A good old-fashioned Irish soda bread recipe that can be prepped in 10 minutes! The buttermilk gives this soda bread the perfect flavor. It’s crunchy on the outside and moist and sweet on the inside!
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Easy Soda Bread Recipe
Bread can definitely sound intimidating to make from scratch, but it doesn’t have to be! This is one of the easiest bread recipes to make since it doesn’t require any yeast or rising time. Some other easy favorites are my 3-ingredient artisan bread and homemade french bread.
This Irish soda bread is so simple to make and tastes great! There is no yeast in this recipe and there is no rise time, making it super quick. The outside texture reminds me of an Irish scone, while the inside is tender and sweet. My kids weren’t sure of the texture at first, but it grew on them. It’s definitely not the same texture as my easy homemade bread recipe, but so yummy. My husband and I couldn’t stop eating it!
This Irish soda bread tastes great served with butter and a little bit of honey. We absolutely loved it and will be making it again for dinner on Saint Patrick’s Day along with corned beef and cabbage!
Grab all your pantry staple ingredients and get ready to make a dense and delicious crusty bread recipe. It is simple to make and a favorite bread that everyone loves!
Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.
- Flour: Using all-purpose flour works best and gives it thickness and texture.
- Sugar: Added in for sweetness!
- Baking powder: This boosts the bread to speed up the rising process as well as giving it the expansion when the bread is rising.
- Baking soda: Helps the bread rise and gives it the leavening that it needs.
- Salt: Enhances the bread flavor and blends the ingredients together.
- Kerrygold Irish butter: This is a specialty butter that is a MUST for this Irish bread recipe. Slightly softened butter will work great in this recipe.
- Buttermilk: Tenderize the bread when using buttermilk. Make your own homemade buttermilk or store-bought buttermilk.
- Egg: Binds and brings all the bread dough together and helps hold the dough tight.
How to Make Irish Soda Bread
Traditional Soda bread is a fun way to celebrate St. Patrick’s day or enjoy it as a side for your favorite stew or soup. Mix together, knead the bread, slice the top, and then bake the bread. You will love this classic Irish soda bread.
- Mix. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or fork. Stir in the buttermilk and egg.
- Knead. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead with your hands until the bread forms a ball.
- Cut. At this point, you can cut the dough in half to make 2 smaller loaves or 1 large loaf. Press it down and round the edges and then cut an ‘X’ in the top of the loaf.
- Bake. Combine the melted butter and buttermilk in a small bowl and then brush half of it on top of the loaf. Bake at 350°F for 45 to 55 minutes, brushing the remaining buttermilk mixture on top halfway through.
Sweet Version with Raisins
For a sweeter version, try making this recipe with raisins. Just mix in 1 cup of raisins (or 1/2 cup into half of the loaf). Next, sprinkle with sugar after brushing the butter on top before baking. Then slice it and top it with a little more butter and honey. DELISH!!
5 star review
“Love this recipe! Even better than Kneader’s Irish Soda Bread. We look forward to it all year long…although I’ve been known to make this as the perfect side to any soup. It’s so moist, light and buttery…like a big biscuit. Anyone who tries it, loves it, and it’s easy to make and even give away!”– Mollie
Ways to Enjoy Irish Soda Bread
Here are a few delicious ways to help enjoy Irish soda bread! It is perfect just the way it is, spread your favorite jams, or use it as a side dish with soup. There are so many great ways to enjoy this Irish soda bread.
- Plain: The flavor is so great that you don’t need to top it with much when serving. Try enjoying a slice with a little bit of butter and a drizzle of honey.
- Jams or Spreads: Strawberry jam, apple butter, and cinnamon butter are all great compliments.
- Soups and Stews: Serve with comforting and hearty soups or stews like beef bourguignon, vegetable soup, or cabbage soup.
Soda bread is a reaction between the buttermilk and baking soda and forms bubbles of carbon dioxide in the dough. The shape of the bread is also a tradition for it.
Yes, skipping the yeast and using baking powder, white flour, and buttermilk helps make this bread good for you.
In the United States, Irish soda bread is known as a sweet white bread that has raisins and seeds. The word “soda” in the name comes from baking soda instead of using yeast.
If your soda bread is too hard and dense or crumbly, the bread may have been over-kneading. Because there is no yeast in this bread, less kneading. This will give the bread a softer crumb.
How Long Does it Last?
It’s best if served the first day, however, the bread should keep for about 2 to 3 days. It has a tendency to dry out pretty quickly, so just make sure to wrap it tightly with foil or plastic wrap and store it at room temperature.
Do you love to celebrate with Irish recipes?! Try this delicious Irish scone, traditional corned beef and cabbage, or this pistachio chocolate chip cookies.
More Easy Bread Recipes
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Irish Soda Bread Recipe
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 8 Tablespoons Kerrygold Irish Butter (can substitute for butter or margarine, slightly softened)
- 1 ¼ cups buttermilk
- 1 large egg
For Brushing on Top:
- ¼ cup butter , melted and slightly cooled
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a skillet, pizza stone or baking sheet. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or fork. Stir in the buttermilk and egg.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead with your hands until the bread forms a ball. At this point you can cut the dough in half to make 2 smaller loaves or 1 large loaf. Press it down and round the edges and then cut an 'X' in the top of the loaf.
- For the brushing on top, combine the melted butter and buttermilk in a small bowl and then brush half of it on top of the loaf. Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick comes clean, about 45-55 minutes. Brush remaining butter onto the soda bread half way during baking.
- Cool on baking rack and serve warm. This Irish soda bread is best served the first day.
Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.
Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!
Great recipe, I like the no egg and the addition to baking powder, unlike other recipes, everyone loved this so I made more today! hardest part is getting the sticky dough off my fingers.. I didn’t have buttermilk so I made my own.
I made this recipe and followed it closely. After adding all of the ingredients I turned the dough onto a lightly floured surface. The dough was very crumbly and I had a hard time forming a ball. It finally came together. I brushed it with the butter and buttermilk and sprinkled the top with sugar. Slicing into the baked bread it didn’t want to hold its shape it was partially falling apart. The taste was good but I was disappointed with the finished texture of the bread. Can you tell me where I went wrong?
Hi Mary, I’m sorry it didn’t hold for you. :( My guess would be that too much flour was added and that it was over-mixed. soda bread is naturally a little more crumbly than a traditional bread, but it should still hold up it’s shape.
Thanks for your response! I am going to give it another try.
Couldn’t find my recipe that I’ve used for years, so I searched my many sites for one that sounded yummy! This was a wonderful choice! Easy to prepare, simple ingredients, and beautiful outcome! I made two nice rounds, added raisins for “spotted dog”, cut cross into top, and sprinkled sugar over brushed glaze! This is my new go to recipe 💚
Yay, this makes me so happy to hear! I hope you had a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day :)
Made it yesterday. Big success with my wife. We both loved it hot out of the oven and out of the toaster today.
I’m so glad to hear you both loved it! :)
This soda bread had a great flavor and texture! Delicious!
This recipe was super easy and my first ever having this bread we loved it!
I couldn’t beleive how delicious this bread was for being so easy and having so little ingredients. Will totally make this again- even after all of this nonsense is over!