These Hot Cross Buns are dense and hearty.  Perfect for those cold mornings when you want to snuggle up with your coffee by the fire.

Hot Cross Buns | Kita Roberts

Yeast is not. my. thing. I know that there is a skill, a knowledge bestowed upon those who work with yeast that comes from practice, finely honed skills, a sense for when it’s perfect, and the eye of newt or some such other witchcraft because yeast is like heck no all up in my kitchen. First, it doesn’t froth, it never froths. Second, it doesn’t rise. Nope. Even if I use the no frothing required yeast, it takes double the time to even make the dough burp from a wee bit of gas. Yeah, yeast and I need to have a heart to heart. And only for bread baking. Going to be very specific here. Because otherwise, it’s kind of an awkward post to put on the interwebs.

That being said, since I founded the Pass the Cook Book Club to challenge myself to trying out new recipes from those wonderful mountains of cookbooks collecting dust in my ever expanding collection – I picked 3 very inspiring recipes for the month of March. Fresh pasta, Scotch Eggs, and these Hot Cross Buns. I am going back for the other two, promise.

My buns were far from perfect. This was actually like the 4th or 5th attempt. (So yeah, there’s a lot of misfires in the PtS kitchen). There was one morning where Bill Nye stopped by and schooled me on keeping a control as I tested different types of yeast at different temps in my kitchen. All of which sat there and laughed at me. Purchased fresh yeast, just in case the yeast I had was bad, still nothing. Threw TONs of ingredients in the waste can. Mostly yeast. There was even a day when it smelled like  yeast… gross. But, I tried. And was inspired to try some more. Ruling out everything, I think my kitchen was just too darned cold (even with the oven on!) to make a happy environment for the little yeastlings. But, oh well. Roll with the punches…

Interested in joining? Click to read more about the Pass the Cook Book Club. To join the club, click for our facebook group here. (Please message me to let me know you are a real human, as we have been getting some spam lately ><) Remember, you don’t need a blog – you just need to want to cook!
Hot Cross Buns | Kita Roberts

If you’ve tried my Hot Cross Buns recipe, or any other recipe on please don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know where you found it in the comments below, I love hearing from you! You can also follow along for more good eats and travel tips on Instagram @passthesushi & @girlcarnivoreTwitter Facebook.

There is nothing quite like a warm sticky roll to start the day with.  Here are a few more you need to try.

Chocolate Chip Pecan Cinnamon Rolls #BrunchWeek

Quick Maple Cinnamon Rolls

Nutella Cinnamon Rolls with Crunchy Coconut Granola Topping

Hot Cross Buns | Kita Roberts

Hot Cross Buns for Pass the Cook Book Club

I found these buns to be a wee bit on the dense side. I also warmed the milk a bit before adding the yeast, just to make sure it was cozy.
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Author: Kita
2 hours 30 minutes
Serves: 12 buns


  • oil for greasing
  • 1 cup milk - divided
  • 1 pack - .25oz active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup superfine sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 cups bread flour
  • 2/3 cup raisins
  • 2 tbs candied lemon peel - cut into 2” pieces ½ teas cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 tbs butter - melted
  • 2 large eggs - plus 1 yolk
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  • Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F. 
  • Coat a large bowl with oil; Set aside. 
  • Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper for when you are ready to make the buns.
  • Whisk 1/2 cup milk, yeast, and 1 teaspoon of sugar in a small bowl and allow to stand until frothy.
  • Meanwhile, combine the flours, remaining sugar, raisins, candied peels, spices, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Give a quick mix on low speed until combined.
  • Add the butter, 2 eggs, and the yeast mixture to the flour. Mix for about 3 minutes or until a sticky dough forms.
  • Turn the dough out onto a clean lightly floured surface and knead by hand until smooth, about 5 minutes. Roll into a ball and place in prepared bowl, flipping to coat evenly with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise in a warm space until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  • Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a floured surface again. Knead for 3 minutes before dividing into 12 equal portions. 
  • Form into buns and place about 1" apart from one another on prepared baking sheet. Cover again and allow to rise another hour - to hour and half, or until doubled in size.
  • Combine the remaining egg yolk with 1 tbs of water and brush gently over each bun. 
  • Place buns in oven and reduce heat to 400 degrees. Bake for 20 minutes, until golden. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
  • When cool, whisk the remaining milk with the confectioners’ sugar and vanilla extract until smooth. Place in a ziploc bag, snip off the edge and ice with a horizontal line across each bun followed by a vertical line. Allow to set and serve.


Calories: 331kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Protein: 7g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 56mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 19g

Nutritional informations provided as a courtesy and is only an approximatation. Values will changes based on ingredients used.

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Hot Cross Buns | Kita Roberts


  1. Your pictures always look amazing! I am sorry these were so much pain. I decided to not use/adapt the recipe after your messages on FB and things were smoother thankfully. I am not a fan of yeast either but since I joined the blub for a challenge I wanted to make the buns! Hope this doesn’t deter you from more yeast 😉

  2. I know it is not funny but I had to laugh about all of your yeast failures. I have certainly had misses too. This was a hard month for me to pick. All three would have challenged me for something new.

  3. I had a couple yeast disasters this month, too! I finally had to put some hot water in my empty oven to proof the dough as I was getting very impatient. You’d never know your hot cross buns weren’t perfect. They look darn good to me!

  4. After all those attempts these certainly look great! Sorry I missed out this month, didn’t plan ahead and then was out of town.

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