Skip to Content

Cuban Medianoche Bread Recipe

Every great sandwich starts with great bread. When making a Cubano sandwich, only Cuban Medianoche Bread will do. Medianoche Bread is a sweet, eggy bread that’s the perfect complement to the Cubano sandwich.

Rows of Golden brown Medianoche rolls sitting on a piece of parchment paper.If you follow me on Facebook…o.k. if you aren’t, why not? (Shameless plug)  If you follow me on Facebook then you know John and I do a lot of bike riding. It’s great spending time together doing something we enjoy. Sometimes, there is another motivation. One of the trails we ride ends close to a restaurant that we like to stop at for one of the best Cubano sandwiches we’ve ever eaten. If only they were served on this Cuban Medianoche Bread!

Since we enjoy this sandwich so much, I decided I was going to try and make it myself. The restaurant told me where they get their bread, but since I just love baking bread, I decided to find a recipe and bake it myself.

Top view of a row of golden brown Medianoche rolls sitting on a cooling rack over parchment paper.I said that restaurant had one of the best. The very best Cubano sandwich that I’ve had was in Miami. When I was searching for a Medianoche Bread recipe I landed on a site by “Three Guys From Miami“. It’s very evident that they are passionate about their recipes and I learned a lot about the sandwich itself.

Top view of a golden brown Medianoche roll sitting on a cooling rack over parchment paper.They stated that the only way to eat a Cubano is to stay with the classic and to build it correctly. That’s what I wanted, and this bread turned out just as they described. “It’s a sweet eggy roll that is the perfect compliment to the salty tang of the ham and cheese.”

Don’t have time to make it now? Pin it for later!

 

Rows of Golden brown Medianoche rolls sitting on a piece of parchment paper.
Print
4.8 from 15 votes

Cuban Medianoche Bread Recipe

Every great sandwich starts with great bread. When making a Cubano sandwich, only Cuban Medianoche Bread will do. Medianoche Bread is a sweet, eggy bread that's the perfect compliment to the Cubano sandwich.
Prep Time 3 hrs 30 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 3 hrs 55 mins
Servings 8 rolls
Author Julie Menghini

Ingredients

  • 2 packages of dry active yeast
  • 3/4 cup white sugar divided
  • 1 cup warm water warm to touch but not hot
  • 1/2 cup lard melted (Crisco shortening can also be used)
  • 3 eggs room temperature
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 6 cups bread flour more or less

Egg wash

  • 1 egg with 2 tablespoons water whisked together until foamy

Instructions

  • In a medium sized bowl combine the yeast, warm water, and three tablespoons of sugar. Set aside until the yeast begins to bubble. If it doesn't bubble, the yeast isn't good and you need to start over.
  • In a separate bowl, beat the eggs until foamy. Add the eggs, remaining sugar, and salt to the yeast/water mixture. Slowly pour in the melted lard whisking continuously to the yeast/water mixture.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixture, fitted with the dough hook attachment, pour in yeast/water mixture. Gradually add flour one cup at a time until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. My recipe only took 5 cups of flour. It will depend on your air temperature and humidity on how many it takes for you.
  • Knead the mixture for an additional 5 minutes on a medium speed. The dough will be soft and pliable but not overly stiff or sticky.
  • Grease a large bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Add the dough turning once so both sides are greased. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 60 to 90 minutes, or until doubled.
  • Punch the dough down on a work surface. Divide the dough into 8 to 10 rolls. I actually weighed mine out so they were similar in size (approximately 5.7 oz each).
  • Roll to make cylinders about 5 inches long and 2-1/4 inches wide. Place on a greased or parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  • Cover with a clean damp towel. Let rise in a warm place for 60 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Using a sharp knife or a lame, cut a shallow seam down the middle of the top of the bread, leaving an inch or two uncut on each end of the roll. Brush the tops of the rolls liberally with the egg wash.
  • Bake until golden brown, about 20 to 35 minutes. Remove the rolls from the oven and take them off of the baking sheet immediately. Cool on a wire rack. While still warm, brush the tops with melted butter.
  • Store at room temperature in a covered container.

Notes

Recipes courtesy of the Three Guys From Miami from their book: "Three Guys From Miami Cook Cuban." Copyright ©2004 All Rights Reserved. Check out their website at: https://icuban.com/food https://icuban.com/food

Nutrition

Calories: 443kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 616mg | Potassium: 128mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 230IU | Vitamin C: 0.8mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1.2mg
This recipe was calculated using the exact brands and measurements I used to make this recipe. If you are following a strict diet please note changing anything will cause the nutritional info to change. My calculations are intended as a guide only.
Tried this recipe? That's awesome!Mention @hostessatheart or tag #hostessatheart!

