There are many variations of monkey bread, making it difficult to pinpoint where and when monkey bread was first invented. One theory is that monkey bread originated from pans of Parker House crescent rolls baked side-by-side in a Bundt pan, and this method makes it resemble the Chilean monkey tree.
Some food historians claim monkey bread is the creation of actress ZaSu Pitts and her neighbor, Ann King, a housewife from Texas. It is speculated that the women created the unique bread, and its name was inspired by neighborhood children who grabbed the baked bread like little monkeys. King specialized in baking monkey bread after returning to Texas and opening a bakery. The Los Angeles Times began sharing monkey bread recipes with its readers in 1946.
An easy way to make monkey bread is to use two cans of refrigerated flaky biscuits, separating the biscuit dough and cutting it into quarters. Place the biscuit dough into a plastic food bag with cinnamon and sugar, shaking the bag to coat the dough. Arrange the dough in a lightly greased Bundt pan and sprinkle 1/2 cup raisins and 1/2 cup walnuts on top. Mix together 1 cup packed brown sugar and 3/4 cup melted butter in a separate bowl and pour over dough. Bake until golden brown and serve warm.