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How To Reheat Hot Cross Buns – I Test 5 Methods [Pics]

Hot cross buns are a staple for any Easter breakfast.

But who wants to eat them cold?

Not me!

I’ve experimented with five different hot cross bun reheating techniques to see which ones best re-create that ‘freshly baked’ goodness.

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

A note on my experiment

I (a master baker…not) made a batch of hot cross buns and set them aside to cool.

Well, almost all of them. There was a quality test first.

The next day, I tried the following reheating methods:

  • In the oven (reliable and consistent)
  • In the microwave (a bit stodgy but soft)
  • In the toaster (a little squashed but nicely crunchy)
  • In a skillet (messy but decadent!)
  • In the air fryer (OK if they aren’t stale)

For consistent results, and if you’ve got a lot of hot cross buns to reheat, use the oven.

Your kitchen will smell like hot cross buns and they’ll be soft and warm.

Try the toaster or the air fryer if you want a crunchy exterior and a soft inside. The skillet works too, if you’re up for a treat.

The microwave is okay if you’re in a real hurry, but I found the results a bit chewy. 

Reheating hot cross buns in the oven

Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C). Place the hot cross buns on a baking tray and cover them with foil. If they’re stale, spritz the hot cross buns with water before covering them with foil, or put them in a wet paper bag. Heat for 5-10 minutes in the oven. 

How to reheat hot cross buns in the oven:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C).
  2. Place the hot cross buns on a baking tray and cover them with foil. Spritz them with some water if they’re stale. Alternatively, put the hot cross buns in a wet paper bag.
  3. Heat the buns for 5-10 minutes in the oven.
  4. Remove the hot cross buns and serve while still warm.

If your hot cross buns are a bit on the stale side, introducing some steam helps to rejuvenate them.

If your buns are still fresh and you want a crisper outside texture, then skip the foil.

Top tip: you can also cut your hot cross buns in half, butter them, and heat them under the broiler.

My verdict

This is the best method for reheating hot cross buns in bulk.

You’ll get consistent results, even if it is a bit slower than the other methods.

Reheating hot cross buns in the microwave

Arrange the hot cross buns on a microwave-safe dish and cover them with a damp paper towel. Microwave the hot cross buns on high for 15-seconds. Test the buns and heat for a further 15-seconds if needed. You can also cut the buns in half and butter them before microwaving them. 

How to reheat hot cross buns in the microwave:

  1. Arrange the hot cross buns on a microwave-safe dish, cutting them in half and buttering if you want.
  2. Cover the hot cross buns with a damp paper towel
  3. Microwave the buns on high for 15-seconds. Test them and heat for a further 15 seconds if needed.

Buttering the bun before microwaving them allows the butter to seep deep into the bread. Yum!

Make sure that you eat the buns while they’re still warm because when they start to cool, they will go stale quickly.

My verdict

Heating my hot cross buns in the microwave was quick and easy, but the results aren’t to everyone’s taste.

The buns became soft and chewy, but they were almost a bit too stodgy for me.

However, if the buns are really stale, the microwave is a good option for re-moisturizing them.

Reheating hot cross buns in the toaster

Cut your hot cross buns in half before placing them inside your toaster. You may need to flatten them a bit! Toast the buns for a short time before checking to see if they’re done. The toaster can burn the buns quickly, and shorter increments help to avoid this.

How to reheat hot cross buns in the toaster:

  1. Cut your hot cross buns in half (don’t butter them).
  2. Place them inside your toaster.
  3. Toast the buns for a short time before checking to see if they’re done.
  4. Heat in short increments to avoid burnt buns.

Even when cut in half, the hot cross buns may not quite fit in the toaster.

Forcing them in will result in a lot of crumbs, so tap them on the counter first to avoid a build-up in the bottom of your toaster.

My verdict

The toaster leaves you with a nice crisp, browned surface on your hot cross buns. Perfect if you want to butter your buns.

However, you do lose the fluffiness of the buns because you have to squash them.

Reheating hot cross buns in a skillet

Place a skillet on medium heat and melt some butter on the bottom of the pan. Cut the hot cross buns in half and place cut side down in the hot butter. Cover with a lid and heat for 2-3 minutes. You can flip them if you want to, but you don’t need to for a delicious result.

