Harmonious Homestead
Connecting Farms & Families In Central Ohio since 2010


News, recipes, and stories from food systems work 

Irish Soda Bread

irish soda bread recipe
irish soda bread recipe

When I wanted to make Irish Soda Bread but had no recipe, I knew just where to turn: my Irish friend Sarah. She is a dedicated volunteer for the Daughter's of Erin, honored as their member of the year for 2011! Sarah shared her favorite version, Grandma Irwin's Soda Bread. I baked it up yesterday morning with just two minor changes: I used half whole wheat white flour and added a bit of grated nutmeg.

I will no longer need to search for an Irish Soda Bread recipe - Grandma Irwin's is fantastic. It has a crisp top crust, browned side crust and moist interior. The bread is sweet and rich but not overly so.

I served it to my parents and sisters alongside corned beef and cabbage. There is nary a piece left for me to enjoy as Sarah suggests - a thick slice toasted and topped with butter.

Beyond the taste, the recipe requires very few dishes and no special equipment. You simply mix together the dry ingredients, stir liquids in another cup, and mix the two gently. Pour into a buttered and floured pan and bake.

irish soda bread flour
irish soda bread flour
liquids for irish soda bread recipe
liquids for irish soda bread recipe
irish soda bread dough mixed together
irish soda bread dough mixed together
baked irish soda bread in pan
baked irish soda bread in pan

Click pictures to enlarge them.


4 c regular flour
1 c sugar (optionally reduce to 1/2 c & it's still delicious)
1 tsp salt
 1 tsp baking soda
 1-1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1 stick (8 tbs) butter, melted
1-1/3 c buttermilk
2 eggs
~1-2 c raisins (depending on how much you like raisins), soaked (to make them plump), drained & patted dry; you could also use currants (more traditional).  

1. Preheat oven to 325F.  Grease (or butter) & flour bundt pan or regular bread loaves pans.  Only mix/make this by hand (no mixers).

1.  Mix dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, cream of tartar) together in a large bowl & set aside
2.  Mix melted butter, buttermilk, and eggs liquid measure; the melted butter might get cold & clump a little when added to the buttermilk but this isn't a problem.
3.  Mix soaked & patted dry raisins in the "dry" ingredients
4.  Pour wet mixture into dry mixture; stir.  The batter will be like a thick cake batter.  If it's not, add a little bit more (maybe 1/4 c) buttermilk @ a time, 'til it's easy to stir.
5.  Spoon batter into prepared pan(s).  If using more than 1 pan, make sure they're even.
6.  Bake 'til darker golden brown on top & tooth pick (or thin steak knife) comes out dry.  The time will depend on the size of your pans.  Let your nose help you know when it's done too.
7.  Eat warm w/a little butter.

Thank you, Sarah, for sharing your authentic Irish American recipe. Happy St. Patty's Day everyone!