The Best Paleo Hot Cross Buns Recipe.


We are so excited about our paleo hot cross buns recipe! Every year it seems hot cross buns are available earlier and earlier. In fact we’re pretty sure we spotted hot cross buns the day after Christmas at our local super market (what the?!). So we’re sorry for not posting this recipe sooner because by now (like us) you’ve probably been craving those delicious buns filled with spices and dried fruit with a big dollup of butter that slowly melts off the sides… drooooool.

We actually had a paleo hot cross buns recipe from last year but the photos were pooey and we were a little worried with the amount of spices that we used (we kinda sorta used to have a mild obsession with cinnamon)… in fact we said to use 3 tbs. (YES TABLESPOONS) of cinnamon and 2 tbs. (YES TABLESPOONS) of nutmeg… oopsy doopsy, spice overload.

Anyway, merrymaker mum re-tested the recipe and made some slight adjustments (when we say slight we mean major… seems our spice measurements last year were way off!). But here it is! Our paleo hot cross bun recipe, they really do the trick for that hot cross bun craving.

What other recipes are MUST HAVES for this Easter? Leave us a comment with your suggestions and we’ll do our best to paleo-fy the crap out of them! (i.e get rid of the nasties).

Always merrymaking,

Emma + Carla


paleo hot cross buns.
Serves 12
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Stuff you need
  1. 2 cups almond meal
  2. 1/2 cup coconut flour
  3. 1/4 cup 100% maple syrup or honey
  4. 6 eggs
  5. 250 grams grass fed butter melted (or ghee or coconut oil)
  6. 2 apples peeled and grated (we used granny smiths)
  7. 3/4 cup of unsweetened sultanas (or raisins, be sure to check for nasties!).
  8. 2 tsp. nutmeg
  9. 3 tsp. cinnamon
for the crosses
  1. 1 tbs. coconut flour
  2. 1 tbs. tapioca flour
  3. water
Now what
  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F).
  2. Line 12 muffin tins with large muffin cases.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the almond meal, coconut flour, nutmeg and cinnamon in a bowl.
  4. Add the maple syrup, butter and eggs and mix well.
  5. Now add the apple and sultanas. Mix again until it forms a dough.
  6. Once the mixture is all combined, roll in to 12 even balls.
  7. Place them in to the muffin cases and press down a little.
for the crosses
  1. Place the flours in a small bowl.
  2. Gradually add drops of water while stirring, until a thick white paste forms. Use a fork to make sure there are no lumps.
  3. Put the paste into a piping bag, and pipe a cross on to the top of each bun.
  4. Now place the buns into the preheated oven for 30 minutes.
  5. Serve without the muffin cases (so they look more bun-like), warmed and with more butter. Yum.
merrymaker tip
  1. We think cranberries and apricots would be tasty (but not as traditional) instead of the sultanas!
The Merrymaker Sisters | Health Happiness Abundance


We're health Emma and Carla Papas, ‘The Merrymaker Sisters’... also real life sisters! We're communication professionals turned health and happiness advocates, passionate entrepreneurs and health coaches. On a mission to merrymake over the world! We're the founders of where we inspire hundreds of thousands of Merrymakers around the world with real food recipes, positive mindset advice and ways to find and follow your bliss!


  1. Did you use small cubes of apple in the recipe photo? If not, what are the cubed items in the hot cross buns. They look delicious! Definatly have to make them.
    Thank you

  2. Hi Girls!
    I really want to try hot cross buns but I’ve moved overseas and I can’t get Natvia here. I can get stevia but I think 1/4 cup would be way too sweet. I use a tiny little pinch of it and it’s disgustingly sweet and bitter. Any advice on what I could use as a natvia substitute? Thanks so much! Love your blog!

    • Hi Robyn! Thanks so much for your comment :) and we want you to try them too! We’d recommend giving raw honey (YUM!) or rice malt syrup a try! You could also use coconut sugar, that would give a caramelly flavour! A quarter-half of a cup of these ingredients would substitute well. :)

  3. Hi guys, is there a substitute for almond meal in this? Unfortunately I can only eat peanuts and cashews :(. Would something like buckwheat or quinoa flour work?

    • Hey Maddy! You could definitely try quinoa or buckwheat flour. You could also make your own cashew meal and use that instead! Which would actually be DELISH! :)

  4. Hi girls could you make these without putting them in muffin cases? Could cook them like normal hot cross buns on a baking tray?

