Monkey Bread Recipes You’ll Want to Make Immediately

Monkey bread, which is also referred to as sticky bread, pull-apart bread, and pinch-me-cake, is an unbelievably versatile dish that’s suitable for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. Make it sweet, savory, or spicy,  prepare it entirely from scratch, or for days when you need a quick monkey bread fix, use refrigerated biscuits. No matter what your monkey bread craving may be, there is a recipe here that will cure it!

1. Traditional Monkey Bread

monkey bread

Monkey bread | iStock.com

Saveur makes traditional monkey bread from scratch, first preparing the dough and then covering it in a divine sticky-sweet glaze before baking. Serve this pull-apart bread for breakfast, brunch, or any time you need to satisfy your sweet tooth; the recipe yields 8 to 10 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 18 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing
  • 3¼ cups flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 (¼-ounce) packages active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar

Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 10-inch Bundt pan with butter and dust with flour; set aside. Whisk flour and salt in a bowl; set aside. Heat 2 tablespoons butter with milk and ⅓ cup water in a 1-quart saucepan over medium-high heat until an instant-read thermometer reads 115 degrees Fahrenheit. Transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a hook attachment. Stir in ¼ cup granulated sugar and yeast; let sit until foamy, about 10 minutes. With the motor running, slowly add dry ingredients; beat until dough is smooth. Transfer to a lightly greased bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap.

Set in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Combine remaining granulated sugar with cinnamon in a large bowl. Melt remaining butter in a 2-quart saucepan; whisk in brown sugar and set aside. On a lightly floured surface, pat dough out into an 8-inch square about 1 inch thick. Cut dough into 1-inch pieces. Toss dough with cinnamon sugar mixture, and then fit snugly into prepared Bundt pan. Pour butter mixture evenly over dough; bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the middle of the bread comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving.

2. Caramel-Pecan Monkey Bread

Caramel-pecan monkey bread

Caramel-pecan monkey bread | iStock.com

Taste of Home’s monkey bread is smothered in a rich caramel glaze and topped with pecans for an irresistibly gooey treat. Plan ahead if you’re hoping to serve this dish for breakfast; the dough needs to be covered and refrigerated overnight before you can proceed with the rest of the recipe. It yields 20 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (¼-ounce) package active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1¼ cups warm 2% milk (110 to 115 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • ⅓ cup butter, melted
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour

Caramel

  • ⅔ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup butter, cubed
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream

Assembly

  • ¾ cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup butter, melted

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, butter, sugar, eggs, salt, and 3 cups flour. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a firm dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6 to 8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and refrigerate overnight. For caramel, in a small saucepan, bring the brown sugar, butter, and cream to a boil. Cook and stir 3 minutes. Pour half into a greased 10-inch fluted tube pan; sprinkle with half the pecans.

Punch dough down; shape into 40 balls. In a shallow bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon. Place melted butter in another bowl. Dip balls in butter, then roll in sugar mixture. Place 20 balls in the tube pan; top with remaining caramel and pecans. Top with remaining balls. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown. Cool 10 minutes before inverting onto a serving plate. Serve warm.

3. Onion-Mustard Monkey Bread

making monkey bread

Making monkey bread | Thinkstock.com

Food & Wine’s recipe highlights monkey bread’s savory side. Filled with buttery flavors and flecks of onion, this pull-apart bread is a perfect replacement for dinner rolls. It yields 10 to 12 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 envelope dry active yeast
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • Salt
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  • 2 tablespoons snipped chives
  • 1 teaspoon chopped thyme

Directions: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In a saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter. Add the milk and sugar and heat just until warm. Transfer to a large bowl, stir in the yeast, and let stand until foamy, 5 minutes. Stir in the flour and 1½ teaspoons of salt until a sticky dough forms. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth, 5 minutes. Oil the bowl and return the dough to it. Cover with plastic and let stand in a draft-free spot until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Butter a 10-inch tube or Bundt pan. Punch down the dough and divide it into 4 pieces.

Roll each piece into a 12-inch log and cut each log in 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball. Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a skillet. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until softened, 6 minutes. Stir in the mustard, chives, and thyme. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter; stir until melted. Season lightly with salt and transfer to the large bowl to cool slightly. Add half of the dough balls and turn to coat with the onion mixture.

Arrange the balls in the bottom of the pan. Repeat with the remaining dough balls. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let stand until risen to the top of the pan, about 1 hour. Bake the bread in the lower third of the oven for 25 minutes, or until golden. Cover the pan loosely with foil, reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, and bake for 30 minutes longer, or until risen. Let the bread cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Set an inverted plate on top and turn the bread out onto it. Set another plate on top and invert the bread so it’s right side up. Break into rolls or cut into slices.

4. Monkey and Gorilla Bread

monkey bread

Monkey bread | iStock.com

Food Network’s two-tiered monkey and gorilla bread is best saved for dessert. The top tier is similar to traditional monkey bread, while the bottom layer is filled with a rich cream cheese surprise. Prepare each of the breads in separate Bundt pans and layer them just before serving.