Cuban Medianoche Bread is similar to the Hawaiian rolls in flavor and texture. They could have been made smaller, but John thought they were just the right size. Especially when he got half of mine! The Best Cuban Sandwich is amazing so get your baking stuff together!

If you love homemade rolls as much as we do, here are a couple more of our favorites!

Brioche Bun Recipe

A Broche Bun topped with poppy seeds sits on a blue napkin in front of a basket of Brioche rolls.

Super Easy Potato Roll Recipe

A potato roll sitting on an antique butter paddle that\'s been cut in half and slathered with melted butter. A cooling rack with rolls sits behind the roll.

Sweet Molasses Brown Bread Recipe

A roll sits next to a rolled pulled apart and buttered next to a jar of butter and in front of a basket of rolls.

Let’s keep in touch!  You can find me on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and The Mix!  Better yet, enter your email address in the box below and never miss a recipe!

 

Top view of a row of golden brown Medianoche rolls sitting on a cooling rack over parchment paper.
Recipe Rating




Joy Panem

Tuesday 21st of September 2021

Thank you for sharing your recipe.

Julie Menghini

Wednesday 22nd of September 2021

I'm actually baking this recipe today, Joy! We love it. Thank you!

Pat

Sunday 20th of June 2021

These are FANTASTIC! Thanks for posting, and for providing such easy-to-follow instructions. My first batch accomplished without a hitch...though some did not come out "camera ready". :-) You are right about the hint of sweetness being a nice counter to the rich, salty ham, pork and cheese. Hubby has already requested I try shaping some round next time for burger and pulled pork buns. Texture is perfect for all these uses, and the butter brushed on at the end is a must. Thanks again for the nice recipe.

Julie Menghini

Monday 21st of June 2021

Thank you so much, Pat! We just love these rolls. They're so soft and tender. I appreciate your comment, and shaping them into round rolls is a great idea!

Pat

Sunday 20th of June 2021

I forgot to add that I was able to make them by hand. I was concerned with 6C flour, but it was surprisingly easy. Once it was all pulled together in the bowl, I dumped on the counter and kneaded by hand. It took a bit longer than the mixer's 5 minute knead - but it's good exercise! The dough was lovely and smooth and easy to work with. So don't hesitate to try this recipe even if you don't have a mixer.

Carla

Sunday 25th of April 2021

I've been wanting to try these rolls for ages! Baked them up for a pork roast potluck and was blown away at their flavor!! Thank you so much for this recipe! I wish I could post a photo of my results; they came out so beautiful!

Julie Menghini

Monday 26th of April 2021

Thank you so much, Carla! These rolls are so good and I'm so glad you enjoyed them too! ~ Julie

Stacey N Anderson-Ebener

Saturday 4th of July 2020

Can you make this in the breadmaker? At least to make the dough itself.

Julie Menghini

Sunday 5th of July 2020

I don't own a breadmaker Stacey but the fact that I use a mixer and dough hook I believe you'd be fine using a breadmaker?

Janine

Thursday 13th of February 2020

A Cuban sandwich is made with regular Cuban bread (long, airy, slightly salty loaf which is not sweet at all). If you put the same ingredients between medianoche bread (sweet, denser, similar to challah, and much shorter lengthwise than standard Cuban bread) it is no longer called a Cuban sandwich, it is called a medianoche sandwich, or a medianoche for short. It's considered a separate (though closely related) sandwich.

Maria

Tuesday 16th of March 2021

This is not a Cubano this is a media noche sandwich bread which is another kind of Cuban sandwich and it’s bread IS sweet

Caroline Tan

Thursday 24th of December 2020

I should have read the recipe in full and this comment. Went to icuban after my dough is resting. No sugar. So it's not Cuban sandwich bread. Disappointed! But we shall see how this medianoche turns out, hopefully not too sweet as I'm making Cubanos.

Julie Menghini

Friday 14th of February 2020

You are correct, Janine! I actually got this recipe (with permission) from "The Three Guys from Miami" and so I can't take the credit for their story or change the name of their recipe. I will definitely be posting a Medianoche sandwich in the future, however. Thank you for sharing!