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Lemon-Cherry Hot Cross Buns

  • Total Time: 2 hours 50 mins
  • Yield: 20 1x




  • 1 1/2 cups lukewarm milk
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp yeast
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup dried cherries
  • 1/4 cup candied lemon peel


  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp warm water


  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla


  1. Combine milk, butter, sugar, egg, yeast, lemon zest and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Let stand for 5 minutes to allow the yeast to dissolve.
  2. Add remaining dough ingredients, and stir until dough comes together. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until dough is soft and elastic, but still slightly sticky. Place in a large lightly oiled bowl, turning to coat the top; cover with a damp cloth and place in a warm, draft-free place to rise until doubled in size, about 90 minutes.
  3. Turn dough out onto a clean surface, and divide into 20 evenly-sized pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, and place in a greased 9x13 pan (you can also use two 9" round pans, if you prefer). Cover with a damp cloth and set aside to rise for 45 minutes.
  4. Bake in a preheated 375F oven for 30-35 minutes, or until buns are golden brown.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare glaze by combining sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Brush onto the buns as soon as they come out of the oven, and set aside to cool.
  6. While buns are cooling, prepare the icing by stirring together icing sugar, lemon juice and vanilla until smooth. Scoop into a piping bag (or McGuiver one by snipping off one of the bottom corners of a sandwich bag), and pipe an icing cross onto the top of each bun.
  • Prep Time: 2 hours 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins