Monkey Bread aka Pull Apart Cinnamon Roll Bites

Monkey Bread aka Pull Apart Cinnamon Roll Bites

I don’t normally make this sort of thing but we had a brunch planned with our neighbors over the freezing weekend and I wanted to make something warm and comforting that would please the adults and the kids. My sister in law, Corby, makes a version of this bread every Christmas and it always fills the house with the most amazing cinnamon smell. Here is my version. It is basically mini cinnamon roll bites with the best gooey glaze. Serve it with brunch and then have the leftovers warmed up with coffee. It’s for one of those weekends you aren’t on “the program” and want to indulge. 
 
I recommend making the dough the night before and allowing it to rise in the fridge. This makes this entire process much less to tackle and it’s much easier for assembly the morning of. You will need about 30 minutes to prep the individual balls (I make 50 balls form this batch of dough).
 
Serves about 12 people in total. 
 

INGREDIENTS

Dough
1 package instant yeast
1 1/4 cup 2% organic warm milk (make sure not hot!)
1/3 cup organic unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup organic granulated sugar
2 large organic eggs
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
5 cups organic all purpose flour 

Cinnamon / Sugar Coating
3/4 cup organic unsalted butter
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 
1 1/4 cups organic granulated sugar 
2/3 cup packed dark or light brown sugar (I normally use dark)
1 teaspoon Madagascar vanilla extract
 
Vanilla Sugar Glaze Topping
1 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons organic half & half or heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon Madagascar vanilla extract
 

Process

Using your stand mixer add yeast to the bottom of the bowl, add warm milk, melted butter, sugar, eggs, salt and 3 cups of flour. Beat on high speed. You can use a dough hook if you have. Last time I made this I used the paddle and it was fine too. Just scrape the dough down as it beats. Once combined add 2 more cups of flour making it 5 cups total. Beat on high for 3 minutes until a ball forms.
 
Remove from mixer and place on floured surface. Knead the dough until it’s smooth and almost elastic. It should bounce back when you punch it down. Knead for about 3.5 minute, make sure you do not over knead as this will make the dough chewy. Form the dough into a smooth ball and place it in a large greased bowl (spray with organic cooking spray) and turn the dough once to coat all sides. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, or for at least 8 hours.   
 
At these point you can leave the yeast to rise and do the rest of the steps in the AM.
 
Make the coating:
Melt 1/2 cup of butter in a small bowl and set aside. Mix the granulated sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl and set aside. You will use the rest of the butter, brown sugar and vanilla later. 
 
Spray a 10-12 cup Bundt pan with organic nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
 
Remove dough from fridge. Punch the cold dough down very gently to allow the air bubbles to release. Pull pieces apart and roll into balls that are approximately 1.25’ in diameter and place on a piece of parchment paper. Remember you need approximately 45-50 balls total so make sure to watch the size. 
 
Preheat oven to 350
 
Dip each ball one by one in the melted butter then in the cinnamon sugar mixture. I am OVERLY generous with the coating as that makes for more goo and trust me, the gooier the better. If you run out of coating mix up some more sugar and cinnamon and keep going until all are coated and in the Bundt pan. Line the inside of the pan as you go and try to line them in a pattern that will make an even bottom. Remember you are turning this over to serve. Haphazard is better don’t make it too straight or lined up. Once you have all in the pan allow to rise again for at least 30 minutes before baking. 
 
Melt the remaining 1/4 cup of butter and whisk in the brown sugar and vanilla until combined. Pour the buttery mixture over the dough balls in the Bundt pan.
 
Bake for 30-35 minutes. If the top is getting too brown at the end place a sheet of tinfoil on top for remainder of cooking time. Cool for 5-10 minutes then invert onto serving plate. While cooking make the glaze.
 
Let cool 5-10 minutes on the serving plate. Simply whisk all of the glaze ingredients together and pour over the bread making lines back and forth making sure to get it driving down the sides and inside.  You may either cut the bread into generous slices or let everyone pick the balls off animal style.
 
Make sure you leave yourself enough time for the rising and baking the AM of! Everyone will be asking for this recipe trust me.

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