Monkey Bread

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Once you start eating Monkey Bread, it’s really hard to stop! This pull-apart bread is soaked in cinnamon, sugar, and butter and couldn’t be easier to make.

I plate of monkey bread resting on top of a wooden cutting board.


It is a simple pull-apart bread is OOZING everything that is delicious about breakfast sweets: Cinnamon, sugar, and butter.

This tasty bread is a brunch staple across the Midwest, especially at the holidays. A big thank you shout-out to my sister-in-law Erin, an Iowa native, for sharing her family’s version! It’s a keeper.

How do I make Monkey Bread?

Start with refrigerated biscuits (aka “exploding biscuits” in some circles), quarter, and toss them in a simple cinnamon-sugar topping.

Add them to your bundt pan, then smother in a mixture of boiled sugar, butter, cinnamon, and vanilla.

A collage of three photos showing steps to making monkey bread.

Why do you call it Monkey Bread?

The name comes from the fact that you can eat this delicious dessert by hand. You can pick it apart with your fingers the way a monkey would. (source: Wikipedia)

It is also known as:

  • Monkey puzzle bread
  • Sticky bread
  • Hungarian coffee cake
  • Golden crown
  • Pinch-me cake
  • Pluck-it cake
  • Pull-apart cake
Two small plates with servings of monkey bread and forks on them.

Does Monkey Bread need to be refrigerated?

No need to refrigerate the bread. It could dry out and become stale, and you will have to call it funky monkey bread.

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Monkey bread on a white plate.

Monkey Bread

Once you start eating Monkey Bread, it’s really hard to stop! This pull-apart bread is soaked in cinnamon, sugar, and butter and couldn’t be easier to make.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 16 servings
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 176
5 from 7 votes


For the Monkey Bread:

For the glaze:


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a Bundt pan generously with vegetable shortening or nonstick spray.
  • Whisk 2/3 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl. Cut biscuit dough into quarters. Drop the dough pieces into the sugar and cinnamon mixture in batches, tossing to coat. Transfer to prepared pan.
  • In a small saucepan, combine remaining 2/3 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon with butter and vanilla. Bring to a boil and pour evenly over the dough.
  • Bake 50 minutes to 1 hour. Cool about 10 minutes in the pan, turning out onto a serving plate while the bread is still warm. Loosen around the edges of the pan with a plastic knife if necessary to help dislodge the bread.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together powdered sugar, water, and vanilla until smooth. Drizzle over the bread and serve warm. 
  • To reheat the bread from room temperature, warm in a 350°F oven for 5 to 10 minutes.


The 4 tubes of 7.5 ounce biscuits are sold in a shrink-wrapped 4-pack. Both “original” and “buttermilk” varieties are delicious in this recipe!


Calories: 176kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 1gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 54mgPotassium: 5mgFiber: 1gSugar: 31gVitamin A: 178IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 5mgIron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?Tag @culinaryhill on Instagram so we can admire your masterpiece! #culinaryhill
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Meggan Hill is a classically-trained chef and professional writer. Her meticulously-tested recipes and detailed tutorials bring confidence and success to home cooks everywhere. Meggan has been featured on NPR, HuffPost, FoxNews, LA Times, and more.

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    1. Hi Cherie, yes! The bake time may vary and depending on the pan, you may need to slide a knife along the side to get the bread to release. Hope this helps! – Meggan

  1. Great recipe, I love it the only thing I did different was I used two
    16OZ.(1 LB)453ggreat value flaky jumbo buttermilk biscuit’s
    And now I get to share them with my I’m your old daughter so she’s going up cuz I’m for the first time

  2. Thanks for another terrific recipe. You are now my go to expert! The photographs are greatly appreciated/helpful. I checked the oven at 42 minutes, and promptly took the monkey bread out. Thanks again. :)5 stars

  3. My mom has been making monkey bread for over 50 years she is 86.. It’s basically the same but a totally different setup. I was taught to take out two Frozen loaves of bread the night before and let them sit out overnight period. Then in the morning you start pulling about an inch size and you make round balls and then you dip those in hot butter and roll them in a cinnamon and sugar mixture. Then you put them in the bundt cake pan that has been buttered and cinnamon and sugared. and you just keep making those balls until the two loaves of bread are gone. then you put it on the stove with the oven set at 350° and you wait for them to raise again until they’re over the top of the bundt cake pan. You then put the pan on a cookie sheet and in the oven at 350° and cook for 30 to 40 minutes until golden brown.. The very top ones will be darker. Then flip the Bundt cake pan upside down onto a heat safe plate and serve. I think when my mom started making this they didn’t have those square biscuits that you can cut up.

  4. This is why I wish we had refrigerated biscuits!!!! Don’t have them in Australia much to my disappointment

  5. I made this yesterday and it burned! I took it out after 48 minutes and it was hard as a rock. 50 minutes to an hour is what the recipe said, which is way too long. Next time I make it, I will probably cut that time down to 30 minutes.

    1. So sorry to hear that Allison! I’ve made this a bunch of times, there must be a difference in our ovens. I’m going to pick up an oven thermometer so I can double-check my temps and make sure I’m baking things at the temps I think I am. So sorry again!

  6. Meggan, Your photos are lovely! My mouth is watering just browsing around here:-) This is one of my favs!5 stars

    1. Thank you so much, Danielle! How can you pass up Monkey bread?! I’ve heard the best way to eat it is with MORE butter… as in dipped in a bowl of butter… yikes! ;)

  7. Awwwww … I have so many good things to say about this monkey bread, but right now I am consumed with envy that you guys got to meet!!! How wonderful! :-)
    I have to admit, Meggan, that when I first read ‘refrigerated biscuits’ I had no idea what you were talking about. Here in the UK, like in Australia, that just doesn’t exist (a fridge biscuit here is a chocolaty cookie cake made with butter, chocolate and cookies … haha!)
    Still, I would love to have a go at this – I bet the dough would be pretty simple to make from scratch.
    Failing this, I will just have to jump on a plane and come and sample your family recipe for myself, like the lovely Nagi did!5 stars

  8. I was literally in food heaven. I did a little happy dance when I smelt it in the oven and my knees buckled when Meggan took it out of the oven. While she was dealing with nappy changes, I kept sneaking more and more for myself, to the point that when Meggan actually made us a tea and we sat down like the civilised adults we (well she) are, I was pretty full already.

    And yet, I kept going. I couldn’t stop! This is crazy good stuff. CRAZY good! I could hardly eat any dinner, I ate so much monkey bread!!!

    Thank you Meggan!!! I was sooooooooo happy to finally try monkey bread…and it surpassed all my expectations!!! N x5 stars

  9. Focusing on gratitude AND this monkey bread sounds like a good plan to me! In all seriousness, I do always take time this time of the year to reflect on everything and look back. .  you’re right! so much to be thankful for! 5 stars

  10. Ummm so jealous you two got to hang and eat monkey bread!!! HOLY CRAP!  This is so beautiful honey! I have a feeling Nagi will be toting a suitcase full of refrigerated biscuits home :)5 stars