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Cinnamon monkey bread on white serving plate

Homemade Monkey Bread Recipe

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This scrumptious Homemade Monkey Bread Recipe is an outstanding, 5-Alarm breakfast or brunch treat that will thrill your family!!

Much as I love my easy monkey bread or bubble rolls made with a box of pudding mix, this Homemade Monkey Bread is worth the effort!

Cinnamon Monkey Bread on white plate

Homemade Monkey Bread Recipe

Have you ever had a firetruck, with its lights flashing and sirens blaring, race down your quiet street and stop in front of your house? Not once, not twice, but at least 3 times? Granted, this has been over a couple of decades, but the initial episode was the most memorable. I was baking my first Cinnamon Monkey Bread.

We had been to Sedona, Arizona, and I had purchased a mini-cookbook from our bed and breakfast for Bubble Roll. It was made with frozen roll dough, a box of butterscotch pudding, butter and LOTS of sugar. I arranged the bread dough in the pan, topped with the dry ingredients, let it rise and popped it in the oven. Well, little ol’ me didn’t realize that the angel food pan I had used would leak the sugar syrup ALL over the bottom of the oven. Whoops. Well, problem easily solved. I turned on the self-cleaning oven and went on with my day

Cinnamon monkey bread on white serving plate

How to Make Monkey Bread

It was shortly after when one of the kids reported there was smoke coming from the kitchen, then the hubby suggested there might be flames in our oven. The queen of denial said no way until the smoke alarm started blaring thus notifying our fire department that our home was in jeopardy.

I was just baking, I told the fireman, sheepishly, when he walked up our driveway. Eventually, I learned my lesson. When something starts smoking in my oven (which happens more than I care to admit!), I call my alarm company and instruct them to ignore any smoke signals from us that come their way. But you’re smarter than I am, and when you make this delicious cinnamon monkey bread, it will go off without a hitch!

So my first tip on how to make monkey bread is to use a Bundt or Angel Food Cake Pan with a solid bottom. If your pan has a removable bottom, there will be a big mess in your oven after baking. Or even a fire!

Next, do not force the dough to rise with a too hot oven. 85º is the goal. My new oven has a proofing setting which is set at 85. Placing a bowl of very hot water into your oven can also gently raise the temperature, but double-check with an oven thermometer.

Let the monkey bread cool on a rack for at least 5 minutes before inverting. This allows the caramel topping to cool a bit so it doesn’t all slide off the bread. If there’s any topping left in the pan, scrape it out over the rolls.

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Fire truck in front of house

Photo courtesy of my son, Tom, who loves to document our family foibles

Homemade Monkey Bread Recipe

Homemade Monkey Bread Recipe

Yeast rolls rolled in cinnamon sugar and baked with a caramelly glaze for a magnifent breakfast or brunch treat.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Yield 8 servings



  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided, 2 tablespoons softened (to grease the Bundt pan) and 2 tablespoons melted
  • 1 cup warm milk (about 110 degrees)
  • 1/3 cup warm water (about 110 degrees)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 package rapid-rise yeast (or instant)
  • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour , plus extra for work surface
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Cinnamon Coating

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 8 tablespoons butter (1 stick), melted

Optional glaze:

  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk


  1. Preheat oven to 200º, then turn it off. Grease Bundt pan with the softened butter. Set aside.
  2. In a large measuring cup, mix together milk, water, melted butter, sugar, and yeast. Mix flour and salt in a standing mixer fitted with the dough hook. Turn machine to low and slowly add milk mixture. When the dough comes together, increase speed to medium and mix 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from bowl, and place in a large bowl coated with cooking spray. Cover bowl with greased plastic wrap and place in a warm oven (85 degrees) until dough doubles, about an hour.
  3. While the dough is rising, mix brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. Put melted butter in a second bowl.
  4. Pat dough into an 8 inch by 8-inch square. Cut dough into 64 pieces.
  5. Roll each dough piece into a ball, then coat balls in melted butter, one at a time. Roll in brown sugar mixture, then place the balls into the greased Bundt pan. Try to place the second layer of dough balls over the seams of the first makes a better presentation.
  6. Cover pan with plastic wrap and place in your slightly warm oven (about 85 degrees) for about an hour or till dough rises about an inch above sides of pan.
  7. Remove pan from oven and preheat oven to 350º. Bake until top is deep brown, about 30 to 35 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes, then turn out onto plate and let cool about 10 minutes before icing.
  8. While bread cools, whisk icing ingredients until smooth. Drizzle glaze over warm monkey bread. Serve warm.


Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

Total time does not include proofing time.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 523Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 692mgCarbohydrates: 84gFiber: 2gSugar: 42gProtein: 7g


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56 comments on “Homemade Monkey Bread Recipe”

  1. LOL well I hope the monkey bread was worth all the effort! 🙂 I’m sure they’ve had that happen before… I’m always worried that our fire alarm will go off when we have something that starts to smoke the oven out…

  2. What a funny story…but not so funny if a real fire would have broken out! Your monkey bread is so irresistible, yummy, ooey-gooey goodness for a special morning with my favorite latte! xo

  3. I have never made monkey bread and have always wanted to. I’m bookmarking this for in the future use. Like maybe tomorrow!

  4. I have seen so many recipes for Monkey Bread that I really need to give this a shot! This looks luscious!

  5. Oh my goodness I can’t believe you actually had them show up that must have been embarrassing. Did you offer them some monkey bread? I am sure if they got to taste that amazing deliciousness it would have made the trip worth it.

  6. Hysterical Liz!!! I’ve set off the smoke alarm but the fire department hasn’t come to the house yet.
    Gorgeous monkey bread you baked. It’s one that is nudging me to bake one for the first time.

  7. Yummy! I so love monkey bread. Yours looks incredible!

  8. Oh goodness what a story! Monkey bread reminds me of home, my mom, weekend breakfasts and lots of love!

  9. I know I shouldn’t laugh… but what a funny story. 🙂 I love that your son took a photo. I can just see Bill.. “No, Mr. Fireman.. my wife was just baking…”. It’s nice to know even a superb baker like you has your harmless mishaps. The first time I made monkey bread… I didn’t realize it needed to be a bundt pan and I had raw bread in the middle of my monkey. Urhg. 🙁

    Your monkey bread is fantastic… bet the fireman wanted to stay to have a piece. 🙂

  10. Oh. My. Gawd. Little dough bites, covered with gooey glaze! I’m all over this!

  11. My man used to be a fireman and he will appreciate your story for sure! I see you overcame the issue and baked some fantastic looking monkeybread!

  12. Oh, Liz!! That is too funny!!! I can honestly say that my baking hasn’t brought the fire dept… yet. But in a few cases maybe it should have.

  13. Lizzy,
    I’ve never made Monkey Bread but I’ve seen recipes for it all over the place. Hopefully when I get around to making, it will look as good as yours.

  14. Cinnamon is my favourite spice and your monkey bread looks fill to brim with cinnamon goodness. It looks delicious.

  15. Hi 🙂
    When does the softened butter get added? I see it in the dough ingredients, but not in the instructions.

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