Gooey Monkey Bread

12 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Gooey Monkey Bread is sweet and sticky, made with buttermilk biscuit dough, butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and ready in under 45 minutes!

You’ll love making both savory AND sweet breakfast dishes for every occasion, especially around the holidays, like this Breakfast CasseroleEasy Cinnamon Rolls (in 1 Hour!) and Easy French Toast Bake!

Monkey Bread

Monkey Bread is a holiday favorite breakfast (a Christmas morning tradition for many!) that is incredibly EASY to throw together because it uses store-bought buttermilk biscuit dough and a few extra ingredients you already have in your pantry like cinnamon, brown sugar, and unsalted butter.

It may sound like the ingredients aren’t that special, but together what you get is a sweet bread that tastes like a mix between a dessert and a coffee cake, with a caramel brown sugar mixture holding it all together.

Monkey Bread is a kid-friendly recipe from start to finish. The dough cooks up like dumplings so they have a great time pulling it apart. The dough is also perfect for kids to help with, a plastic knife is all you need to cut it into quarters for this recipe.

Want to make this more homemade? You can always make Biscuits for dinner the night before, and reserve half of the dough for the next morning in the refrigerator.

If your store doesn’t have biscuit dough, you can use another pop-open can of dinner roll dough to make this. The taste and texture of the classic biscuit dough version is preferred, but once you coat it in melted butter and cinnamon sugar, you might not even notice a switch in the dough you’re using.

Monkey Bread collage of assembly steps

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why do they call it Monkey Bread?

This is traditionally called monkey bread because the cake is made up of little dough pieces, making it easy to pull apart with your hands, like a monkey would eat it.

It’s also called golden dumpling cake, monkey puzzle bread, and pinch-me cake, and is meant to be served while it is still warm so you can easily pluck it apart. A lot of families serve this sweet bread on Christmas morning.

How do you Make Caramel Sauce Monkey Bread?

Instead of melting the butter and brown sugar together, you can use a homemade caramel sauce for this monkey bread recipe instead. Here’s a homemade caramel sauce recipe, which would be the perfect sweet and sticky match for this monkey bread recipe!

Can you refrigerate before baking?

Yes, you can assemble the monkey bread entirely, then cover it in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Store-bought dough makes this really easy. You don’t have to worry about the yeast rising too much and ruining the dough.

How do you store overnight after baking?

Monkey bread can be covered tightly with plastic wrap and stored at room temperature overnight. We don’t recommend refrigerating bread after you’ve cooked the dough because it will go stale faster.

Monkey Bread on cake stand being pulled apart

Homemade Monkey Bread (From Scratch!)

This recipe uses store-bought buttermilk biscuit dough, but you can definitely make this homemade monkey bread from scratch by using the dough from our recipe for Buttermilk Biscuits. Just rip the dough into biscuit-sized balls and follow the rest of the recipe as written. Plus you can save some dough for later and make biscuits for dinner!

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Tips for Making Monkey Bread

  • Try adding a touch of maple syrup to the brown sugar butter mixture, then topping the finished monkey bread with pieces of cooked bacon.
  • If you’re serving this bread for a holiday, make it more festive by dusting with powdered sugar and cinnamon right before serving. You can also drizzle with some icing and top with chopped pecans.
  • Use a non-stick bundt pan to make flipping the bread onto a plate easier.
  • Instead of combining the brown sugar and butter on the stove, you can save time by melting the butter in a small bowl in the microwave for 1 minute at a time, then whisk in the brown sugar until well-combined before pouring over the biscuit dough.
  • If you don’t have a bundt pan, you can make this in a loaf pan by cutting the cooking total time down by about half, then check it every 10 minutes or so until it’s done.

How to Store Monkey Bread

  • Serve: This recipe is best served immediately after baking. Let cool for five minutes then serve so the sugars can set and cool a little.
  • Store: This recipe can be stored at room temperature overnight in an airtight container or in the refrigerator for 2-3 days before it becomes too stale. Warm gently in a microwave.
  • Freeze: You can freeze monkey bread wrapped tightly for up to 3-4 weeks. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight. This is best served warm, after it’s defrosted. Wrap in tinfoil and warming in the oven for a total time of 6-8 minutes at 325 degrees F, just until the bread is warmed through. This makes the butter and sugar mixture softer so the bread will easily pull apart.
Monkey Bread on cake stand

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Gooey Monkey Bread

Gooey Monkey Bread is sweet and sticky, made with buttermilk biscuit dough, butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and ready in under 45 minutes!
Yield 12 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 3 12-ounce packages refrigerated buttermilk biscuit dough , each cut into quarters
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar , packed


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and add the sugar, cinnamon and biscuit quarters to a ziplock bag and shake well.
  • Add the pieces to a bundt pan.
  • Add the butter and brown sugar to a medium saucepan on medium heat and bring to a boil for one minute before pouring onto the bundt pan.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes, remove from oven, let cool for 10-15 minutes then place a plate over the bottom of the bundt pan and flip over to remove.



Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.


Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 76g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 874mg | Potassium: 214mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 37g | Vitamin A: 235IU | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 3mg
Gooey Monkey Bread Collage

Photos used in a previous version of this post.

Easy Monkey Bread
Semi-Homemade Monkey Bread
Quick Monkey Bread

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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  1. The instructions say put sugar, cinnamon and biscuits in a bag and shake until coated. Then it says to pour sugar over it. Didn’t you use all the sugar in the bag? If not, how much would be left over to pour? I’m confused. Thank you

  2. When I make this (tried twice) mine comes out gritty (sugar) and not gooey. What am I doing wrong? I’ve had good gooey monkey bread before from other people and mine just doesn’t turn out the same. Help!

    1. It sounds like the butter and brown sugar mixture needs to cook longer. Make sure your burner is on medium heat and then bring it to boil. Let it boil for one minute before pouring it in to the pan. Hope this helps for next time.

  3. This recipe was amazing I cannot thank you enough very easy fast and I love the fact that you can click on the times and have a kitchen timer on your phone that’s perfect thank you so much have a great evening

  4. Looks gorgeous! I’m not sure why I never made monkey bread before but I look forward to trying yours. I have tried few of your cookie recipes and they turned out perfect.

  5. This looks so delicious! I can almost smell it baking in the oven! Perfect as part of a holiday brunch menu!