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Chef John's Irish Soda Bread

Rated as 4.59 out of 5 Stars

"St. Patrick's Day is right around the corner, and what better way to celebrate than with a loaf or two of Irish soda bread? If made correctly, this is one of the best quick breads (those leavened without yeast) you'll ever have. Subtly sweet, with a light, tender crumb, and not at all dry. You can use quick-cooking oats in place of rolled oats, if desired."
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1 h 45 m servings 195
Original recipe yields 16 servings (2 loaves)


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  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.
  2. Whisk all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a bowl. Cut butter into flour mixture using a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal.
  3. Beat buttermilk, egg, honey, and orange zest together in a bowl. Pour buttermilk mixture, currants, and raisins into flour mixture; stir with a wooden spoon until a wet, sticky dough comes together.
  4. Turn dough out onto a well-floured work surface; press dough together into a soft ball of dough and cut into 2 pieces. Form each half into a smooth, round loaf. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and let rest for 15 minutes. Cut a 1/2-inch deep "X" into the top of each loaf with a serrated knife.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown and fragrant, about 45 minutes. Transfer loaves to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 195 calories; 3.9 36 5.1 20 382 Full nutrition

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  1. 87 Ratings

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Most helpful positive review

I have been wanting to try out this recipe ever since Chef John uploaded it to YouTube. I finally got around to making it a few evenings ago. This is my first time making bread and may I just sa...

Most helpful critical review

I made the recipe pretty much as written. I increased whole wheat flour to 1 cup and decreased all purpose to 2 3/4 cups. The dough was so wet and unmanageable. I had to dust frequently with flo...

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I have been wanting to try out this recipe ever since Chef John uploaded it to YouTube. I finally got around to making it a few evenings ago. This is my first time making bread and may I just sa...

Followed the directions exactly, and it had a great crunchy crust while remaining moist on the inside. Flavour-wise, it was the perfect balance of subtle sweetness with refreshing orange tangine...

For the all star Canada Cooks event I made Chef John's Irish Soda Bread using yogurt instead of buttermilk which made it very moist and delicious. I think this is a good bread to have at a lunch...

I've been obsessed with Irish soda bread since getting some from a local bakery around St. Patty's. This recipe was outstanding, even with a few modifications. I love oats, so added an extra 1/...

This will be my go-to recipe for Irish Soda Bread. The orange zest is a wonderful addition! I used King Arthur's White Whole Wheat Flour in place of the all-purpose flour, and it worked great.

Someone should tell "kathy g" dried currants are black and life's too short to be so bitter. Great recipe John thanks!

I don't bake much, just started making a few loaves of bread this year. And I don't recall eating Irish soda bread anywhere recently so I can't compare my creation to anybody else's. That said, ...

Great flavor and it was very moist. I made exactly as the recipe stated. The video was very helpful too.

First of all, what a surprising taste! Although it had raisins (no currents out here in rural America) it had an overall lovely, sweet taste. It was super easy to make and Chef John's suggestio...