Sweet Irish Soda Bread

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5 from 10 votes
This sweet irish soda bread recipe is perfect to make for St. Patrick's day or really any day. The soda bread only takes 5 ingredients and requires no yeast.
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Easy Irish Soda Bread in a wooden bowl>

This sweet Irish soda bread recipe is perfect to make for St. Patrick’s Day or really any day. The soda bread only takes 5 ingredients and requires no yeast.

Easy Irish Soda Bread in a wooden bowl>

The sweet irish soda bread has a real traditional taste and feel. It only requires one hour to make and can be kicked up by adding raisins and/or caraway seeds.

If you love St Patrick’s day and want to incorporate even more fun ideas, check this link.


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What We Love About This Sweet Irish Soda Bread

The recipe is so easy. It requires on five ingredients, no yeast, and therefore you will have this bread made in no time. If you are interested in the history of irish soda bread, you can find out more here.

  • 1 Hour Bread: Warm and on the table in 1 hour!
  • Easy Ingredients: Only 5 ingredient.
  • Family Friendly: Kids can help make this delicious bread.
  • Adaptable: Can make it with fruit or seeds to make it your way.
Easy Irish Soda Bread pictured in closeup.

Ingredient Notes

  • All-Purpose Flour: No need for special ingredients.
  • Baking Soda: Make sure that it is fresh, it is vital for the reaction.
  • Buttermilk: The buttermilk along with the baking soda create the reaction that makes the bread rise and give the soda bread it’s unique texture.
  • Sugar: Just a little to add a hint of that sweet taste.
Flour, butteer, eggs, raisins and buttermilk.

Equipment Needed

How to Make Sweet Irish Soda Bread

These are the basic steps for making Sweet Irish Soda Bread . Please refer to the recipe card below for more detailed instructions.

A glass bowl filled with flour and then the other dry ingredients and butter incorporated in.

STEP 1: PREP

First, preheat oven to 425 degrees and grease pan. Then combine dry ingredients in mixer.

STEP 2: Mix

Next, with the mixer on low, add the sugar then slowly pour in the buttermilk then mix until sticky ball forms.

The wet ingredients added to the batter and then mixed.

STEP 3: Tray

Then place dough in pan so it covers the bottom of the pan. Using a sharp knife, cut an X into the dough about 1/4 inch deep. Cover the pan with another 9-inch cake pan that has been inverted.

STEP 4: BAKE

Finally, bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Lastly, remove cover and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

A dough is formed and then placed in a pan and the cross put on top.

Prep and Storage Tips

HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE AHEAD OF TIME

Truly, this is one of those recipes that should be made fresh as it only takes an hour, however, you can make it a day ahead of time and store in an airtight container.

HOW TO STORE THIS RECIPE

Again, it is best served fresh but can be stored in an airtight container, it should last for up to three days.

HOW TO FREEZE THIS RECIPE

Freeze this Sweet Irish Soda bread in an airtight bag or container for up to three months.

HOW TO REHEAT THIS RECIPE

Really this bread is wonderful toasted, however you can warm the loaf in the oven at 325 degrees for 10 minutes.

Frequently Asked Questions

HOW TO MAKE IRISH SODA BREAD WITHOUT BUTTERMILK?

Buttermilk is not something we have on hand anymore, to make soda bread without buttermilk, simply use whole milk and add lemon juice or vinegar. Simply add 1 tablespoon of either to the milk.

CAN I SUBSTITUTE DIFFERENT FLOUR?

While traditional irish soda bread is made with plain white flour, whole wheat flour, gluten free flour or even a combination of different flours or oats can be used.

CAN THIS RECIPE BE DOUBLED?

Indeed, this recipe can be doubled if you are feeding a crowd.

WHY IS MY IRISH SODA BREAD SOGGY IN THE MIDDLE?

If your soda bread is coming out done on the outside but raw in the middle it’s most likely because you are not cutting a deep enough cross into the bread.

