Guilt-less Desserts & Treats for your Family

Hot Cross Buns Gluten Free, Paleo

The best thing about Easter is the food!

Sure, Christmas has presents and a solar-powered reindeer but Easter has eggs, bunnies and hot cross buns; and it’s ok to stat eating them months in advance (or at least that’s when they start selling them in the shops).

Healthier Hot Cross Buns are a bit like the Easter Bunny himself; elusive and potentially fictional. They’re usually better suited to breaking windows.

These Hot Cross Buns are Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Processed Sugar Free and
Paleo… aka Awesome.


They are not hard to make but are time consuming due to the rising times required. I have used yeast in this recipe as you would in a traditional recipe, but without the gluten the yeast doesn’t rise like you would expect. The yeast does play another role in this recipe and that is to create the texture you would expect from a Hot Cross Bun. I tried this recipe yeast-less and the buns turned out more like a scone than a bun. Keep the yeast, kneads a little and eat!

 Hot-cross buns,
Hot-cross buns,
One a penny, two a penny,
Hot-cross buns Gluten Free Paleo.

Hot-cross buns,
Hot-cross buns,
If you have no daughters,
Give them to your sons.


If you need more healthier Easter cooking inspiration you need ‘Mummy Made.It A Healthy Easter’. There’s over 30 Hot Cross Buns, Chocolate and Carrot desserts and treats and it can be yours as an instant download for just $5. Get your copy here.


Hot Cross Buns (Gluten Free, Paleo)

A Classic Easter treat that is now even good for you!
Prep Time3 hrs
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time3 hrs 35 mins
Servings: 9


Hot Cross Buns

  • 1/2 cup Milk of choice
  • 1/2 cup Apple Sauce see recipe below
  • 2 1/4 teaspoon Yeast
  • 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon Orange zest
  • 1/2 cup + 1 Tablespoon Coconut Flour
  • 1 1/4 cup Almond Meal
  • 1/2 cup Arrowroot plus1/4 cup extra for kneading
  • 1 teaspoons Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Mixed Spice
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • Dash of Nutmeg
  • 1 cup Dried Mixed Fruit can substitute for sultanas or currents

Cross Paste

  • 1 Tablespoon Almond Meal
  • 3 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon Arrowroot
  • 2 Tablespoons Water


  • 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons Water
  • 1 Tablespoon Gelatine
  • Dash Of Mixed Spice

Apple Sauce

  • 4 apples peeled and cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup water


Hot Cross Buns

  • Heat the milk in a saucepan over medium heat to a lukewarm temperature.
  • Put the maple syrup, yeast, salt, apple sauce, vanilla extract, zests and eggs in a bowl of a kitchen stand mixer with a dough hook attached. Pour the warm milk into the bowl and turn the mixer to low. (if you don't have a dough hook attachment use a normal beating attachment)
  • Mix until fully combined (1-2 minutes)
  • In a separate bowl sift the dry ingredients together.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the hook attachment and mix until smooth (4 min).
  • You may need to scrape the edges of the bowl 2-3 times as it is a very sticky mixture.
  • Add the mixed fruit and mix until incorporated.
  • Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a well greased bench.
  • Add the extra arrowroot and knead the dough until the extra arrowroot is combined.
  • This can be quite messy as the dough is sticky and not easy to knead.
  • It helps to keep your hands and the bench well greased.
  • Knead only for 2 minutes (or until you start going crazy at the sticky mixture).
  • Place the dough into a greased bowl. Cover the bowl with a cloth and place in a warm place for 1 hour.
  • Ideally this will be in a sunny spot, but if the weather is against you go to plan B or C
  • Plan B; turn the oven to the lowest temperature. Once reached, turn the oven off and open the oven door slightly. Wait 5-10 minutes and place the covered bowl in the oven for 1 hour.
  • Plan C; if you have a special oven with bright lights or a defrost mode it can be used to generate heat.
  • After 1 hour, evenly divide the dough into 10 pieces.
  • Form each piece into a ball and place on a lined and greased baking tray.
  • Cover the tray with a cloth and place back in the warm place for 90 minutes.
  • After 75 minutes preheat the oven to 175C/350F.
  • Make the Cross Paste (see recipe below).
  • Pour the paste into a ziplock bag or piping bag. Cut a small slit in the bottom of the bag and make a cross on each bun.
  • The paste is quite thick and will need to be used as soon as it is made. Resist all temptation to water it down too much as it will be too runny then and not form a cross on the bun.
  • When the oven is at temperature, place the Hot Cross Buns on the middle rack and bake for 35 minutes.
  • At 30 minutes make the Glaze (see the recipe below).
  • After 35 minutes remove the Hot Cross Buns from the oven and immediately baste with the hot glaze.
  • The Hot Cross Buns are best eaten within 36 hours of baking.

Cross Paste

  • Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and add the water whilst stirring.
  • The paste will become quite thick like concrete.
  • Place the paste in a ziplock bag or piping bag.


  • Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to the boil whilst whisking.
  • Use immediately.

Apple Sauce

  • Place apples and water in saucepan.
  • Cover with lid. Bring to boil, then simmer over a medium for 7-10 minutes, or until apple is soft.
  • Store in fridge

3 Comments to Hot Cross Buns Gluten Free, Paleo

  1. I made these (along with the choc orange HCBs) today. The flavour is amazing, just like traditional buns, the texture is not what i was expecting. It was good, don’t get me wrong, and i know it will never be like wheat based buns but my mixture was quite wet, still sticky but didnt really hold much shape, i ended up with 2cm high discs. I expected it to turn out more like the choc orange dough. Hav i done something wrong or is this dough just that different

    • It should be the same Jes. Make sure you add the extra 1/4 cup of Arrowroot in when kneading the dough. It really needs it. If it is still a bit wet add an extra tablespoon. The dough buns should be able to hold theit shape (like the chocolate ones).

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