Buttery Monkey Bread Recipe

5 from 4 votes

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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. 

There are two people in this world: those who have had monkey bread and those who have not. For those of you who are in the “what on earth is monkey bread” camp, I’m here to save the day and quite possibly change your life. Like my brief description mentioned above, this is a sweet breakfast treat that is similar to cinnamon rolls and sticky buns. If you’re looking for something indulgent to make, than this Monkey Bread Recipe is your ticket.

monkey bread

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.

Ingredients Needed

Start out by gathering up these ingredients to make the best and easiest monkey bread!

  • Pillsbury Biscuit Dough – hello easy recipe!!! That’s right, just buy some pre-made biscuit dough and you’re ready to go. If you rather make this recipe from scratch there are directions for that down below.
  • Granulated Sugar and Cinnamon – the cinnamon sugar that coats each piece of biscuit dough. SO good!
  • Walnuts – I added walnuts for a nutty crunch. Feel free to use a different type of nut or none at all.
  • Brown Sugar, Butter, Heavy Cream, and Salt – this is to make a brown sugar sauce that makes everything sticky and delicious!

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

Brown Sugar Sauce

So, in just about every monkey bread recipe out there, there is this 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.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a fluted bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray or brush with butter and set aside.
  2. Open two cans of biscuits and cut into quarters. Place into a large Ziploc bag or bowl.
  3. Sprinkle granulated sugar and cinnamon over dough pieces and toss to coat each piece.
  4. Add half the walnuts and coated dough pieces into the bottom of the bundt pan.
  5. Sprinkle with remaining nuts and dough pieces.
  6. Stir melted butter, heavy cream, and brown sugar together in a liquid measuring cup until smooth. Pour over dough pieces in prepared pan.
  7. Bake 30-40 minutes or until thoroughly cooked. Cool 5-10 minutes.
  8. Turn upside down onto serving platter, replacing any biscuit pieces and remaining sauce or nuts. Serve warm.

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.

How to Make Monkey Bread

How to make Homemade Monkey Bread (aka 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, 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.

monkey bread

How long to cook monkey bread

30-40 minutes total in a 350-degree oven. Of course, ovens vary; some run hot, some run cold. So start checking your monkey bread for doneness after 30 minutes and adjust baking times as you go.

More sweet breakfasts to try!

So, 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. You never know who you’ll convert!

Have a great day, friends!

5 from 4 votes

Buttery Monkey Bread Recipe

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
Polaroid photo of granola bars

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13 Responses
  1. 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!

  2. 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.

  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. 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!