Thursday, 28 March 2013

Chocolate Hot Cross Buns

Happy Easter everyone!

Today I have a final Easter recipe for you - chocolate hot cross buns. This recipe is technically a throwback to last year, but I am reposting it with better pictures.

I'm now off to spend the weekend with my family (brother, parents and Dad's parents) but will be back next week for my uni break. Hope everyone is well!

So, about these chocolate hot cross buns. They are a perfect Easter treat - for your kids, for you, for brunch, for breakfast, for a snack; hell, for anytime and anyone. So, while they are not healthy, I promise you the taste makes up for it. Besides, a little bit of chocolate never hurt anyone.

This is a brilliant recipe for Easter. We had ours with cold orange juice, which was amazing, and some Carmello and Malteser eggs. Obviously, as this is an Easter themed treat, you can serve it with anything you want – but we loved having ours as a mini-brunch.

Recipe adapted from: Achieve Success

Makes 12 hot cross buns.

You will need:
-          1 ½ cups warm milk (I warmed mine in the microwave for about 45 seconds)
-          2 sachets of dried yeast (mine were 7g each)
-          ½ tsp salt
-          ½ tsp sugar
-          4 cups self raising flour
-          1 tbsp cocoa
-          1 tsp cinnamon
-          2 tbsp sugar
-          55 g butter, melted
-          1 egg
-          1 cup chocolate chips (I used ¼ cup dark (bittersweet) chips, ¾ cup milk chocolate chips)
-          1/4 cup water
-          1 tbsp sugar
-          Nutella / chocolate ganache (Recipes of mine which include ganache are: Malteser Brownies and Roasted Cherry Brownies with Roasted Cherry Ganache

What to do:

In a large bowl combine milk, yeast, salt and ½ tsp sugar in a large bowl. You have to mix this together well – I prefer to use a wooden spoon. Make sure the yeast is well mixed in. Cover loosely with plastic and leave bowl in a warm spot for 10 minutes or until the mixture is slightly bubbled on top. Mine was not very frothy/bubbly, but I left it for around 12 minutes and there were bubbles on the top of the mixture.

In another large bowl, sift flour, cocoa and cinnamon together. Add the 2 tbsp of sugar, frothy yeast mixture, butter and egg. Stir until the mixture comes together. It will be a thick, shaggy dough and very sticky. Turn the mixture out onto a well floured bench. Make sure your hands are well floured. Knead the dough until it is smooth. I had to knead mine for 10-15 minutes. It actually wasn’t working for a while, so if this happens for you, just do what I did – leave the dough for a minute or two and let it breathe. Then, retry. My dough wasn’t perfectly smooth, it was still a little sticky but it stuck together.

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl (I simply sprayed mine heavily with coconut oil). Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap. Leave the dough in a warm place so the dough will rise. I left mine for about 1 hour 10 minutes, but leave for up to 1 hour 30 minutes if the dough has not doubled in size. Mine doubled very quickly – in fact it rose over the bowl and stuck to the plastic. There is nothing wrong with this, it means you’ve done a good job. I went for a run while my dough was rising.

Once the dough has doubled in size, punch it down to its original size with your fist. This is the best bit of the recipe – it’s so much fun.

Turn down on to a floured surface and add the chocolate chips slowly, kneading the bread until the chips are evenly spread throughout the mixture. 
On a tray or in a large, deep pan, divide the mixture into twelve equal portions to make twelve balls of dough. Mine were not perfectly circular – not at all. But it doesn’t really matter, it still looks good. Make sure you place the balls about 1 cm apart, as the dough has to rise one more time.

Cover the balls with plastic wrap and leave the pan in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size. This takes about 30 minutes. I left mine for a good 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Bake the buns for 15 – 20 minutes. The top of the buns will be a golden brown and when a skewer is inserted into the dough it should come out clean. This may take less time depending on your oven – keep a good eye on it.

If you want to glaze the muffins, simply boil the water with the remaining 1 tbsp of sugar for about 3 minutes. Then brush the sugar mixture over the warm muffins.

After this, while the muffins are warm, make the crosses. I used a knife and Nutella to simply spread the nutella over the buns to make a cross. I also used, for these pictures, homemade ganache, which I simply placed in a zip lock bag, pushed down to one corner, cut the corner of the zip lock bag off, and squeezed out the ganache to make the crosses.

Serve warm. You can serve them at warm temperature, but warm, when the chocolate chips melt out into your mouth, is so much better. These buns can be reheated easily. I don’t know how long they last in the fridge, because we ate them all.


  1. These look gorgeous! I made some cinnamon and apple hot cross buns yesterday.

    1. Oh cinnamon and apple ones sound amazing! Wish I had thought of that! :)

  2. I wish I would have seen the recipe for these before Easter .... but I guess these will taste great anytime of the year, rigt? They really do like delicious!!!

    1. Haha, I made them for Easter but I would totally make them any other time and just not do crosses so they seem less Easter-y.