Best Hot Cross Buns Recipe for Easter

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Perfect Hot Cross buns are easy this Easter with my simple recipe. This recipe makes super soft, deliciously fluffy buns. The addition of a bit of milk and butter gives the buns a richer taste and texture. Best of all the whole house will smell delicious as the buns bake!

Time to Make Homemade Hot Cross Buns!! It's so simple using the Thermomix. Best of all the whole house will smell delicious as the buns bake! #Thermomix #Easter #Hotcrossbuns

Our family always celebrates Easter with freshly made bread. We usually make hot cross buns, but in years past we have made brioche cooked with tye-dye boiled eggs, Filipino Ensaymada, and many other special Easter bread. I started this tradition because I wanted to make sure the kids had something in their stomachs before they launched into the chocolate Easter eggs.

Other Easter Recipes

Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

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Easter Chocolate Mousse

Time to Make Homemade Hot Cross Buns!! It's so simple using the Thermomix. Best of all the whole house will smell delicious as the buns bake! #Thermomix #Easter #Hotcrossbuns

I could have just given the kids cereal for breakfast, like any other morning… but then it would be special.

The recipe I’m sharing was printed in the recipe booklet which came with my breadmaker.  The breadmaker is more than 20 years old so I’ve been making these hot cross buns for a long time. Over the years I’ve altered the recipe slightly and they always work out perfectly.

However, once I bought my Thermomix there was no need for the breadmaker. So I kept the hot cross bun recipe and adjusted it for the Thermomix and gave away the breadmaker.

Overhead shot Thermomix Easter Hot Cross Buns with Butter

How to Proof Hot Cross Bun Dough

When you are doing the first proof for any dough you should allow the dough to proof until it has reached double the original size. When the yeast is in its optimum conditions this can be a quick process, taking perhaps 1 hour. Although if conditions are not optimal, the yeast can take longer to become active and the proofing time may take all day. 

Optimal conditions for yeast 

Yeast is a living organism and is the aerating componant of the dough. In order to get light fluffy buns it’s important to understand how yeast works, and how to optimise conditions to get the best outcome. 

  1. Use yeast that is within it’s “best before date.” Old yeast can risk the success of your baked goods. Commercial purchased dehydrated yeast is in a dormant state when purchased. It is a perishable item and will become less viable as a rising agent the longer it has remained in dehydrated form. 
  2. Adding sugar and warm water to the yeast as a first step allows the yeast to become active. The warm water at 37% rehydrates the yeast and is the temperature the yeast likes.  The sugar is an easy fuel for the yeast and is it’s first feed.
  3. The number next key variable when proofing dough is the outside temperature. The yeast becomes more active in a warm environment.
  4. To speed up the proofing process, cover the dough and bowl with a tea towel and leave it in a sunny spot to proof.  If it is a particularly cold day place the covered bowl in your car, or in the oven with just the oven light on.
  5. Always continue to proof the dough until it has doubled in size, regardless of how long it takes.

Why do a second proof?

The second proof is just as important as the first. The first proof brings the dough to double the size. This proves to us that we have awoken the yeast properly and it is active enough to produce a loaf or buns. The reason we do a second proof is we want to knead the dough lightly to redistribute the yeast and bubbles. This ensures an even bake with a regular size air bubble and a better texture.

The second proof allows the dough to be formed in the required shape. For the Hot cross buns, we form the dough into 12 buns. Please see the video for a demo on how to shape the buns.

Once the dough has been shaped the second proof is usually quicker as the yeast is already active and producing carbon dioxide which aerates the dough. The buns need to be allowed to proof until they have risen to the size of the finished bun. They will not continue to rise in the oven. 

When the buns are the correct size it is time to bake them.

Chocolate Hot Cross Buns Variation

If you would like to make the Bakers Delight style chocolate Easter Buns the recipe is easily adjusted.

Using the original hot cross bun recipe;

  • omit the spices and substitute 2 teaspoons of dutch process cocoa powder.
  • omit sultanas and add 200gm chocolate bits.

Iced Hot Cross Buns Variation

I also like to use icing sugar to make the cross on my hot cross buns instead of the traditional flour paste cross. If you want to add an icing cross you will still need to glaze the buns with the sugar glaze whilst they’re hot.   Once the buns have cooled decorate with a thick white icing sugar cross.

Before you BAKE!

Would you like to eat these Hot Cross Buns fresh in the morning without all the work??

You can prepare the dough the night before and bake them in the morning.

