An easy homemade Monkey Bread recipe with no rising or yeast required. You’re going to love this classic favorite, remade entirely from scratch!
Homemade Monkey Bread
I am guessing you’re no stranger to monkey bread.
If you’re lucky, your childhood was like mine and you spent many mornings cutting up pre-made biscuit dough, rolling it through cinnamon and sugar, and all-but drooling in front of the oven while it baked. Let’s not forget the scalding burns from dripping hot oozing caramel sauce all over yourself because you just can’t wait another second for that first bite.
As much as I campaign for from-scratch recipes, I really can’t knock the original Pillsbury monkey bread version. Not too much, anyway. It’s genius, quick, easy, and it just tastes like nostalgia. But… if I’m being honest, nostalgia doesn’t always taste quite as good as from-scratch. And while there’s a time and place for the quick & easy version, you know I’m here to tell you that homemade is the way to go.
A lot of homemade monkey bread versions use yeast to make the dough, but considering the OG Monkey Bread recipe is made with biscuit dough (which does NOT use yeast), that just didn’t seem right to me. Instead, I set about modifying my own popular biscuit recipe to work as the base for this monkey bread.
Much easier than using yeast, and the results did a better job of mimicking the texture and buttery flavor of the original (but, you know, better).
How to Make Monkey Bread from Scratch
- Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl, then use a grater to grate butter into the dry ingredients (alternatively you can use a pastry cutter!). Stir so all butter pieces are evenly distributed through the flour.
- Add milk and stir well
- Stir until dough is cohesive and clings together. Once I’ve worked the majority of the ingredients together with a spoon, the dough is usually a bit dry and shaggy still and I’ve found it’s often easiest to briefly use my hands to work the dough together until it clings together.
- Transfer dough to a lightly flattened surface and flatten to ½″ thick. Use a knife to cut into pieces smaller than 1″.
- Roll each square of dough in cinnamon/sugar mixture then layer into a lightly greased bundt pan or tube pan.
- In a saucepan, cook together butter and brown sugar until boiling, then pour over monkey bread pieces. This sauce is like a caramel sauce and it’s going to work its way through our pan and smother every bite of our monkey bread!
- Bake until dough is cooked through, then serve warm!
How Can I Tell if My Monkey Bread is Done Baking?
There’s a lot of dough in your bundt pan, so it can be tricky knowing for sure whether all of your monkey bread pieces are cooked all the way through. Personally I like to use a long wooden skewer and pierce through a few pieces to the bottom, making sure my skewer doesn’t come out doughy.
Since the monkey bread is much too hot to actually remove a piece and test it at this point, it’s sometimes helpful to use the skewer (or a toothpick, or even a knife) to move a few pieces around a bit to check that they don’t seem under-baked or too doughy.
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Let’s bake together! Check out my how to make Monkey Bread video at the bottom of the recipe! If you enjoy watching, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel!
From-Scratch Monkey Bread, No Yeast
- ½ cup granulated sugar (100g)
- 2 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 18 Tablespoons salted butter
- 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons light brown sugar firmly packed (225g)
- Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease the inside of a bundt pan or tube pan with butter. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt.
- Use a grater¹ to shred butter over flour mixture and then stir butter pieces into the flour mixture.
- Add milk and stir until you have a cohesive dough. Usually I will have to use my hands to work the dough together.
- Transfer dough to a clean, lightly floured surface. Form into a ball and then flatten dough to ½” thick.
- Using a sharp knife and pressing straight down into the dough (don’t “saw” the dough), cut dough into pieces smaller than 1”.
- Prepare cinnamon/sugar mixture by whisking together ½ cup granulated sugar and 2 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon. Roll each piece of dough through cinnamon/sugar then layer into prepared bundt pan.
- Sprinkle remaining cinnamon/sugar over dough. Set aside and prepare glaze.
- In a small saucepan, combine butter and brown sugar over medium heat and cook until butter is melted. Bring to a boil then remove from heat.
- Drizzle butter/sugar glaze evenly over dough.
- Transfer bundt pan to 350F (175C) oven and cook 30 minutes or until dough pieces are cooked through.
- Allow to cool for 10 minutes then carefully invert onto serving platter. Enjoy warm.
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I originally published this Monkey Bread recipe 10/19/2015. Since then I have updated the recipe and photos to improve them and have also added a video and notes that I hope are helpful. My original recipe also used a splash of bourbon in the glaze (hence why the url is “drunken monkey bread”). Feel free to add a bit of bourbon (to taste) if you’d like!