Our Monkey Bread Recipe is a classic breakfast treat that the kids (and adults!) absolutely go nuts over! Sweet, sticky biscuits coated in cinnamon and sugar and baked in a simple caramel sauce.
Pretty sure every American out there has at least heard of monkey bread, if not eaten it at least once.
I’m not sure about the rest of the world though. I don’t believe canned biscuit dough is a hugely popular thing outside of the US, and that is the standard start to a quick monkey bread.
Of course, this is about the only time I use canned biscuits, because my dad’s homemade biscuits are life-changing! I get comments and emails from readers almost daily about how that biscuit recipe is THE ONE TRUE BISCUIT. 😉
Anyway, this monkey bread with biscuits is a classic. We grew up on it and I wanted to share the recipe because 1) it’s good stuff, 2) every kid needs this in their life, and 3) it’s a holiday breakfast staple and there’s always another holiday around the corner.
Update: We used this recipe to make Monkey Bread Muffins and they’re a big hit too! Must try!
What Is Monkey Bread?
Also known as cinnamon pull apart bread, this popular treat is basically just cinnamon sugar covered biscuit dough baked in a simple caramel sauce.
It’s usually made in a Bundt pan and it gets the name “monkey bread” from the way you pull it apart with your hands like a monkey would. Or maybe you use a fork like a civilized person. That’s okay too.
This is most commonly served as a breakfast treat in America, but it doubles beautifully as a dessert.
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Biscuit Dough – We make our monkey bread with refrigerated canned biscuit dough. You can use homemade biscuit dough as well.
Coating – You’ll need granulated sugar and ground cinnamon to coat the biscuit dough.
Sauce – We pour a delicious caramel sauce over it all and that’s made with butter and brown sugar. Super simple!
What Readers are Saying!
“Amazing and so much better than store-bought. This recipe couldn’t be any easier to make.” – Deborah
How to Make Monkey Bread:
Dough: While pre-heating your oven to 350 degrees, grease a 9 cup Bundt pan. The Bundt pan works perfectly for monkey bread as it creates a lot of surface area for all that sticky sweet cinnamon and sugar glaze.
- We’re making monkey bread with biscuits, so to start, remove the refrigerated biscuits from the can, and cut each biscuit into 4 pieces.
- Place the cut biscuits into a large zip top bag and add the granulated sugar and cinnamon. Shake the bag well to coat the the biscuits.
- Add the cinnamon and sugar coated biscuit pieces to the Bundt pan.
Butter and Brown Sugar Sauce: Now we are getting to the really good part! This sauce will combine with the cinnamon and sugar coated biscuit pieces to make that gooey, sticky soft texture that makes this easy monkey bread recipe taste so irresistible.
- Add the butter and brown sugar to a small sauce pan over medium heat, stirring often. Once it has reached a smooth, almost caramel like consistency it will be ready.
- Pour the mixture over the biscuit pieces in the Bundt pan.
Bake: Once you have added the sauce you can begin baking the dough. It is helpful to place the Bundt pan on a baking sheet to prevent any of the mixture from spilling over into your oven.
- Bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes before flipping onto a serving dish. Do not wait much longer or the mixture may begin to stick to the pan.
- Difficult as it may be, allow the bread to cool for up to 10 minutes before serving. You want the bread and sticky mixture to be warm, not lava hot.
- Pan Size: Make sure you use a 9 cup (or larger) Bundt pan for this recipe, anything smaller and it will overflow and create a sticky mess. Be sure to place the Bundt pan on a baking sheet just in case.
- Cooling: Do not let it cool for too long before flipping it onto a serving dish or the mixture could cool and begin to stick to the Bundt pan.
- Serve Warm: Monkey Bread is best when warm. It can be reheated! If you are going to eat it all within a couple of days, it can be stored at room temperature in a plastic zip top bag. You can also freeze monkey bread for up to a few months by tightly wrapping it in plastic wrap and foil.
- Boiling Sugar: I’m a mom, so I have to say this everytime we work with boiling sugar – sugar is hot hot hot (and sticky) when it’s melted and it will burn you on contact. Be very careful. We love letting kids help in the kitchen, but we don’t let younger ones help with the caramel sauce here.
A quality bundt pan is essential! This one is non-stick, budget friendly, and gets used often in my home. It’s the classic choice for monkey bread recipes!
Monkey Bread can be made in many ways, with many different ingredients. Some possible additions include:
- Nuts – pecans and walnuts are a great choice.
- Raisins – my family would revolt, but maybe this will work for you. 😉
- Chocolate Chips – Not quite sweet enough for you? Try sprinkling in some chocolate chips.
- Drizzle a simple vanilla glaze or cinnamon roll icing over the bread and sprinkle with sprinkles for a fun birthday breakfast.
- Pumpkin spice makes everything better! Try our Pumpkin Monkey Bread!
Monkey Bread is best served warm. This is one dish that the kids love to eat!
We pop it on a serving platter or cake stand, have everyone wash their hands (important step for what’s to come next…), and then everyone picks apart the bread like little monkeys, pulling off bits of sweet, sticky dough and popping them onto their plate or into their mouths.
Although monkey bread is traditionally made in a Bundt pan you can use a variety of other pans to make it. Cake pans, cast iron skillets, baking dishes, etc. Just make sure to adjust the quantity for the size.
It gets the name because of how you pick it apart with your hands to eat it like a monkey would. It is also known as plucking cake, pull-apart bread, or bubble bread!
You can leave the monkey bread covered at room temperature for at least a couple of days. No need to refrigerate. You can re-heat the bread in portions in the microwave for about 20 seconds. Monkey bread is best enjoyed warm!
Can I make this with homemade biscuits?
So, here’s the million dollar question…do I think homemade biscuit dough would work in this monkey bread recipe?
The answer…yes, I THINK so, but I’ve not tried it.
If you want to attempt, double a batch of my dad’s biscuits and pat the dough out into a large rectangle and then just cut into 1-inch squares. I would be a bit more liberal with the flour so that the dough is a bit sturdier and not quite as soft.
I have not tested this myself, but this is where I would start if I were going to.
What We Love About Monkey Bread!
This is a kid-favorite, but it takes the adults right back to their childhood as well.
Sticky, sweet, and fun to eat, this makes any special day start off a bit more special and it’s fairly simple to whip up with a bit of prep work and time.
More breakfast favorites!
- Air Fryer Donuts
- Cinnamon Crunch Bagel
- Sausage Gravy
- Chocolate Glazed Donut
- Old Fashioned Donut
- 2 tubes refrigerated biscuit dough 8 biscuits each
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ¾ cup butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Liberally grease a 9 cup bundt pan.
- Remove the biscuits from the can and cut each biscuit into 4 pieces.
- Place biscuit pieces into a large zip top bag and add the granulated sugar and cinnamon. Seal the bag and shake to coat the biscuit pieces in the cinnamon and sugar.
- Add the biscuit pieces to the prepared bundt pan.
- Melt the butter and brown sugar in a small sauce pan over medium heat, stirring often. Once smooth and combined, pour the mixture over the biscuits.
- Bake for 35 minutes or until no longer doughy in the center.
- Let cool for 5 minutes and then carefully flip onto a serving dish.
- Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.