This hot cross buns recipe with icing is not only fluffy and perfectly sweet, but they're also grain-free, gluten-free, and paleo! A perfect breakfast or dessert for Easter or any holiday season.
This guest post is from Tisha Riman, a nutritionist, food stylist, recipe developer and the blogger behind The Nourished Mind: where self-care meets nutrition. There you’ll find lots of gluten-free recipes, as well as tips on how to improve gut health, practice intuitive eating and reduce stress. Whether it’s a green smoothie or a glass of wine, Tisha believes that a well-balanced lifestyle is one that you actually enjoy. Over to you, Tisha!
These hot cross buns are everything you hope them to be: fluffy, warm, fruity. Oh, and they’re totally grain-free.
Okay, maybe that last one took you by surprise, but hear me out. I’m a big believer that you should absolutely enjoy your favorite foods, without rules and restrictions. (In fact, I’m launching an entire program around this, which you can check out here.) We’re deeply emotionally connected to our food (especially family favorites like hot cross buns), and food can nourish us in more ways than just its nutritional content. Food is a form of love, of tradition, of gathering. (And given this last year, we could all use a little more of that, right?)
But I also know for many of us, what’s in our food matters. Maybe you’re Celiac, or have an autoimmune condition. Maybe someone in your family or friend’s group follows a specific diet, and you still want them to enjoy those favorite comfort foods, while being mindful of the ingredients.
If so, this recipe is for you. This recipe combines all my favorite things about gluten-free baking: it’s quick, it takes minimal ingredients (this recipe is all spices, take a look!), and it’s still tasty.
The trick, I’ve found, is the use of almond flour. While there’s nothing wrong with gluten-free flours like rice, teff or buckwheat (and in fact, I use all of them in my baking), I love almond flour because it produces a crumb very similar to traditional wheat products. This is especially true in baked goods like cake or cookies.
Now buns? They’re a little finicky, because buns have a light fluffiness from gluten that’s hard to replicate with gluten-free baking. But this recipe comes pretty darn close, if I do say so myself.
It uses ground psyllium husks and whipped egg whites to produce a lighter, fluffier bun that pulls just the right amount when you bite into it—no crumbly mess here!
How To Make Grain-Free Hot Crossed Buns
This recipe comes together super quickly. First, boil your water.
While it boils, you’ll want to whisk all of your dry ingredients together and break down any clumps.
In a different bowl, use a hand mixer to whisk together the eggs, apple cider vinegar, vanilla and salt. You’re looking for a soft peak here, that can just hold its shape.
Next, you’ll combine your wet into dry ingredients and add the water. You can use a wooden spoon to get the stirring started (the water is hot, so careful!) but I like to use my hands to fully knead it together once the water cools.
Finally, stir in whatever dried fruit (if any) you’d like. I chose my favorites, cranberries and apricots, because I also love the coloring it adds to the buns.
Divide your dough into 6 round buns, wash with egg yolk and bake! Voila. Easy peasy.
Once they’ve baked, make the coconut butter glaze and pipe your buns.
Key Ingredients for Hot Crossed Buns
- Almond flour
- Ground Psyllium Husks (you can find this at most health food stores. If you can’t find ground, simply buy whole and grind with a coffee grinder or blender!)
- Egg whites
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Coconut Butter
How To Serve Hot Crossed Buns
Personally, I think these taste the best when you cut them in half and broil them, face up, in the oven until golden and slather with butter. Seriously, yum.
You can make these up to 3 days in advance, just be sure to keep them refrigerated and covered. Once ready to serve, simply cut in half and heat up.
Made with love,
Ps. Want to learn how to eat intuitively while still focusing on your health? Get on the waitlist for my 6-week program The Nourished Body Reset where we’ll be breaking down how to tame your hunger and restore your metabolism while tapping into your own intuition and body signals. You can join the waitlist here.
Grain-Free Hot Cross Buns
For the glaze:
- 2 Tbsp coconut butter
- 1 Tbsp honey (or maple syrup)
- 1 Tbsp water
For the buns:
- Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small pot or kettle, bring water to a boil.
- In a large bowl, mix together almond flour, ground psyllium, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.
- In a medium bowl, use a hand mixer to whisk together egg whites, apple cider vinegar, vanilla and salt until soft peaks form.
- Stir in hot water and egg mixture to dry ingredients, until fully combined. Add in cranberries and chopped apricots.
- Roll dough into 6 round buns and place on the baking sheet, evenly spaced.
- Brush with egg yolk. Bake 40-50 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. Cool completely.
For the glaze:
- In a small pan, melt together all ingredients.
- Pour into a piping bag and pipe onto the buns, or use a spoon and drizzle on top.