Hot cross buns recipe

Honey butter hot cross buns

Make your hot cross buns even sweeter by baking your own with honey butter to top them off.


  • 300ml whole milk
  • 50g butter, cubed
  • 500g strong white flour, plus 140g for the crosses
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 85g golden caster sugar
  • 7g dried yeast
  • 1 large egg, beaten, plus 1 egg to glaze
  • oil, for greasing
  • 100g dried mixed fruit
  • Zest of 1 orange

For the spiced honey butter

  • 200g salted butter, softened
  • 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 4 tbsp honey


  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C, fan bake. Warm the milk and orange zest in a small saucepan until steaming. Remove from the heat and add the butter, swirling the pan until the butter has melted and the milk has cooled to hand temperature.
  2. Mix the flour, cinnamon, sugar, yeast and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Pour in the milk mixture and the beaten egg and mix with a wooden spoon until the mixture clumps together. Tip out onto a lightly dusted work surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Transfer to a clean oiled bowl, cover with cling film or a tea towel and leave to rise for 2 hrs or until doubled in size.
  3. Dust your largest baking tray with flour. Tip the dough back onto your work surface and knead again to knock out any air bubbles. Add the dried fruit and knead to incorporate into the dough.
  4. Divide the dough into 11 equal pieces. Roll each lump of dough into a smooth ball. Arrange the balls on your tray in a ring, leaving a small gap between each one. Cover loosely with a piece of cling film and leave somewhere warm for a further hour or until doubled in size. The buns should be just touching.
  5. Brush the buns with a little beaten egg. Mix the remaining flour with enough water to make a thick paste, then transfer to a piping bag fitted with a small round nozzle or use a sandwich bag and snip off one corner. Use the paste to pipe crosses over the buns. Bake for 25 mins until golden and cooked through.
  6. While the buns bake, make the spiced honey butter. Put the butter, spices and honey in a bowl and beat with an electric whisk until smooth. Transfer to a bowl. When the buns are cooked, remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 mins on the baking tray. Serve the buns warm with the butter ready to be spread.

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