This recipe for traditional hot cross buns creates a soft, fruity bun which is worth taking the time to make. These sweet buns are served at Easter time but that doesn’t mean they can’t be enjoyed any time of the year.
Makes 9 Large Buns
Continue reading for money saving tips and gluten and dairy free options. There is also a PDF version of this recipe at the end of the post which can be printed or saved to your device to save on paper.
*The Nutrition Facts label above should be used as a guide only. The amounts can change depending on the brands you use. To reduce the fat content always try to buy reduced fat products and lean meat when you can afford it. Look for reduced salt products and low sugar without artificial sugar replacements.
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Traditional Hot Cross Buns Q&A
The common belief is that a similar bun from which these evolved were made in the 14th century by Brother Thomas Rodcliffe from St Albans Abbey in the United Kingdom. They were given out to the poor on Good Friday.
Cut the hot cross bun in half then smear the two halves with butter. Heat on high in the microwave in 20 second bursts until the butter has just melted. The buns will soften when they are just heated but too long and they will go hard.
Personally I find my dough is still sticky after kneading even though many recipes will say to knead until it’s no longer sticky. This could be due to the quality of the flour used. I find that 10 minutes is long enough to knead and the dough will no longer feel sticky after it has finished its first rise.
Bread flour will give you a better texture however the cheap flour works just fine. I used budget flour in the photos above and had a good rise and acceptable texture. The taste is the same. It is more important to have a quality yeast as poorer qualities won’t give you the rise and light texture.
Gluten and Dairy Free Options
For gluten free; replace the flour with a measure for measure gluten free flour blend. For dairy free; replace the butter with a dairy free margarine and the milk with either a lactose free milk or oat milk.
Save money by buying pantry basics such as flour in bulk packs. It will store for up to 1 year when stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight. This top rated airtight flour storage container will hold a 5 pound (2.25kg) bag of flour and has a levelling bar for mess free measuring. (Paid link)
Yeast is one item I don’t purchase in bulk. The yeast packed in individual foil packs does perform better than yeast in bulk packs as it retains its freshness. Yeast may still work after the expiry date however you may not get the same amount of rise and the bread will be heavy.
Caster sugar can be replaced with normal granulated sugar if you don’t have it in the pantry. You can also replace the sultanas with whatever dried fruits you have on hand. Apricots, dates, cranberries and currants all work well in this recipe.
Do you have flour and yeast left over? Try this Best Basic White Bread Recipe.
This guide to Creating Budget Friendly Meals covers everything from planning to making the most of in season vegetables and meat to using raw ingredients to create healthy and nutritious meals which cost less to make. A little forethought can save you a great deal of money over the course of the year.
Are you a Homebody? This free homesteading guide covers everything from craft projects to growing and preserving your own food.
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