    Thanks :)

    • Hi Prue! The mixture isn’t really ‘dough-like’ so we think it’s best to use the muffin tins in order to keep the shape! :) Happy Baking! YUM! e + c

    • Hi Erin! You can definitely freeze these – we’d recommend you freeze them separately so you can thaw them out individually when it’s hot cross bun time! :) enjoy! e + c

  5. […] Carrot cake is definitely one of our all time favourite sweet treats! We’ve come up with a Paleo Raw Carrot Cake recipe just in time for the Easter Bunny! If you like super duper sweet sweet treats then you might want to add a few extra dates! We were trying to keep this lower in natural sugars too! Let us know what you think, the frosting is actually too scrumptious – we almost forgot to put it on the cake! You  might also like our paleo hot cross bun recipe!  […]

    • Hi Sharon! Thanks for your question! What we suggest is using chia seeds instead of eggs! For every egg you can mix 1 tbs of chia seeds with 3 tbs of water, allow this to soak for 30 minutes until a gel forms. This is a great egg substitute! :)

  6. A fabulous recipe! However for those who avoid FODMAPS (apples in particular), can they simply be left out or is a substitution required for moisture and/or flavour? :)

    • Hi Sharon! The reason for the apples is definitely moisture… we’ve read a little about FODMAPS but we’re not completely 100% what’s on the yes/no list. Is there a veggie maybe you could substitute for the apple? Hmmm….

      • I will think about a substitute then! FODMAPS (acronym for a range of fermentable carbohydrates) were discovered by Dr Sue Shepherd, a Melbourne nutritionist (whilst doing her thesis with IBS patients), and formulated with Dr Peter Gibson (Monash Uni). A multitude of websites worldwide refer to FODMAPS and many have their own view on acceptable foods but Sue & Peter are the only true experts and their research at Monash is ongoing. Removing or reducing these foods has shown amazing results for many folk, including me! :)

        • Hi Sharon! Wow! Thank you for sharing! It is soooo interesting. Let us know what you think regarding the substitute we’d really like to hear your thoughts! e + c

  7. Hi,

    Live in South Africa and we don’t get Natvia here. The Stevia we get also on comes in this small sachets like canderel or tablets.
    Could you use Xylitol or what could one substitute Natvia with?


  8. Hey, I stumbled across you girls on Instagram and I just want to say how amazing your recipes look!

    I’m thinking about making these hot cross buns, BUT, isn’t ghee very, very fattening and bad for you? Also, I’m from the UK and while I probably could find almond meal in one of the supermarkets, is there an alternative to it, in case I don’t find any?

    Thanks! Look forward to your reply :)


  9. Thank you so much! These are so simple, I can’t wait to prepare them for my family! So good they’re even healthy!!!! 😀

  10. These look lovely… !! I would like to make them for my son’s lunchbox but can’t use almond meal… is arrowroot an appropriate substitute? If so, how much? Thanks for all your amazing recipes!

    • Hi Katherine! Hmmm… we are thinking coconut flour will make them too dry and not sure about arrowroot flour. Can they take seeds to school? What about a mix of pumpkin/sunflower seed meal?

  11. oh my gosh, these look amazing!! I can’t wait to make and eat them. Just a question: do they freeze well or do they have to be eaten the day of baking?

  12. I’m baking it at the moment.Not too sure though,because it hasn’t got baking powder or bicarb of soda in the recipe.

  13. Hi girls. I would love to try this recipe however my son does not manage coconut flour well. I know coconut flour tends to behave/react differently to other flours so wondered if you had any suggestions for an alternative? Thanks!

  14. This looks totally delish! Can’t wait to try with waster around the corner. However I am thinking of making a dark chocolate version and see how it goes. I have always been a fan of Coles chocy hot cross buns and have been missing them immensely

  15. This looks totally delish, can’t wait to try with Easter around the corner. However I am addicted to Coles chocolate hot cross buns and been trying to replicate it paleo style haha let’s hope this works well :-)

  16. Hi Guys, there seems to be a huge amount of butter leaching out of these as they cook….Is that normal?….I don’t do a lot of baking….didn’t weigh, but did use a 250g block of grass fed butter…they smell divine as they cook though!! :-)

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