Mabhanzi recipe

Mabhanzi recipe

All of you who are from where I’m from will know exactly what mabhanzi are and will need no introduction. This is my take on them. I have finally found my ideal recipe. Believe me I have experimented a lot until I have decided to settle on this mabhanzi recipe. These ones are soft and fluffy on the inside and golden brown on top.

NOTE : Oven temperature should be 150 Celsius

I have made some mabhanzi using a few mabhanzi recipes before yet fail when I tried to recreate them. For some reason I just could not recreate my previous mabhanzi recipe so I had to ditch them. The following mabhanzi recipe never lets me down and it is the only mabhanzi recipe I go to over and over again.

This mabhanzi recipe makes 12 big ones or 24 smaller ones. You can also halve the recipe and bake 6 large ones or 12 small ones.


  • 120ml (1/2 cup) water
  • 2 packets yeast (14 grams)
  • 550 grams (4 and 1/4) cups plain flour
  • 300 grams (2 cups and 1/3 cup) bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 110 grams (1/2 cup)sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 350 ml (1 and 1/2 cups) milk
  • 113 grams butter (melted)


  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water

Mabhanzi : Method

  • Pour the water into a large bowl and sprinkle the yeast over it, stir and leave the mixture for about 5 minutes.
  • After the five minutes add the milk, eggs, sugar, melted butter and salt into the yeast mixture. Whisk together
  • Add the flour into the large bowl a cup at a time and mix until all the flour is used up and it begins to form a dough.
  • Using your hands, knead it in the bowl and then tip it onto a floured work surface and knead until smooth, can take about 10 minutes.  Put some vegetable oil or flour on your work surface to prevent the buns from sticking.
  • Oil the inside of a large bowl and place the dough in it. Cover bowl with cling-film and let it stand in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size (about 2 hours). The rising time  will vary depending on how warm the place is.
  • Butter and flour a baking tray which is about 33cm (13 inches) by 22 cm (9 inches)
  • Once your dough has risen knock the air out of it and tip it onto a floured surface. Weigh the dough and divide by 24
  • Shape each ball into a bun (mabhanzi) shape and place them on the baking tray.
  • Let them rise again until double in size about 1 hour
  • Preheat the oven to 150C (ignore video temperature) about 5 minutes before the rising time ends.
  • Bake in the oven for 30 minutes (the times may vary because ovens differ but be on the look out for a golden dark brown top.)
  • Prepare the glaze 2 minutes before the buns are ready by mixing the 3 tablespoons of caster sugar and 3 tablespoons of water in a small saucepan and bringing it to the boil. Remove from the cooker as soon as it starts to boil.
  • Brush the buns with the glaze mixture sugar whilst they are still hot.
  • Loosen the buns with a knife or spatula, around the edges of the baking tray
  • Using another cooling rack, turn the mabhanzi out of the tray so that they cool without having a wet bottom.
  • They can be served warm or at room temperature
  • I hope you find my mabhanzi recipe simple to follow like I do.