If you want to, you can have a good three months of hot cross bun eating. Heck, the plump, spiced parcels have started lining supermarket shelves as early as Boxing Day. But if you want a great hot cross experience, it’s hard to beat one made by Adelaide’s best baking experts.

We’ve rounded up some of this year’s standouts – in alphabetical order – including dense fruit buns packed with Australian apricots and fig, one glazed with Pedro Ximinez and served with spiced honey-butter, a vegan sourdough option, and a tiramisu-inspired bun with coffee-custard filling and marsala. Toast or microwave them, slather them in butter (try the double-cut method to increase the buttered surface area), and thank us later.

Banana Boogie, Belair

In previous years, Belair’s Banana Boogie has taken out the title of Australia’s best hot cross bun at the Baking Association of Australia’s Victorian Baking Show – so who are we to argue? In 2023, the bakery scored first (and second) place for its traditional fruit-filled buns, which are made with Laucke flour, Australian fruit from Sunbeam and spices from Oostra in Victoria. It’s also selling fruitless and choc-chip buns, plus a new almond croissant-inspired creation (and a custard-filled hot cross doughnut). We suggest you get there soon. It’s trading every day from now until Easter Sunday. Traditional buns are six for $12 and 12 for $22, fruitless are $7.50 for six, and choc-chip are $9 for six.

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Bottega Bandito, Prospect

Two of the biggest names in the local indulgence scene – Bottega Bandito and Gelato Messina – have teamed up to offer two hot cross bun ice-cream sandwiches. Expect a sweet bun with chocolatey dough and chunks of milk, white and dark chocolate cut in half to sandwich a scoop of Messina’s Gianduia gelato. On the slightly more traditional side, there’s also an Italian fruit and nut bun with cranberries, sultanas and pistachios, and a scoop of fior di latte gelato with white chocolate and pistachio fudge, plus Messina’s famous pistachio praline. The buns are available all Easter weekend until sold out.

Dough, Adelaide CBD

The bakers at Dough make tens of thousands of hot cross buns every Easter, so you know there’s some serious demand for these fruit-filled bundles. The Central Market icon’s glossy sourdough buns will be available every market day until Easter and are available for pre-order online. Six for $20.

The Lost Loaf, Bowden

These sourdough beauties, courtesy of pastry chef Emma Shearer, are made with Angas Park dried Australian apricots, plus sultanas, currants, figs, Fleurieu Milk Company milk, Rohde’s free-range eggs, Laucke flour and spices. The fruit loaf-like buns are available from The Lost Loaf’s Plant 4 bakery until Easter. Get in early – there’s usually a long line out the door – and good luck trying to resist Shearer’s golden, flaky croissants and crusty-chewy loaves of sourdough while you’re there. Then head across to Plant 3, where Bowden Brewing is again brewing an Easter-edition English-style brown ale inspired by Shearer’s bun recipe, made with dried figs, apricots, sultanas and spices (pre-order it here now). Six for $23.

The Village Baker, Black Forest & Burnside Village

A trip to The Village Baker in Burnside Village or Black Forest has become an Easter tradition for many Adelaideans. Owner-chef Ben Sachse is turning out award-winning traditional, sourdough (both vegan-friendly) and choc-chip and cinnamon buns, so there’s something to appease each family member. The sourdough option is a standout, made with Australian sultanas and currants, orange juice, orange zest, cinnamon, mixed spices and maple syrup. Pick up at either store before Easter (both shops are closed on Good Friday and Easter Sunday).

Willmott’s Gastronomia, Rose Park

Orso’s chefs are at it again with their fancy hot cross buns – glazed with Pedro Ximinez sherry and served with spiced honey-butter. The shiny parcels are available to eat in or take away at Orso’s neighbouring deli, Willmott’s Gastronomia, from Tuesday to Sunday until sold out. $6.50 for one bun or $24 for a pack of four.

This article was originally published on March 29, 2021. It was updated on March 25, 2024