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Hot Cross Buns with Honey Butter

Hot Cross Buns with Honey Butter

The perfect Easter breakfast: home-made Hot Cross Buns with Honey Butter!

Course Bread, Breakfast
Cuisine Australian, British
Prep Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 5 minutes
Author Manuela Zangara



  • 400 ml – 1 2/3 cups milk
  • 120 gms – ½ cup unsalted butter chopped
  • 750 gms – 6 cups flour
  • 75 gms – ⅓ cup caster sugar
  • 14 gms – 4 tsp dry yeast
  • tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 300 gms – 2 cups sultanas
  • 1 orange zested
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 1 egg

Cross Paste

  • 35 gms – ¼ cup flour
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 2 or 3 tbsp water

Spice Glaze

  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • 125 g – ½ cup caster sugar
  • 100 ml – ½ cup water

Honey Butter

  • 80 gms – 1/3 cup butter softened
  • 40 gms – 2 tbsp honey


Hot Cross Buns

  1. Put the milk and chopped butter into a measuring jar and microwave it for a few seconds, just until the butter melts. Stir and keep aside to slightly cool down.
  2. Put the flour, sugar, yeast, spices, half of the sultanas, orange and lemon zest and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle or hook attachment. Stir to combine.
  3. Stir in the egg, then the milk mixture.
  4. Knead for 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic. Just before turning the mixer off, add the remaining sultanas and mix.
  5. Make the dough into a ball and put it in a greased bowl. Cover it with plastic wrap and set aside to rise for 1 hour or until the dough doubles in size.
  6. Punch down the dough, divide it into 20 equal pieces, then knead each piece into a smooth ball.
  7. Put the balls on an oven tray lined with baking paper. Make sure to leave about 1 cm – ½ inch between them.
  8. Cover them with greased cling wrap and set aside in a warm place for 45 minutes or until the dough doubles in size.
  9. In the meantime prepare the cross paste by sifting the flour and caster sugar into a small bowl.
  10. Gradually stir in enough water to make a smooth thick paste.
  11. Put the paste into a ziploc bag and snip a tiny piece off one of the bottom corners so it can be used later as a piping bag.
  12. When the buns have doubled in size, pipe crosses onto them.
  13. Preheat the oven to 220°C – 425°F and bake the buns for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 200°C – 390°F and bake for a further 10 minutes or until golden.
  14. In the meantime make the spice glaze.
  15. Put the mixed spice, caster sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
  16. Remove from the fire and let it cool slightly.
  17. When the buns are ready, brush them generously with the spice glaze.
  18. Serve warm or at room temperature with honey butter.

Honey Butter

  1. Mix the softened butter into a paste.
  2. Add the honey and stir well to combine.
  3. Store in the fridge and bring back to room temperature before using.