Wholemeal Nian Gao Loaf Bread

Wholemeal Nian Gao Loaf Bread 全麦年糕吐司

A sweet loaf bread that contains nian gao, a Chinese glutinous rice sweet cake, which makes the bread soft, with a dense, wholesome mouthfeel. Yum!
Course Bread, Breakfast
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 50 minutes
Servings 1 x 450g Loaf Pan


  • 220 g bread flour + 30g Prima superfine wholegrain flour*
  • 5 g sugar
  • 100 g nian gao, steamed for 5 mins if it has hardened
  • 25 g coconut oil
  • 130 g water
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • 30g-50g dried cranberries, optional
  • Desiccated coconut, optional


  • Place all ingredients (except cranberries) into bread machine bread pan, to knead into dough. I am using Panasonic SD-P104, Mode 9 Bread Dough. This includes kneading + first proof. If you are using mixer, mix all ingredients together (except cranberries). 
  • Proof for about 45mins to 1 hour till it doubles. You can add in the cranberries after the dough comes together.
  • After first proof, remove the dough and let it rest for10 mins. The dough is quite sticky, so dust your work space and dough with flour. Punch out air and roll into a rectangular shape. Ensure the length is just nice for your bread tin. Swiss roll the dough up and placed into bread tin.
  • Let the dough proof again for about 45 mins to 1 hour. Preheat oven to 180C. Just before baking, brush the surface of the dough lightly with milk. Sprinkle desiccated coconut and press onto dough gently to "secure" the coconut.
  • Bake in preheated oven at 180C, middle rack, for about 20 mins.
  • Let cool completely before slicing or placing into air tight container.


I like to use Prima's range of unbleached bread flour and wholegrain flour. You can substitute 30g of wholegrain flour with other wholemeal flour of your choice, plain flour, top/cake flour or bread flour.
Do note that most top/cake flour will be bleached. Prima has unbleached version of top flour; its cake flour seemed to be bleached though.
If you prefer a sweeter loaf, you can use 10g-15g of sugar. Any type of sugar is ok. I am using demerara sugar as it is unrefined sugar and carries some nutritional values than refined sugar. You can also use coconut sugar here for low GI. - I am using coconut oil as I love the fragrance, but you can choose to use any kind of oil you prefer.
Over here, I roll out the bread dough after 2nd proofing, into a longish rectangular shape. I then use a knife and made 2 cuts along the length, and braided the bread. You can do this, or roll into regular bread - totally up to u! ;)