Caribbean butter bread recipe

3.1.20 | Recipe by Renz

Looking for a simple bread recipe to create a solid sandwich loaf? Then this is the bread you need. A Caribbean butter bread loaf that is smooth and sturdy. Perfect for eating alone or creating the perfect sandwich.

Two baked loaves of Caribbean butter bread with one sliced to show the inside.

I always have a resolution that I am going to eat less flour. And I usually always fail.

But it's hard when I want to share with you guys my food. I could NOT share this homemade bread recipe with you guys. So here's to breaking resolutions.

Baking bread is an integral part of the community in the Caribbean. We bake and we share. It's never one or two loaves.

White bread is usually my go-to bread, and this butter bread is one of those on the top of my list.


What is butter bread?

This Caribbean butter bread is a type of bread that is smooth and doused in butter during the folding process. It's a nice buttery, soft inside, firm outside loaf.

This bread is sandwich bread, like the hard dough bread.

Caribbean people especially bought a lot of this butter bread loaf and hops bread from the bakery. People especially loved it with butter or some cheese or even guava jelly on it.

What makes butter bread different from other bread recipes is that we don't make these in loaf pans.

Ingredients for butter bread, Caribbean style

This bread recipe, like most basic bread, uses simple ingredients. There isn't anything extravagant needed from your pantry.

  • All-purpose flour
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Granulated sugar
  • Instant yeast
  • Vegetable shortening
  • Whole milk,
  • Warm water

Equipment for making butter bread

How to make butter bread

I always make my bread in my Kitchen-Aid mixer. For me, it beats the hassle.

I throw all my ingredients into the bowl, put on my dough hook, and let the motor do the mixing.

I don't have the mixer on too high of a speed when using the hook. I do make sure it runs long enough to activate the gluten in the flour. A moderate speed (Speed 2) is good.

KitchenAid says that kneading for 2 minutes in your mixer is equivalent to kneading for 10-12 minutes by hand.

It's sometimes a good idea to lightly oil the dough hook prior to using it. This helps the dough to not "climb" when the mixture starts to come together.

Also, note that if the dough is continuously "climbing" it has been mixed enough.

The first thing is to make sure you have your baking sheet ready before getting your dough ready to roll.

In your mixer bowl, or in a large mixing bowl, combine your dry ingredients of flour, yeast, salt, and sugar.

Then add your wet ingredients of shortening, milk, and warm water to the flour mixture until a smooth, soft dough ball is formed.

Once completed, leave the mixture in the bowl, and cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. This we will leave for about an hour so that it yields.

Butter bread mixture in a silver covered with plastic wrap as it yields.

When your hour is up, and your dough has at least doubled, punch the mixture down.

Then go ahead and divide it into two parts.

Now would be a good to time get your oven on and preheated. (see tip below)

Now we want to roll each dough out on an oiled surface or you can also use a silicone pad. You can also try a lightly floured surface, but be careful not to add too much extra flour.

Try to get it into as much of a circle as you can.

Take some of your melted butter now, and brush that all over the rolled-out smooth dough.

Rolled out butter bread dough and melted butter being brushed on the dough.

Now we need to roll the dough in as tightly as possible slowly. Don't worry about butter being pushed out. But do roll slowly.

Place the rolled bread dough on the baking sheet with parchment paper. This bread is a bit soft and long so you need to be careful when moving to the sheet. Having your sheet ready and close by is important.

Also, be mindful of where the end seam is on the roll and where you want to place it on the baking sheet. I prefer to put the end of the roll at the bottom so that when it's baking, there's less likely a chance of it opening up.

Dough of butter bread being rolled up into a loaf.

Leave the loaves to yield again for another 20 minutes.

Just before you are going to place the sheet in the preheated oven, brush the loaves of bread with whatever melted butter you have leftover.

Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, until golden brown. Cooking time can vary based on your oven. But you basically want it to be a nice golden brown.

How can I tell my bread is done?

Sometimes gauging that your bread is baked and ready to come out can sometimes be a little tricky. After numerous failures, here are three things that help me verify.

1. The color of the bread is a nice golden brown. If I see pale spots here and there I usually give it a little more time to finish up.

2. Take the internal temperature of the bread. I use my instant-read thermometer to verify that the internal temperature is about 190 degrees. (sometimes to 200)

3. The bread has a hollow sound. When I tap on the bottom of the loaf, there is a hollow sound.

Golden brown baked Caribbean butter bread, in a tray.

Best way to store homemade bread

After all that work, we would want to make sure we get to keep this bread as fresh as possible for as long as we can.

Using a bread box is always a great option. Some of them keep the temperature perfect for the bread to avoid fast molding. If you don't have a bread box, a good airtight container will be a great substitute.

You can also wrap the bread in plastic wrap. It retains the moisture of the loaf but it does let bread that is crispy on the outside lose its hard crust.

Freezing bread in slices has been the best thing I've been doing. I would wait until the bread is cool, slice it up into individual slices, then freeze the loaf.

Can I make this in a bread machine?

This bread can also be made in a bread machine if you have one. Just follow their process directions as this may vary depending on the machine.

Tips for baking bread

Here are a few things that helped me along my bread baking journey.

Pick the best yeast: There are two types: Dry active and Instant/Rapid Rise. Dry active yeast must be activated in warm water before use (see tip below for temperature of water). Instant yeast can just be added as-is.

Be careful of the water temperature. Be careful of how hot you make the water that you are going to use. Slightly warm water works best. You can do a heat test by putting two fingers all the way into the water. If while you are pulling it out slowly it's too hot, then the water is too hot for the yeast.

