Healthy Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread

Guess what happened?  This Healthy Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread just happened!  No sugar, no butter, no oil, no white flour…  no nasties whatsoever, yet it tastes OH. SO. GOOD.

This Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread is soft, moist, and sweet, it’s really hard to believe something that tastes this good could be so good for you.

It’s packed with filling fiber, satiating protein, and healthy fats only.  I know, I know, it sounds like I’m describing some boring salad or something, but I swear, this doesn’t taste like plain lettuce or raw broccoli in any way shape or form.

Healthy homemade Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread (Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread)! No sugar, no butter, no oil, and no white flour, yet it’s soft, moist, and sweet! You’d never know it’s sugar free, low carb, high protein, high fiber, gluten free, and dairy free. Healthy Dessert Recipes at the Desserts With Benefits Blog (www.DessertsWithBenefits.com)

This stuff is legendary.  It’s life changing.  It has definitely changed my life already!  I’ve made it three times in the last month, I just can’t get enough.

Healthy homemade Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread (Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread)! No sugar, no butter, no oil, and no white flour, yet it’s soft, moist, and sweet! You’d never know it’s sugar free, low carb, high protein, high fiber, gluten free, and dairy free. Healthy Dessert Recipes at the Desserts With Benefits Blog (www.DessertsWithBenefits.com)

Don’t you just wanna grab one?

This Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread is seriously decadent.  It’s pretty filling too.  You won’t be able to eat the entire pan even if you tried.  I mean, you’ll definitely WANT to, but it’s impossible.  Two or three pieces and you’ll be full.  My family calls me the “bottomless pit” so I can eat about four  😉

Every time I make this recipe I’m really surprised at how well it turns out.  It’s slightly dense, but also very fluffy.  Kinda like a donut hole, but more substantial.  Unlike many gluten-free baked goods, these don’t crumble (or taste) like sand — they can actually hold their shape!

Healthy homemade Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread (Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread)! No sugar, no butter, no oil, and no white flour, yet it’s soft, moist, and sweet! You’d never know it’s sugar free, low carb, high protein, high fiber, gluten free, and dairy free. Healthy Dessert Recipes at the Desserts With Benefits Blog (www.DessertsWithBenefits.com)

Mmmm!  *drools*

I’m really bummed that I finished off a batch of this homemade Monkey Bread just this morning for breakfast.  And all this dessert talk is making me crave these bubble-shaped Cinnamon Rolls again!  I guess I better get started on my fourth batch soon, huh?  😉

20 pieces

Healthy Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread

Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Cook Time: 28 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Fat per serving: 7.6

Calories per serving: 180

Ingredients:

Dough:
Cinnamon Sugar Coating:
  • 96g (½ cup) Granulated Erythritol
  • 2 tbs Ground Cinnamon
  • 28g (2 tbs) Coconut Oil, melted

Homemade Maple Syrup, for serving

Directions:

For the Dough:
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the psyllium and yeast.
  2. In a stand mixer bowl fitted with a beater-scraper attachment, add the almond milk, applesauce, egg whites, erythritol, butter flavor, vanilla extract, and stevia extract. Turn mixer on medium-low speed.  While mixing, sprinkle in the psyllium/yeast mixture and mix until completely smooth.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then mix again.  Mixture should look like thick gravy.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the coconut flour, soy flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Turn the mixer off and dump in the dry ingredients.  Return mixer to medium-low speed and mix until combined.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix on medium speed.  Dough should be very thick, dense, and slightly sticky.
  4. Compact the dough as best as you can into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Place the bowl in a warm area for 1 hour.
For the Cinnamon Sugar Coating:
  1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the granulated erythritol and cinnamon.
  2. In a small bowl, add the melted coconut oil.
For the Assembly:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 7″ springform pan** with cooking spray (I also lined mine with a parchment paper circle).
  2. Roll the dough into balls (I used an ice cream scooper to portion out the dough so they were all the same size).  Dunk a dough ball in the oil and roll the ball between your palms to spread the oil around the entire surface, then toss inside the cinnamon sugar mixture.  Place the ball inside the prepared pan, and repeat the process with the rest of the dough.
  3. Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon sugar into the pan.  Bake for ~28 minutes, or until a nice caramelized crust forms.  Immediately cover the pan with tin foil and let cool for ~30 minutes.
  4. Place a heat-proof plate or cutting board over the monkey bread and quickly, but carefully, flip it.  Loosen the springform, keeping it on, but removing the springform base.  Drizzle some Homemade Maple Syrup (or real maple syrup or icing) over the monkey bread and let it soak in a little.  Place a serving plate over the monkey bread and once again, quickly, but carefully, flip it.  Remove the springform and serve warm!

Notes:

**You can also try a brownie pan or cake pan.

Just like storebought pretzels, these are best served immediately after they are made.  Storing isn’t recommended.

All images and text ©.

