Monkey Bread

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This Monkey Bread recipe is one for the books! Simple biscuit dough rolled in cinnamon sugar, mixed with nuts and baked up hot and sticky with a simple cream and brown sugar sauce. This indulgently sweet breakfast treat is similar to Cinnamon Rolls or sticky buns.

monkey bread on platter with spoon

But first, what is Monkey Bread?

Monkey Bread is a soft and sweet pastry made up of small pieces of baked dough that have been rolled in cinnamon and sugar. Typically its made with a pre-made biscuit dough (hiiii Pillsbury) and baked in a bundt pan. Variations include savory versions or extra sticky versions with brown sugar and butter glaze and pecans or walnuts.

Pre-Made Biscuit Dough

One of the things I most love about this recipe is how fast it comes together. I like to use pre-made biscuit dough (like Pillsbury or the store brand version). If you’d rather make this recipe from scratch, there are directions for that down below.

Want even more cinnamony sweet recipes? Here you go: The Best Homemade Cinnamon RollsCinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake RecipeCinnamon Swirl Donut Bread and Cinnamon Butterscotch Cookies.

Dough with Cinnamon Sugar

My Brown Sugar Sauce

In just about every monkey bread recipe out there, there is a caramel or ‘sauce’ concoction you are supposed to pour overtop all the biscuit pieces before baking, made up of melted butter and brown sugar. It’s good, but it’s definitely not my favorite.

After testing and re-testing this recipe, I’ve found the best caramel you can use is made of a little melted butter, a little more heavy cream, and a lot of brown sugar, with a healthy pinch of salt to finish it off. It’s a different take on monkey bread for sure, but the results and the finished product absolutely cannot be beaten.

Poring Brown Sugar Butter Glaze over Dough

How to Make Monkey Bread

So, this is one of the easiest recipes on the planet because I take help from the store and use the Pillsbury biscuit dough. See my notes below for making a homemade from-scratch version of this monkey bread. For full recipe details, see the printable recipe card down below. Here is what you can expect when making this recipe:

Preheat Oven + Prep Bundt Pan

Preheat the oven. Spray a fluted bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray or brush with butter and set aside.

Cut Biscuit Dough into Quarters + Sprinkle with Cinnamon & Sugar

Open two cans of biscuits and cut into quarters. Place into a large Ziploc bag or bowl.

Sprinkle sugar and cinnamon over dough pieces and toss to coat each piece.

Assemble By Layering into Bundt Pan

Add half the walnuts and coated dough pieces into the bottom of the bundt pan.

Sprinkle with remaining nuts and dough pieces.

Stir melted butter, heavy cream, and brown sugar together in a liquid measuring cup until smooth. Pour over dough pieces in prepared pan.

How to Make Monkey Bread

Bake, Then Allow to Cool Before Inverting Bundt Pan

Bake 30-40 minutes or until thoroughly cooked. Because ovens vary, start checking for doneness at 30 minutes and then adjust accordingly. Cool 5-10 minutes.

Turn upside down onto serving platter, replacing any biscuit pieces and remaining sauce or nuts. Serve warm.

Dig In!

The best part of this recipe is digging into the warm monkey bread with a fork. We are a bit savage and give everyone a fork and tell them to go to town. Every man for himself. There is really no glamorous or appropriate way to eat this. Just dig in and enjoy! You won’t be sorry.

cutting monkey bread

How to Make Monkey Bread From Scratch

If the super quick Pillsbury Monkey Bread version doesn’t tickle your fancy, you can totally make this recipe from scratch by using my homemade white bread recipe.

Make half a batch of bread dough, let it rise, and then it’s ready to use! Simply cut the dough into bite-sized pieces before rolling in cinnamon and sugar and adding to your pan. It replaces the store-bought biscuit dough with everything else in the recipe staying as is.

Can I make this monkey bread recipe without the nuts?

Yes! Of course, you can. If you don’t like walnuts, try pecans or almonds. Or just omit completely. The nuts are definitely considered to be an ‘extra’ and removing them from this recipe will not change the outcome.

slice of monkey bread on plate

Storing Leftovers

We usually don’t have leftovers for very long when we make Monkey Bread…but if you do need to store it, place in an airtight container with a lid. Monkey bread is best stored at room temperature for 2-3 days. To Reheat – warm in the microwave in 15 second intervals.

To Freeze – Wrap cooled bread tightly in plastic wrap and then in foil, or in an airtight, freezer safe ziploc bag. Monkey Bread will stay fresh up to 3 months in the freezer. Allow to thaw overnight in the fridge.

closeup of side of monkey bread

More Sweet Breakfasts to Try!

If you need a fast, easy treat in your life, or you’re looking for something special to serve during the holidays, give this monkey bread recipe a try.

Have a great day, friends!

taking out slice of monkey bread
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Monkey Bread

This Monkey Bread recipe is one for the books! Simple biscuit dough rolled in cinnamon sugar, mixed with nuts and baked up hot and sticky with a simple cream and brown sugar sauce. 
servings 10 servings
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 50 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 cans Pillsbury biscuits 16.3 oz. size cans, 16 biscuit rounds total
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts optional
  • 5 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 pinch salt

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 10-cup bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
  • Open cans of biscuits and cut into quarters. Place biscuit pieces into a large bowl or ziploc bag. Top with granulated sugar and cinnamon. Toss dough pieces with cinnamon sugar to coat evenly.
  • Sprinkle 1/4 cup nuts in the bottom of the bundt pan. Top with half of the dough pieces. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup nuts and dough pieces.
  • In a large liquid measuring cup, whisk melted butter together with brown sugar, heavy cream and salt. A thick, grainy sauce should form. Pour sauce over dough pieces and spread evenly.
  • Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until dough pieces are completely baked. Cool 5-10 minutes. Turn upside down onto serving platter and replace any dough pieces of nuts which may have stuck to the bottom of the pan. Serve warm.

Notes

Feel free to use pecans or almonds in place of the walnuts or omit all together.

Nutrition

Calories: 577kcal | Carbohydrates: 74g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 935mg | Potassium: 271mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 350IU | Calcium: 82mg | Iron: 3.4mg
Course: Breads, Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Monkey Bread

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Recipe Rating




15 Responses
  1. Sarah Lowe

    5 stars
    Super simple, absolutely delicious and a hit at our recent family dinner. Best served right out of oven. Everyone was fighting for more and who was gonna get leftovers.

  2. Bonnie Hepworth

    Super excited to try this. We make this for Christmas morning breakfast every year! I’m intrigued by your sauce change and I can’t wait to see the difference.
    Thanks for sharing!

  3. Nikki B

    I am making this Thanksgiving morning so we can munch on it while preparing dinner! Your caramel sauce looks better than any other recipe I’ve seen!

  4. Lynne Wilson

    Looks MARVELOUS! Would 1/2 & 1/2 be ok instead of heavy cream? I know it might not be as rich & maybe not so thick, but as I am a coffee drinker, I have 1/2 & 1/2 in my frig always.

    1. Lauren

      I’ve never tried to make this using half and half…I suppose its worth a shot? If anything the sauce will be more runny than usual.

  5. Valerie D.

    5 stars
    This was absolutely delicious! I’ve had a monkey bread recipe I’ve made for years, but this creamy caramel looked so good I had to try it. So good!

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