Hot Cross Buns and Bread

It may be snowing out today, but I know spring is on the way. It’s been a long winter here! Easter will be here soon, and it never seems right without some Hot Cross Buns. I will make these again on Easter! Every year I get into the mood for Hot Cross Buns and this year is no different. I have tried various recipes and the one I made this year really hit the mark. The blend of spices is just right for what I like. Like so many other foods, what you grew up eating and liking, sets the bar for something tasting “right” when you get older.

Hot Cross Buns and Bread

This recipe is pretty traditional except that I used raisins and a little orange zest. I also made a loaf of Hot Cross Bun Bread out of the same dough. I love it toasted! The simple sugar and water glaze adds just a little extra sweet.  I made my crosses with a flour and water paste but you could make them after the rolls are baked and cooled, using powdered sugar mixed with a little cream. Your choice.

Hot Cross Buns and Bread

The loaf of bread baked up nice and soft and tasted delicious when toasted. I suggest that you check the temperature of the bread before removing from the oven. Breads can be deceiving and since it will take about 15 minutes longer to bake than the rolls, you want to make sure it’s done. I baked this loaf until it was 190°F in the middle. The rolls are also soft and I didn’t need to use the thermometer on them.

Hot Cross Buns and Bread

I also like the hot cross buns made with candied citron and currants, I have made them that way many times. I just didn’t have either on hand when I made these and I really do like using raisins more than currants, they are bigger and softer!

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Hot Cross Buns and Bread Hot Cross Buns and Bread

Hot Cross Buns and Bread

Traditional yummy Hot Cross Buns. This is an easy recipe to follow that produces incredible rolls or bread.

Recipe type: Bread, Rolls, Breakfast
Serves: 12
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 1 Tbsp quick rising yeast
  • 3 Tbsps sugar
  • ¾ Cup whole milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2½ cups bread flour (divided)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup raisins

  • For The Cross:
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2 Tbsps water (may need a little more)

  • For The Glaze:
  • ⅓ Cup water
  • ⅓ Cup sugar
  1. Grease a 13"x 9" baking pan (or 9" loaf pan if making the dough into bread) with butter or spray with baking spray, set aside.

  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the warm water and yeast. Mix until
  3. dissolved.
  4. Add the sugar, egg and milk, whisk until combined.
  5. Add 1½ cups of the flour and mix well with a wooden spoon until smooth.
  6. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes.

  7. Attach dough hook to mixer.
  8. Add the oil, salt and spices, mix gently, until incorporated.
  9. Add the remaining cup of flour and mix into a ball.
  10. Mix the dough on low speed for 5 minutes. Add the raisins and mix for another
  11. minute.

  12. Form dough into a ball and place in a bowl that has been greased (I just spray with baking spray). Cover and let rest for about another 30 minutes.

  13. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces, and roll into small balls.
  14. Place all 12 dough balls onto the prepared baking pan
  15. Cover with a clean towel and let rise for another hour or until they are touching.

  16. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  17. Make the mixture for the cross. Mix the water and flour together to form a paste. Once the buns are ready for the oven, using a piping bag or zip lock bag back with the corner snipped of, squeeze the cross mixture across the buns in both directions to form the cross.

  18. Place in the oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes and golden brown. For the bread bake 35-40 minutes.

  19. For the Glaze
  20. Bring the sugar and water to a boil in a small pan. Simmer until reduced by half.
  21. Glaze the buns when they come out of the oven and let cool.

  22. My total time to make this recipe was 3½ hours, much of that time was rising time. This really is an easy recipe.



4 thoughts on “Hot Cross Buns and Bread

  1. Hi I tried this and it was entirely too much liquid. Is it supposed to be more flour than the 2 1/2 cups ? Thanks

    • This is a very sticky dough and I use plenty of extra flour when shaping the rolls. Are you sure you added both parts of the flour? The ratio of flour to liquid is right. If you usually work with a firmer dough, you can always increase the flour by 1/2 to 1 cup. These rolls are meant to be soft, not heavy.

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