Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Hot Cross Buns

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Hot Cross Buns, Quirky Cooking

[Originally posted March 2014, updated 22 March, 2023. The original version had only 1 Tbsp psyllium husk and the mixture was wetter so I baked the ‘buns’ in muffin cups. I’ve added more psyllium husk to the updated recipe so that the mixture can be rolled into balls and baked as buns.]

The other day I thought I’d have another go at making gluten and dairy free hot cross buns, as I wasn’t completely happy with my last attempt. Since I’m finding I react more and more to gluten these days, my spelt recipe is out for me, so I’ve had to create a gluten-free version.

I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one craving sweet, spicy hot cross buns, and although gluten-free buns are never going to be quite as soft and fluffy as the spelt or wheat versions, they are delicious, especially hot out of the oven, and are totally satisfying my craving!

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Hot Cross Buns, Quirky Cooking
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Hot Cross Buns, Quirky Cooking

As with most gluten-free baking, the leftovers will (by the next day) be a bit dry in texture, only good for slicing up and toasting. Although you can also use the leftovers to make a hot cross bun ‘bread and butter pudding’… YUM!

My suggestion is, make the dough, then only bake what you will eat that day – save the rest of the dough in a container in the fridge for another batch. The dough will last for about 3 days in the fridge in a sealed container. (The flavours will grow stronger as the dough sits in the fridge and if you leave it too long it will taste very yeasty, but I don’t mind that.) 

If you’re looking for my earlier Hot Cross Bun variations and recipes, you can find them here:

Grain-Free Hot Cross Muffins

Spelt Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Bun Monkey Bread (spelt)

Hot Cross Bun Pull-Apart Bread (spelt)

Gluten-Free Hot Cross Buns (2012 version)

Have a Happy Easter!

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Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Hot Cross Buns

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: QuirkyJo




  • 150g rice (uncooked), brown or white
  • 110g millet or sorghum, seeds or flour
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1 Tbsp instant yeast
  • 190g arrowroot or tapioca starch
  • 1 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp Quirky Cooking Hot Cross Bun Spice Blend, OR
    • 4 tsp ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla powder
    • 1 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
    • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 40g coconut sugar or 30g honey
  • 3 Tbsp psyllium husk
  • 2 eggs (or see below for egg free)
  • 200g coconut milk, or preferred milk
  • 150ml water
  • 40g macadamia oil or other light oil
  • 100g sultanas
  • 100g currants (or try dried sour cherries or cranberries)


  • 50g gluten-free plain flour
  • 50g water


  • juice of 1 orange (approx. 50g juice)
  • 50g coconut sugar or Rapadura
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla powder or 1/2 tsp natural vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon


  1. Place rice and millet or sorghum into Thermomix mixing bowl and mill 1 min/speed 9, or use rice and millet/sorghum flours.
  2. Add orange zest, yeast, arrowroot or tapioca starch, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, sugar, and psyllium husk, and mix 20 sec/speed 5. Scrape down sides of bowl with spatula.
  3. Add eggs, milk, water, oil, sultanas and currants and mix 20 sec/reverse/speed 4. Scrape down sides of bowl with spatula and mix another 10 sec/reverse/speed 4.
  4. Pour mixture into a large container, place lid on, and leave to rise for 2 hours at room temp.
  5. Once mixture is risen, container can either be put into the fridge to be used the next day, or you can make the buns straight away. (If you like, you can make half a batch straight away, half a batch the next day, as they are always best fresh from the oven!)

when ready to bake

  1. Mix the flour and water for the crosses in a small bowl with a fork until smooth, then pour into a small a small ziploc bag. Seal the bag and cut a very small corner off. Set aside.
  2. With wet hands, divide the dough into 12 even pieces and shaped into buns. Place onto a lined baking tray, close together, and smooth tops of buns with a little water.
  3. Cover buns loosely with a silicon wrap/cover and a tea towel over the top (to keep them moist) and leave to rise for about 45 mins, or until they have risen by a third or almost doubled. (Don’t over-rise buns or you’ll find they flatten out, and will sink in the middle once cooked.) Towards the end of the rising time, preheat oven to 200C (fan forced). Pipe crosses onto buns.
  4. Once oven is hot, place tray inside on middle shelf, and cook for 20-25 mins, or until lightly browned. Check they are cooked by gently pulling apart buns in the centre.


