Savory Monkey Bread is quick and easy to make and totally customizable, thanks to refrigerated biscuits that are dipped in garlic butter and coated in herbs and cheese for a monkey bread that’s as festive as it is delicious!
I first shared this gorgeous Savory Monkey Bread recipe back in 2013, inspired by a Food Network tweet that stopped me mid-scroll. Since then, this monkey bread recipe has become a holiday menu staple and a lovely option to jazz up dinner rolls for special dinners. And the best news is that, despite how fancy it looks, it's deceptively easy to make!
Most everyone already knows how to make sweet, gooey, traditional monkey bread. But what's required to make Savory Monkey Bread?
- Refrigerated biscuits. Flaky, homestyle, or regular buttermilk will all work, but this recipe was developed using jumbo sized biscuits. If I can find it, I prefer using an organic brand such as Annie's or Immaculate Baking Company for more natural/straightforward ingredients. You could also substitute refrigerated breadstick dough in lieu of biscuits.
- Butter. Melted. Either salted or unsalted are fine. Or you could substitute olive oil, if you wish.
- Garlic salt. To flavor the butter.
- Coatings. Feel free to get creative! You can use fresh herbs, grated or shredded cheeses, slivered or diced nuts, spices, and more! I recommend choosing about five different coatings to alternate on the rolls for a truly impressive presentation. And remember that you need to use some sort of cheese on about half of the pieces since that's what holds the monkey bread together once you unmold it!
What's especially great about this recipe is that it's so customizable. The Savory Monkey Bread photos in this post depict coatings of fresh chopped parsley, fresh chopped dill, chopped slivered almonds, grated Parmesan (mix with paprika for deeper color), and shredded cheddar. Keep in mind that very delicate herbs, such as basil, will likely darken over the baking time, so you may want to avoid using those.
How to Make Savory Monkey Bread
(The below photos are intended to be helpful, but please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for FULL DIRECTIONS.)
Making Savory Monkey Bread is fun and easy!
- Preheat the oven and generously grease a nonstick bundt pan.
- Cut each biscuit in half.
- Roll each biscuit half into a ball.
- Stir garlic salt into melted butter, drop in a biscuit ball, and roll around until coated.
- Roll each butter-coated biscuit ball in alternating coatings, pressing to adhere.
- Arrange and layer the biscuits in the bundt pan so that the various coatings are alternated.
- Bake monkey bread until biscuits are done and surface is golden, covering with a sheet of foil if the monkey bread starts getting too dark before it's done.
- Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then run a thin, soft rubber spatula around the edges and down the sides of the pan to loosen any stuck cheese. Invert the pan onto a plate. The bread at the top/open side of the pan ends up being the prettiest part. So after you flip the bread out onto a plate, flip it one more time onto your serving platter.
This combo of herbs, cheeses, and nuts truly makes for a Savory Monkey Bread with great flavor and visual appeal!
If you're up for experimenting, I can think of a few yummy variations of this Savory Monkey Bread:
- A combo of oregano, parsley, and Parmesan would be yummy to accompany an Italian meal.
- A combo of cilantro, Monterrey jack, and taco seasoning would make for a nice a Mexican theme.
- Wrap each biscuit around a small cube of cream cheese (plain or seasoned), boursin cheese, or even mozzarella for pull-apart monkey bread with gooey centers.
Furthermore, you can choose to mix your cheese and herbs and then coat each biscuit ball with the same mixture...
...or you can keep all of the coatings separate and alternate your biscuits, like I did here today.
Do keep in mind that some herbs and spices are stronger than others. The dill I used in my monkey bread variation was a bit overpowering, but my family loves dill so it didn't bother us at all (in fact, my boys fought over the dill-covered rolls). But something like rosemary would fall under the umbrella of a little bit goes a long way.
Dried vs. Fresh Herbs
Dried herbs are about three times more potent than fresh. So I don't think I'd roll a ball of dough in straight dried herbs. However, I would consider stirring a sprinkle of dried herbs into grated Parmesan (for example) and then coating a dough ball in that.
Also, some fresh herbs -- such as basil -- are more delicate than others and may darken in the oven. This monkey bread recipe has been tested using fresh parsley and fresh dill, so exercise your own discretion when experimenting with other herbs. 🙂
There you have it...a fun, festive take on dinner rolls that will liven up your weeknight meals, dinner parties, or holiday tables, from Thanksgiving to Christmas to Easter!
This Savory Monkey Bread is sure to garner oohs and ahhs, and your dinner guests will never believe how quick and easy it is to make.
Meaning, of course, that you are under no obligation to tell them... 😉
More Tasty Bread Recipes
- Bacon Cheeseburger Monkey Bread
- The Very BEST Homemade Whole Wheat Dinner Rolls
- Quick & Easy Garlic Rosemary Cloverleaf Dinner Rolls
- The Very BEST Whole Wheat Bread
Savory Monkey Bread
- 2 (16-ounce) cans jumbo refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
- ¼ cup (½ stick) butter, melted
- ½ teaspoon garlic salt
- 5 or so different fresh chopped herbs and/or grated cheeses (for coatings), RECOMMENDED: fresh chopped parsley, fresh chopped dill, chopped slivered almonds, grated Parmesan, and shredded cheddar
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 9- to 10-inch Bundt pan with butter, or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- Stir garlic salt into melted butter. Cut each biscuit in half and roll into a ball. Dip each biscuit ball in butter, then roll in desired coating. Arrange biscuits in the pan so that the various coatings are alternated, making sure that cheese accounts for the coating on at least half of the biscuits so that the monkey bread holds together once it's baked.
- Bake for 25 to 35 minutes until biscuits are done and surface is golden. Start checking monkey bread at about 20 minutes, and if it's browning too quickly, lay a sheet of aluminum foil on top for the remainder of the baking time.
- Cool in pan for 5 minutes. Run a thin, soft rubber spatula around the edge and down the sides of the pan to loosen any stuck cheese. Invert onto a plate, then lay serving platter on top and flip bread over onto serving platter so that the attractive side is on top.
- This recipe has been tested with fresh chopped parsley and dill. If you choose to substitute the herbs, please be aware that more delicate herbs (such as basil) may darken in the oven.
- If you don't want to alternate your biscuit coatings, you can mix the cheese and herbs together and use the same coating for all of the biscuits. Whatever you decide, you need to use some sort of cheese on at least some of the pieces since that's what holds the monkey bread together once you unmold it.
- Dried herbs are three times more potent than fresh, so if using dried, you may want to mix with cheese to prevent an overpowering flavor.
- You may use just about any type of refrigerated biscuits or bread dough. You just want the total amount of dough used to be around 32 ounces.
- If you wish, this bread can be assembled ahead of time (although some delicate herbs may darken at the edges where they were chopped). Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours, up to overnight. Take the pan out of the refrigerator as you preheat the oven, and then bake as directed.
Adapted from Food Network.
Originally published November 11, 2013, and updated on April 1, 2020, November 28, 2020, and December 1, 2023.