Break the Fast with Monkey Bread

July 8, 2013
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Yeast doughPlease note: Eileen Goltz is a freelance kosher food writer. The Orthodox Union makes no endorsements or representations regarding kashrut certification of various products/vendors referred to in her articles, blog or web site.

It is always difficult to come up with new and interesting recipes for yom tov meals. This challenge becomes 10-times harder during the break-fast, when family and friends need to be fed NOW! This year, I’m going to propose that you make something delicious and perfect for grabbing and popping into your mouth just as soon as the 26 hours are up. I’m talking about Monkey Bread.

Monkey Bread, also known as “Bubble Bread,” is comprised of yeast dough rolled into balls (frozen bread dough is most often used), coated in butter, put into a cake pan and covered in cinnamon, sugar, chopped nuts and various other kinds of “stuff”. It’s typically a dairy dish that is best eaten warm with everyone grabbing at it with their fingers sort of like monkeys grabbing coconuts, hence the name monkey bread.

The following recipes are all variations on a theme and can be tweaked to utilize whatever coating and toppings you prefer. Just remember to thoroughly grease your baking pan or the monkey will stick to the pan.

Monkey bread can be made up to one day ahead and heated just before serving.

Rhodes Butterscotch Bubble Bread (dairy)

8 to 10 servings


  • 24 Rhodes Dinner Rolls, thawed but still cold
  • ½ box butterscotch or vanilla pudding mix, non-instant
  • ½ cup pecans, chopped
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup butter or margarine


  1. Grease a bundt pan VERY well.
  2. Place the pudding mix in a shallow bowl. Cut the rolls in half and then roll them in the dry pudding mix.
  3. Place half the rolls in the bottom of the greased bundt pan, alternate layers with pecans. Repeat with the remaining rolls and nuts. Sprinkle the remaining pudding mix over the top and set it aside.
  4. In a microwave bowl combine the brown sugar and butter. Microwave until the butter is melted. Remove from the heat and whisk to combine.
  5. Pour the mixture evenly over the top of the coated rolls. Let the dough rise until double in size or the dough is even with the top of the pan.
  6. Preheat oven and then bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Cover the top with foil and then cook for another 15 minutes. Check to see if the top is golden. If not, cook an additional 5 to 10 minutes without the foil.
  7. Remove from the oven immediately after baking. Cool for 5 minutes, using a knife loosen the bread from the sides of the pan and invert the bread onto a serving plate.

Modified from my files from a Rhodes recipe.

Bobby Flay Pecan Pie Monkey Bread (dairy)



  • 1 package (¼ oz.) active dry yeast
  • ¼ cup water (110 to 115°F)
  • 5 cups flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 to 1¼ cups warm milk (110 to 115°F)
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted, plus more for greasing
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs


  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed, plus more for greasing
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons whipping cream
  • 6 Tablespoons chopped pecans


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 6 Tablespoons chopped pecans


  1. Grease a bundt pan
  2. For the dough: Dissolve the yeast in the water in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add 3 cups of the flour, the milk, butter, sugar, salt and eggs. Heat on medium for 3 minutes. Stir in enough of the remaining flour to form a firm dough.
  3. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead for 6 to 8 minutes. Place the dough in a greased bowl, turning it over once to grease the top.
  4. Cover and refrigerate overnight. (you can use frozen bread dough, thawed if you prefer).
  5. For the caramel: In a sauce pan combine the brown sugar, butter and cream and bring it to a boil. Cook at a simmer, whisking constantly for 3 minutes. Pour half the mixture into the greased bundt pan and sprinkle with the pecans.
  6. For assembly: Punch the risen dough down and shape into 40 balls (1 to 1 inches in diameter).
  7. In a bowl combine the sugar and cinnamon. Pour the melted butter into another bowl. Roll the balls in the butter and then roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture.
  8. Place 20 balls in the bundt pan and top with remaining caramel and the pecans. Lastly, place the final 20 balls of dough into the pan. Cover the bundt pan with plastic wrap and let it rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  10. Bake until the top is a deep golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes.
  11. Cool for 10 minutes before inverting onto a serving plate.

Serve warm.

