Manuka Honey Hot Cross Buns

Why not enjoy some delicious Honey Hot Cross Buns this Easter.

Adapted recipe from Nagi’s Hot Cross Buns (Recipe TinEats)



  • 1 tablespoon instant or rapid rise yeast
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 cups warm milk
  • 4 1/4 cups plain flour + 1/4 cup for kneading
  • 2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 2 tsp all spice or mixed spice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sultanas
  • 1 - 2 oranges, zest only
  • 50g / 3.5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 egg


  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 5 tbsp water


  • 1 tbsp of Manuka honey diluted in 1 tsp of filtered water.


Place flour, yeast, sugar, all spice, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. Briefly mix.

Add butter, milk, egg, honey, sultanas and zest.

Dust a work surface with flour and knead by hand for 10 minutes.

Dough is kneaded enough when it’s smooth and does not break when stretched

RISE #1:

Leave dough in the bowl, cover with cling wrap and place in a warm, wind free place to rise until doubled in size. This will take anywhere between 30 minutes to 1 1/2 hours depending on how warm it is.


Line a 31.5 x 23.5 cm / 9 x 13” tray with baking paper with overhang.

Remove cling wrap and punch dough to deflate.

Dust work surface with flour, place dough on work surface, shape into a log - this will deflate the air.

Cut into 12 equal pieces.

Take one piece and press down with palm, then use your fingers to gather into a ball, then roll the dough briefly to form a ball. This stretches the dough on one side and that’s how I get a nice smooth surface.

Place the ball with the smooth side up on the tray. Repeat with remaining dough. Line them up 3 x 4.

RISE # 2:

Spray a piece of cling wrap lightly with oil (any), then loosely place over the tray.

Return tray to warm place and leaver 30 - 45 minutes, until the dough has risen by about 75% (less than double in size). Partway through Rise #2, preheat oven to 180°C/350°F (all oven types).


Mix flour and water until a thick runny paste forms.

Spoon into a round 3 mm piping bag or small ziplock bag then snip corner.

Remove the cling wrap and pipe crosses onto the buns. Go slow so it hugs the curves.


Bake for 22 minutes, or until the surface is a deep golden brown. The surface colour is the best test for this recipe. Meanwhile, place honey and water in a bowl. Mix to combine.

Remove buns from oven. Use overhang to lift buns onto a cooling rack.

Brush with honey mixture while warm. Allow to cool to warm before serving.

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