Hot Cross Cookies

Hot Cross Cookies are something easy and delicious to bake at Easter time. They are chewy, American style cookies with all the flavour and spice of a hot cross bun. I used melted white chocolate to decorate my hot cross cookies but you could use white icing.

Hot Cross Cookies

Hot Cross Cookies: Makes 12 Cookies:

  • Time:  15 mins hands on time + 10 mins cooking
  • Cost:  11p per cookie
  • Calories:  187 per cookie


  • 100g butter at room temperature
  • 75g soft brown sugar
  • 50g golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
  • Zest 1 orange
  • 50g raisins or sultanas
  • 150g self-raising flour
  • 40g white chocolate to decorate 


  1. Preheat the oven to 190 C / 170 fan / gas mark 5. Line one large baking sheet (or two small ones) with baking paper.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar until smooth and fluffy using a wooden spoon. Add the syrup, spice and orange zest and mix well. Add the raisins or sultanas and mix until they are well distributed. 
  3. Finally add the flour, a little at a time, until you have a smooth cookie dough. Start by using a spoon and then at the end use your hands to press everything together. Do not over work the cookie dough as the butter will start to melt.
  4. Split the cookie dough into 12 equal portions and roll each portion into a ball. Place the balls of cookie dough on the baking sheet with plenty of room between them (at least 10cm) as they will spread during baking. Do not flatten the balls.
  5. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes (or 12 minutes at the very most). The cookies will have a slight golden crust on the outside but be very soft to touch and a bit puffy. Don't worry, they will sort themselves out as they cool.
  6. Leave the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes before carefully transfering to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.
  7. Put the white chocolate in the corner of a foodbag and put the foodbag into a mug of freshly boiled water until the chocolate has melted. Snip the corner of the foodbag and pipe the white chocolate onto the cookies in a cross shape. Leave to dry.

Some cookie making tips:

  • The butter must be at room temperature but not melted! Melted butter will cause the cookies to spread too far during baking.
  • Golden syrup is a key ingredient! The consistency of the syrup gives the cookies that lovely chewy texture.
  • Self-raising flour is a must. Plain flour doesn't work. Don't bother trying
  • Do not be tempted to flatten the balls of cookie dough, they will spread perfectly during the baking. 
  • Do not grease the baking paper as the cookies will become too greasy. They are buttery enough not to stick.
  • Take them out of the oven after 10 minutes - or 12 are the very most. Even though they will look undercooked they are not. Any longer and you'll get crunchy cookies.
  • Wait until they are cool before you munch them. They are best eaten fresh. 
  • You can freeze the dough for a later date if you wish.