The Little Leprechaun Loaf

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Irish soda bread


The leprechauns sneak up on me every year. After I devour my stash of dark chocolate fudge and truffles, I completely forget that another holiday falls between Valentine’s Day and Easter! Maybe if St. Patrick’s Day involved candy and cookies instead of corned beef and cabbage, I’d remember the date a little better…  


But this year, a high school friend reminded me an entire week ahead of time! She posted pictures of her homemade Irish soda bread on Facebook, which I drooled over for a good 10 minutes before searching for a recipe.


I found an easy one, and just 45 minutes later, I pulled my little loaf out of the oven. After carving out a thick wedge for myself, I sliced a thinner piece for any visiting leprechauns… I didn’t want them to think I forgot about them again this year!


Irish soda bread


Irish Soda Bread

Yield: 1 loaf

Serving Size: 1/6 of loaf

Irish Soda Bread

modified from CL’s recipe

This bread is so easy to make and takes barely any time to prepare! Just mix up the dough and pop it in the oven before starting to cook dinner, and it’ll be ready by the time you serve your meal.

1 c all-purpose flour
1 c whole-wheat flour
¾ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 c buttermilk (see note)

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°, and lightly coat a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the center, and pour in the buttermilk, stirring just until incorporated. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface, and knead 4-5 times. Shape into a 8”-round loaf, and place onto the prepared cookie sheet.
  3. Score the loaf by cutting a ¼”-deep X into the top. Bake at 450° for 15 minutes before turning down the temperature to 400° and baking for another 15 minutes, or until the bread sounds hollow when tapped. (Do not open the oven when turning down the temperature!!) Cool on the pan for 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Note: I didn’t have any buttermilk on hand, so I substituted with 1 c vanilla soy milk and 1 tbsp lemon juice. It turned out sweeter than the original recipe, which I liked even better!

View Nutrition Facts


Irish soda bread


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  1. Beth says on March 15, 2013 at 11:33 pm

    Finally – a bread recipe so easy, I have no excuse not to try it!

    • foods for the soul says on March 16, 2013 at 3:51 pm

      5 ingredients and no kneading — it doesn’t get any simpler than this! Just be careful when you pull it out of the oven… It’s so tempting to eat the entire loaf all in one sitting!

  2. Amanda says on March 16, 2013 at 10:11 am

    It tastes so good! Thanks for the taste test (I love Irish soda bread!). =)

    • foods for the soul says on March 16, 2013 at 3:51 pm

      You’re welcome! I’m glad you enjoyed it. I still want to try making your sourdough bread too!

  3. Brittany says on March 16, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    I have never ever ever everrr had Irish soda bread!! I need to change that!

    • foods for the soul says on March 16, 2013 at 3:52 pm

      I agree — change that soon! :] I hadn’t had Irish soda bread before I baked this loaf, but now I’m looking for any excuse to make it again. I may try to do mini loaves (or rolls) the next time… Portion control goes out the window when it comes to me and bread products!

  4. Nancy/SpicieFoodie says on March 17, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    I’ve wanted to make Irish soda bread for such a long time. You’d think I remember when St. Patrick’s day rolls around but I always forget. I can’t believe it only took you 45 — that’s great! Thanks for sharing, I’m going to pin it.

    • foods for the soul says on March 17, 2013 at 12:44 pm

      Me too! I had wanted to make Irish soda bread last year, but I didn’t have any time before St. Patrick’s Day. This particular recipe is so short and simple that it would be delicious any night of the week, so maybe you won’t have to wait for the holiday to bake a loaf after all!

  5. Yvonne @ bitter baker says on March 17, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    You know, I don’t know how it’s possible, but I’ve never had Irish soda bread before, looks awesome though, gotta try it! From the ingredients it seems like it’d be very similar to how we make our scones in Sweden (we rarely make sweet scones). Happy St. Patty’s Day!

    • foods for the soul says on March 17, 2013 at 5:31 pm

      I hadn’t realized that other people make scones that aren’t sweet! I have to try that sometime. If you try the Irish soda bread, I hope you enjoy it! And happy St. Patrick’s Day to you too!

  6. Marianne says on March 17, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    the loaf looks lovely …surely you meant to write bicarbonate of soda and not baking powder…?

    • foods for the soul says on March 17, 2013 at 7:01 pm

      Oh my — yes you’re right! Thank you so much for catching that. I must have been too distracted by the visiting leprechauns to type the recipe correctly… ;] All fixed now!

  7. felicia sullivan says on March 18, 2013 at 10:07 am

    OOOH! Love this :)

    • foods for the soul says on March 18, 2013 at 12:03 pm

      Thank you! I loved it too. I ate three servings the first day, then finished it off the next. It’s hard to beat good homemade bread!

  8. laurasmess says on April 6, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    Yum, what a beautiful loaf! I love the fact that this recipe doesn’t contain yeast… so good to be able to bake it within the hour! I’ll have to give it a go! Thanks for sharing (love your blog, by the way!) x

    • foods for the soul says on April 6, 2013 at 6:34 pm

      Thank you! I loved that it didn’t contain any yeast either, so I didn’t have to wait hours until I could enjoy the bread. I hope you like it!

  9. Lauren says on January 18, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    Amy, this is a great simple recipe. I love your photography. It looks beautiful. I am going to try a vegan version of this with raisins and orange zest. Thank you so much for the wonderful inspiration.

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