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Close front shot of two slices of Irish Soda Bread on a plate
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5 from 2 votes

Irish Soda Bread Recipe

This Irish Soda Bread recipe yields a classic quick bread with a crusty exterior and a buttery crumb.
Course Sides
Cuisine Irish
Keyword Irish Soda Bread Recipe, St Patrick's Day Recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Cooling Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 10 slices
Calories 185kcal
Author Blair Lonergan


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons very cold salted butter, cut into ½-inch dice
  • 1 egg
  • cup buttermilk (I used low-fat, but any variety will work)
  • cup sour cream (I used light, but any variety will work)
  • ½ teaspoon grated orange zest
  • cup raisins or dried currants, tossed with 2 teaspoons flour
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds, optional


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 8.5 x 4.5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the cold butter and mix on low until the butter is incorporated into the flour.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk, sour cream and orange zest. Gradually add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients. Stir in the raisins and caraway seeds (if using).
  • Transfer to the prepared loaf pan. The dough will be very sticky, so it helps to dampen your fingers or spatula with a little bit of water so that you can spread the dough in the pan without too much sticking. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.


  • How to store Irish Soda Bread: Store the bread in an airtight container or wrapped tightly at room temperature for 2-3 days.
  • Can Irish Soda Bread be frozen? Yes! Wrap the bread tightly and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Can Irish Soda Bread dough be refrigerated? No, I do not recommend preparing the dough in advance and then keeping it refrigerated before baking. This is because the baking soda and buttermilk start reacting immediately, so it's important to get the bread in the oven as quickly as possible. Otherwise it will lose its leavening power.
  • Use raisins, dried cranberries or dried currants in this bread. If you prefer, you can omit the dried fruit altogether.
  • Caraway seeds are also optional. I have left them out of this particular photo, because our family doesn't care for them.
  • The buttermilk is an important ingredient in this recipe. The lactic acid in the buttermilk reacts with the baking soda to form tiny bubbles of carbon dioxide, which helps the bread rise. Don't substitute with a different milk.
  • Make sure that your butter is very cold. Mixing the cold butter into the dry ingredients (just like you would do for scones or pie crust) is the key to a nice, flaky texture.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 185kcal | Carbohydrates: 32.6g | Protein: 4.2g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2.9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1.1g | Cholesterol: 30.9mg | Sodium: 279.3mg | Potassium: 134.4mg | Fiber: 1.2g | Sugar: 12.4g