Simply complete the method up to the point where the buns are doing their second proof in the baking tray.


  1. Spray some plastic film with oil and cover the Easter buns.
  2. Place them in the fridge.
  3. leave overnight

In the morning;

  1. Remove the hot cross buns from the fridge
  2. Allow them to come to room temperature
  3. Make your cross mixture and pipe the cross onto the buns.
  4. Preheat the oven.

To cook, bake as normal. Glaze and enjoy.

Be sure to also try my delicious Thermomix pancakes if you are looking for another tasty breakfast treat. 

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Thermomix Hot Cross Buns

Thermomix Hot Cross Buns

Julie Carlyle
There is nothing better than the aroma of hot cross buns baking. 
5 from 7 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Proofing 40 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Bread, Cake, Easter
Cuisine Australian
Servings 12
Calories 348 kcal



  • 200 g water warm tap water
  • 2 tsp dried yeast
  • 560 g bakers flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 90 g milk warm
  • 2 tsp bread improver
  • 70 g sugar
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 50 g butter at room temp
  • 200 g sultanas

Decorative Cross

  • 80 g water
  • 80 g flour


  • 40 g water
  • 40 g sugar


  • Place water, yeast, milk, butter and sugar in TM bowl. Combine 3 min/40 degrees/Speed 2.
    200 g water, 90 g milk, 70 g sugar, 50 g butter, 2 tsp dried yeast
  • Add flour, salt, bread improver, cinnamon & nutmeg to TM bowl. Combine 40 sec/Speed 3. 
    560 g bakers flour, 1 tsp salt, 2 tsp bread improver, 3 tsp ground cinnamon, 2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • Scrape down the bowl if necessary.  Knead 2 min/Dough 
  • Add the sultanas. Knead 50 sec/Dough.
    200 g sultanas
  • Remove the dough from the TM bowl and incorporate and lose sultanas by hand.
  • Spray the Thermoserver with oil and place the dough in the covered Thermoserver to proof. (Proof the dough until it has doubled in size) The time it takes will be dependent on the temperature. In a warm environment it could take as little as 1 hour. In the cold it may take 3-4 hours).
  • Line a tray with baking paper.
  • Once the dough has doubled in size remove the dough from the Thermoserver and place on an oiled bench.
    Knead the dough by hand and divide into 12 equal buns.
  • Pre-heat a fan forced oven heated to 170 degrees or a regular oven to 180.
  • Place the buns, side by side on the prepared baking tray leaving a small gap so that the buns will eventually touch as they proof. The buns need to proof until they have doubled in size.
  • Place the baking tray in a warm place with a tea towel to cover. The time the buns take to rise depends on the outside temperature. Keep the buns as warm as possible.
  • Once the buns have double in size it’s time to make the decorative cross.

Decorative Cross

  • In a small bowl add the flour and water. Stir by hand until combined.
    80 g water, 80 g flour
  • Use a piping bag to draw a cross over the tops of the buns.
  • Place the buns in the oven and cook for 25-35 minutes. 

Bun Glaze

  • Place the sugar and water in a microwave proof dish. Microwave 50 sec on high.
  • Once the buns come out of the oven apply the hot glaze immediately to the top of the buns with a pastry brush.
    40 g water, 40 g sugar
  • Allow the buns to cool.



Proofing the Dough
You should proof the dough until it has reached double the original size. Sometimes this is a quick process and sometimes it can take longer. The key variable is the outside temperature. Yeast is a living organism and it will not become active unless it is in a warm environment. 
To speed up the proofing process, cover the dough and bowl with a tea towel and leave it in a sunny spot to proof.  If it is a particularly cold day place the covered bowl in your car.
This is just as important as the first. Proof, allow the Easter Buns enough time to rise to the finished size before baking. They will not continue to rise in the oven. All the size happens in the second proofing.


Calories: 348kcalCarbohydrates: 66gProtein: 8gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 14mgSodium: 250mgPotassium: 278mgFiber: 2gSugar: 21gVitamin A: 160IUVitamin C: 1.1mgCalcium: 75mgIron: 2.9mg
Keyword Baking, Easter bun, Easter recipes, Hot Cross Bun
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Thank you for stopping by,

Happy Cooking



26 thoughts on “Best Hot Cross Buns Recipe for Easter”

  1. Dianne Ross says:

    5 stars
    Absolutely delicious hot cross buns – my new favourite recipe thanks Julie

    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      Hi Dianne
      I am so pleased you enjoyed the recipe 🙂
      …and thank you so much for coming back and leaving a lovely message.
      Happy Cooking

  2. Sonya says:

    What can you use instead of Bakers flour, I can only buy 5kg bags?

