Pineapple Coconut Fans

by Kate on February 20, 2014

Pineapple Coconut Fans -

Around these parts, the talk for months now has been all about snow. It’s been an exceptionally brutal winter with subzero temperatures and a massive number of snow storms that continue to drop feet of snow on us. We’ve had one major snow storm this week and two smaller but still significant storms. For New Jersey, that’s A LOT of son! Way more than we’re used to.

I always think we must sound like a bunch of wimps for those in other parts of the US who have real winters like this or worse each year. Or Canadians! They must really think we’re a bunch of whiny babies as we complain about a foot or two of snow here and there. Honestly, we just aren’t used to this. This winter truly has been significantly worse than years past. So yes, we complain and take a million pictures of the foot of snow outside our windows while praying for spring’s quick arrival. According to a certain groundhog, we still have a little while. In the meantime, I’m growing a bit tired of warm comfort food and hot chocolate. I’m leaning toward the power of positive thinking.

Pineapple Coconut Fans -

Perhaps if I start thinking warm thoughts, winter will take the hint and get lost. These pineapple coconut fans are a great way to think warm, tropical thoughts. This tender fanned out pastry isn’t overly sweet. It’s filled with the tropical flavors of pineapple and flaky coconut so they’re sure to satisfy your sweet tooth without going overboard. These pineapple coconut fans are breakfast bread, snack bread, dessert bread or midnight snack bread. They’re anytime you want to feel transported to a warmer clime bread.

These sweet rolls are my creation for this month’s Improv Challenge. Our ingredients for the challenge were bread and butter. I think these lovely fans showcase those ingredients beautifully and deliciously. Below is a little cheat sheet to show you how to fold your own beautiful pineapple coconut buns in to a lovely fan shape.



Pineapple Coconut Fans -

One Year Ago: Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Two Years Ago: Lemon Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Muffins

Three Years Ago: Cannoli Pancakes

Pineapple Coconut Fans

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

4 hours

Yield: 12 buns

Pineapple Coconut Fans

Tender sweet bread filled with the tropical flavors of coconut and pineapple.


  • 1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut flakes
  • 8 ounces crushed pineapple, drained
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Dough:
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2/3 cup 100% coconut milk
  • 4 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten


  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together coconut, pineapple and butter until evenly combined. Shape into 12 balls. Set aside in refrigerator.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low and beat in water and coconut milk until combined.
  4. Stop mixer. Remove paddle attachment and fit mixer with a dough hook.
  5. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, yeast and salt. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture until incorporated. Add the egg. Increase the mixer speed to medium and knead dough 10-15 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  6. Divide the dough into 12 even pieces. Using the pictures as a guide, take a piece of dough and flatten into a circle. Cover remaining dough pieces with a towel to prevent drying.
  7. Remove one coconut pineapple ball from the refrigerator and place it in the center of the circle. Bring the edges up and around the coconut pineapple ball and seal it inside.
  8. Once again, press the dough into a circle about the size of your palm taking care not to let the filling seep out.
  9. Fold the circle in half. Then fold it in half again. You'll now have an almost triangular shape.
  10. Using a sharp knife, cut the triangle in half. Turn both sides up so that the filling from both halves is exposed. Transfer halves to prepared baking sheet.
  11. Once on the baking sheet place the two halves side by side, filling side up and gently squeeze the bottom to join the two halves together and form a fan. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough.
  12. Cover dough lightly with a linen kitchen towel and set at warm room temperature for 3 hours.
  13. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake buns in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until golden. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Adapted from Elra's Baking

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Melody February 20, 2014 at 2:03 pm

Yummy! I’m so glad your dough has coconut milk in it. These look like they taste divine! (And where is your beautiful bird’s egg blue plate from? I love it!)


Teri @ The Freshman Cook February 20, 2014 at 6:43 pm

Your recipe makes me think of sunshine and warm days! Great recipe, I love pineapple in anything!(and coconut milk too)


Jessie February 20, 2014 at 9:56 pm

These are so pretty and look delicious! Thanks for explaining how to do the fan shape!


Christine February 21, 2014 at 4:31 am

I personally love how you cut and fanned these! I’ve never seen that before and I can’t wait to try it!! Thanks for the tutorial-what a lovely idea for the Improv Challenge!


Jennie @themessybakerblog February 21, 2014 at 7:36 am

Call me a wimp, but I’m done with this weather. I’m ready for outdoor living and cocktail sipping on my patio again. Oh, and one of these lovelies. Yum! Pinned.


Kristen February 21, 2014 at 10:26 am

This is the coldest I have been in years, and I am in Florida! I totally win the prize for becoming a cold wimp. Those pineapple fans, straight out of a warm oven, would be the best cure….yum!


dina February 21, 2014 at 10:50 am

these look amazing!


Sarah|Pickled Capers February 21, 2014 at 12:55 pm

What a sunny little day in brunch form. Love it.


Karen - Cinnamon Freud February 21, 2014 at 6:59 pm

Yum, these look amazing! I have just recently discovered that I like coconut (hated it as a kid), so I will definitely give these a try!


Lesa @ Edesia's Notebook February 22, 2014 at 5:45 pm

How gorgeous, Kate! What a lovely way to beat the winter blahs!


Cathy W February 23, 2014 at 2:31 am

Now, this is what I need to do…go tropical! I’m still stuck in the chocolate/comfort food mode (and still whining about winter, even though I should be used to it here in MN). Your creation is beautiful!


Kate February 25, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Thank you Cathy! I’m still whining too 😉 But spring is right around the corner (or at least that’s what I keep telling myself)


esther February 27, 2014 at 12:22 pm

Does it have to be bread flour?


Kate February 27, 2014 at 1:25 pm

It would be preferable to use bread flour. All-purpose flour can certainly be used however, your fans will likely be more dense.


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