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Pan of monkey bread with vanilla icing.

Photo: iStock

Monkey bread

This sticky, spiced American treat is like a giant bundt cake of gooey cinnamon rolls that smells and tastes sublime. Add vanilla icing and serve pull-apart style. This monkey bread will be ready before you know it. 

28 March, 2023
Average: 4 (3 votes)

serves for


total time

3 HR 20 MIN


Whole milk
1 and 1/2 cups (360ml), warmed to about 110°F (45°C)
2 and 1/4 tsp (10.5g)
Granulated sugar
1/4 cup (50g)
Unsalted butter
5 tbsp (70g), melted
1 tsp (5.7g)
All purpose flour
5 cups (625g)
Unsalted butter
3/4 cup (170g), divided
Granulated sugar
1 and 1/4 cups (250g)
Ground cinnamon
1 tbsp (8.3g)
Dark brown sugar
2/3 cup (130g), or light
Vanilla extract
1 tsp (4.4g), pure
Vanilla icing
Confectioner's sugar
1 cup (120g)
Whole milk
3 tbsp (45ml)
Vanilla extract
1/2 tsp (2.2g), pure


Step 01

Combine the warm milk, yeast and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or paddle attachment. Whisk the ingredients together and cover the bowl, allowing it to sit for 5 minutes.

Step 02

Add the eggs, butter, salt and 1 cup of flour. Beat the mixture on low speed for 30 seconds before adding the remaining flour. Increase the speed to medium and continue beating until the dough is fully formed and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. If you don't have a mixer, you can mix the dough with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula. 

Step 03

Beat the dough for 2 more minutes in the mixer or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 2 minutes.

Step 04

Grease a large bowl with oil or nonstick spray, then transfer the dough into the bowl. Cover the bowl with aluminium foil, plastic wrap, or a clean kitchen towel and leave the dough to rise until it has doubled in size, around 1-2 hours.

Step 05

Grease a 10-12 cup bundt pan with butter or nonstick spray. 

Step 06

Melt 1/2 cup (115g) of unsalted butter in a medium bowl. In another medium bowl, combine granulated sugar and cinnamon. The rest of the butter, brown sugar and vanilla will be used later.

Step 07

When the dough is ready, punch it down to let the air out. One at a time, roll small pieces of dough into balls – about 1.25 inches (3.2cm) in diameter each. You will need 40-45 balls in total. Dip each ball, one by one, in the melted butter and then roll it in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place the balls in the bundt pan. Cover the pan with aluminium foil, plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel and allow the monkey bread to rest for 20 minutes.

Step 08

Lower the oven rack and preheat to 350°F (177°C).

Step 09

Melt the remaining 1/4 cup (60g) butter, then add the brown sugar and vanilla extract. Pour all over the monkey bread.

Step 10

Bake for 35-45 minutes or until golden brown. If the top is browning too quickly, cover it with foil. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, then flip onto a large serving plate.

Step 11

Mix all of the icing ingredients together and drizzle over the monkey bread. Slice the monkey bread into generous pieces, or let your guests have the fun of tearing off the sticky pieces themselves.


This decadent cake tastes best served immediately after baking. You can store leftovers at room temperature for one day or in the refrigerator for up to four days, tightly covered.

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