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By: Chef Laura Bonicelli

Irish Soda Bread with Caraway is a hearty quick bread. My version is slightly sweet and speckled with raisins. Buy your ingredients at your favorite Farmers Market! 

Irish Soda Bread with Caraway

About Irish Soda Bread with Caraway Seeds

My Irish Soda Bread with Caraway makes an 8-inch loaf.  The origin of soda bread is attributed to Native Americans using naturally occurring sodium bicarbonate in pearl ash from wood to leaven the bread without yeast. The tradition of Irish Soda Bread began in the 1830s in Irland when commercial producers introduced baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). Traditionally, soda bread is a round loaf with a cross cut in the top to ward off fairies. (Since I don’t seem to have a fairy problem, I thought I could skip that step.) The bread texture is scone-like and perfect for serving with soup, stew, or just a good amount of butter.

.putting it together

For our Irish Soda Bread with Caraway, as with any quick bread, we’ll get all of our dry ingredients mixed and then add in the wet ingredients. I use a whisk and stir and evenly distribute the ingredients. I cut the butter into small pieces and work it into the flour with my hands. Stir in the raisins at this point.

Remember, baking soda needs acid to work. (Cooking club members – see “Baking Basics – types of leavening” in the club.) Providing the acid is the function of the buttermilk in this Irish Soda Bread recipe; it has the acid. A quick fix if you don’t have buttermilk on hand; add some vinegar or lemon juice to regular milk. For this recipe, I would use one tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice. Measure that into your measuring cup before you measure the milk. Then stir it up and let it sit while you get the rest of your ingredients together. You’ll notice the milk will curd slightly, which is fine. You’ll have enough acid to react to the sodium bicarbonate, and your bread will rise. As a general rule of thumb, I use roughly one tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice per cup of milk. This recipe has a little over a cup of milk, but it’s enough acid.

If you feel your Irish Soda Bread with Caraway loaf is getting too brown, tent it with aluminum foil. I usually check the loaf after 30 minutes. Irish Soda Bread is always best served warm, so keep the butter handy!

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Irish Soda Bread with Caraway
Irish Soda Bread with Caraway dough in pan
Irish Soda Bread with Caraway bread in pan

I hope you love this recipe! 

Buon Appetito!

Step by Step Instructions


Irish Soda Bread with Caraway

© Chef Laura Bonicelli
Irish Soda Bread is a hearty quick bread. My version is slightly sweet and flavored with caraway seeds.
5 from 5 votes

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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Breads, Brunch, Lunch
Cuisine Irish
Servings 8
Calories 356 kcal


  • 8-inch cake pan


  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon caraway seeds optional
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter cut into 8 pieces
  • 2/3 cup currants or raisins


  • 1 1/3 cups buttermilk
  • 1 large egg


  • Preheat oven to 375ºF. Spray an 8-inch cake pan with cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, seeds, baking powder, and salt.
  • Using a pastry blender or your fingers, mix and the butter into the flour until you the mixture is mealy and butter is evenly distributed. Stir in the currants.
  • Measure buttermilk in a 2-cup liquid measuring cup and stir in the egg until combined.
  • Stir the egg mixture, all at once, into the dry and mix until just combined. Turn over several times to form a ball.
  • Put the dough into the prepared pan and push to the edges.
  • Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until browned, puffed, and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

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Calories: 356kcalCarbohydrates: 62gProtein: 8gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 483mgPotassium: 226mgFiber: 2gSugar: 8gVitamin A: 271IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 63mgIron: 3mg
Keyword bread, currants, raisins
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