Irish Soda Bread Recipe

Our Irish Soda Bread Recipe is so good, you’ll be making it all year long. We like our soda bread a little bit sweet with a buttery, crumbly crust. Slice and serve warm with butter, jam or just as is!

Add our Crock Pot Corned Beef along with this Irish Cream Creme Brulee for dessert and your St. Patrick’s Day menu is done!

Irish soda bread with green checkered napkin

Why You’ll Love Our Irish Soda Bread Recipe

Quick breads like soda bread are a great recipe to have on hand, and not only for holidays like St. Patrick’s Day but all year long! Since these recipes are so easy to make without a lot of kneading and no time needed for rising, you can enjoy soda bread as often as you like.

  • Easy To Make: No yeast required for this quick bread. Just a few pantry ingredients and this recipe comes together in a snap.
  • Delicious Side Dish: When we make hearty beef stew or a shepherd’s pie for St. Patrick’s day, this slightly sweet, dense bread is the perfect side.
  • Homemade Gift: This Irish soda bread recipe makes a wonderful, homemade gift during the holidays.
Irish soda bread with butter dish and wooden knife

What Does Irish Soda Bread Taste Like?

Some people say that soda bread has a similar flavor to a scone, and I definitely agree with that. We add a bit more sugar to our soda bread than a typical recipe because we do have a little sweet tooth. Of course if you prefer, you can reduce the amount of sugar in this recipe down to as little as 2 tablespoons.

Ingredients You’ll Need

All you need is a few ingredients for this quick bread recipe. Usually we have all of these on hand, sometimes we might need to grab a carton of buttermilk, but you can also make your own.

  • Flour
  • Baking soda
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Buttermilk
  • Butter
  • Egg
  • Raisins (optional but recommended!)

How To Make Homemade Buttermilk:

Add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar to a measuring cup and then pour in 1 1/2 cups of whole milk or 2% milk. Whisk together and let sit for 5 minutes. Instant buttermilk!

How To Make Irish Soda Bread

We’ll go over the basic steps here with these step by step photos. For complete instructions, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  • Mix the dry ingredients: Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt together in another large bowl.
  • Cut in the butter: Cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter, two forks or you hands. Make sure the butter is very cold for this step.
  • Combine: Whisk and egg into a cup and a half of buttermilk and pour over the dry ingredients. Lightly mix together and then add the raisins. Mix until the raisins are combined with the dough.
raw loaf of irish soda bread with X mark in the center
  • Lightly knead: Turn the dough out onto a board and knead just a few times until the dough comes together into a ball. The dough will still be crumbly. Form into a round, shallow loaf.
  • Bake: Place the dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet and score an “X” into the top of the dough (this helps the center cook because the dough is so dense). Brush the top of the dough with melted butter. Bake for 45-50 minutes until golden.

Tips For Success

  • Measure the ingredients carefully. Fluff up the flour and then spoon it into your measuring cup without packing it down.
  • Form the loaf into a round but more shallow dome, the thicker the center is the longer it will take to cook through.
  • Bake your loaf on parchment paper to help the bottom from getting too brown.
  • Cover the bread with foil halfway through cooking if the top is browning too quickly.
Irish Soda Bread with green and white napkin and butter

To Store and Freeze

You can store this bread in a container in a container, or slice and place into resealable storage bags. The bread will keep for 3-4 days without refrigeration.

However, to get a little more length out of your soda bread, you can transfer it to the refrigerator and it’ll last about a week.

You can easily freeze this bread too! Cut the loaf into slices or quarters or even freeze whole. Defrost the bread at room temperature and then eat as is or heat up in a toaster or warm in a low oven.

Sliced soda bread with raisins and butter

What To Serve With Irish Soda Bread

Besides just slicing and shoving in your face…there’s lots of ways that you can enjoy Irish Soda Bread. We like to toast thick slices of this bread and slather on a lot of butter, but that’s just us.

You can also add on jelly or jams, or even a hazelnut spread like Nutella. Because this bread recipe is so flavorful, it’s delicious all on it’s own too.

Our recipe for this soda bread is a little on the sweet side, so it can be served as a side dish or as part of dessert with an Irish Coffee!

Main Courses That Go Well With Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread with green and white napkin and butter

Irish Soda Bread

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 6 Servings 1x

Our Irish Soda Bread recipe is so easy to make! A delicious quick bread recipe that’s perfect for St. Patrick’s Day!



  • 4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar (plus 2 tablespoons if you like a sweeter loaf)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup raisins (optional, but recommended)
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter (for brushing the dough before baking)


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Add the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt to a large bowl and whisk together.
  3. Add the cubed, cold butter to the flour mixture. Cut the butter into the flour with a pastry cutter, two forks or your fingers. The flour should look like crumbly sand when you’re done. I like to go through with my fingers at the end to make sure there aren’t any large pieces of butter. Stir in the raisins (if using).
  4. Whisk the egg together with the buttermilk and then pour into the bowl over the dry ingredients. Stir together until a crumbly dough forms.
  5. Lightly dust a board with flour and then turn the dough out onto the board. Knead the dough a few times just to bring the dough together. Form the dough into a round, shallow loaf and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  6. Cut an “X” into the top of the dough (see post for photos) and then brush the top with the melted butter.
  7. Place into the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Check the bread: if the loaf is getting too brown, place a piece of aluminum foil loosely over the top. Continue baking for another 20-25 minutes until the center of the bread is cooked through.
  8. Let the soda bread cool for at least 15 minutes before slicing.

Recipe Notes

To store leftover soda bread, keep in a resealable bag or wrap in plastic wrap once cooled. Irish Soda bread will keep on your counter for 2-3 days or in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.

Freeze: You can also freeze this bread for up to 6 months. Slice and store in freezer bags and pull out when needed.

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

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