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close up of chocolate hot cross buns in a rectangle ceramic dish

Chocolate Hot Cross Buns

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5 from 3 reviews

Deliciously soft and full of chocolate chunks these Chocolate Hot Cross Buns are perfect for your Easter Brunch! Step-by-step photos teach you how to make these classic buns! Filled with warm spices and orange zest, easily made the night before and baked fresh in the morning! We enjoy these hot cross buns all year round! 

  • Total Time: 3 hours 56 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x


Units Scale
  • 6oz (3/4 Cup) Warmed Milk (120F/49C)
  • 3 Large Eggs, at room temp.
  • 3oz (6 Tablespoons) Butter, melted
  • 2 Teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 500 grams (4 Cups) All-Purpose Flour/ Plain Flour
  • 100 grams (1/2 Cup) Granulated Sugar
  • 2 1/4 Teaspoons (1 American Packet) Rapid-Rise Yeast
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg, Cloves, Ginger
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Allspice
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Orange Zest, roughly 2 medium oranges
  • 6oz Semi-Sweet or Dark Chocolate Chunks


  • 1 Large Egg
  • Splash of Water
  • 62 grams (1/2 Cup) All-Purpose Flour/ Plain Flour
  • 2oz (1/4 Cup) Water


  1. In a medium bowl add warm milk, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla extract. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook or a large bowl add the flour, granulated sugar, yeast, salt, and spices, mix for 1 minute. With the mixer on low slowly add the milk mixture and continue mixing until the dough comes together. Turn the mixer speed to medium-high and let the dough hook work the dough for roughly ten minutes or so. If you are doing this by hand expect it to take closer to 15 minutes. 
  2. While dough is kneading grease a large bowl and set aside. 
  3. Once the dough is smooth and elastic hand knead in the orange zest and chocolate chunks. Place dough in greased bowl and flip dough over so all the surface of the dough is greased, place a tea towel or plastic wrap on top and let the dough rise until doubled in size, roughly 2 hours*
  4. After dough has doubled in size turn out on to a floured surface and cut into 12 equal pieces. I cut it into 4 pieces then each piece into 3 creating 12. Grease a 9"X13" pan and set aside. Take each piece and turn into a smooth ball by pinching each corner into the center.  Place seam side down and repeat with remaining pieces. Cover with a tea towel or plastic wrap and place in a warm environment to rise until doubled in size, and the dough balls are now touching each other. Roughly 1 hour. 
  5. When buns have risen, preheat oven to 350F/180C. In a small bowl mix together the egg and water, using a pastry brush brush the tops of each roll. 
  6. In another small bowl mix together the flour and water to make a flour paste, once it is in a paste transfer to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip- pipe a horizontal line down the center of each row of rolls then pipe vertical rows down the center of each roll to create the crosses. Place in preheated oven and bake for 23-26 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool for 20 minutes before attempting to break apart. Best served with warm with butter.


*I turn my oven on to 200F and then turn it off and place the dough bowl in the oven so the dough can rise in a warm environment. 

  • Author: Elizabeth I Confessions of a Baking Queen
  • Prep Time: 3 Hours 30 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 26 Minutes
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: English
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