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Grandma’s Favorite Hot Cross Buns

My husband's Grandma used to make these every year for Good Friday, and I carry on the tradition with my own version of her recipe. I make 6 dozen every year, and they all disappear. —Jill Evely, Wilmore, Kentucky
  • Total Time
    Prep: 45 min. + rising Bake: 15 min./batch
  • Makes
    6 dozen


  • 4 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 3 cups warm 2% milk (110° to 115°)
  • 2 cups canola oil
  • 8 large eggs, room temperature
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature, separated
  • 1-1/3 cups sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 13 to 15 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2-2/3 cups raisins
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • ICING:
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons 2% milk


  • In a very large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm milk. Add oil, eggs, egg yolks, sugar, cinnamon, salt, cardamom, yeast mixture and 10 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a firm dough. Stir in raisins.
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/4 hours.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Divide into 72 pieces; shape each into a ball. Place 2 in. apart in 4 greased 15x10x1-in. baking pans. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 40 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375°. Combine egg whites and water; brush over tops. Bake 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. For icing, combine confectioners' sugar, butter and enough milk to achieve desired consistency. Pipe a cross on top of each bun.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 219 calories, 8g fat (1g saturated fat), 37mg cholesterol, 120mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate (12g sugars, 2g fiber), 5g protein.

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  • kimmerrou
    Apr 21, 2019

    I made these yesterday for Easter (today) and I only made half of the recipe- and they were FABULOUS! Light and yummy and I love the amount of spice was scrumptious.

  • khegeman
    Apr 4, 2018

    Very good. I 1/4 the recipe, because I did not need 6 dozen.

  • fayida
    Feb 29, 2016

    I wonder do you really mean 2 CUPS of oil? It seems a lot compared to other recipes for Hot Cross buns

  • Kate1718
    Feb 13, 2016

    I haven't tried to bake these yet but I will soon. I wonder if substituting coconut oil for the canola oil would work. I hate to use that stuff, now that we know it's so bad for ya.

  • lori4jesus
    Apr 2, 2015

    This is a great recipe! I think that it's the best that I have ever eaten. I added two cups of sugar and heaping teaspoons of the cinnamon and cardamom. We like the sweeter dough and more spice. I also added diced candied pineapple and mango with the raisins for more flavor. I added at least 2 cups candied pineapple and mango. Made a full recipe and shared!

  • shawnba
    Apr 18, 2014

    I have made this recipe several times now, and my family's likes it a lot!! The first time I made the full recipe, and it does make a full 6 dozen, too many for my family of 4. I have since cut it in half and still get 3 dozen 2 oz rolls. It has become an Easter favorite!!

  • aj4mcaffee
    Mar 26, 2013

    No comment left

  • AlabasterShelf
    Mar 22, 2013

    No comment left

  • msmb
    Mar 21, 2013

    I am an experienced bread maker and have never had anything turn out like this. The recipe only made 38 instead of 72 and they looked nothing like the picture. I have reviewed the recipe and cannot see where I went wrong. Also the taste is a big thumbs down.

  • PrairieKari
    Apr 6, 2012

    No comment left