Presented By
Paul Cutter

Delicious and indulgent, this classic recipe combines aromatic spices with honey and citrus flavors to create hot cross buns that melt in your mouth and are perfect for Easter morning.

These hot cross buns are made from the perfect balance of wholemeal spelt and rye flour, similar to how my great Polish aunt used to make her brioche. The dough is enriched with good quality extra-virgin olive oil that marries perfectly with the sophisticated and robust flavor of the rye. I’ve then added generous amounts of plump raisins and dried apricots so that each mouthful has a burst of flavor.

Make a double batch because these won’t last long! This tasty treat is not very difficult to create, and even the dough is very simple. After combining the ingredients, the most important part is to allow the buns to rest and develop in the fridge overnight for at least 12 hours.

This recipe is from my cookbook Healthy Baking.


  • 330 g (11 ½ oz / 2 ¾ cups) wholemeal spelt flour
  • 50 g (1 ¾ oz / ½ cup) rye flour
  • 10 g (1/4 oz) fresh yeast or 5 g (2 teaspoons) dried yeast
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 250 ml (8 ¾ fl oz /1 cup) milk of your choice
  • 2 free range eggs
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 150 ml (5 ¼ fl oz) extra virgin olive oil
  • 300 g (10 ½ oz / 2 cups) raisins or golden sultanas
  • 100 g (3 ½ oz) dried chopped apricots
  • 100 g (3 ½ oz) good quality 70% dark eating chocolate, melted


  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons of milk


Start this recipe the day before.

Day 1

  1. Combine the flours, yeast, honey, milk, eggs, orange zest, vanilla, sea salt, cinnamon and ginger into the bowl of your bench top mixer
  2. Mix with a dough hook at low speed until combined, then increase the speed to medium and mix further for 8 minutes until smooth
  3. Add the olive oil slowly, a little at a time, until incorporated into the dough
  4. Mix the raisins and apricots gently through the dough
  5. Turn off your mixer and remove the bowl
  6. Cover your bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rest at room temperature for about 1 hour
  7. Place the dough in the fridge overnight to rest and develop for 12 hours. This dough is quite sturdy, so if you go over 12 hours, that’s ok, so long as you cook the dough the following day. Resting also loosens up the dough so you end up with a light and fluffy hot cross bun

Day 2

  1. Divide the dough into 24 even size portions
  2. Leave to set in a warm place for about 1 ½ – 2 hours. This depends on the warmth of your kitchen. I usually turn the oven on just to warm the kitchen to help them prove, and the dough should at least double in size
  3. Preheat your oven to 180°C fan-forced (360°F)
  4. Make an egg wash by combining the egg and milk
  5. Brush tops of the buns with the egg wash
  6. Bake for 35 – 40 minutes or until baked through and golden
  7. Cool slightly
  8. Melt chocolate then pipe over the buns before serving

NOTES + INSPIRATION: Add two finely diced roasted apples, which combines wonderfully with the raisins before baking. Serve warm or toasted and enjoy.

Teresa Cutter, founder of The Healthy Chef, is an author, nutritionist and classically trained chef. You can find more of Cutter’s tips and recipes on her website, app, eBooks and Instagram.

My main goal at The Healthy Chef is to get people cooking and eating healthier. Eat natural foods, focus on fresh fruits and vegetables and just keep it simple.” — Teresa Cutter

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