Ingredients:

Monkey bread

  • Flour, for pan
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 30 buttermilk canned refrigerator biscuits
  • 1 stick butter, plus more for pan
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup walnuts

Gorilla bread

  • Flour, for pan
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 20 buttermilk canned refrigerator biscuits
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, cut into 20 cubes
  • 1 stick butter, melted, plus more for pan
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1½ cups walnuts

Directions: To make the monkey bread, butter and flour a Bundt pan and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine sugar and cinnamon. Cut refrigerator biscuits in half and toss in cinnamon and sugar mixture. Melt the 1 stick of butter in a saucepan and add brown sugar and bring to a boil; then add nuts. Line the Bundt pan with biscuits and pour butter mixture over them. Bake for about 30 minutes. For the gorilla bread, butter and, flour a Bundt pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine sugar and cinnamon. Separate biscuits and flatten each slightly with your hand.

Sprinkle ½ teaspoon of the cinnamon and sugar mixture onto each biscuit. Place one cube of cream cheese in center of biscuit and fold in half to resemble a half moon. Melt the 1 stick of butter in a saucepan and add brown sugar and bring to a boil; remove from the heat. Place ½ cup nuts on the bottom of the Bundt pan and then line the pan with a row of cream cheese filled biscuits. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon and sugar mixture. Drizzle half of the butter mixture on top and then repeat steps, beginning with nuts. Bake for about 30 minutes. Stack the monkey bread on top of the gorilla bread, and serve.

5. Monkey Bread

monkey bread

Monkey bread | iStock.com

Cooking Light gives monkey bread a healthy makeover. The recipe avoids premade biscuits, which are often high in sodium, and makes homemade dough using whole-wheat flour, orange juice, and honey. Dipping each roll in a combination of milk and butter drastically cuts down on fat, and a cream cheese glaze eliminates additional sugar. One serving has 234 calories, 184 milligrams of sodium, and 2 grams of saturated fat.

Ingredients:

  • 13.5 ounces (about 3 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 4.75 ounces (about 1 cup) whole-wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 package quick-rise yeast
  • 1 cup very warm fat-free milk
  • ¼ cup very warm orange juice
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Cooking spray
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 4½ tablespoons fat-free milk, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ⅓-less-fat cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Weigh or lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, salt, and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer with dough hook attached; mix until combined. With mixer on, slowly add 1 cup milk, juice, honey, and 2 tablespoons butter; mix dough at medium speed 7 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Combine granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a shallow dish. Combine 3 tablespoons milk and 2 tablespoons butter in a shallow dish, stirring with a whisk. Punch dough down; divide into 8 equal portions. Working with one portion at a time, roll into an 8-inch rope. Cut each dough rope into 8 equal pieces, shaping each piece into a 1-inch ball. Dip each ball in milk mixture, turning to coat, and roll in sugar mixture. Layer balls in a 12-cup Bundt pan coated with cooking spray. Repeat procedure with remaining 7 dough ropes.

Sprinkle any remaining sugar mixture over dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, 1 hour or until almost doubled in size. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 minutes or until golden. Cool 5 minutes on a wire rack. Place a plate upside down on top of bread; invert onto plate. Combine powdered sugar, remaining milk, and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Microwave at high 20 seconds or until warm. Drizzle over bread.

6. Mexican Monkey Bread

monkey bread

Mexican monkey bread | iStock.com

Kraft strays from sweet monkey bread and instead delivers a spicy version. Jalapeño peppers, cheese, and parsley give this recipe phenomenal flavor, while refrigerated biscuits ensure it’s a dinner dish you can make with ease. It yields 12 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (16.3-ounce) can refrigerated biscuits, quartered, divided
  • 2 tablespoons  butter, melted
  • 1¼ cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • ¾ cup drained canned sliced jalapeño peppers, divided
  • ¾ teaspoon parsley flakes, divided
  • ¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Dip ⅓ of the biscuit pieces in butter; place in prepared pan. Top with ½ cup cheddar, ¼ cup peppers, and ¼ teaspoon parsley; repeat layers. Cover with remaining dipped biscuit pieces, peppers, and parsley; top with combined mozzarella and remaining cheddar. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes. Invert bread onto plate; remove pan. Serve bread warm.

7. Mini Garlic Monkey Bread

Mini garlic monkey bread

Mini garlic monkey bread | iStock.com

To make mini garlic monkey bread, cut refrigerated biscuits into quarters, toss them in butter, garlic, parsley, and Parmesan, and bake in a muffin tin. Six Sisters’ recipe, which can be found in their cookbook A Year with Six Sisters’ Stuff: 52 Menu Plans, Recipes, and Ideas to Bring Families Together and via The Girl Who Ate Everything, yields 12 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 (7.5-ounce) cans refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnishing.

Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly spray a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray. With a knife, cut each biscuit into quarters and place in a bowl. Add the butter, garlic, parsley, and ¼ cup Parmesan cheese. Pour mixture over biscuit pieces and gently toss together until everything is evenly coated. Place 4 to 5 biscuit pieces in each muffin cup. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes, or until golden. Serve warm.

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