I first posted a Monkey Bread recipe way back in 2014, but there was always something bugging me about it.  I wanted to remake the recipe to make it a bit simpler and easier for y’all to make.  Here are the changes I made to the recipe:

  • Increased Psyllium Husk Powder, 16g to 40g
  • Increased Active Dry Yeast, 8g to 10g
  • Increased Salt, ⅛ tsp to ¼ tsp
  • Increased Egg Whites, 4 to 5
  • Increased Butter Flavor, 2 tsp to 1½ tbs
  • Increased Vanilla Extract, 2 tsp to 1½ tbs
  • Increased Stevia Extract, 2 tsp to 1 tbs
  • Increased Coconut Flour, 10 tbs to 1¼ cups
  • Decreased Soy Flour, 2 cups to 1¼ cups
  • Decreased Applesauce, ¾ cup to ½ cup
  • Added ¼ cup Granulated Erythritol
  • Added ½ tsp Baking Soda

I also tried baking the Monkey Bread in a 9″ springform pan. It only made enough for one layer, but it was still delicious!

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Here is the recipe’s nutrition label:

Healthy homemade Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread (sugar free, low carb, high protein, high fiber, gluten free, dairy free)

That’s pretty damn good for MONKEY BREAD, if I do say so myself!  🙂

As a comparison, 2 pieces of Pillsbury’s Monkey Bread recipe have 220 calories, 10g fat, 30g carbs, 0g fiber, 16g sugar, and 2g protein.  My healthified recipe is lower calorie, lower fat, lower carb, higher fiber, and higher protein, while also being sugar free and cholesterol free (wow, that was a mouthful).

Unlike Pillsbury, my recipe doesn’t contain any dangerous hydrogenated oils/trans fats either.  My recipe might be healthier, but it sure doesn’t taste like it.

Healthy homemade Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread (Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread)! No sugar, no butter, no oil, and no white flour, yet it’s soft, moist, and sweet! You’d never know it’s sugar free, low carb, high protein, high fiber, gluten free, and dairy free. Healthy Dessert Recipes at the Desserts With Benefits Blog (www.DessertsWithBenefits.com)

Delicious, indulgent and…  healthy.  Yes, you can have it all!

Enjoy  🙂

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With love and good eats,

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-Jess

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33 comments on “Healthy Low Carb and Gluten Free Monkey Bread”

  1. These look amazing! I’m trying to cut down on Soy products – any suggestions on subbing out maybe 1/2 the flour? Is the texture of the soy flour similar to garbanzo bean flour?

    • Stacey-
      I’m afraid there isn’t a good substitute for the soy flour. It absorbs a lot of liquid, similar to coconut flour, and it binds the dough very well, similar to oat flour and wheat flour 🙂
      I’ve never used garbanzo bean flour before so I can’t be sure about that… it took a lot of trial and error to get the texture of the bread similar to breads made with wheat flour, so I’m nervous about recommending a substitute 🙁
      I agree with you about putting a limit on soy consumption, but personally, I think if it’s 100% organic and non-GMO (like the organic soy flour used in this recipe), a little now and then isn’t dangerous.
      I hope you get to try out the recipe!! 🙂
      -Jess

  2. I have the same question as Stacey – I don’t do soy 🙁 These look absolutely amazing and hope I can figure out a way to make them! Ah, the joys of allergen free baking 🙂

    • Susan-
      I’m sorry, but there isn’t a good substitute for the soy flour. It absorbs a lot of liquid, similar to coconut flour, and it binds the dough very well, similar to oat flour and wheat flour 🙂
      It took a lot of trial and error to get the texture of the bread similar to breads made with wheat flour, so I’m nervous about recommending a substitute 🙁
      Personally, I think if soy is 100% organic and non-GMO (like the organic soy flour used in this recipe), a moderate amount isn’t dangerous.
      I hope you get to try out the recipe!! 🙂
      -Jess

  3. Patti Shank
    3

    Yup, Don’t want to use soy flour either. How about a combination of flaxseed meal and almond flour?

    • Patti Shank-
      I’m sorry Patti, but there isn’t a good substitute for the soy flour. It absorbs a lot of liquid, similar to coconut flour, and it binds the dough very well, similar to oat flour and wheat flour 🙂
      It took a lot of trial and error to get the texture of the bread similar to breads made with wheat flour, so I’m nervous about recommending a substitute 🙁
      In my experience, almond flour tends to create crumbly products, and while flaxseed meal binds very well, it prevents breads from rising… the Monkey Bread might get really dense and heavy.
      Personally, I think if soy is 100% organic and non-GMO (like the organic soy flour used in this recipe), a moderate amount isn’t dangerous.
      I hope you get to try out the recipe!! 🙂
      -Jess

  4. i love you cut the carbs in half and really upped the protein. yum!

