Infused Monkey Bread

Cannabis edibles fans and carbaholics everywhere, rejoice, for this is your recipe. The soft, fluffy dough and sweet, caramel-y butter sauce of this treat are ideal for infusing.

I know what some of you may be thinking: I make this for the kids. Why should I infuse it?

I say to you: You make it out of crappy refrigerator biscuit dough for the kids. You make it from scratch for yourself and your stoner friends. (Who makes something this complicated for someone who literally tells you that your cooking sucks anyway?)

Besides, you don’t stop loving the delicious, sticky pull-apart goodness of Monkey Bread just because you can technically vote. In fact, voting awareness may make the soothing goodness of Infused Monkey Bread even more important, just saying.

In this post, we’ll give you a recipe for Infused Monkey Bread, show you how to make monkey bread generally, and share some tips and tricks for how to make the best monkey bread from scratch.

Infused Monkey Bread

One of the things you lose with those refrigerator slabs is some flaky, buttery taste. The secret to the buttery texture and flavor that monkey bread is known for is its dough, which is more similar to a brioche than a classic biscuit dough.

[If you were desperate and had our Infused Buttermilk Biscuits on hand, frozen, could you get inspired and cut those up and use them instead like you would a can of dough? Probably! It would just not be exactly the same. But…it would probably be pretty good. We’ve never tried it!]

You will need:

  • A 10-cup Bundt pan or 10-inch tube pan
  • A 9 by 13 inch baking dish

Ingredients

For the caramel sauce you will be putting into the bottom of the pan and/or drizzling over the bread. You can make this up to one month in advance, just reheat it gently before using it (or trying to put it in your pan):

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 2 tablespoons cannabutter
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup room-temperature heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

For the dough:

  • ½ cup or 1 stick cannabutter, chilled, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • ½ cup or 1 stick unsalted butter, chilled, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • extra butter to grease bowl
  • ⅓ cup whole milk, can be infused
  • 2¼ teaspoons or 1 – ¼-ounce envelope of active dry yeast
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 4 large room temperature eggs

For assembly and dough prep:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons or ¼ cup cannabutter, gently melted and cooled slightly
  • 4 tablespoons or ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly

For the pan:

  • Melted butter for greasing
  • Sanding or granulated sugar for dusting

Directions

For the sauce:

1. Make the sauce by stirring the 1 cup sugar, 3 tablespoons of water, and ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar in a heavy, medium-sized saucepan. (A pan that isn’t heavy will burn your caramel because it will have hot spots. The cream of tartar is allowing you to stir and not ruin the sauce.)

2. Over medium heat, bring the sugar mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally and scraping the sides.

Once you achieve a rapid boil, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for about 4 minutes, no longer stirring, but instead swirling the pan occasionally. The syrup will start to turn golden around the edges after a few minutes, and eventually the mixture will turn amber. Watch carefully and remove once you achieve a dark amber color.

3. Off the heat, stir in 2 tablespoons of both cannabutter and unsalted butter, just 1 tablespoonful at a time, until the mixture is smooth. The caramel will sputter. Gradually add the heavy cream, stirring constantly, and continue to stir the caramel until it is thick and very smooth. If you see hard spots in the caramel, return it to medium heat and stir until they dissolve.

4. Once you have the right consistency with your caramel, stir in the sea salt. Allow the caramel sauce to cool and continue to thicken in an airtight container if you won’t be using it right away.

For the dough:

1. Starting with your cold cannabutter and butter in a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, beat on medium-low speed until the butter blend is smooth and easier to work with yet remains cold, about 1 minute. Place butter blend in a medium bowl and set aside. You will reuse the mixer bowl but you don’t need to wash it—in fact it’s better not to.

2. Heat your milk or cannamilk gently over low heat in a small saucepan until you can feel it is warm but not steaming hot. You can also use a thermometer: your goal is 110° to 115°F which will help the yeast grow. In a small bowl, whisk milk and yeast to dissolve. Let sit about 5 minutes until foamy.

3. In the mixer bowl from before, whisk the sugar, flour, and salt to combine. Add the eggs and yeast mixture and beat with dough hook on low speed. As dry ingredients are incorporated, gradually increase the speed to medium until dough forms one mass around the hook.

4. Once dough has come together, continue to mix on medium speed. Aim for about 5 minutes, and for dough to be elastic and smooth. The dough should not stick to the bowl anymore, so if it doesn’t easily pull away cleanly from the bowl, add more flour as needed by the tablespoonful. While it is mixing, butter a large bowl.

5. With a soft, elastic dough achieved, you can add in your butter blend, with the motor running continuously. Add the butter mix gradually, about 1 tablespoonful at a time. Before you add another tablespoon, wait for the dough to absorb the butter. Be patient; the whole process takes several minutes. You will be rewarded with a very soft, smooth, amazing dough, however, when you’re done adding the butter.

6. Carefully place dough in the greased bowl and cover. Let the bowl rest in a warm place free of drafts until the dough has almost doubled in size. This should take about 55 to 65 minutes.

