This Old Fashioned Hot Cross Bun recipe is a staple during the Easter season. These sweet and spiced buns made with raisins, candied fruit, nutmeg and cinnamon are the perfect addition to Easter dinner or served on Fridays during Lent. They are a delicious treat that the entire family will love!
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Spring is right around the corner, which means the Easter season will soon be upon us. I love all the family traditions celebrated during this time of year. From coloring Easter eggs with the kids to making our annual bunny cake or Bird’s Nest Cookies! It is a special time that I always look forward to. One of my favorite things to make is a batch of Old Fashioned Hot Cross Buns. They are such treat! I always say that I am going to make them throughout the year, but that typically does not happen. So, I end up making them on a few different occasions during March and April. Because, they can be a little time consuming, sometimes I even make a double batch and freeze them for later.
What are Hot Cross Buns?
There are many different theories on the precise origin of Hot Cross Buns. However, this old fashion recipe is traditionally a sweet and spiced iced bun served during the Easter season. In many different parts of the world, including the United Kingdom, Australia and the United States, the buns are often served on Fridays during Lent, Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday.
What Ingredients are in the Old Fashioned Hot Cross Buns?
There are several items needed to make the Hot Cross Buns, but they are not hard to make (I promise)! You will need:
- Mixed Candied Fruit
- Powdered Sugar
How do I make the Old Fashioned Hot Cross Buns?
*Imporatnt Tip:There are 3 parts to making these delicious, Easter inspired buns. So, they do take time! The bun dough will need about 90 minutes to rise, so plan ahead of time when making this recipe.
Ok, on to making them!
Start off, by whisking together the flour, sugar, yeast, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg in a medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, beat together the milk, butter and eggs. Then add the flour/yeast mixture to the milk/egg mixture and beat for about 3 minutes until well combined. Stir in the raisins and candied fruit. Gradually stir in the flour to make a soft dough.
Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead for about 7 minutes, until the dough is smooth. Form the dough into a ball, cover and let rest for 15 minutes.
Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish and set aside. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and divide it into 12 equal sized pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and place it in the prepared baking dish.
Cover with a clean tea towel and let stand in a warm, draft free area until the balls have doubled in size. This typically takes about 1 ½ hours. Now, time to preheat the oven to 350F. In a small bowl, mix together the water, flour and powdered sugar for the crosses. Put this mixture in a Ziploc bag (or pastry bag), cut a corner off the bag and pipe a line down the length and width of the pan of buns to form crosses.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and ice the buns while they are hot! The icing is super simple to make. All you need to do is mix together the powdered sugar and milk and brush it over the buns while they are hot out of the oven. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes on a wire rack and serve warm!
How do I store the Hot Cross Buns?
Once the Hot Cross Buns have cooled completely, they can be stored in an air tight container for 3 to 5 days. They can also be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. In fact, as I mentioned above, I love to make a double batch of them and store half in the freezer to pull out at a later time after the Easter season. To thaw them out, just take them out of the freezer and let stand at room temperature until thawed. They can be heated back up in the microwave or oven.
Do I have to add the candied fruit or raisins?
No, the candied fruit and or raisins can be omitted. I am old fashion and prefer to make them the traditional way. However, on a few occasions, I have divided the dough in half and just added the raisins and candied fruit to half. I know not everyone prefers these items, so this is a good alternative when preparing them for a big family dinner.
- ½ cup raisins
- ½ cup mixed candied fruit
- ¾ cup warm milk
- ⅓ cup white sugar
- 4 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 ¼ teaspoon quick rise yeast
- 2 large eggs
- 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- ¼ cup water plus 1 tablespoon
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon milk
For the buns:
- In a medium bowl whisk together 1 cup of flour with the sugar, yeast, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg.
- In a large bowl beat together the milk, butter and eggs.
- Add the flour/yeast mixture to the milk mixture and beat well, about 3 minutes.
- Stir in the candied fruit and raisins.
- Gradually stir in the remaining flour to make soft dough.
- Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead for about 7 minutes, until dough is smooth.
- Form the dough into a ball, cover and let rest for 15 minutes.
- Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. Set aside.
- Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and divide it into 12 equal sized pieces.
- Roll each piece into a ball and place it in the prepared baking dish.
- Cover with a clean tea towel and let stand in a warm, draft free area until doubled in size, about 1 ½ hours.
- Preheat oven to 350F.
For the crosses:
- In a small bowl mix together the water, flour and powdered sugar.
- Put this mixture in a Ziploc bag, cut a corner off the bag and pipe a line down the length and width of the pan of buns to form crosses.
- Bake for 30 - 35 minutes.
- Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. Ice the buns while they are hot.
For the icing:
- Mix together the powdered sugar and milk for the icing and brush it over the buns while they are hot from the oven.
So Tell Me…
Have you ever made Hot Cross Buns? Do you have a favorite recipe for the Easter season? Are you looking forward to Spring?
Thank you so much for stopping by! As always, I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below. Have a great week!
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