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Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns. Not just for Easter Sunday, these delicious, fragrant, yeast raised sweet rolls have become a brunch staple year round at our house.

Perfect Hot Cross Buns

Perfect Hot Cross Buns

Originally published March 2015.

Here’s an Easter specialty that will be much appreciated after the morning egg hunt. The scent of these cinnamon and vanilla infused buns baking will wake the entire house in eager anticipation.

Raisins shown in a white bowl.

Sultana Raisins are great in this recipe but you can use any kind you like.

I like sultana raisins in mine but dark or golden raisins or currants are also good. If your family is not fond of dried fruits, these are also exceptionally delicious with chocolate chips substituted for the raisins.

If you’re looking for an incredibly easy and totally delicious Easter Ham recipe for lunch, I highly recommend Our Brown Sugar and Dijon Glazed Ham.

Perfect Hot Cross Buns

An Easter Tradition to share year round.

Like this Hot Cross Buns recipe?

You’ll find lots of great ideas in our Bread Category and for Easter dessert, check out the hundreds of ideas in our Desserts Category.

Perfect Hot Cross Buns

Perfect Hot Cross Buns

It’s easy to keep up with the latest home style cooking & baking ideas from Rock Recipes. Be sure to follow Rock Recipes Facebook Page and follow us on InstagramPlus you’ll see daily recipe suggestions from decadent desserts to quick delicious weekday meals too.

2019 UPDATE We now have a new version of Christmas Hot Cross Buns

Christmas Hot Cross Buns photo with title text for Pinterest
For even more delicious ideas for special brunches or teatimes, we have put them together into one amazing collection of our 25 Best Scone Recipes.

25 Best Scone Recipes image with title text for Pinterest

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Perfect Hot Cross Buns
Yield: 12 buns

Hot Cross Buns

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Not just for Easter Sunday, these delicious, fragrant, yeast raised sweet rolls have become a brunch staple year round at our house.


  • 3/4 cup lukewarm water, around 100 degrees F
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 envelope regular yeast, 2 1/2 to 3 tsp
  • 3 cups flour
  • pinch salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sultana raisins, or golden raisins
  • 1 egg yolk, reserved from preparing the dough
  • 1 1/2 tbsp water

For the vanilla glaze

  • 1/2 cup icing sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 to 3 tsp milk


  1. Dissolve the sugar in the warm water. Sprinkle the yeast over the surface. Do not stir. Let stand for 15 minutes.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer with a dough hook attachment or in a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, salt cinnamon and sugar.
  3. Add the prepared yeast along with the melted butter, 1 egg, 1 egg white, and vanilla extract.
  4. Knead with the mixer's dough hook for about 5 minutes or mix together with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together, then knead by hand for about 10 minutes. You may need to dd a little more flour as you knead, if your dough is too sticky. This is not unusual when making yeast doughs of any kind.
  5. Whether you are using an electric mixer of making the dough by hand you should always knead the raisins into the dough by hand; the mixer tends to crush the raisins and you want to keep them intact, so gentle hand kneading is best to incorporate the raisins into the dough.

Proofing the dough.

  1. Cover and let stand in a draft-free, warm place for 30 - 40 minutes.
  2. Grease a 9x13 inch baking pan. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and form into balls.
  3. Place them in the prepared pan and let rise for about an hour or until about doubled in size.
  4. Whisk together the reserved egg yolk and 1 1/2 tbsp water. Brush over the tops of the buns before baking. You need not use it all. This step makes a glossy finish to the tops of the buns.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30-35 minutes or a little longer.
  6. Remove from pan and let rest on a wire rack for about 15-20 minutes before piping on the vanilla glaze crosses.

For the vanilla glaze

  1. Mix together the icing sugar, vanilla extract and milk until smooth. You will want this to be quite a stiff glaze so only add enough milk to bring it to a thick consistency.
  2. Pipe crosses onto the tops of the warm buns. A Ziploc bag with the corner snipped off works well for this if you do not have a piping bag.


The total time in this recipe does not include time for the dough to proof. Allow 1 1/2 to 2 hours additional time for this. Warmer kitchens may take less time, colder kitchens will take longer.

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Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 384Total Fat 10gSaturated Fat 5gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 57mgSodium 138mgCarbohydrates 68gFiber 3gSugar 28gProtein 6g

The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.

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Sunday 21st of April 2019

I made these buns yesterday in hopes of Easter Sunday morning with a cup of tea. Not a one left this Sunday morning for tea. However your complete Ham dinner is on for later today and since the ham is in the oven (with a pad lock), hopefully there will be some for the Easter feast. I made your cheesecake for dessert and am looking forward to seeing the smiles and hearing the sighs of a wonderful Easter feast well enjoyed by all. Happy Easter.

Betty Duffett

Saturday 20th of April 2019

I have been wanting to make Hot Cross Buns for quite some time and was delighted to find your recipe online. I made them today for the first time and as with every single one of your recipes I have tried, these buns are absolutely delicous!! So light, fluffy and flavourfull! Thank you for sharing!! I will definitely be making them again. Happy Easter!

Barry C. Parsons

Sunday 21st of April 2019

Do glad you enjoyed the recipe! Happy Easter.


Friday 19th of April 2019

Barry: Do you plump the raisins in hot water and drain well or just as they are from the store? I sometimes find the raisins very dry and hard from the store.

Barry C. Parsons

Friday 19th of April 2019

If they were hard I would plump them, but it's usually not necessary.

Carol Guite

Tuesday 2nd of April 2019

Hello again Barry Made these last night. Excellent taste. I did add an extra half cup of raisins because I like a lot of them in my baked goods. My husband ate one before I had a chance to put the piped icing on and then had two more after that. Lol I have made so many of your reciipes that I might as well get rid of all my other cookbooks. Thanks again for these tried and true recipes.


Friday 14th of April 2017

Have you noticed any difference in what type baking pan you use? Any preference to glass or metal?

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