marmite hot cross buns

You know hot cross buns right? Those sweet chewy bread buns usually studded with dried fruit that you toast and slap on equal quantities of butter? Over the past couple of years M&S have had Marmite hot cross buns on sale at Easter time and they are TERRIFIC.


Scouring the shelves in 2024 and while their hot cross buns are out (and apparently available all year round) I can’t find them. One Tweet tells me it’s not clear if they’ll be around…

I’m distraught enough I have to make my own version.

marmite hot cross buns

You will be making a fairly sticky dough here – hot cross buns are usually tender so the dough will be quite soft. I like these Marmite hot cross buns toasted, then spread with butter while they’re still warm. But you could go crazy and add more Marmite.

marmite hot cross buns

marmite hot cross buns

Gary @ BigSpud
Love it or hate it, here's a savoury treat to be enjoyed any time.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
proving 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Course Snack
Cuisine English
Servings 12 buns


  • 300 ml whole milk
  • 50 g unsalted butter
  • 3 teaspoons Marmite rounded
  • 500 g plain flour
  • 1 large free-range egg
  • ½ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 100 g mature cheddar grated
  • 100 g red leicester grated

For the piped cross

  • 75 g plain flour


  • Put the butter and Marmite into a bowl and microwave for 1 min to melt together. Stir together and allow to cool while you do everything else.
  • Mix the flour and yeast together in a bowl. Pour in the cooled butter mixture, milk, egg, pepper, and salt. Knead by hand for 5 minutes to form a smooth, sticky dough.
  • Put into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp tea towel. Leave in the warm place for 1 hour to prove.
  • Mix the cheeses into the dough and fold until combined. Slice into 12 equal-sized buns. Shape each piece of dough into a neat ball and pop on a oiled baking tray. Space them out as they will grow, but authentically they will join at the edges like a batch. Cover with the damp tea towel and prove for another 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  • Mix together the flour with a little water to create a thick paste. Put in a piping bag and pipe a cross onto your buns.
  • Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until risen and golden.
  • Cool on a rack before devouring like an animal, adding butter as needed.



This dough is fairly tacky. A metal or plastic bench scraper can be a lifesaver to help get your dough to cooperate, eg

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