Traditional Soda Bread

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This traditional no yeast bread recipe is a crumbly dense bread with a slightly sweet taste. With only a few pantry and refrigerator, staples required this delicious Traditional Soda Bread can be made easily and is one everyone will enjoy.

Bread is a perfect pairing for just about any meal and sometimes it tastes even better if it’s easy to prepare like this buttery beer bread, no-knead bread, or even this southern cornbread.

Irish soda bread slices with loaf in background

Irish Soda Bread

Traditional Irish soda bread recipe is one of my very favorite bread recipes to prepare because of its simplicity and it’s also one my children enjoy making with me. It’s Aimee here, from Aimee Mars Living, and soda bread is common in our households.

This dense and unleavened bread is not only truly Irish it’s also made with simple pantry ingredients. Known as a table bread it’s one that can be eaten toasted with butter for breakfast, at lunch with cheese, or with dinner as a side to your main dish.

How to Make Traditional Soda Bread

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 400ºF and prepping the baking sheet or pan you wish to use. If using a baking sheet line it with parchment or lightly coat a 9-10 inch cake pan or a cast-iron skillet with cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl beat the egg and buttermilk together until combined.
  3. Place the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and whisk together.
  4. Using a pastry cutter cut the cold butter into the flour mixture until it becomes crumbly.
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until it forms into a dough. Stir in any add-ins.
  6. Flour hands and a flat surface then lightly knead the dough for 1 minute before forming into a ball and placing onto the prepared pan or baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes until the crust becomes a golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.

Ingredients in Soda Bread

Most of the ingredients in soda bread are standard pantry staples, which is one of the reasons this bread is so easy to make. You can also add in many different extras for added flavor such as raisins or currants.

  • Buttermilk
  • Eggs
  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Baking Soda
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Raisins or Currants (optional)

Other Add-ins for soda bread

  • Dried Fruits such as pineapple, cranberries, or cherries.
  • Shaved Coconut or Coconut Flakes
  • Chocolate Chips
  • Diced Bacon
  • Shredded Cheese such as cheddar

soda bread slice with loaf behind

What does traditional soda bread taste like?

Similar to biscuits, the flavor is subtle with slight hints of sweetness. This bread is not meant to be served alone, but with butter or jam. To add additional flavor to soda bread you can mix in some dried fruits such as currants, or even something sweet like chocolate chips.

Why is my soda bread crumbly?

Using too much flour and too little buttermilk can cause your bread to turn our more crumbly than it should be. Make sure to spoon and level the flour when measuring it to avoid this mixture mess up.

Why is my soda bread raw in the center?

There are a few reasons that cause soda bread to not fully cook leaving a raw center. The fixes are simple though.

  • First, check your oven temperature. Chances are it could be too high. If you don’t have a thermometer to check the internal temperature of your oven then try lowering it. Place a loose tent of foil over the bread to avoid it from overcooking the outer later and continue cooking on the lower temperature so the middle can fully bake.
  • Second, make sure you’re using the correct pan size. If your pan is too small and the dough ball too high it will take longer to cook.

traditional soda bread in cast iron skillet

How to store soda bread

Wrap the bread in plastic wrap, foil, or store in an air-tight container for up to 4 days. It does not need to be refrigerated. This bread can also be stored in the freezer by covering it with plastic wrap and then a layer of foil. It will keep the freezer for up to 2 to 3 months.

Try some of these other bread recipes:

Traditional Irish Soda Bread sliced

Traditional Soda Bread

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This traditional no yeast bread recipe is a crumbly dense bread with a slightly sweet taste. With only a few pantry and refrigerator, staples required this delicious Traditional Soda Bread can be made easily and is one everyone will enjoy.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Author Aimee Mars
Servings: 12 Slices


  • cups Buttermilk
  • 1 large Egg
  • cups Flour spooned and leveled
  • 3 tablespoons Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 5 tablespoons Unsalted Butter cubed
  • 1 cup Currants optional


  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF. If using a seasoned 10 to 12-inch seasoned cast iron skillet no other steps are needed, but if using a baking sheet line it with parchment paper. A 9-10 inch cake pan can also be used by lightly greasing it.
  • In a small bowl beat the buttermilk and egg together until combined and set aside.
  • Using a large bowl whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt together until well mixed. Cut the cubed butter into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter or a fork. Work the butter into the mixture until it becomes crumbly. Stir in currants or any other add-ins.
  • Pour the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture and fold using a spatula until the dough become thick. Using floured hands remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a floured surface. Knead the dough for about 1 minute until all the flour is mixed in.
  • Place the dough into the cast iron skillet or prepared pan and with a very sharp knife cut an X on the top of the dough.
  • Bake the bread for 45 minutes until it begins to turn a golden brown. If the bread appears to be browning too quickly loosely place a tent of foil on top.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.


Serves: 12

Serving1sliceCalories276kcal (14%)Carbohydrates47g (16%)Protein7g (14%)Fat7g (11%)Saturated Fat4g (20%)Cholesterol32mg (11%)Sodium330mg (14%)Potassium207mg (6%)Fiber2g (8%)Sugar13g (14%)Vitamin A235IU (5%)Vitamin C1mg (1%)Calcium61mg (6%)Iron3mg (17%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Bread, Side Dish
Cuisine Irish
Keyword soda bread
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic


Aimee Mars

Spending time in the kitchen is a childhood memory that stems as far back as I can remember. The dots connecting those days to recipe development and food photography though, are winding and loopy. Just months after my clothing line in New York City, which was a childhood dream, came to a screeching halt I found myself at home as a new mom with a newborn. Desperately seeking a creative outlet, I began with the familiar and comforting act of cooking. A new passion of recipe development was ignited, and my blog became a place to break bread and to share these recipes with everyone. My family of four and one very convincing dog who loves to beg now enjoy our meals, and scraps, in Charleston.

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