Irish soda bread

Irish soda bread

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(127 ratings)

Takes 45-55 minutes


Makes 1 loaf

Get the taste of Ireland with this fresh, no-fuss soda bread

Nutrition and extra info

  • for up to 1 month

Nutrition: per slice

  • kcal296
  • fat5g
  • saturates3g
  • carbs56g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre5g
  • protein11g
  • salt1.21g
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  • 250g plain white flour
  • 250g plain wholemeal flour
  • 100g porridge oats
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 1 tsp salt
  • 25g butter, cut in pieces



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 500ml buttermilk
    Buttermilk pancake mixture in bowl with whisk



    There are two types of buttermilk. Traditional buttermilk is a thin, cloudy, slightly tart but…


  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6/fan 180C and dust a baking sheet with flour. Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl, then rub in the butter. Pour in the buttermilk and mix it in quickly with a table knife, then bring the dough together very lightly with your fingertips (handle it very, very gently). Now shape it into a flat, round loaf measuring 20cm/8in in diameter.

  2. Put the loaf on the baking sheet and score a deep cross in the top. (Traditionally, this lets the fairies out, but it also helps the bread to cook through.) Bake for 30-35 minutes until the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. If it isn’t ready after this time, turn it upside down on the baking sheet and bake for a few minutes more.

  3. Transfer to a wire rack, cover with a clean tea towel (this keeps the crust nice and soft) and leave to cool. To serve, break into quarters, then break or cut each quarter in half to make 8 wedges or slices – or simply slice across. Eat very fresh.

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Comments, questions and tips

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12th Aug, 2008
so easy and quick to make! and so good! it simply disappeared in a blink
28th Jul, 2008
re Alice If you are in Spain you can buy buttermilk at SuperSol markets on the Costa del Sol.
27th Jul, 2008
Fabulous. Husband especially loved it. In future I'll make two smaller loaves out of this recipe instead of one.
24th Apr, 2008
re: alice. Yes you can use either live yoghurt or soured milk as an alternative to butter milk. I use soured milk in mine. I use the same volume milk as buttermilk in the recipe. And i sour it 1st by heating it (in the microwave), then adding 2 tsp lemon juice, then allowing it to cool a little. this makes a kind of lumpy yoghurty mixture, but it works well instead of buttermilk.
16th Apr, 2008
Great soda bread, and an easy to follow recipe. I halved the recipe because I didn't have enough buttermilk - it worked out fine - I just had to add a couple more handfuls of flour. Also, totally forgot to put in the butter(?!) but it was still really good so if you want to cut it out it works fine!
17th Mar, 2008
Wonderful bread! Easy and tasty! Dear Alice, you can substitute buttermilk with kefir, plain yoghurt or soured milk (mix 1 tablespoon of lemon juice in one liter lukewarm milk, stir well, let stand for 10 minutes and its ready.)
14th Mar, 2008
I live in Spain and I have looked for buttermilk but cant find it. Is there an alternative??
3rd Jan, 2008
I just found out that i was sensitive of yeast - Irish soda bread was recommended. This recipe is great, making lovely bread thats very tasty and filling. Goes great with soups and makes fantastic toast. I'd highly recommend it - 2nd batch is in the oven as i type. Thanks
23rd Dec, 2007
Mmm... tasty
10th Dec, 2007
My husband said this is the best soda bread he has ever tasted. The trick is definitely not to over knead it.


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