  1. Place all glaze ingredients into mixing bowl and cook 2 mins/Varoma temp/speed 2, (or simmer in a saucepan on the stove for a couple of minutes). Remove buns to a serving plate, then brush with the hot glaze. Serve warm.
  2. Store any leftover, cooled buns in an airtight container at room temp for 1 day. Best eaten on day of baking if you want them soft, but also delicious sliced in half and toasted under the grill.


Egg-Free Variation: Swap eggs for ‘chia eggs’ – 2 Tbsp chia seeds mixed with 6 Tbsp water.

Did you make this recipe?

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19 thoughts on “Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Hot Cross Buns

  1. ryza says:

    Hi jo,

    The alternate egg substitute could be the flaxseeds . I didnt try the same for this recipe, but it worked well for a cake i tried in the past. The proportion is 2Tbsp of flaxseed powder soaked in 6Tbsp of warm water and let it sit for 10 minutes. The mixture will become gluey like an egg.

  2. Lisa says:

    Hi Jo,

    What other flour could I try instead of rice as I’m intolerant to it, I will also be using chia seeds or flax as a egg replacement. Thanks.

  3. Vicky says:

    Hi Jo,
    These look delicious! I can’t wait to try them. However, I need to avoid rice. What would you suggest as a substitute?

  4. Liz says:

    I made the mix up and have refrigerated it to let the flavours go through 😀 I made mine fruit free as I am not only lactose (I just used lactose free milk in this recipe) and gluten free but low fodmap (to treat diagnosed IBS) and didn’t want to risk bloating due to the dried fruit. They smell amazing and can’t wait to bake them up in the morning 😀 .

    In previous years I made spelt ones but like you said, spelt doesn’t work if we become more and more sensitive to gluten. I used to be fine with spelt and now I can’t handle pretty much any gluten at all. And last year I didn’t get to have any Easter treats as I was unable to eat at all (another story all together, in short I had undiagnosed IBD in severe flare).

    I am also allergic to corn so using Xanthan is out of the question. Psyllium husks are a life saver when it comes to baking.

    Just want to say thank you for the recipe and can’t wait to try out some others.

  5. Bonnie says:

    Hi Jo!
    Just wondering what I could best substitute the brown rice and sorghum or millet with if you’re following a Paleo Diet?
    Thanks! Bonnie

  6. Zuzana says:

    Hi Jo, I am making these today ????. Is the dough supposed to be quite runny? I don’t have TM so using traditional method. Thank you.

  7. Georgie says:

    Hi Jo, made your hot cross buns yesterday and had one for breakfast this morning! Even hubby was impressed! They were great. As you mentioned, they where heavier than a ‘normal’ hot cross bun but we felt the flavors were all there! the one for breakfast was heated for about 8 second in the microwave, cut in half then buttered and it was just as good!! First time I’ve enjoyed Easter without indigestion!! Cheers!

  8. Kylie says:

    Jo, I’ve made this recipe in the past, I can’t remember the raw texture? is it dough like or runny? Would it work as the pull a part bread with orange glaze? I just realised last time I made the pull apart I could eat spelt… now I can’t!!! 🙁

  9. Shirley Bergin says:

    Looking forward to a yeast free version as that is the thing that affects me. Can have bread from sourdough but not introduced yeast

  10. Zoe says:

    I love love LOVE these hot x buns, was so excited to find the recipe two years ago and have been making them for Easters since – definitely the best GF DF recipe I’ve come across 😀

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