How to reheat hot cross buns in a skillet:

  1. Place a skillet on medium heat and melt some butter in it.
  2. Slice the hot cross buns in half and put the cut side down in the pan.
  3. Cover with a lid and heat for 2-3 minutes. You can flip the hot cross buns over if you want.

Hot cross buns can be delicate and will burn quickly if you’re not careful.

Check them after a minute to make sure they’re not burning, and turn the heat down if they show signs of charring.

The lid helps to trap moisture inside so that the buns stay moist.

If your buns are a bit stale, sprinkle some water in the pan before putting the lid on to create more steam.

My verdict

The results from this method were absolutely delicious. The buns were tasty, moist, and crispy.

I used a lot of butter though, so it’s probably not the healthiest!

The only downside was the clean-up required afterward.

Reheating hot cross buns in the air fryer

Set your air fryer to 300°F (150°C). Cut your hot cross buns in half and butter them if you want. Place your hot cross buns in the air fryer basket and heat them for 2-3 minutes. Ideally, keep the buns to a single layer in the air fryer.

How to reheat hot cross buns in the air fryer:

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 300°F (150°C).
  2. Optional: cut your hot cross buns in half and butter them.
  3. Place them into the air fryer basket. 
  4. Heat the buns for 2-3 minutes until they are heated through.

I like to line the basket with aluminum foil or parchment paper to catch any crumbs. 

My verdict

This method is fine to reheat hot cross buns, so long as they aren’t stale.

If your hot cross buns are stale, the air fryer will dry them out more.

On the plus side, it was fast and the buns got a nice crispy exterior.

How to store hot cross buns

Allow the hot cross buns to cool down to room temperature and then keep them in an airtight container for up to 2 days. To keep them as fresh as possible, you want to minimize air exposure. Wrapping them tightly in plastic wrap or keeping them in a freezer bag with the air removed will work.

Make sure that the buns are cool before you store them, as any heat will lead to condensation forming in the packaging. The condensation will then turn your hot cross buns soggy. 

Can you freeze hot cross buns?

Hot cross buns freeze well for up to a month. Ensure that the buns are completely cooled before wrapping them in plastic wrap and placing them in a freezer bag. All the air must be removed to avoid freezer burn. Freeze glazed buns for 30 minutes uncovered to prevent the glaze from running.

How to freeze hot cross buns:

  1. Allow the hot cross buns to cool to room temperature. If the buns are still hot, then the condensation will turn to ice crystals, which will ruin the texture of the buns.
  2. Wrap them in plastic and then place them in a freezer bag.
  3. Remove all the air* from the freezer bag to prevent freezer burn.
  4. Glazed hot cross buns must be frozen uncovered for 30 minutes to avoid the glaze sticking to the plastic wrap.
  5. Label and date the buns and freeze for up to a month.

*To remove the air from the freezer bag, you can squeeze it out, suck it out with a straw, or dunk the freezer bag in water and force all the air out.

Although hot cross buns freeze well, baked goods tend to deteriorate the longer they remain frozen in the freezer.

For this reason, it’s best to reheat your hot cross buns as soon as possible to enjoy the spicy texture and flavor.

How to thaw and reheat frozen hot cross buns

It’s best to remove your hot cross buns from the freezer a few hours before reheating. Keep them wrapped and let them thaw on the counter. 

Once thawed, unwrap the hot cross buns and put them on a baking tray. Place the tray in a preheated oven at 300°F (150°C) for 5-10 minutes.

Keep Reading: How To Reheat Cinnamon Rolls

How To Reheat Hot Cross Buns

In this short recipe, I show you the best way to revive and reheat your leftover hot cross buns.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: British
Keyword: hot cross buns, how to reheat hot cross buns
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 310kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 portion hot cross buns

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C).
  • Place the hot cross buns on a baking tray and cover them with foil. Spritz them with some water if they’re stale. Alternatively, put the hot cross buns in a wet paper bag.
  • Heat the buns for 5-10 minutes in the oven.
  • Remove the hot cross buns and serve while still warm.

Notes

If your hot cross buns are a bit on the stale side, introducing some steam helps to rejuvenate them.
If your buns are still fresh and you want a crisper outside texture, then skip the foil.
Top tip: you can also cut your hot cross buns in half, butter them, and heat them under the broiler.

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 310kcal

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