Hot Paw Buns

This is a recipe adapted from a couple of different places and with an added surprise. It was influenced by my Mums Hot Cross Buns which came with a marzipan cross on top, Tilly and I just took it one step further.

My recipe is gluten free, but I suspect you may be able to swap out the gluten free plain flour for normal plain. I’ve not tried it, but it might work.


  • 250grams GF plain flour
  • 150grams Buckwheat Flour
  • 70grams Caster Sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 7grams fast action yeast
  • 1tsp xanthan gum (leave this out if not using GF flour)
  • 225ml whole milk
  • 60grams butter
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 100 grams cranberries/raisins or dried fruit of your choice
  • 1 braeburn apple, peeled, cored and chopped finely
  • zest from 1 lemon
  • 1/2tsp cinnamon
  • 2tsp mixed spice
  • a good grating of nutmeg
  • 2 inches from a block of marzipan
  • 1tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1tbsp water


  • Gently melt the butter with the milk in a small pan. Leave to cool to blood temperature.
  • Sift the flours into a bowl, add the salt to one side, sugar, yeast, xanthan gum (if using) to the other make a well in the centre.
  • Pour the milk and butter into the well along the egg and stir in with a fork.
  • Knead slightly to bring together, although I tend to do this with a spoon as it’s quite sticky! It wants to be streak free.
  • Put in an oiled bowl and cover with oiled cling film. Place somewhere warm for about an hour until it has doubled in size.
  • Add dried fruit, zest and spices. Mix together. Cover and leave again to rise for another hour.
  • Roll into a long sausage using some flour so it doesn’t stick, it is sticky!
  • Cut into 12.
  • Cut 1cm cubes of marzipan and place one inside each bit of dough, pinching the dough together to seal it inside. Shape them into balls and position on lined baking tray with a couple of centimetres between them. Cover and leave to rise or an hour, maybe two, hopefully they will rise.
  • Heat oven to Gas 7, 220C 200C fan.
  • Roll out the remaining marzipan to about 3mm thick using icing sugar to stop it from sticking. Cut out paw shapes or just strips to make crosses.
  • With a bit of water damp the top of the buns to help the marzipan stick.
  • Pop in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Turn them round half way through, they will almost certainly need covering in foil at this point too to stop the marzipan from going too dark!
  • Cool for as long as you can before slicing in half and applying plenty of butter.
  • They are even better toasted, but take care not to stick the melted marzipan to everything, so don’t use a toaster, use a grill.

I did think whilst making them this year that you could maybe put a chunk of chocolate inside them instead of the marzipan. You could even swap out the dried fruit for chocolate chips. I might give this a go when it’s not even Easter!