- Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry, and fold together just until combined.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, and bake until a toothpick inserted in the thickest part of the bread comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs (approx. 55 to 65 minutes).
- Cool for 20 minutes in the pan, then invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the toppings:
- Lightly toast the coconut flakes in a dry pan over medium heat, until just beginning to turn brown. Set aside.
- Place the powdered sugar in a medium bowl and add the coconut milk and coconut extract.
- Stir together until smooth, then drizzle over the coconut bread and top with toasted coconut flakes.