Irish Soda Bread with Buttermilk


We had a large gathering on Easter and my mom brought the most delicious soda bread I’ve ever eaten as a gift from one of her neighbors (Mrs. B.). I have always loved Irish Soda Bread and I buy it when I see it in the stores and bakeries. Some are better than others. I’ve even had homemade soda bread over the years and again – some are better than others.

Mrs. B’s soda bread was nothing like any I’d ever had before. It had a texture that clearly made it a soda bread but had a moistness that I’ve not seen in a soda bread. In addition, Mrs. B’s soda bread had plump white raisins in it. I asked her if she’d share the recipe with me and she did so, here it is. If you like soda bread, I’m betting that this is going to be your new soda bread recipe.


  • 5 cups sifted all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) softened butter
  • 2 cups white raisins, soaked in water for 15 minutes
  • 2 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs slightly beaten


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Generously butter 2 (9×5-inch) bread pans.
  • Stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
  • Cut in the softened butter and mix thoroughly with your hands.
  • Stir in raisins.
  • Add eggs and buttermilk to flour. Stir until well-moistened.
  • Add to bread pans.
  • Bake for 1 hour.
  • Cool in bread pans for 3-5 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to cool.