Store your yeast well. Store dry yeast in the freezer once it has been opened. Unopened yeast should be stored in a cool dry place.  It keeps the best there.

Preheat your oven. Try to make sure that it's heated for at least 20 minutes before you put your bread in there.

Let the bread cool. Well, I fail at this all the time. Hot bread and cheese are a must when the bread is baking. But it is definitely better to cut cooled bread. There are no cracking or indentations made. If you look at my main pic you might see a crack in the bread. Yup, I sliced this as soon as it came out to take pics. I also find it better to slice the bread up side down. (bottom of loaf facing up) It gives a cleaner cut.

Slices of butter bread in a tray with a loaf.

Good items to have to bake bread:

A baking stone:
Something I need to invest in for myself. Not just for bread but also for pizza. A baking stone helps to create a crust that doesn't crack and allows the bread to bake all the way through and not over brown

Oven thermometerthis little gadget will let you know for sure what the temperature of your bread/meat is and not just based on your oven's digital reading

Scale: This makes the measuring of dry ingredients (especially flour) much easier. An off measure of flour can easily mess your bread up.

Baking Sheet: Perfect for baking things that do not fit into the traditional loaf pans.


An overhead shot of a loaf of butter bread with some slices/

If you were able to make this recipe, please let me know and give me a rating on the recipe card.


Here are some dessert bread recipes

Here are some great meats to eat with that bread:




  1. I only have active dry yeast. How much of it should I use for this recipe?

    1. HI. Here is the conversion: To use active dry yeast instead of instant (bread machine) yeast in a recipe, multiply the amount of yeast by 1.25.

  2. As soon as I can get my hands on 8 cups of flour, I am definitely trying this recipe! I have just discovered your blog.

  3. What type of flour is best? Bread flour or all purpose?

    1. Hi. I used all purpose. It is the only flour I buy to be honest. Will update the post to be more specific. Thank you!!

  4. Hi. I will try the recipe today. You mentioned by the ingredients 1/2 cup of vegetable shortening and 2 tbs of vegetable shortening but in the instructions you wrote shortening milk. So I am guessing the 1/2 cup is for the shortening milk. My question is though what can the shortening milk be replaced with? Thank you.

    1. HI Sorry. I forgot a comma between shortening and milk. Edited. Sorry for the confusion.

  5. I live in South Korea and just made this recipe and almost cried cause I was instantly transported to my childhood days living west in Fredericksted! Thank you for this recipe.

    1. You are welcome!! Thanks for posting and stay safe!

  6. The recipe calls for 1/2 cup of Vegetable shortening and 2 Tablespoon of Vegetable shortening. Do you add it all to the mixture or is the 2Tbsp used when rolling into a ball.

    1. Hi, the 2 tablespoons is a little extra oil that is needed for the mixture.

  7. Hi, is the vegetable shortening Crisco shortening?

    1. HI yes. Crisco is actually the brand I prefer to use also

  8. What can I do to keep my bread bottoms from burning or getting to dark. Also any tips on how to make sure the bread is thoroughly cooked and avoid the bottoms from getting to dark. Should I bake at a lower temperature?

    1. Hey. Are you putting it on the lowest rack? It could be getting too much heat You can try to move it up a level. You oven temp could be really strong too so another option would be to lower the temperature a bit. You can also put a sheet pan on the lowest level between the heat and the bread and it will help reduce the intense heat to the bread.

    2. Thank you very much. I use the middle rack. I will try and put a sheet pan on the bottom rack to help. That's a good idea. Thank you again.

  9. The recipe calls for 1/2 cup of Vegetable shortening and 2 Tablespoon of Vegetable shortening and to add it all together to the flour mixture. I am using the 1/2 differently from the 2 tbsps?

    1. Hi. yes it's a 1/2 cup plus the 2 tablespoons additional

  10. Can I substitute butter for the shortening?

    1. Hi. Yes you can.. 1 for 1. BUT.. know that the texture of the bread would be a bit different

  11. I am so glad I came over from the Bloggers Group on Facebook. I have been looking for another sandwich bread recipe. The only thing I see different in your recipe and the two I make is you use solid shortening, and I use butter/oil. I can't wait to try your recipe and see the difference shortening makes.

    1. Oh hey Lori. Does the butter/oil make much of a difference with bread texture?

    2. I'm sorry, I don't combine the two. One recipe uses butter and the other uses oil. I like the one with butter better than I do the one with oil. I find the oil recipe to be a little more dense than the one with butter.

  12. Glad to find this recipe. As a child on Aruba I used to get butter bread when I visited my godmother, but never knew how to make it.

  13. Hi, would it be okay to let the dough do the first rise overnight in the fridge?

    1. Hi Thoya. I have never done this myself, but my mom says yes you can. After mixing cover and put in fridge. You can punch down one hour in and then let it rise again for whenever you need to use it. It's best to use it in about 48 hours of mixing once it's in the fridge

  14. Hi. I’m about to make this. It calls for vegetable shortening. Is that the same as vegetable oil

    1. Hi. I use crisco. Sorry I'm late to see your comment.

  15. It came out absolutely fabulous. Thankyou for your wonderful recipes.

    1. Greatt.. thank you. Did you use the vegetable oil?

  16. I made this today and it was delicious! Tastes just like home!

  17. I might just not be seeing it, but what temperature should I preheat the oven to?

    1. Hey, It's line 5 in the recipe card. 350 degrees.

  18. I don't have any shortening and can't get access to it for a few weeks. what can I substitute ?

    1. Heya. Just use margarine. It just won't be as "crispy" crusted.

  19. Hi! What size stand mixer would you recommend for mixing the 8 cups of flour?


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