Skip to main content

I remember back in early January, just a few days after the Christmas festivities, I spotted the first of the shiny Easter eggs on the supermarket shelf and freshly baked hot cross buns in the bakery section. The tinsel was barely down and yet here I was, being reminded that Easter was ‘just around the corner’ and being tempted to start sampling these goodies VERY ahead of time!

It got me thinking that by the time Easter actually rolls around, surely most of us will be a bit over the chocolate and soft buns with sugar glaze (unless of course you are like my young kids who could never tire of these delights)? So I decided to create my own version of a hot cross bun, one that would provide a good dose of whole grain goodness and more importantly, stand out in taste, texture and yummy goodness compared to the countless buns that have been in the supermarket for way too long!

I combined two of my favourite whole grain cooking flours (wholemeal spelt flour and BARLEYmax™ flour) together with cranberries, sultanas, orange peel, zest and yummy spices to create this delicious (and very nutritious!) healthy hot cross bun. I couldn’t work out how to do the crosses (I mean, you can’t have a bun without the crosses!) until my 6 year old son came up with the ingenious idea of using apple strips, which worked a treat!

This recipe is pretty straight forward and these buns don’t take too long to prepare, so you can easily whip up a batch (or a few) for your Easter celebrations and enjoy with butter, jam or just straight up! One word of warning though, they probably won’t last very long and you may have everyone coming back for seconds!


  • ¾ cup BARLEYmax™ flour
  • ¾ cup wholemeal spelt flour
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cup mixed dried fruit (I used cranberries, sultanas and orange peel)
  • Grated zest of one orange
  • Thin slices of peeled apple




  1. Preheat an oven to 160°C and grease a 12-hole muffin tray.
  2. Sift flours into a large bowl and make a well in the centre.
  3. In a blender, mix the milk, maple syrup, butter, egg, baking powder, bicarb of soda, lemon juice, spices and vanilla.
  4. Gently fold through the dried fruit and orange zest.
  5. Add this mixture to the flour and fold through until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.
  6. Spoon into the muffin tray (you can use muffin cases if you prefer).
  7. Place the apple strips on top to form a cross.
  8. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cooked through (should be firm to touch).
  9. Enjoy hot out of the oven or store in an airtight container for a few days (although they probably won’t last that long!).

If you’d like to make these delicious BARLEYmax™ Hot Cross Buns, drop us an email here and we’ll send you the BARLEYmax™ flour you require for the recipe.

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy and safe Easter on behalf of the BARLEYmax™ Team!

Teri Lichtenstein
Accredited Practicing Dietitian
The Healthy Grain Brand Ambassador

Intended as general advice only. Consult your health care professional to discuss any specific concerns.

Leave a Reply