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Citrusy Hot Cross Buns

These traditional buns with a delicate orange flavor are always on our Easter menu. But my family enjoys them so much that I also prepare them throughout the year.
  • Total Time
    Prep: 35 min. + rising Bake: 20 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    2 dozen


  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 3/4 cup warm whole milk (110° to 115°)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 4-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • ICING:
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons butter, softened
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 to 4 teaspoons whole milk


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, sugar, eggs, butter, salt, cinnamon and allspice and 3 cups of flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in raisins, lemon and orange zest and enough flour to form a soft dough.
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide into 24 pieces. Shape each into a ball. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  • Beat remaining egg with water; brush over rolls. Bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes or until browned. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
  • For icing, combine sugar, butter, vanilla and enough milk to achieve desired consistency. Pipe an "X" on top of each bun.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 175 calories, 4g fat (2g saturated fat), 35mg cholesterol, 140mg sodium, 31g carbohydrate (12g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.
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