Dutch Oven Hot Cross Buns

Golden brown fully baked hot cross buns with lighter crosses on each bun, nestled in a black Dutch oven with one bun removed.

Hot cross buns are a spiced sweet bun traditionally eaten on Good Friday. They are enjoyed across the world as a delicious breakfast, brunch, or snack

Particularly popular in Australia where the Easter long weekend is one of the best camping weekends of the year, this is a great recipe to cook while outdoors. But it is also a great treat all year round.

Hot cross buns have a signature cross on top, which is a throwback in history to when it was felt that the population was becoming too fat. So the church would only allow sweet fruit rolls to be made on particular days and celebrations. The cross indicates that the rolls met those requirements. Now, this cross only remains in Easter traditions.

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Close up of shaped hot cross bun dough balls nestled together with crosses being piped on before baking.
Prepare a smooth flour paste and pipe the crosses onto the dough balls before baking.
Steam coming off fully baked, golden brown hot cross buns in black Dutch oven, a person's hand removing the lid covered in coals.
Bake the buns in the preheated Dutch oven for 25 minutes, or until cooked through.
Person's hands kneading hot cross bun dough on lightly floured surface.
Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for about five minutes until smooth and elastic.
Close up of a single, fully baked hot cross bun with golden brown top.
Hot cross buns are delicious for breakfast, brunch, or a treat at any time.
Golden brown fully baked hot cross buns with lighter crosses on each bun, nestled in a black Dutch oven with one bun removed.
Hot cross buns are a spiced sweet bun traditionally eaten on Good Friday.

Dutch Oven Hot Cross Buns Recipe

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Golden brown fully baked hot cross buns with lighter crosses on each bun, nestled in a black Dutch oven with one bun removed.
Hot Cross Buns are spiced sweet buns eaten on Good Friday. As Easter long weekend is a great camping weekend in many countries this is a must-cook recipe each year.
Preparation 1 hour
Cook 25 minutes
Ready in 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 12 Servings
CourseBreakfast
InfluenceEuropean
DifficultySeasoned
MethodBake
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Ingredients

Buns

  • 1 1/3 cups warm milk (310ml) (110 degrees F | 43 degrees C)
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar (60g)
  • 2 sachets dried active yeast (about 4 teaspoons) (7g)
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (600g)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup butter (60g)
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins or sultanas
  • 2 eggs

Garnish

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (60g)
  • 1/4 cup water (60ml)
  • 2 tablespoons apricot jam warmed and strained

Equipment

  • 12 inch Dutch oven

Directions

Buns

  • In a bowl, whisk together the milk, sugar, and yeast until all the sugar has dissolved. Cover and set aside until the yeast has activated and the mixture has become frothy; about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg. With your fingers rub in the butter until the result looks like fine breadcrumbs.
  • Stir the raisins, eggs, and frothy yeast mixture into the flour mixture, then mix until well combined.
  • On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for about 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Add the dough to a large, slightly greased bowl then cover with plastic wrap. Leave in a warm place for 45 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
  • Remove the risen dough from the bowl and ‘punch down’. Slightly knead, then divide into 12 balls.
  • Place the balls (buns) onto a greased tray, cover with plastic wrap, then leave in a warm place to rise while you heat the Dutch oven.
  • Preheat the Dutch oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C), then add the dough balls.

Garnish

  • Whisk together the flour and water to a smooth paste. Place in a disposable snap-lock bag and cut off the tip. Using the bag, pipe a cross on the top of each bun. 
  • Bake the buns in the preheated Dutch oven for 25 minutes, or until cooked through.
  • Straight after removing the buns from the oven brush with the warmed apricot jam.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 283kcalCarbohydrates: 52gProtein: 6gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 41mgSodium: 253mgPotassium: 251mgFiber: 3gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 210IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 54mgIron: 2mg

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About Saffron Hodgson

Outdoor cooking has been Saffron’s passion since she was young, often choosing to go camping and cook hearty meals over fire rather than stay inside, watch TV, and eat take-out. Today she is the driving force of Bush Cooking bringing the skills of cooking outdoors to thousands of people.

Learn more about Saffron Hodgson
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