7. Uncover the dough. Interrupt the rising process and deflate the dough by punching it down several times. (Not too hard, Rocky.) Cover a 9 by 13 inch baking dish with a big enough piece of plastic wrap that you’ll be able to lift off your dough with the plastic. Place the dough in the pan on top of the plastic wrap. Press the dough all the way to the sides of the pan into an even layer, and cover the dough completely with the plastic so there are no air pockets.

8. If you’re going to bake this today, chill the wrapped dough in the freezer for 20 to 30 minutes, until it is firm to the touch and then take it out again. If you’re going to bake it tomorrow, place it in the refrigerator. Either way, probably enjoy a quick cannabis break, this is pretty involved.

To Assemble:

1. In a medium bowl, combine granulated sugar and cinnamon. Brush the pan with the melted butter. Sprinkle the pan with the sugar, and then tap out the extra sugar. Basically, instead of greasing and flouring the pan, you’re greasing and sugaring it.

[Some people like to pour some of the caramel sauce we made in advance right into the bottom of the pan. This has the effect of really having a nice, gooey, bubbly version of the dish—but it can also spell disaster if you put in too much and don’t place something underneath your pan to catch any sauce that bubbles out. Be careful. If you do this, we recommend placing another pan underneath to catch drippings so you don’t get caramel on your oven.

One other note: you still need that other cinnamon sugar and melted butter.]

2. Remove the dough from the freezer or refrigerator. Uncover the top and brush it with melted butter. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over the top of the dough generously. Shake the extra back into the bowl, and then flip the baking pan over the work surface so the buttery, sugary side will face down. Turn the dough out onto the work surface and discard the plastic wrap.

3. Brush the rest of the dough with butter and dust it with cinnamon sugar. Cut the dough into a 6 by 12 grid with a chef’s knife or a pizza cutter.

4. Work as fast as you can here so your dough doesn’t get too soft. Separate the dough grid pieces and lightly roll them into balls one at a time, just using your hands. If they are sticky, use more cinnamon sugar. Put each ball in the pan. Once all of the dough balls are in the tube pan, cover it with plastic wrap and allow the pan to rest in a warm place free of drafts for about 40 to 50 minutes, or until the dough has almost doubled in size again.

5. When the dough is nearly doubled, preheat the oven to 350°F.

6. Remove plastic wrap from the tube pan once the dough has risen. Bake the monkey bread at 350°F for 25 to 35 minutes or until golden brown.

7. Remove the bread from the oven. Let the bread cool in the pan for 10 minutes.

8. Use a small knife or spatula to unstick the monkey bread from the pan’s sides and bottom. Place a serving plate on top of the pan, and invert the pan onto the plate. Remove the pan. You can serve right on that plate, but let it cool for a few minutes more first if you can.

9. Pour whatever sauce remains over the monkey bread, or serve some on the side for dipping, if that’s your jam.

Enjoy your new status as a cannabis edibles making hero.

How to Make the Best Monkey Bread

Easter dessert of Pull Apart Carrot Cake Monkey Bread. A yeast bundt cake made with cinnamon, carrots, nuts and a brown sugar glaze. Selective focus with blurred foreground and background.

Look, making this from scratch is a bit of a PITA, no question. But it’s definitely a crowd-pleaser, and something worth infusing—a double win.

Here are some of the basics:

Monkey Bread a/k/a Hungarian Coffee Cake. This is a relative of babka and other rich pastries, which is why the sweet, fatty dough absolutely matters. A leaner dough makes something more like plain bread—and we’re not after that here. That’s why we’ve got lots of butter and eggs.

Working With Yeast. Remember how you waited until the yeast was foamy? Well, if you didn’t, or if that never happened, and you ended up with flat, heavy, disappointing bread, it’s possible your yeast didn’t work. Waiting for it to foam is called proofing it—just “proving” that the yeast will work. The foaminess is the yeast being active and multiplying.

Can I Use a Different Yeast? You can use either an active dry yeast or an instant yeast, but your rise times may vary. Just remember that your goal each time is for the dough to almost double in size, and wait until it does that.

What If My Dough Doesn’t Rise? There are a few reasons that dough doesn’t rise, typically. First is cold temperatures. Another is dead or expired yeast. Using liquid in your dough that is too hot—in this case it would be your milk or cannamilk—can also kill your yeast. Too much sugar or flour can hurt your rise. Using the wrong kind of flour can also be a problem for yeast doughs. Finally, kneading dough either too much or too little can prevent it from rising!

Wait—I Always Ate This With Vanilla Icing! Yes, some people do. If you’re one of them, we still recommend you keep some of the caramel sauce, at least in the pan. But if you prefer to drizzle with vanilla, whisk together 1 cup powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons of whole milk, cream, or cannamilk, and ½ teaspoon vanilla extract until smooth and you have your vanilla icing.

Final Thoughts on Infused Monkey Bread

Monkey Bread may be the perfect cannabis edible for sharing. It’s basically a huge pan of tiny cinnamon rolls you pull apart as a group, and it’s a tremendous vehicle for butter. It’s comfort food, breakfast all day and night, sweet and salty—it’s a winner.

When you’re ready to pull out all the stops for your stoner friends, or you just want to treat yourself and someone special, try this infused monkey bread recipe.

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