Recipe from Bobby Flay via the food network (modified slightly)

Apple Monkey Bread (dairy)

8 to 10 servings


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3 (12 oz.) cans refrigerated buttermilk biscuits, separated and cut into quarters
  • 3 apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 1/3 cup golden raisins
  • 1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
  • ½ cup butter or margarine
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed


  1. Preheat an oven to 350°F. Grease a bundt pan.
  2. In a paper bag bag combine the sugar and cinnamon add the biscuit dough pieces in batches of 6 to 8 pieces at a time to the bag with the sugar mixture and shake to coat.
  3. Starting with the dough, alternate layers of the chopped apple, raisins, nuts and the sugar-coated dough pieces in the greased bundt pan.
  4. In a small saucepan combine the margarine and brown sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce to a simmer and whisk for at least 2 minutes.
  5. Remove the mixture from the heat and pour it over the dough and apples.
  6. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until the top is golden.
  7. Allow the bread to cool in the bundt pan for 10 to 15 minutes, loosen the sides with a knife and then invert it onto a serving plate.

Submitted by Richard Monsonsky NY, NY

Savory Garlic Monkey Bread (dairy)

8 to 10 servings


  • 3 Tablespoons minced green onions or shallots
  • 3 Tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 Teaspoons minced garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 5 Tablespoons butter, melted or olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 24 frozen dinner roll bread dough, thawed
  • 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese


  1. Grease a bundt pan.
  2. In a bowl combine the green onion, parsley, oregano, garlic, salt, butter and eggs and whisk to combine. Dip roll into the egg mixture.
  3. Place half of the coated dough balls into the prepared pan. Sprinkle half the Parmesan cheese over the top. Top with the remaining rolls and cover with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
  4. Cover with wax paper and let rise until doubled in size, about 45 to 50 minutes.
  5. While the dough is rising preheat the oven to 350°F.
  6. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown.

My files, source unknown


6 to 8 servings


  • 24 frozen bread dough rolls, defrosted
  • 5 Tablespoons olive oil; 2 Tablespoons to grease the pan and 3 to pour on top
  • 1/3 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1½ Tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ cup pizza sauce
  • Parmesan cheese for dusting
  • Any chopped topping you like (sliced mushrooms, black olives, green peppers etc.


  1. Grease a bundt pan with 3 Tablespoons olive oil (leave any oil left over in the bottom of the pan).  Sprinkle ½ Tablespoon of the Italian seasoning along the sides and bottom.
  2. Using a rolling pin roll out the bread dough rounds until they are about 3 inches across. Spoon a heaping teaspoon of pizza sauce, some mozzarella cheese and whatever toppings you like in the center of the round but don’t let it go out to the edges. Pull up the sides and pinch the edges together to seal it into a ball with the filling in the middle.
  3. Place 8 of the filled balls, seam side up in the pan.
  4. Once you have the first layer done, drizzle a little oil and Parmesan cheese on top. Repeat ending with a little bit of oil drizzled over the top.
  5. Let rise for 45 minutes to an hour.
  6. While the dough is rising preheat the oven to 350°F.
  7. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes until the top is golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven, let cool for 5 minutes, and then invert on a serving plate.

Blueberry Monkey Bread (dairy)

8 to 10 servings


  • 1-1/3 cups sugar, divided in half
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 4 (10 oz,) cans refrigerated buttermilk biscuit dough
  • 1¼ cups frozen blueberries
  • 10 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a bundt pan.
  2. In a bowl combine 2/3 cup sugar and the cinnamon. Cut each biscuits into 3 pieces, and then roll each piece in sugar-cinnamon mixture.
  3. Arrange about 1/3 of the biscuit pieces and blueberries in the prepared pan. Repeat the process 3 times with the remaining blueberries and biscuit pieces covering the blueberries of one layer with biscuits in the next layer.
  4. In saucepan combine the remaining 2/3 cup sugar, butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and 1 cup of blueberries. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the mixture to a simmer. Cook, stirring frequently until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved.
  5. Cool the mixture slightly and then pour it over the mixture over dough and fruit in pan.
  6. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown on top.
  7. Cool for 5 minutes, use a knife loosen the sides, then invert the bread onto a serving plate.

Modified from a Pillsbury® recipe submitted by Arlene Simon Chicago IL

© Eileen Goltz monkey bread 13a

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.