Bourbon, Bacon, and Brown Sugar Monkey Bread
I’m just gonna come right out and say it – This is the best thing I’ve ever made.
Sinful and sweet? Savory and salty? This monkey bread has it all, and you better be wearing leggings while eating it.
I’ll fully admit that my fingers are a tad bit sticky while typing this, and it’s because I can’t keep my hands off this damn bread. At first I was quite surprised by just how exceptionally good this is, but when you break down the core ingredients, the mystery becomes quite clear:
Sugar? uh huh.
Bourbon? you know it.
Suffice it to say, health food this is not. But an indulgent, over-the-top, ridiculously amazing treat that you can splurge on over Sunday brunch?
That, it most certainly is.
Dave is a bit of a bourbon aficionado, so there’s always brown liquor lingering around the apt. In all honesty I’ve never been inspired to drink bourbon — I’m more of a bubbles + rosé kinda gal — but something about baking with bourbon felt oddly appealing. It’s a known “thing”, sure, but there was just something about bourbon + butter + brown sugar that kept ringing in my head, so eventually I had to test it out.
As for why I chose monkey bread? It was just one of those serendipitous kitchen moments – I went with something, and it worked, so here we are.
Monkey bread is wonderfully easy to put together, and that’s all thanks to pre-made biscuits. You can make your own, sure, but when you’re downing a mountain’s worth of butter, sugar, and booze, you might as well throw in some processed biscuits to really shut down your organs.
And bacon, naturally.
The alliteration-whore in me couldn’t resist adding bacon to this recipe, and frankly the bacon took this recipe to a whole new level of tasty. Now don’t get me wrong – This bread would still be amazing sans bacon, so if you’re a vegetarian don’t be shy about leaving it out.
But if you’re not a vegetarian?
Double down girrrl. Double. Down.
This recipe has it’s fair share of moving parts, but overall it’s pretty easy. Cooking up the bacon takes an extra step vs. your typical monkey bread recipe, but you can cut up the biscuits and grease your bunt pan while the bacon sizzles, so the timing remains fluid.
Once the bacon is cooked, the quartered biscuits get tossed in a white sugar + cinnamon mix, just like any standard monkey recipe. Where things start to deviate from the traditional is the sprinkling-in of the bacon, plus the bourbon, brown sugar, and butter sauce you smother on top.
When it comes to the bourbon I strongly recommend using something high quality — Knob Creek and Bulleit are great brands — because the taste comes through in the finished product. As for the flavor, the bourbon doesn’t quite add a boozy taste, it’s more about what the bourbon does to the other components, playing off the bacon and brown sugar and thickening the overall sauce/glaze into sticky-icky amazeballs perfection.
And if you’ve never heard your guests squeal before? Don’t be alarmed – It’s a totally normal reaction to eating something this offensively delicious.
Bourbon, Bacon, and Brown Sugar Monkey Bread
- 8oz Bacon
- 2 cans Pillsbury Grands Buttermilk Biscuits (15oz each)
- 1/2 cup White Sugar
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 3/4 cup Salted Butter
- 1 cup Dark Brown Sugar
- 2 1/2 tbsps High-Quality Bourbon
- Crisco & Cooking Spray to grease
- Pre-heat oven to 350F. Thoroughly grease metal bundt pan* with Crisco.
- Using a sharp knife or kitchen scissors, cut bacon into chunks. In very lightly greased skillet, brown bacon over medium heat until just beginning to crisp, ~10 minutes. Drain as much fat from skillet as possible, then transfer to paper towel lined bowl to cool.
- While bacon cooks, dice each biscuit into four quarters. Next, combine white sugar and cinnamon in Ziploc bag, then add in grands and shake all ingredients until each biscuit is evenly coated. Set aside.
- When ready, layer about half the sugared biscuits into the greased bundt pan, then sprinkle with a layer of bacon. Further top with remaining biscuits and bacon, then set aside.
- In small pot melt butter over medium-low heat before whisking in brown sugar and bourbon until smooth. Evenly pour mixture over biscuits, then bake for 30 minutes until cooked through. Allow to cool slightly, then flip over on cake plate and immediately serve.
>> *I baked my bread in a metal bundt pan – Silicone bundt pans are poor conductors of heat, so I wouldn’t use one for this recipe. If you do, cooking time (and quality!) may be different.