Photo by Seriously Low Carb on Unsplash

Having been wheat free for over 20 years, one of the things I always missed was gluten-free hot cross buns. You can actually now buy these in the supermarkets (a total revelation). However it is one of those joys to be able to bake your own. They take time but it’s so worth it.

History of hot cross buns:

Traditionally these are a Good Friday food. The cross on them signifies the crucifixion of Jesus, which is remembered on this day. Whether you are a Christian or not, hot cross buns are now a staple food and I think a pretty fabulous snack. Best served warm with butter and jam, but these can also be sliced, filled and taken as a cold snack.

It is thought that thehot cross bun originates from St Albans in England, where in 1361, where a monk at St Albans Abbey called Brother Thomas Rodcliffe, created an ‘Alban Bun’. These were a fruit bun that were distributed to those in poverty on Good Friday.

Gluten-free hot cross buns 
Photo by <a href="">Seriously Low Carb</a> on <a href="">Unsplash</a>

Gluten-free hot cross bun notes:

  • Use a good quality gluten free flour that contains xanthum gum as this helps it all stick together. I love Doves Farm flour but there are so many others.
  • Don’t skimp on the rising time. Trust me I do not have a lot of patience and I’ve totally baked these babies too early. They are not as good.
  • Whilst you would knead normal hot cross buns, with these ones you don’t want to overmix them.
  • Experiment with flavours, I’m a total traditionalist but there are so many variations you can make!

Try these hot cross bun variations:

Whilst I love the traditional fruity hot cross buns you can make these your own flavours. Why not try:

  • Blueberry lemon using lemon zest and a handful of blueberries.
  • Chocolate and Spice hot cross buns
  • Jalapeno and Cheese (use some cheddar cheese and a sprinkle of jalapenos). Very unusual!
  • Cranberry and white chocoate. Switch the raisins in the recipe below for cranberries and add some white chocolate chips.
  • Chocolate hot cross buns. This recipe is gluten free and looks very chocolatey and tasty.
  • Apple and cinnamon. Grate an apple into the mixture and I promise you will love the combo.
  • Or try my fruity flapjack recipe!

Storage of gluten-free hot cross buns:

  • These fruity bins will keep best in an airtight container for 3 days. They also freeze well.
  • If you happen to have glut of hot cross buns then why not make a bread and butter pudding from them or use them for French toast. Simply dip into egg and cook in a frying pan for a delicious breakfast.
Hot cross bun on a white surface

Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Resting Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Course Snack


  • 500 g Gluten Free Flour with xanthum gum
  • 2 tsp yeast
  • 300 ml warm milk
  • 75 g caster sugar
  • 50 g marg
  • 1 egg


  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • zest 1 orange
  • 100 g sultanas
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1/2 grated nutmeg


  • Mix all the above together to make a dough, but don’t knead it.
  • Place into an oiled bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rise in a warm place, until almost doubles in size and springy to the touch. This takes anywhere from 20-60 mins.
  • Whilst it rises have a sit down, a cuppa and also mix together the second stage of ingredients, the filling.
  • Mix this fruity bunch into the dough and leave it to rise once more.
  • I left mine most of the afternoon. Leaving it longer than needed won’t harm it. Then shape into rounds, about 12, and get ready for the creative bit.
  • Mix a couple of tbsp of gluten free flour with a drizzle of water and mix to a thick paste. Pop into a piping back and pipe on your crosses.
Keyword Baking