As the summer is coming to an end, I’m reluctantly starting to think about fall flavors. I love pumpkin and maple just as much as the next person but I saw Pinterest blowing up with all things pumpkin towards the end of July. Really? Already? How is that possible? I don’t know about you, but I’m hanging on to the warm, lazy days of summer just a little bit longer with this cherry cheesecake monkey bread.
I’m a huge fan of breads that can be pulled apart and eaten with your fingers. They’re so easy to make. Not to mention, they’re always great for feeding a crowd. Brunch anyone?
The flavor possibilities are pretty endless, from sweet to savory bread is a blank slate for whatever you want to stuff in there. Cut into a big boule of crusty fresh bread and fill it with cheese, jalapeños and bacon. Viola! You’ve got this crazy good jalapeño popper bread recipe which makes a great appetizer for watching a game.
Or maybe you want something on the sweeter side? Then maybe this s’mores pull apart bread is more your speed. Graham cracker crumbs coat tender dough that’s then layered with smooth, creamy melted marshmallows and chocolate chips. Pop that baby in the oven and you’ve got s’mores in your oven any time you want! No fire needed.
When it came to this cherry cheesecake monkey bread recipe I channeled the s’mores version a bit, rolling tender dough in graham cracker crumbs makes it ever so “cherry cheesecake-esque.” Maybe I’m finding fewer fresh cherries at the market, but this bread you won’t need them.
Using canned cherry filling let’s you pile on those sweet cherries long after summer’s bounty has come and gone. The icing on the cake (pun intended) is a fluffy, sweet cream cheese icing. All the elements of cherry cheesecake in a delightfully delicious pull apart bread!
Cherry Cheesecake Monkey Bread Recipe
For the Dough:
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup warm water
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 2 tablespoons dry milk powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1 egg, beaten
For the Filling & Coating:
- 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 21 ounce can cherry pie filling
For the Icing:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/8 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons bourbon
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, whisk together warm water and granulated sugar. Sprinkle yeast over water and allow to stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together 3 cups flour, dry milk powder, and salt. Add milk, melted butter, and egg to yeast mixture. With mixer on medium speed (or by hand) slowly add flour mixture to the yeast mixture and mix until incorporated. Add just enough of the remaining 1 cup flour to form a smooth, elastic dough that’s just slightly sticky to the touch. Knead 10 minutes in mixer or by hand.
Grease a large bowl lightly with oil. Form dough into a ball and place in bowl, turning to coat on all sides. Cover with plastic wrap and rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until doubled in size, approximately 1 1/2 hours.
Spray a 10-cup bundt pan with a nonstick baking spray containing flour. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together graham cracker crumbs and granulated sugar.
Punch down dough and cut into 1-inch pieces. Dip dough pieces in melted butter and roll in graham cracker crumb mixture. Place 1/3 of the dough pieces into prepared bundt pan until bottom is covered. Spoon half the cherry pie filling over dough pieces. Top with half the remaining dough pieces and spoon remaining cherry pie filing over top. Place remaining dough pieces on top. Cover with plastic wrap and rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until nearly doubled, about 30-45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Uncover pan and bake in preheated oven for 45-55 minutes until golden, bubbly, and cooked through. Cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes. Invert onto a serving plate. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, milk, and bourbon. Beat until fully incorporated, adding more milk if too thick or adding more powdered sugar if too thin, sn until desired consistency is achieved.
Spread icing over top of bread. Serve warm.
Cuisinart Stand Mixer
KitchenAid Stand Mixer
Cuisinart Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls