Inspired by a recipe by Flo Braker, my vegan spiced buns are less crumbly and more cakey than a scone, and really make a nice change. Plus they are even easier!
Is it a scone? Is it a rock cake? No it’s a spiced bun! I recently came across this delightfully easy recipe whilst browsing my latest cookbook purchase, The San Francisco Chronicle Cookbook. Firstly, stop reading now and go and buy it. Click through my link too as I get 1p commission.
This book, some 25 years old, has some amazing recipes in it and you can pick it up for just a couple of bucks. I guarantee that anyone could find something to cook in here.
Table of Contents
What are Vegan Spiced Buns?
But more about these spiced buns! Unlike scones or rock cakes, these don’t require the fat to be “cut into” the flour mixture. This is the process that gives you a flakier, drier texture that allows you to spread butter on baked goods like scones. Nor do these buns use yeast, so they’re not like a typical hot cross bun or teacake.
Instead, whilst they do use shortening and yogurt like scones often do, this is simply beaten into the dry ingredients until you have a droppable batter. So far, so much like a rock cake instead. That’s what I thought.
However, once baked, these unassuming, and frankly unappealing looking buns have a delectable cakey interior instead. More like a muffin almost and nothing like a scone.
Once cold, you can certainly spread this with a little vegan butter and jam, but equally they are delicious cold. Not too sweet, and with a lovely spiced flavor that comes from the additions of cinnamon, ginger and cloves.
- Flour. I used plain flour, but I think they would be nice with wholemeal too, although you may need a little extra oil
- Vegetable Shortening. I use Trex because it is naturally vegan and easy to find in the stores.
- Plain vegan yogurt. I use Alpro soy, but use your favorite brand of plant based yogurt.
- Sultanas. You could also use raisins or currants instead.
- Egg replacer. I use Bob’s Red Mill or Orgran. In this recipe, I put the powder and the water in the bowl with all the other ingredients and don’t worry about whisking it up first.
- Spices. Cinnamon, ginger and cloves. If you strongly dislike one or more of these flavours, you can omit and replace with some vanilla extract instead. They won’t be spiced buns though.
See recipe card for quantities.
Honestly the easiest baked goods I’ve ever made. Just two steps.
Sieve dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl, then add shortening, yogurt and brown sugar
Using an electric whisk, blend until you have a stiff batter, then fold in the sultanas
- Once you have a nice thick batter/dough, drop spoonfuls onto your oil baking sheet, Sprinkle with a little sugar, and bake on a low-ish oven (about 170c) for between 15-25 minutes. It depends on how large your buns are. You can use a smaller spoon to make dainty buns, or use an ice cream scoop to make large buns.
- Once done, they will feel firm to touch and the sugar will have made a delicious crust.
Hint: if you have a hands-free mixer, this might be easier to use as the dough/batter gets quite thick for the beaters. If not, don’t panic, but do your mixing near the sink!
If you know how to make the recipe fit a certain diet, let the reader know here. Don’t fake it – only provide guidance on topics you have actual experience with.
- Sultanas – you could use dried blueberries, chopped peel, cranberries or even currants
- Flour – use gluten free flour instead of white plain flour to make this gluten free
Giving the visitor ideas on how they can change this recipe to better suit their dinner guests, or their cultural cuisine, is a great way to increase the chances they make the recipe
- Deluxe – add chocolate chips or a water icing drizzle. Serve with butter and jam or whipped coconut cream
- Kid friendly – remove the sultanas and add chocolate chips!
Store the cooled buns in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
I haven’t tried freezing them so I can’t state if they will freeze or not! My suspicion is no because they are quite cakey, and I think they might be a little mushy on thawing out.
Make sure to lightly oil the baking sheet. Because these are quite cakey, they can stick quite easily!
Yes you can! Just use your favorite gluten free flour mix in place of the regular flour.
Easy Vegan Spiced Fruit Buns – No Yeast
- 1 Electric Hand Whisk
- 2½ cups Plain Flour
- ½ tsp Baking Powder
- ½ tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
- ½ tsp Cinnamon
- ¼ tsp Cloves - powdered
- ¼ tsp Ginger - powdered
- ¼ cup White Sugar
- ½ cup Brown Sugar
- ½ cup Shortening - I used Trex
- 1 tbsp Egg Replacer - whisked up with 3 tbsp water
- 1 cup Yogurt - vegan, plain
- ½ cup Sultanas
- Sugar for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 170c.
- Sift all the dry ingredients into a large bowl.
- Add the egg replacer, water, brown sugar, yogurt and shortening and, using an electric hand whisk, blend well until you have a thick, sticky dough
- Fold in the sultanas using a spatula
- Using an ice cream scoop, drop dollops of the mixture onto a lightly oiled baking sheet. Make sure they are a couple of inches apart as they will spread during cooking.
- Sprinkle the buns with a little white sugar.
- Bake for between 15-25 mins, depending on the size. They will feel dry to the touch on top, and the sugar will have formed a little crust.
- Once baked, place on a cooling rack and serve.
Please note that where the recipe asks for milk, butter or yogurt, this refers to any plant-based version that you prefer.