A Roaring Success Tiger Bread Guide

Tiger bread is delicious thanks to its crunchy mottled crust and fluffy middle. It’s known as a bloomer loaf and is called tiger bread because the first baker who made it a long time ago thought it looked stripey like a tiger. Interestingly, Sainsbury’s renamed their tiger bread to giraffe bread after a little girl wrote to the supermarket stating she thought it looked more like the pattern of a giraffe. What do you think? Do you agree with her? Either way, tiger bread is a roaring success to both bake and eat. So, let’s find out more about this mouth-watering treat.


Actually no! It might look difficult due to the pattern on top but it’s actually very easy to make. It’s definitely something you could do at the weekend with your family.


Tiger bread wouldn’t be tiger bread without it’s cracked crust, right? That’s what gives it such a distinctive appearance. The effect is achieved by spreading half-proofed bread dough with a rice flour paste. When the bread is baked, the top of the bread then gets a crackly crust. There’s a scientific reason for why this happens. Basically, the rice flour is gluten free and does not expand in the oven along with the bread. So as the bread rises, the paste on top cracks creating a tiger stripe pattern. You can make a whole tiger bread loaf this way or divide the mixture into individual rolls.


Tiger bread is made from very simply ingredients including flour, water, salt, sugar, butter and yeast. The rice paste which is spread on top is made using rice flour, water, oil, sugar, yeast and salt.


You can find many easy recipes online. But they all have a similar method. Firstly, you’ve got to prepare the dough. This usually involves dissolving yeast, sugar and salt in lukewarm water, then adding the softened butter to the flour. You’ll then need to combine everything together. Knead the dough by hand or with a bread mixer for a good ten minutes. The dough should then be placed in a clean, dry bowl and left in a warm environment for 30 minutes. This is called proving, and allows the dough to expand.

After that, divide the bread into rolls or shape your loaf, place on a baking tray and cover in cling film. Let the bread rise for another hour until the dough has doubled in size. While you’re waiting, make the rice paste by combining flour, yeast, salt and sugar with water and oil. Mix to form quite a thick paste and after 20 minutes of the final proofing, paint your dough with the mixture before covering it again and leaving it for another 40 minutes.

The final step is to bake the bread at around 180 degrees for 35 minutes until the top is golden brown.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea will be roaring its way back to London this summer! Playing at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in the West End from 11 July until 4 September 2022, this is one of the best London attractions for kids aged 3+ this summer, so why not book your tickets and enjoy a day out to remember? The show runs for 55-minutes long and is based on the popular children’s picture book by Judith Kerr.