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Slow-Cooker Monkey Bread
Slow-Cooker Monkey Bread PHOTO: LIZ ANDREW/STYLING: ERIN MCDOWELL

We can all agree: Baking ain't easy. Why? It's so easy to mess up. You leave your Bundt cake in the oven for a minute too long and suddenly it's burned to a crisp. But not this foolproof recipe for slow-cooker monkey bread. Just set your ingredients in a Crock-Pot and—voilà—a gooey, warm, caramel-y dessert.

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Makes 8 to 10 servings

Monkey Bread

Two 16-ounce cans refrigerated biscuits

12 tablespoons (1½ sticks) butter, melted

½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1¼ cups brown sugar

1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

Praline Topping (optional)

1 tablespoon butter

1 cup brown sugar

½ cup heavy cream

½ cup chopped pecans

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. Make the monkey bread: Grease the inside of a large slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray and line it with a large piece of parchment paper. The paper should be long enough to go about three-quarters of the way up the sides of the slow cooker (this makes removing the finished monkey bread easier). Spray the parchment paper with nonstick cooking spray.

2. Separate the biscuits and cut each into 4 even pieces. Roll the dough into balls.

3. In a medium bowl, stir the butter with the vanilla extract to combine. In another medium bowl, stir the brown sugar with the cinnamon to combine.

4. Working in batches, dip a few of the pieces of dough into the butter mixture, then into the brown sugar mixture.

5. Arrange the coated dough balls in an even layer in the base of the slow cooker.

6. Set the slow cooker on high and cook until the sauce is caramel-y and the biscuits are fully baked, about 2½ to 3 hours.

7. Make the praline topping: In a small pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the brown sugar and mix until it begins to dissolve. Add the cream and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-low heat.

8. Cook the mixture until it thickens slightly, 5 minutes (be careful not to let it boil, as cream likes to boil over). Stir in the pecans, salt and vanilla extract. Set aside to cool slightly.

9. To serve, use the parchment paper “handles” to remove the monkey bread from the slow cooker. Scoop portions of the monkey bread onto plates and top each with 1 to 2 tablespoons of the praline topping, if using.

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