    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      Hi Sonya
      Bakers flour is best for bread of any type. You can try regular flour but it doesn’t have as much gluten.
      You can usually by a bread loaf mix in a 1 kilo pack.
      I hope this helps.

  3. Bec D says:

    What am I doing wrong I followed this recipe to a T and they are hard as rocks. I did second prove for about 40 mins….. Recipe number 5 fail….next

  4. Marijan says:

    I’d like to also include currants and peel and we like them well spiced. Can you please recommend suggested quantities. TIA

  5. Julie says:

    These buns are the best!!! So soft and light, beautiful! I tried a different recipe a few days ago and they were dry and crumbly. Will only use this one from now on!

  6. Emily Lanyon says:

    Hey! Any chance I can replace spices with cocoa and sultanas with choc chips? Any ideas on quantity to use and whether you think this would work?


    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      Hi Emily
      Thank you for your question.
      Yes you could absolutely make those replacements. Swap the sultana for the same weight of chocolate chips. Remove the spices and then replace 1/4 cup of flour with the same weight of cocoa powder.

      Let me know how you go.
      Happy Easter

  7. Natalie Meadows says:

    Have you ever doubled this recipe?

    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      Hi Natalie
      You won’t fit double the recipe in the TM bowl. But if you just repeat making the dough you will find it only takes about 5 minutes longer to make a double batch.
      Happy Cooking and have a lovely Easter

  8. Barbara Howell says:

    Just wondering if after the first rise they could go in the fridge overnight to be cooked the following morning?

    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      Hi Barbara,
      That’s a great question!!
      The answer is absolutely, if you want fresh, hot buns Sunday morning, make the recipe as per normal. Once you have formed the buns and placed them in a baking tray they can go in the fridge.
      Firstly spray plastic wrap with oil and cover the buns. This will prevent any chance of the buns sticking.
      In the morning
      Remove the buns from the fridge and allow them to come to room temp.
      Preheat the oven.
      Make your cross mixture.
      Pipe the cross on the buns and then cook and glaze as normal 🌸
      Thanks so much for asking this question!

  9. Jessica says:

    Can you omit the bread improver from the recipe? If not what substitutes do you suggest?

    1. Brett Carlyle says:

      You can, however bread improver gives it a fluffier, lighter texture when baked. You can substitute a teaspoon of vinegar which will give a similar result, although there will be a slight sourdough flavour. Thank you for commenting!

  10. Fiona Lunn says:

    5 stars
    5 stars for sure

  11. Fiona Lunn says:

    Have just made a dozen, absolutely delicious, so soft and especially yummy straight out of the oven
    I did halve the spices as my elderly mother doesn’t like a lot and didn’t put the crosses on either (She doesn’t like those either)

  12. Linda Clow says:

    I just wanted to clarify. In step 4 we put in thermoserver to raise. Then when its raised we add saltanas and knead in. then step 6 do we let rise again to knock it down or is this the knocking down before adding saltanas??

    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      Hi Linda
      Yes, that is correct we add the sultana by hand and allow the dough to proof. Once the dough has proofed we knock it down again and then shape into rolls.
      Happy Cooking

  13. Lynne Davison says:

    Just made them. One word YUMMMMM. My other half said best ever 😋😋. Wish I could load a pic.

    1. Julie Carlyle says:

      That is so awesome!! I’m really pleased you like the recipe :)!! I wish you could load a pic too, I’d love to see them xx
      Thanks so much for coming back and letting me know xx
      Happy Easter

  14. Ben Myhre says:

    5 stars
    These buns look great and your tradition of making fresh bread for Easter is special. Something everybody will remember in the years to come. I will be putting these on my ‘to make’ list.

  15. Anita says:

    5 stars
    Easter is definitely not the same without a fresh batch of homemade hot cross buns. Yours looks super lovely and comforting. 🙂

  16. Noelle says:

    5 stars
    Homemade these buns are always superb! I will be saving this for Easter dinner 🙂

  17. Rosa says:

    5 stars
    I dont think I’ve ever had hot cross buns but i will definitely need to! These look great.

  18. michele h peterson says:

    5 stars
    I do love hot cross buns and had forgotten how much better they taste when home made. I’ll give these a try!

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