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Hot Cross Buns in a baking dish with one removed
My Favorite Hot Cross Buns
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Rising Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 55 mins

I love making hot cross buns every year around Easter. So here are My Favorite Hot Cross Buns. They are well-spiced with amazing flavor and so fluffy. Perfect for Easter breakfast, brunch, dinner, or really any time of the year!

Course: Bread
Cuisine: Western
Keyword: Favorite Hot Cross Buns
Servings: 12 buns
Calories: 883 kcal
For The Dough
  • cups lukewarm evaporated milk (sub with whole milk) See Note 1, milk should be heated to about 110° F
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon instant yeast
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon zest from 2-3 lemons
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature for greasing pan
For The Crosses
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • cup water + 1 Tablespoon
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
For The Glaze
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons water
  1. Grease a 9 by 13 baking dish with butter.

  2. In a large bowl, the bowl of a stand mixer or a bread machine, combine all the ingredients for the dough. Mix them together using the stand mixer, bread machine, or by hand. I mixed the dough using the dough function of my bread machine. Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic.

  3. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and place in the buttered baking dish.

    To ensure every bun is of the same size, you could weigh the buns on a kitchen scale. But I hardly do this. I just eyeball them.

  4. Place the buns in a warm place to rise until doubled in size. I love to turn on my oven for 1-2 minutes then I turn off my oven and place my dough inside to rise. This works perfectly for me everytime.

  5. When the buns are almost done rising, preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C.

  6. Make the flour paste for the crosses. Mix together the flour, water, and sugar to form a pipeable paste. Pour the paste into a Ziploc bag then snip the corner. Hold the bag over the buns and carefully draw crosses over the risen buns with the flour paste.

  7. Bake the buns in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes or until dark brown on top.

  8. Make the lemon glaze. In a small bowl mix together the lemon juice, powdered sugar, and water. Use a pastry brush to brush the glaze over the buns while they are still hot.

  9. Serve warm. Store leftovers in an airtight bag in the fridge for 2-3 days. To reheat, simply pop a bun into the microwave and reheat for 15 seconds.

Recipe Notes
  1. I love using evaporated milk in baked goods because it is so flavorful. But you could substitute it with whole milk or 2 percent milk.
  2. For more flavor, you could also add a quarter teaspoon of ground cardamom to the dough. However, note that cardamom can be overpowering so make sure you do not add too much.