Irish soda bread is a traditional bread that has been enjoyed in Ireland for centuries. It is a quick and easy bread to make, and it has a unique flavor and texture that sets it apart from other breads. In this blog post, we will explore a brief history of Irish soda bread, provide a recipe for making your own, and offer tips on how to keep it fresh.

History of Irish Soda Bread

Irish soda bread was first made in the mid-1800s.  At that time, traditional leavening agents like yeast were not available. Instead, they used baking soda and buttermilk to make their bread rise. The result was a simple, rustic bread that was perfect for everyday meals. In Irish folklore, the cross on top of the soda bread is believed to have protective powers against evil spirits, including fairies and the devil.

Recipe for Irish Soda Bread

  • 4 cups flour

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp baking soda

  • 1 3/4 cups buttermilk


  1. Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C).

  2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, salt, and baking soda.

  3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the buttermilk. Mix until a sticky dough forms.

  4. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead lightly for 1-2 minutes.

  5. Shape the dough into a round loaf and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

  6. Use a sharp knife to score an 'X' on the top of the loaf.

  7. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

  8. Let the bread cool on a wire rack before slicing and serving.


How to Keep Irish Soda Bread Fresh

Irish soda bread is best eaten fresh, but it can be kept for a few days if stored properly. Here are some tips on how to keep your bread fresh:

  • Wrap the bread tightly a large beeswax wrap to prevent it from drying out. You can also store your bread wrapped up in a beeswax wrap in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

  • Store the bread at room temperature in a cool, dry place.

  • If the bread starts to become stale, revive it by sprinkling a little water on the crust and reheating it in the oven for a few minutes.

In conclusion, Irish soda bread is a delicious and easy bread to make that has a rich history in Ireland. With this recipe and tips on how to keep it fresh, you can enjoy this traditional bread anytime.

March 15, 2023 — Jennifer Doyle

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