Savory pizza monkey bread is a twist on pizza and a fun appetizer or snack. It’s made from scratch and flavored with marinara, pesto and cheese.
I love to make monkey bread, but until recently I’ve stuck to sweet versions. Lately, I’ve seen savory monkey bread recipes on different blogs and so I was curious to try it.
I loved the idea of a pizza monkey bread and could imagine how fun it would be to pull off pieces of the savory bread. I thought a version with some of my favorite pizza flavors like marinara, Italian seasoning, pesto and Parmesan cheese would be delicious.
Instead of making mini monkey bread, I decided to make a big one using my Nordic Ware Classic Bundt Pan*. It’s a little amusing seeing savory monkey bread in the shape of a cake. It’s almost like it’s a cake fake-out.
Pizza Monkey Bread from Scratch
This bread is made from scratch so it’s a good idea to plan ahead if you want to make it. It’s a yeast dough so it needs time to proof twice before you bake it.
I like to use my stand mixer to make the dough. It makes it really easy and you don’t have to knead it by hand. If you don’t have one you can do it by hand but you will need to add time for kneading.
The dough is very simple and made with yeast, water, olive oil, flour, and a little salt. It’s very similar to a pizza dough, but it bakes up soft and fluffy.
All of the pizza ingredients are added after the dough has risen and been rolled into balls.
Steps for Flavoring the Pizza Monkey Bread
When you place the dough balls in the pan you will add layers of the pizza ingredients. That way, all of the bread is flavored and not just the top.
- Coat each dough ball in pesto and Italian seasoning.
- Place some of the dough balls in an even layer in the bottom of the pan and top them with some of the Parmesan cheese.
- Next, add drops of marinara. I like to drop it in the crevices between each dough ball instead of over the top.
- Repeat this process with the rest of the dough balls. I was able to create three layers.
The monkey bread is proofed again and then you bake it until it’s golden and puffy. Cool it for a little bit until it’s still warm but not hot. After you turn it out of the pan, I like to flip it over so all the bubbled bread balls are on top. It makes it easier for everyone to pull off the pieces.
This is such a fun appetizer to make and eat and I’ll definitely make it again soon.
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Pizza Monkey Bread
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 1 1/3 cups warm water about 100°F
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp salt
- 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup Italian seasoning
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup pesto
- 1/2 cup marinara sauce
- In a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer, stir together the yeast and water. Let sit 5 minutes until yeast is foamy. Mix in the olive oil, salt, and flour. Using the dough hook attachment, knead the dough for 5-6 minutes, or until elastic. Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until dough is doubled in size.
- Pour Italian seasoning, parmesan cheese, pesto and marinara sauce into separate bowls.
- Punch down the dough. Tear off small pieces of dough and roll between palms to form round balls. Coat each ball in pesto, then italian seasoning and place in a greased bundt pan. After first layer of balls, sprinkle 1/3 of the 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese evenly across the balls. Then add drops of marinara sauce on the balls (I put drops in the small crevices between each of the balls rather than on top of each ball). Continue with the second layer (you should be able to make three layers). Cover the pan with plastic wrap and allow to sit until dough has doubled in size, 20-30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until bread is golden brown.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.