Hot cross buns on a cooling wrack

Spiced hot cross buns

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(56 ratings)

Prep: 45 mins Cook: 15 mins Plus rising and proving

More effort

Makes 12

Make the most of the long Easter weekend and fill the house with the smell of spiced buns baking

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per bun

  • kcal242
  • fat6g
  • saturates3g
  • carbs44g
  • sugars14g
  • fibre1g
  • protein6g
  • salt0.46g
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    For the dough

    • 450g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting



      Flour is usually made from grinding wheat, maize, rye, barley or rice. As the main…

    • 2 x 7g sachets easy-blend yeast



      Yeast is a living, single-cell organism. As the yeast grows, it converts its food (in the form…

    • 50g caster sugar
    • 150ml warm milk



      One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a 'complete' food…

    • 1 egg, beaten



      The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

    • 50g unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for greasing
    • oil, for greasing

    The spices and dried fruit

    • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
    • ½ tsp mixed spice
    • ¼ tsp grated nutmeg



      One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

    • 100g currant

    To decorate

    • 4 tbsp plain flour
    • 2 tbsp granulated sugar


    1. Put the flour, yeast, caster sugar and 1 tsp salt into a large mixing bowl with the spices and dried fruit and mix well. Make a well in the centre and pour in the warm milk, 50ml warm water, the beaten egg and the melted butter. Mix everything together to form a dough – start with a wooden spoon and finish with your hands. If the dough is too dry, add a little more warm water; if it’s too wet, add more flour.

    2. Knead in the bowl or on a floured surface until the dough becomes smooth and springy. Transfer to a clean, lightly greased bowl and cover loosely with a clean, damp tea towel. Leave in a warm place to rise until roughly doubled in size – this will take about 1 hr depending on how warm the room is.

    3. Tip the risen dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for a few secs, then divide into 12 even portions – I roll my dough into a long sausage shape, then quarter and divide each quarter into 3 pieces. Shape each portion into a smooth round and place on a baking sheet greased with butter, leaving some room between each bun for it to rise.

    4. Use a small, sharp knife to score a cross on the top of each bun, then cover with the damp tea towel again and leave in a warm place to prove for 20 mins until almost doubled in size again. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.

    5. When the buns are ready to bake, mix the plain flour with just enough water to give you a thick paste. Spoon into a piping bag (or into a plastic food bag and snip the corner off) and pipe a white cross into the crosses you cut earlier. Bake for 12-15 mins until the buns are golden and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. While still warm, melt the granulated sugar with 1 tbsp water in a small pan, then brush over the buns.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    22nd Apr, 2011
    Made these yesterday and ate my first Hot Cross Buns in over 20 years (I live abroad). I only used 10g of yeast and made the dough in a bread machine. They were utterly delicious! Very easy to make too. Thanks, James ;-)
    22nd Apr, 2011
    Made these last night - super yummy! My brand new Kenwood Chef mixer did all the kneading :) I added a little mixed peel and just under a teaspoon of "bread improver" to keep them from being too heavy (home made breads can be) and I got light fluffly buns. After all the "yucky cross" comments by others I decided to make up my own so I winged it with 2 parts flour, 1 part caster sugar and a little water to make a runny paste then put it in a freezer bag, peirced the corner with a skewer and piped on my crosses - occassionally a little lump blocked the hole I just pinched it out and kept going - they turned out really well. So those were the prototypes, I will make a batch for the extended family tomorrow with just a tiny bit more mixed spice :) HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE!
    20th Apr, 2011
    They taste a bit yeasty so next time I would use less yeast.
    18th Apr, 2011
    does anyone know how many they last or if they freeze well? Thanks!
    18th Apr, 2011
    Feeling pretty smug right now with a batch of variously sized, very light and bouncy and tasty home-made hot cross buns. Will definitely use this recipe again.
    30th Mar, 2011
    end result excellent, tastes just like shop brought. Have faith though, the dough felt like glue when i mixed it and i was a little worried how it would turn out. The thing i changed was the yeast, i used 1 sachet, not 2
    5th May, 2010
    Great recipe - tried a few, and this was the best. Works in bread machine as well - I added more water, but not sure if that was necessary. Used machine on basic recipe, dough raisin option. Proved for about 30 mins and then baked in oven.
    6th Apr, 2010
    great recipe, I was impressed how well the buns turned out and had many compliments about the taste of the buns. Definetely will do this recipe again next Easter!!
    4th Apr, 2010
    Great hot cross buns, made these with my three year old and we had a lot of fun. I've made a few different hot cross bun recipes in the past and these are definitely the best. My husband has been asking me to make some more...and I will be! I also plan to try the alternatives suggested
    4th Apr, 2010
    I followed the recipe exactly and they were perfect! I've tried a few hot cross bun recipes in the past without success. I'm really pleased I've found a recipe that has worked for me!


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