    • Dina-
      Aw thanks so much Dina!! 🙂
      It’s crazy how similar this Monkey Bread tastes to the regular stuff, while actually being nutritionally balanced.
      I hope you get to try the recipe and I hope you LOVE IT!!
      -Jess

  5. Thank you for this recipe and the soy is not a problem if you are eating organic soy, not processed soy isolates like what they put in soy milk. Can you tell me what I can use as a substitute for the apple sauce? I’d like to try this recipe as a savoury bread roll mixture 🙂

    • Rachel-
      I agree with you completely about the soy! 🙂
      To make a savory bread, you can try using a vegetable puree of some sort instead of the applesauce — maybe steamed carrots (or carrot baby food), zucchini, squash, potato, sweet potato, etc.
      You will need to add 1 tsp of sugar though (preferably sucanat or organic evaporated cane juice rather than white sugar) to activate the yeast. The natural sugars in the applesauce help with that 🙂
      I would recommend omitting the vanilla extract too, and maybe add some dried garlic and onion to the dough instead!
      Mmmm, now I’m craving some garlic bread 😉
      Hope you like the recipe!
      -Jess

  6. Thanks Jess! I have some pumpkin puree on hand so might use that. Otherwise if I remove it shall I just reduce the dry ingredients or will it affect the texture too much? DO you thin this recipe will work as bread rolls?

    • Rachel-
      Pumpkin sounds good! I wouldn’t recommend omitting it because the bread would turn out dry. Applesauce and pumpkin are oil-/butter-replacers 🙂
      I think this recipe might work as bread rolls! I actually used this recipe to make Baked Soft Pretzels (recipe coming soon!), and it was absolutely delicious. I omitted the vanilla extract and stevia extract, added 1/2 tsp of baking soda and increased the salt to 1/4 tsp. I made an egg wash to brush on top and topped the pretzels with flaked sea salt.
      I would recommend trying those changes! Hope you like the recipe 🙂
      -Jess

  7. Delicious! I imagined like most gluten free foods, these would be dry. But boy where they FLUFFY! Excellent texture and delicious flavor!

    Here’s some notes on my baking experience: I ran out of the coconut oil/ butter extract mixture to roll the dough balls in about 2/3 of the way through and had to make a little more. Also, I didn’t have Stevia Mix for the Cinnamon-Sugar coating, so I used granulated Splenda and it worked just fine. Lastly, the Cinnamon-Sugar coating called for 4 1/2 tbs of cinnamon which to me is a TON. I only used 2 tbs and I still feel like I could have used less. I love cinnamon, but even 2 tbs was starting to get a liiiittle bitter for me.

    Great recipe. Thank you!

    • Alicia-
      YAY I’m so glad you made the recipe!! 🙂
      As for the coating, I think it depends on what cinnamon you use. The one I used wasn’t bitter or spicy, it was actually pretty mild and sweet and warming 🙂
      (but the new cinnamon I just bought the other day is really spicy… I guess different types of cinnamon vary)
      Thank you so much for making the Monkey Bread! I wish I could have some right now… 😉
      -Jess

  8. Hi,
    I’m new to the site and just picking out my top recipes to try. I can’t wait to try this monkey bread!

    Question – I have agave syrup/sweetener already. Can this be used as a substitute for the stevia extract?

    Thanks!
    Kristin

  9. i want to make these for a friend so they wont be eaten right away. I will package them airtight….can/should they reheat.them? Is it even woth doing if they cannot be consummed soon after coming out of the oven. (Ps…i dont have many of the ingredient…and so e sound scary!!! Lol)

  10. These look awesome! Never thought a low carb version of monkey bread existed!

  11. Could the recipe for carbquik biscuit dough be used instead of the yeast ones?

  12. These should not be labeled as “sugar free” because your recipe lists ingredients that contain sugar (the applesauce for example. That stuff is loaded with sugar, and there isn’t a sugar free substitute – only “no sugar added.”) Just a cautious diabetic looking out for my fellow diabetic friends 🙂

  13. If you use UNSWEETENED applesauce, the only sugar or sweetener it contains is what’s in the apples, which is natural fructose. Of course you should check the label’s nutrition info, but my unsweetened applesauce has only 60 calories & 13g of net carbs per 1/2 cup serving. It is definitely not “loaded with sugar”. My Hubby is a severe diabetic, & I always try to find recipes for good desserts & pastries that are low in carbs, & this recipe sounds like a real winner to me. Thank you, Jessica!

  14. What if I wanted to use real butter instead of butter extract in this recipe, how much should I use whenever called for?
    Also coconut sugar instead of stevia?

    • I haven’t tried using butter in this recipe, but I’m sure you can omit the butter flavor, reduce the applesauce to 1/4 cup, and add 1/2 cup of softened butter to the recipe.
      I also haven’t tried replacing the stevia with coconut sugar… but I have a feeling that it won’t work. 1-1.5 cups of coconut sugar is a little too much to replace 2 tsp of liquid stevia :/

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  16. Holy smokes! I wish this was vegan, because it looks to die for! Monkey bread is something I had only once or twice in my lifetime, and boy, do I wish I can find a vegan alternative!

  17. Nice recipe,thank you for sharing.

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  19. I did not know this recipe but only for the image gave to see that it is very delicious, it gave an overwhelming desire to eat. I liked it a lot.

  20. Pingback: 27 Best Yet Easy Sugar Free Desserts Recipes to Eat When You are Dieting – DIY Worthy

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