Irish Soda Bread

March 7, 2012 by Ali

This weekend I decided to make an Irish feast to practice for St. Patrick’s Day.

But I have to admit — even though I have some Irish in my family, and had a blast traveling there a few years ago to visit my sister when she studied abroad in Dublin, I have only only spent a wee bit o’ time trying out Irish recipes! So for my feast, I decided to defer to some of my friends’ recipes that fall in the more “tried and true” category.

The first recipe for traditional Irish soda bread is from my friend Christin. She and her family have been making it for decades, and she swears this recipe is the best. And more importantly, that this recipe is foolproof (which is good for this girl who only succeeds about half the time with baking homemade breads)!

Sure enough, the dough was super easy to make, and the bread baked up beautifully! Granted, I probably should have cut the “X” a little deeper to make the shape pucker up perfectly. But overall, I was quite pleased, and it tasted delicious!!! I thought it was much better, actually, than some of the dry, bland bread we had in Ireland. It was moist, sweet, and I loved the extra pop of raisins. And as Christin said, it’s “the best when served warm with good butter”. Definitely agreed.

Stay tuned for more fun Irish recipes to follow for your own St. Patrick’s Day feast!

Irish Soda Bread

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 cup raisins or dried currants
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a small cookie sheet.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in butter with a fork (or with your fingers) until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in raisins and buttermilk until the dough is evenly moistened.

Turn dough out onto a lightly-floured surface and knead gently until smooth. Shape into a 6-inch ball, place on a cookie sheet. With a sharp knife, cut a 1/4-inch deep cross on top of the dough.

Bake 30-40 minutes, or until dough is just cooked through and the top is a light golden brown.

Ali’s Tip:

To save a step, you can also begin making the dough in a food processor. Just be sure to stir in the raisins and buttermilk by hand.


My friend, Christin.

About Ali

Ali Ebright is a freelance recipe developer and food writer/photographer, and blogs at Gimme Some Oven and Gimme Some Life. She also loves all things music, traveling near and far, actually making things from Pinterest, cozying up with a good book and her sweet pup, Henry, and spending time with a wonderful group of friends. Come say hello and follow Ali on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ & Instagram.

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16 thoughts on “Irish Soda Bread

  1. This was super easy and delicious!! I make this at least once a week. Thank you so much for sharing

    - Diane

  2. Tell Christin it came out great!

    - Christine

  3. While this recipe was delicious and I think you for sharing it, it isn’t really traditionally Irish. Irish-American perhaps, but not traditional Irish “soda bread”. It’s more of a railway cake if I’m to be honest. Sugar, butter, and baking powder all take them out of the “traditional” category. Just a little fun fact for ye. Enjoy your St. Paddy’s Day. Cheers from Cork Co.

    - Hannah

  4. Hey.
    My daughter and I made this last night. We got a little crazy with the raisins. But it was a super easy recipe to follow and it turned out great! I didn’t use a mixer or a food processor. I just kept it super simple with a wooden spoon and bowl. I was intimidated about making it but it turned out great. Thanks!

    - Sarah

  5. I’ve been looking for an Irish soda bread recipe for St. Patricks Day!

    - Mrs. Measurement

  6. Ok, so I love Irish Soda Bread and I’ve seen a lot of posts recently featuring different takes on it, but I’ve never seen a more perfect color or texture – I just want a slice! Amazing and I am featuring this post in today’s Friday Food Fetish roundup (with a link-back and attribution), so please let me know if you have any objections. It’s a pleasure following your food…

    - Javelin Warrior

  7. Perfect! Just in time for St Pattys!

    - Jessica

  8. Hi, there!

    Thanks for posting about the Irish Soda Bread recipe. I tried to make this bread once using my Zojirushi BB-HAC10 bread maker, but something went wrong, and it tasted weird. I have to prepare it for St. Patrick’s Day.

    Now I realized that I put too much sugar in it. I saved and printed your recipe. Your instruction is easy to follow. Hope I can make it for the next time.

    - Jessica