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Traditional Irish Soda Bread is a dense and moist bread that requires no rising time and just four simple ingredients to make. Even better, it’s ready in just 45 minutes, start to finish. 

Irish soda bread with raisins cut into pieces.

This Irish Soda Bread is a delicious recipe that goes back many, many years. We use it as our go-to quick bread recipe when we haven’t planned ahead to have bread with dinner. Biscuits and dinner rolls are always great, but sometimes we just want a thick and sturdy piece of bread to go with dinner, and Irish soda bread does not disappoint. No prior planning required, it uses only four ingredients and bakes in under 40 minutes – no rising, no waiting. If you’re hoping to serve a larger crowd, you might want to make two of these loaves. Sharing doesn’t come easy.

Is Irish Soda Bread really Irish?

While that question has been asked for many years, the truthful answer is no. Irish Soda Bread or Soda Bread is a quick bread using baking soda as a leavening agent. The chemical reaction between the baking soda and buttermilk in this recipe produces carbon dioxide which causes it to rise.

The Irish, like other many European countries back in the early 1800’s, didn’t produce much hard wheat to make a good yeast bread, and adopted the soda bread as their own. Hence the name Irish Soda Bread.

Serving Suggestions:

While there are many ways to eat this tasty bread the most typical way to enjoy it is with a spread of butter. While adding some jam or marmalade to it also produces a fun flavorful breakfast type feel.

You can also serve it along side soups for dipping or instead of slicing into chunks you can slice thinly and make them into sandwiches, which this bread would serve well because it’s sturdy.

Irish soda bread with homemade butter.

Storage Instructions:

While this particular bread can dry out quickly, it is best to store it tightly wrapped or in an air safe container to preserve it longer. You can store it wrapped for about 3-4 days or freeze it for up to 2-3 months.

If you like this recipe you may also be interested in these other delicious bread recipes:

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTubeFacebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

Irish soda bread with homemade butter.
Traditional Irish Soda Bread is a dense and moist bread that requires no rising time and just four simple ingredients to make. Even better, it's ready in just 45 minutes, start to finish. 
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
  • 3 to 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons salt*
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup raisins (optional)
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  • In large bowl whisk together 2 1/2 cups flour, salt, and baking soda. Add in your buttermilk and raisins (if using) and stir until it just comes together.
  • Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead until it forms a smooth ball. Gradually add more flour as necessary to acheive a dough that is firm and not sticky. Dust the outside with flour and place on an un-greased baking sheet. Use a sharp knife to slash a 1 inch deep cross on top of the loaf. 
  • Bake in oven for 35 minutes or until golden brown. 
This bread is a salty bread. If you are sensitive to salt or prefer it to be more plain, you can reduce the salt to 1 teaspoon. 


Serving: 1loaf | Calories: 1815kcal | Carbohydrates: 351g | Protein: 56g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 8457mg | Potassium: 954mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 595IU | Calcium: 480mg | Iron: 20.3mg
Course: Bread, Side Dish
Cuisine: Irish
Keyword: Irish Soda Bread
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