The Jamaican spice bun, a delectable treat savored across Jamaica, is a tastebud delight and a cultural emblem, particularly during Easter. Known for its warm spices and succulent dried fruits, this sweet bread is cherished annually. Reinvented for a modern palate, a new vegan and gluten-free rendition of this Jamaican classic retains rich flavors while catering to diverse dietary preferences.
With similar enthusiasm, Jamaica’s culinary heritage features a variety of beloved holiday desserts, such as Sweet Potato Pudding, Jamaican Fruit Cake, and Jamaican Cornmeal Pudding. Locals and visitors alike cherish these traditional sweets, as they offer a homemade taste of the island’s festive spirit that anyone can now easily recreate in kitchens worldwide.

Jamaican Spice Bun

I can remember enjoying bun and cheese for the Easter holiday as a child. We ate popular brands like HTB Jamaican Spice Bun and Jamaica National. Honestly, we never thought of making it at home.

Traditional Jamaican Easter Treat

  • lavor: Richly spiced
  • Texture: Dense and soft
  • Common Accompaniment: Cheese
  • Popular Brands: HTB, Jamaica National
  • Occasion: Easter holiday

Jamaican Easter Tradition: Spiced Bun with Cheese

Jamaica celebrates Easter with a distinctive culinary twist that has been passed down through generations. The round hot cross bun, which was originally a creation of British settlers, has evolved into a rectangular, spiced bun that is distinguishable by its darker appearance as a result of the use of molasses instead of honey, a readily available ingredient from the island’s sugar plantations.

  • Composition: The bun is richly infused with dried fruits, adding a burst of flavor to every bite.
  • Pairing: Traditionally, this bun is paired with slices of cheese, creating a sweet and savory contrast that is now synonymous with the holiday.

It is worth noting that some variants of the bun even incorporate Guinness stout, which adds another layer of depth to its flavor profile. This treat is undoubtedly a cornerstone of Jamaican Easter celebrations, showcasing the island’s ability to blend external influences with local staples to create something uniquely their own.

Jamaican Easter Bun: Vegan Friendly?

  • Ingredients: Typically contains eggs; variations may include butter.
  • Vegan Alternative: Exists—specifically dairy-free and gluten-free recipe options.
  • Popularity: Dairy-free, vegan version gaining traction.

Jamaican Bun Ingredients

  • Gluten-Free Flour
  • Sugar
  • Ground Flaxseeds
  • Baking Powder
  • Spices
  • Salt
  • Almond Milk
  • Sunflower or Avocado Oil
  • Molasses
  • Vanilla
  • Dried Fruits

jamaican spice bun ingredients

How Do You Make Jamaican Easter Bun?

Some of the Jamaican spice bun recipes are made with yeast, but mine is made with baking powder. 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking pan with parchment paper and lightly spray, set aside.
  2. Place all the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix, gluten-free all-purpose flour, sugar, ground flaxseeds, baking powder, spices, and salt. For the gluten-free flour, I used Krusteaz All-Purpose Gluten-Free flour
  3. Combine almond milk, sunflower oil, and vanilla in a bowl and mix well. 
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix to form a batter. Fold the dried fruits into the batter. Scoop the batter into the baking pan. 
  5. Bake in the center of the oven for 60–75 minutes, or until a fork inserted in the middle comes out clean. 
  6. Transfer the baking pan to a cooling rack, meanwhile,  prepare the glaze. Spread the glaze on the warm, spiced bun. Remove the bun from the pan and allow it to cool completely. Delicious, served with my Vegan Cheddar Cheese

How to make Jamaican spice bun, batter being mixed

How To Glaze Jamaican Easter Bun? 

  1. The trick to a moist Easter bun is to glaze it as soon as it comes out of the oven.
  2. This will seal the outer layer and keep the bun moist. Make a simple syrup recipe by combining equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan.
  3. Bring to a boil on medium heat while stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and brush on your Easter Bun. 

how to glazed jamaican spiced bun, glazing bun with a pastry brush.

Other Jamaican Recipes To Try:

Best Jamaican spice bun, holding a slice with my hand over a white plate with 2 more slices

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Jamaican Spice Bun

Jamaican Spice Bun is a sweet bread that is very popular in Jamaica. It is moist, with warm spices and plump dried fruits. I'm so excited to share with you my vegan, gluten-free version of this Jamaican staple.
4.93 from 28 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Jamaican
Keyword: bun, spice bun
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 390kcal

Ingredients

Spice Bun

  • 2 cups all purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup sunflower oil
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups dried fruits raisins, cherries, cranberries, etc.

Simple Syrup

  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons organic cane sugar

Instructions

For The Bun

  • Preheat oven 350℉. Line a baking pan with parchment paper and lightly spray, set aside.
  • Place all the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix, gluten-free all-purpose flour, sugar, ground flaxseeds, baking powder, spices, salt. For the gluten-free flour, I used Krusteaz All-Purpose Gluten-Free flour.
  • Combine almond milk, sunflower oil, vanilla in a bowl and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix to form a batter. Fold the dried fruits into the batter. Scoop batter into baking pan.
  • Bake in the center of the oven for 60-75 minutes or until a fork inserted in the middle comes out clean. Transfer baking pan onto a cooling rack.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the glaze. Spread the glaze on the warm spiced bun. Remove the bun from the pan and allow to cool completely.
  • Delicious served with my Vegan Cheddar Cheese!

For The Glaze

  • Combine sugar and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium heat while stirring until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and brush on your Easter Bun.

Nutrition

Calories: 390kcal | Carbohydrates: 78g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 367mg | Potassium: 354mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 35g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 186mg | Iron: 2mg