Hot Cross Bun

Get’em While They’re HOT!

Delicious, warm hot cross buns. You’ll notice mine doesn’t have the tell tale cross (it’s just flour and water and strictly for decoration. So I passed. Have them for breakfast tomorrow.

Hot Cross Bun

Hot Cross Buns

Warm, fruit filled sweet dough with a beautiful orange glaze
Prep Time 1 day 45 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Rising/Resting Time 3 hours
Course Breakfast
Cuisine comfort food
Servings 8


  • Standing Mixer and dough hook


  • ¾ cup 180ml whole milk, warmed to about 110°F
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast or instant yeast 1 standard packet
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • ½ cup 100g packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons 70g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature and cut into 5 pieces
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 3 ½ 435g all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup 140g raisins or currants*
  • ½ cup 60g all-purpose flour or bread flour
  • 6 –8 Tablespoons 90-120ml water
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons 45ml fresh or bottled orange juice (or use milk and a splash of vanilla extract for plain icing)


  • Prepare the dough: Whisk the warm milk, yeast, and 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar together in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or paddle attachment. Cover and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  • Add the brown sugar, butter, vanilla extract, eggs, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and 1 cup (125g) flour. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, then add the remaining flour and the raisins. Beat on medium speed until the dough comes together and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 2 minutes. Dough should be a little sticky and soft. If it’s too sticky and not pulling away from the sides of the bowl, mix in additional flour 1 Tablespoon at a time. *If you do not own a mixer, you can mix this dough with a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula. It will take a bit of arm muscle!*
  • Knead the dough: Keep the dough in the mixer and beat for an additional 2 minutes or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface for 2 minutes.
  • 1st Rise: Lightly grease a large bowl with oil or nonstick spray. Place the dough in the bowl, turning it to coat all sides in the oil. Cover the bowl with aluminum foil, plastic wrap, or a clean kitchen towel. Allow the dough to rise in a relatively warm environment for 1-2 hours or until double in size. (I always let it rise on the counter. Takes about 2 hours.
  • Grease a 9×13 inch baking pan or two 9-inch square or round baking pans. You can also bake the rolls in a cast iron skillet or on a lined baking sheet.
  • Shape the rolls: When the dough is ready, punch it down to release the air. Divide the dough into 14-16 equal pieces. (Just eyeball it– doesn’t need to be perfect!) Shape each piece into a smooth ball, pinching it on the bottom to seal. I Arrange in prepared baking pan.
  • 2nd Rise: Cover shaped rolls with aluminum foil, plastic wrap, or a clean kitchen towel. Allow to rise until puffy, about 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
  • Add the cross: Whisk the cross ingredients together, starting with 6 Tablespoons of water. You want a thick paste that will pipe easily. Add remaining water if needed. Spoon paste into a piping bag or zipped-top bag. (No need to use a piping tip if using a piping bag.) Snip off a small piece at the corner. Pipe a line down the center of each row of buns, then repeat in the other direction to create crosses.
  • Bake the rolls: Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown on top, rotating the pan halfway through. If you notice the tops browning too quickly, loosely tent the pan with aluminum foil. Remove from the oven and allow rolls to cool for a few minutes as you prepare the icing.
  • Make the icing: Whisk the icing ingredients together, then drizzle or brush on warm rolls. Serve immediately.
  • Cover leftover rolls tightly and store at room temperature for 1-2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.


Save yourself so much heartache, and bloom a bit of yeast with some warm water and sugar. You’ll know in minutes that your yeast is fresh and active.
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