Top shot of irish soda bread with butter in the background.

Expert Tips for Making This Sweet Irish Soda Bread

.

  • Sweeter: Making the irish soda bread sweet, really makes it a sweet cake or tea cake. However, it does make it delicious. Consider adding things such as: raisins, sultans, currents, cranberries or other dried fruits. Also, sprinkle a little sugar on top if you wish.
  • Seeds: Seeds or nuts can be added to this irish soda bread recipe. Try caraway seeds, walnuts or pecans.
  • Butter: Feel free to add unsalted butter to this recipe to add flavor, despite not being traditional, it does taste delicious. Try 4 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter cut into the flour before adding the buttermilk.
  • Variation tip: Can be cooked in a cast iron skillet. Great for presentation purposes. Grandma use to make it this way.
  • Alternate ingredient: Honey can replace the sugar in this recipe if you prefer.
  • Savory: Use your favorite herbs to make a savory Irish Soda bread, for example, garlic, thyme, oregano, ect. Top with Garlic Herb Butter.

What to Serve with Sweet Irish Soda Bread

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Easy Irish Soda Bread in a wooden bowl>
5 from 10 votes

Easy Irish Soda Bread Recipe

Yield: 10 servings
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour
This sweet irish soda bread recipe is perfect to make for St. Patrick's day or really any day. The soda bread only takes 5 ingredients and requires no yeast.
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Ingredients

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 cups buttermilk
  • 4 tbsp sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • Grease and flour a 9-inch round cake pan.
  • In a mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine flour, baking soda and salt.
  • With the mixer on low, add the sugar than slowly pour in the buttermilk.
  • Turn the mixer to medium speed and mix until a sticky ball forms.
  • Continue to mix at medium speed for a minute.
  • Remove dough from mixer and place into prepared pan.
  • Press dough so that it cover the bottom of the pan.
  • Using a sharp knife, cut an X into the dough about 1/4 inch deep.
  • Cover the pan with another 9-inch cake pan that has been inverted.
  • Bake, covered, for 30 minutes.
  • Remove cover and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
  • Let cool for 5 minutes before removing bread from the cake pan.

Expert Tips

  • Sweeter: Making the irish soda bread sweet, really makes it a sweet cake or tea cake. However, it does make it delicious. Consider adding things such as: raisins, sultans, currents, cranberries or other dried fruits. Also, sprinkle a little sugar on top if you wish.
  • Seeds: Seeds or nuts can be added to this irish soda bread recipe. Try caraway seeds, walnuts or pecans.
  • Butter: Feel free to add unsalted butter to this recipe to add flavor, despite not being traditional, it does taste delicious. Try 4 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter cut into the flour before adding the buttermilk.
  • Variation tip: Can be cooked in a cast iron skillet. Great for presentation purposes. Grandma use to make it this way.
  • Alternate ingredient: Honey can replace the sugar in this recipe if you prefer.
  • Savory: Use your favorite herbs to make a savory Irish Soda bread, for example, garlic, thyme, oregano, ect. Top with Garlic Herb Butter.

Estimated Nutritional Information

Calories: 222kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 497mg | Potassium: 110mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 69IU | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 2mg
The nutritional information provided are estimates. To learn more about how I calculate this information go to www.itisakeeper.com/about-its-a-keeper/privacy-disclosure-policies/
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Course: Bread
Cuisine: irish
Keyword: bread, easy recipe, soda bread, St. Patrick’s Day

This recipe is my personal adaption of an ethnic inspired recipe. It is not intended to be an authentic recipe.  I’ve recreated this recipe because I enjoy the flavors and I want to encourage my readers to expand their tastes and try new flavor combinations. The recipe, ingredients and processes may have been adapted to make the recipe accessible for the average American. I have provided links to authentic versions of the recipe in the post above. I encourage you to visit these pages and learn more about the traditional version(s) of this recipe.

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