Ah, the holiday season.
Tis the time for long, leisurely breakfasts (one of my favorite things in the WORLD!). And this Apple Pecan Monkey Bread seriously needs to be on your holiday table this year.
Our Christmas morning tradition growing up was to get up super early and open stockings and then bigger gifts at home, pop in a holiday movie (and probably have some candy at 7 am) and play with our stuff while my mom worked on her breakfast casserole to take over to the Lowell’s house. My parents have known the Lowell’s since before either of them had kids, and our families have been close ever since – even living just 4 minutes apart.
Once everything was ready, we’d pile in the van – usually still in our pajamas – and head over to their house to eat my mom and Jill’s breakfast casseroles, fruit, and monkey bread. A little sweet, a little savory, a little coffee or juice. We’d sit and eat and then exchange gifts with each other.
And that’s how I remember almost every Christmas morning of my childhood. We have a lot of good memories with each other, and any time I have monkey bread, I think of Christmas morning and eating breakfast together in pajamas with bedhead.
So while making a twist on monkey bread made me a little nervous (I didn’t want to ruin how much I love it!), I am SO happy I tried this version.
The pecans give just the right amount of crunch with the soft, pillowy dough, and the little bit of tartness from the apples keeps it from being overly sweet. And of course, I started everything with the perfect dough – the same I use for fluffy dinner rolls, made with our favorite Bob’s Red Mill all purpose flour.
If you’re planning on one (or a few!) holiday breakfast or brunch get togethers, make sure this is on the table. You won’t regret it.
Apple Pecan Monkey Bread
- 4 cups Bob's Red Mill all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp rapid rise yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup water
- 2/3 cup milk
- 4 Tbsp butter, cut into 1 Tbsp pieces, plus more for buttering the pan
- 1/2 medium apple, finely diced
- 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 8 Tbsp butter, melted
- 1 cup powdered / confectioner's sugar
- 1 Tbsp apple juice
- 1 Tbsp milk
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer whisk together 4 cups flour, sugar, yeast, and salt.
- To a medium bowl add water, milk and 4 Tbsp of butter and heat in microwave on HIGH power until it reaches 115 degrees on a thermometer, about 1 minute 15 seconds. Stir to partially melt butter (you just want to make sure it's softened).
- Pour the milk mixture into dry ingredients in bowl of electric stand mixer. Set mixer with a hook attachment then set mixer on low speed and gradually increase to medium-low, knead about 3 - 4 minutes until smooth and elastic while adding additional flour as necessary (dough should be lightly sticky but manageable).
- Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and rest 5 minutes. Meanwhile, butter a Bundt pan with about 2 tablespoons softened butter. Use a pastry brush or a paper towel or anything that will really help get inside all of those nooks and crannies.
- In the bottom of the Bundt pan, scatter half the diced apple and chopped pecans (these will end up on the top of the monkey bread when you turn it out of the pan).
- While the dough is resting, make the sugar coating. Mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a bowl. Place the melted butter in a second bowl or shallow pie plate. Set aside.
- Drop dough onto a lightly floured surface. Shape into an evenly level square, about 9 by 9-inches. Cut into 48 equal portions (these don't have to be exact). Roll each dough piece into a ball (it doesn't have to be perfect, just get it into a rough ball-shape). Working one at a time, dip the balls in melted butter, allowing any extra butter to drip back into the bowl or pie plate. Roll the dipped dough ball in the brown sugar mixture, then layer the balls in the Bundt pan, staggering the seams where the dough balls meet as you build layers. *After you have the first layer of dough covering the bottom of the Bundt pan, scatter the rest of the diced apple and chopped pecans before starting on the second layer of dough.
- Transfer the pan to the oven, close the door, turn the oven off, and allow rolls to rise 40 minutes (don't open oven door) or until they've risen 1-2 inches from the top edge of the pan. Remove from oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees (this should take about 5 minutes, so just allow rolls to rest on counter while oven preheats).
- Bake until the top is deep brown and caramel begins to bubble around edges, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool the monkey bread in the pan for 5 minutes (any longer and the bread will be too sticky and hard to remove!), then turn out on a platter or large plate and allow to cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
- For the glaze, while the bread cools, whisk the powdered sugar, apple juice, and milk together in a small bowl until the mixture is smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the warm monkey bread, letting it run over the top and sides of the bread. Serve warm.
I’m so excited to be working with Bob’s Red Mill again this year! They are our go-to for whole grains, cereals, and baking ingredients. This post was sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill and I was provided with their all purpose flour; as always, recipes + opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support us!