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Swedish Saffron Buns: A Christmas Recipe For The Non-Baker

My late grandfather loved saffron bread. This year for Christmas I decided it would be nice to make our own saffron bread from scratch. I've never baked bread before, and admittedly I get intimidated by any recipe that requires yeast because rising time and temperature play a major part in the outcome; however, I was determined to overcome that ridiculous fear. If amateur bakers around the world can make bread everyday, than we sure can. So Swedish Saffron Buns it is. With the help of some egg nog to relax us and give a little boost of confidence, we quickly got to work. "Let's just make some saffron buns, goddammit!"

(Sorry, I've been binge watching Suits lately).

Low and behold, a few hours later we successfully baked bread! Insanely proud. Better yet, we took some notes along the way to help make your bread baking experience a smooth and pleasant one. Our experience was actually not too bad, but a bit of anxiety was involved. It ended on quite a good note, though. We'd definitely bake these buns again.


- 3 tablespoons stick of margarine or butter

- 2 cups milk

- 2 tblsp active dry yeast

- 1 tsp salt

- 6 1/2 cups of all purpose flour

- 1/8 tsp of saffron

- 1 sugar cube

- 1/2 stick of margarine or butter softened

- 2/3 cups sugar

- 1 egg

Brushing and garnishing:

- 1 egg lightly beaten

- raisins

- pearl sugar, if desired


1). Pre-heat convection oven to 400 degrees F.

2). Melt 3 tbsp of butter in a saucepan. Add 2 cups of milk and heat to 115 degrees F.

3). Crumble the yeast in a large bowl and add then add butter/milk mixture. Stir until dissolved.

4). Add salt, and 2 tsp of sugar, and most of the flour. Knead until the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl. Sprinkle with a little flour and let the dough rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

5). Crush the saffron with the sugar cube.

6). Beat the 1/2 stick of butter and 2/3 cups of sugar until light and fluffy. Add the saffron and the egg.

7). Knead this mixture into the dough. Add the remaining flour, reserving a little for later.

8). Form into shapes as pictured. Place on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet. Cover and let buns rise until almost doubled, about another hour.

9). Brush with beaten egg, and garnish with raisins and pearl sugar.

10). Bake buns on the center oven rack for about 8-10 minutes.



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