National Hot Cross Bun Day

Just in case anybody hasn’t heard of hot cross buns, allow us to introduce them to you. Hot cross buns are sweet, spiced buns that are marked with a cross on top (either directly into the dough or using piped icing) and are sometimes made with fruit. They’re somewhat of a cross between a sweet roll and a dinner roll. Some hot cross buns are made with raisins, but there are all kinds of different variations on the basic recipe. Why not find out what your favorite hot cross bun recipe is and make them for National Hot Cross Bun Day, a holiday that falls on September 11th every year.

The History of Hot Cross Buns

According to most food historians, hot cross buns are an invention of the 12th century. Supposedly, an Anglican monk baked some buns in honor of Good Friday to be used during Lent, and he marked a cross on top of them. It didn’t take long for these buns to gain popularity among monks and religious folks, but it wouldn’t be until the 16th century that their popularity really exploded.

What happened during the 16th century? That’s a question that’s easy to answer. Queen Elizabeth I passed a law that limited the sale of sweet buns to Good Friday, Christmas, and funerals. She did this because the English were very superstitious at the time and believed that these buns had medicinal—almost magical—properties. So the law was passed to prevent anyone from abusing these “powers.” What the law actually did, however, was to encourage people to bake these buns in their own homes. The result is that the law became impossible to enforce and eventually had to be rescinded.

Observing National Hot Cross Bun Day

Celebrating this holiday is as simple as baking some hot cross buns for you and your family and then posting a picture of the buns you made on social media using the hashtag #NationalHotCrossBunDay. It’s really that easy.

When is it?
This year (2024)
September 11 Wednesday
Next year (2025)
September 11 Thursday
Last year (2023)
September 11 Monday
Food & Drinks