Plantain Hot Cross Buns {Gluten-Free, Vegan, Refined Sugar-Free, Yeast-Free, Gum-Free}

Plantain Hot Cross Buns

  • Author: Audrey @ Unconventional Baker
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 buns
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Dessert


Gluten-free, vegan hot cross buns which are full of cinnamon, allspice, and raisin filled flavor. Refined sugar-free and yeast free.



  • 3 tbsp warm water
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 1 large ripe plantain
  • 8 soft medjool dates
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract


  • 1 cup brown rice flour {plus possibly more — see directions}
  • ½ cup sweet sticky rice {also known as glutinous rice flour/mochi/mochiko flour}
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp each: allspice, nutmeg
  • dash of salt
  • ½ cup raisins

Cross Ingredients:

  • 4½ tbsp sweet sticky rice flour
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp water

Glaze Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a small baking dish {I used a 3″ x 6″ oven safe glass tupperware container, but anything similar would work} with some parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Mix warm water and flax in a small bowl/glass and let sit for a few minutes while gathering remaining wet ingredients.
  3. Place all wet ingredients into a food processor, with the flax mixture going in last. Process until completely smooth. Add in dry ingredients, except raisins, and process until the mixture begins gathering up into a ball {it will still be a little sticky, but should pinch together nicely}. If it’s too sticky {i.e. can’t be rolled up into a little ball}, add a bit more rice flour, 2 tbsp at a time, and process, until the mixture begins to stick together. Add in raisins and mix through briefly to incorporate them into the dough.
  4. Scoop out some of the mixture and roll into a ball with your hands. Budget to have enough mixture for 6 balls. Place them in the prepared baking dish as you roll them. They should be touching each other and fill the whole container {they won’t rise, but they will fill out a little and get that square bun shape and look this way}. Use a blunt knife and press a little cross on top of each bun {don’t cut in deep — just press in a little}.
  5. Prepare the cross mixture by mixing all ingredients together in a small bowl. The mixture should be pasty and smooth. If it’s too dry, add a tiny bit more water, too wet — a tiny bit more flour}. Transfer into a pipping bag or a a sturdy ziplock, snip off the edge, and then carefully pipe out crosses on each bun.
  6. Bake in a pre-heated oven for approximately 55 minutes {or until a skewer inserted down the center comes out dry. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.
  7. Prepare the glaze by mixing all glaze ingredients together. Brush this mixture on top of each bun and enjoy!


– Add in some citrus zest for a traditional variation.
– If you cannot find sweet sticky rice flour {though do look for it by its other names first though!}, try increasing the brown rice flour and adding in some tapioca or arrowroot starch. I haven’t tested this out, but I would try 1¼ cups brown rice flour, ¼ cup starch. For the cross part — use a starch.