Traditional homemade hot cross buns

Traditional homemade hot cross buns

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  • Makes 12
  • Easy
  • 2 1/2 hours
  • 15 minutes


  • 480 g flour
  • 2 x 10 g instant yeast sachets
  • 100 g brown sugar
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t nutmeg
  • Salt, a pinch
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 3 T butter
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 135 g sultanas and raisins
  • For the flour paste:
  • 125 g flour
  • 5 T water
  • For the glaze:
  • 65 ml golden syrup
  • 65 ml boiling water

Cooking Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180°C. 

To make the hot cross buns

Combine the flour, yeast, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, lemon zest and dried fruit in a large mixing bowl. 

Place the milk and butter in a saucepan and heat gently until the butter has melted. Lightly whisk the eggs and vanilla together and add to the dry ingredients, along with the milk-and-butter mixture. 

Gently mix the dough using your hands or a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together. 

Turn the dough out onto a clean surface and knead for 10 minutes. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and place in a warm spot for 1½ hours until doubled in size. 

After the dough has risen, knock it down to its original size and then roll into 12 evenly shaped buns. 

Place the buns on a greased baking tray and cover with clingfilm, leaving enough room for the buns to rise. Allow the buns to rise for another 30 minutes. 

To make the flour paste, mix the flour and water together to form a smooth paste, place in a Ziploc sandwich bag and cut off one of the corners to make a piping bag. 

Pipe a cross onto each bun and bake for 15 minutes, or until the buns are golden and cooked through. Glaze the buns while they are still hot.

Discover more recipes starring hot cross buns here.

Abigail Donnelly Recipe by: Abigail Donnelly
View all recipes

Nothing excites Woolworths TASTE's Food Director quite as much as the challenge of dreaming up recipes with innovative new foods – or the thrill of creating deliciousness on a plate with the humblest of ingredients. With Abi by your side, you’ll be a cooking expert in no time at all.

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  • default
    Donna Nancarrow
    April 5, 2020

    Great recipe ! I am not really a baker and this was my first attempt at Hot Cross buns. They were a roaring success. I upped the quantity of Nutmeg and Cinnamon and in my opinion I could have added more. I do like them a little spicy. Due to lockdown I was a bit short of fruit but added some naartjie rind and it worked well. Will definitely be baking these again. Thanks

  • default
    Theo Botha
    March 8, 2016

    You don’t say quantities of the following ingredients and not mentioned in the ingredients section for Traditional homemade hot cross buns:
    baking powder,
    bicarbonate of soda,
    lemon zest and dried fruit

    1. default
      March 8, 2016

      Hi Theo,
      Apologies, we’ve updated the recipe with the correct quantity. Happy baking!

  • default
    Bronwen Hudson-lamb
    March 8, 2016

    Hi Abigail

    I cant’ wait to make this recipe but the following items are missing from the ingredients list and the quantities required:-
    baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, lemon zest, dried fruit and the milk.

    thank you

    1. default
      March 8, 2016

      Hi Bronwen
      Apologies, we’ve updated the recipe with the correct quantities. Happy baking!