Cross buns: gluten, dairy, egg, and yeast free

This year, I wanted to try new baking as part of our Easter dinner in lockdown with my husband. I have extra time, and it would help the day seem more celebratory if special never-before-have-I-made comfort food were involved. I decided to give cross buns a try. It seemed like a perfect Easter dessert to add with pot roast (can’t stomach ham too well, either).

Related true story: In 1993 I started taking piano lessons. “Hot Cross Buns” was one of the first songs I learned. Since there wasn’t a picture in the book and I hadn’t grown up eating them, I just assumed it was a silly song about angry dinner rolls.

Anyway, after doing some research of recipes on Pinterest, and finding my pantry devoid of yeast (which almost every recipe called for), I modified my roll/scone recipe for a simple cross bun. It baked up well and the cinnamon-spice combination is mouthwatering. Traditional cross bun eaters take note, though. This is a simple recipe from someone who did not grow up eating cross buns (see story above) and who is missing a couple key ingredients from her pantry. 🤷🏼‍♀️ One addition that I would recommend is orange zest or extract, especially in the glaze. These would also taste good with dried cranberries and dried cherries. 😋

Cross Buns


  • 1 1/2 c. Bob’s Red Mill 1-1 baking flour in the blue bag
  • 1/2 c. White rice flour
  • 1 c. Sweet Sorghum flour
  • 1/2 c. Sugar
  • 4 TBS Arrowroot starch
  • 1 heaping TBS Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. Ground Nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. Allspice
  • 1 scant c. Coconut cream (let sit in can on counter a few days before opening and scoop thick part only off top)
  • 3/4 c. “Coconut Cream Water” (mix the remaining cream and coconut liquid back together. You can also ise this for the glaze
  • Glaze: 2 TBS. coconut water whisked with 2/3 c. Powdered sugar
  • Icing for cross: 1-2 TBS. coconut water whisked with 1 c. Powdered sugar


  • Preheat oven to 390 F.
  • Whisk together dry ingredients.
  • Stir in coconut cream and coconut cream water. Stir or mix with hands. If the batter is too sticky, add a dusting of flour.
  • Roll dough into smooth balls and place on cookie sheet. I made 13 buns with this recipe.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes, until roll are firm to the touch. Let cool 5-10 minutes before glazing.
  • Mix glaze and brush over rolls. Allow it to harden completely before adding the icing cross. These can be reheated (10-15 seconds) without damaging the glaze or icing.
  • Enjoy!

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