Easter is just around the corner, so what is more traditional than hot cross buns? This recipe uses tangzhong method, therefore the buns stay fresh, soft for many days.

This is my first time making hot cross buns…I used the same method that I have been using for a while…water roux…and added some orange zest to give a citrus kick…therefore these simple hot cross buns recipe has an Asian twist…it is glazed with simple sugar to give a shiny look.

This is a very simple recipe if you are planning to make hot cross buns…and it is great for anytime of the year as well. In spite to the superstition, hot cross buns baked on Good Friday would never go moldy, and could be kept as charms from one year to the next…I would not keep them for this long…but for a few days, I can assure you that the buns will stay fresh, soft and cotton like as out of the oven.

Again, this recipe is very flexible…you can color, I mean flavor the buns according to your palate…by adding dry fruits, spices… anything you desire…make it simple or majestic…


Water roux or Tangzhong

  • 75 ml of water
  • 15 g of bread flour


  • 1 ½ cups bread flour
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon dry milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1½ teaspoon dry yeast
  • 1 large egg and complete to 100 ml with water


  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup water

Sugar Glaze

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water


Water roux

Mix flour and water in a small saucepan. Cook over low to medium heat, stirring constantly until it reaches 65C/149F. The mix will turn to a paste and you can see the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat, cover with a saran wrap film over the paste and leave until lukewarm.


Add the water roux and all the dough ingredients, except the butter to the bread machine bucket according to the manufacture’s guideline. Let the dough cycle run to the end.

Add the butter and run the dough cycle again, make sure that the dough reaches a thin membrane. The dough will be slightly sticky.

Remove from the dough from the bread machine bucket and let the dough rise for approximately 2 hours in a cover container or until it double its initial volume.

Punch down the dough and split into two, then each half into 2 until 16 little balls. Place the little rolls into a bread pan and let is rise until the size has double.

For the cross, mix the all-purpose flour with the water and pipe onto each bun. First horizontally across the buns and then vertically.

Bake in a preheated oven for approximately 20 to 25 minutes at 350F. In the meantime prepare the sugar glaze by adding the sugar to the boiling water, mix until all the sugar is dissolved.

Brush the sugar glaze on the bun as soon you take the buns out of the oven.

Serve warm or cold. The buns will be still very soft up to 3 days.

If you enjoy this simple recipe of Asian inspired hot cross buns, you might want to check on Asian Pumpkin Chia Sandwich Bread or Chocolate Layered Buns.

Did you know that originally hot cross buns were traditionally eaten on Good Friday? The yeast dough were made with lots of spices, such as cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves. According to superstition

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful week!