Delicious Irish Soda Bread: Perfect for Whiskey Lovers

Are you ready to take a trip to Ireland from the comfort of your own kitchen? Then you’ve come to the right place! Today, I’ll be sharing with you my all-time favorite recipe for Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins. As a chef specializing in British cuisine, trust me when I say that this recipe is a must-try for anyone who wants to taste authentic Irish flavors.

What sets this soda bread recipe apart is the addition of whiskey-soaked raisins. The sweetness of the raisins mixed with the deep, earthy flavor of the whiskey complements the tangy taste of the soda bread perfectly. This recipe is so special to me because it has been passed down in my family for generations and has become a tradition in every St. Patrick’s Day celebration.

But don’t worry if you’re not Irish or if you have never tried making homemade bread before. This recipe is easy to follow, and with just a few simple ingredients, you’ll be able to create a delicious, traditional Irish bread that will impress everyone who takes a bite.

So, grab your apron and let’s get started on making this mouth-watering Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Nana's Irish Soda Bread With Whiskey Soaked Raisins
Nana’s Irish Soda Bread With Whiskey Soaked Raisins

If you’re looking for a unique twist on the classic Irish soda bread, look no further than Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe. This recipe has several standout features that will make it a favorite dish in your home.

Firstly, the whiskey-soaked raisins give this traditional bread a phenomenal flavor that is sure to impress. The raisins are soaked in Jameson Irish Whiskey for at least six hours, infusing them with an irresistible sweetness and creating a rich, boozy aroma that will fill your kitchen as you bake.

In addition to the whiskey-soaked raisins, this recipe also calls for sour cream and eggs, which add moisture and texture to the dough. The result is a dense, moist bread that is perfect for soaking up soups or stews or slathering with butter and jam.

Furthermore, the bread’s golden crust paired with its tender crumb will tantalize your taste buds. It has just the right amount of sweetness from honey, sugar, and raisins that complements any savory breakfast or brunch dish.

Finally, Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins is a versatile recipe that is easy to make with everyday ingredients found in your kitchen pantry. With minimal preparation time and just a few simple steps, you can have delicious homemade bread baked to perfection that adds warmth and comfort to any occasion.

Overall, this recipe offers an innovative twist on the traditional Irish soda bread. It’s flavorful, moist, dense, and easy to bake. The whiskey-soaked raisins add a delightful kick of complexity to the overall taste of the bread. Whether you’re celebrating St.Patrick’s Day or simply baking bread for your family on a chilly day, Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins promises to be nothing but pure satisfaction!

Ingredient List

 A warm slice of homemade Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey-Soaked Raisins
A warm slice of homemade Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey-Soaked Raisins


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

Sugar and Leavening Agents

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder


  • 1 teaspoon salt

Whiskey Soaked Raisins

  • 1/2 cup raisins (or dried currants)
  • 1 shot (about 1.5 oz) Irish whiskey, such as Jameson

Other Wet Ingredients

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup sour cream

Honey Butter Glaze

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey

The Recipe How-To

 Flavorful raisins infused with whiskey take your traditional soda bread to the next level
Flavorful raisins infused with whiskey take your traditional soda bread to the next level

Let’s get baking! Here’s how you can make my Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe.


  • 1 ½ cups of raisins (dried currants or golden raisins can be used as a substitute)
  • 1 shot glass full plus 1 tablespoon of Irish whiskey (Jameson is a great choice!)
  • 3 ½ cups of all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 4 tablespoons of cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 ½ cups of sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons of honey

Preparing the Whiskey Soaked Raisins:

In a small bowl, combine the raisins and the Irish whiskey. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to macerate overnight, or at least for six hours. When ready, drain the raisins and keep the remaining whiskey for later use.

Preparing the Dough:

Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and grease a baking sheet with butter. Then, in a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Cut in the butter until the mixture is crumbly.

In another bowl (or in your stand mixer), whisk together the egg, sour cream, and honey until smooth. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until everything is well incorporated. Finally, fold in the raisins.


Shape the dough into a round loaf about 8 inches in diameter on your greased baking sheet. Use a knife to score an “X” across the top of the loaf. Bake for about 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Finishing Touches:

While still hot, brush the bread with the reserved whiskey and 1 tablespoon of honey. Wrap in a clean kitchen towel and allow it to cool completely before slicing.

Congratulations! You’ve baked your first traditional Irish soda bread with whiskey soaked raisins. Enjoy creating memories with this homemade bread that’s perfect for any occasion!

Substitutions and Variations

 My Nana's Soda Bread recipe that has been passed down for generations
My Nana’s Soda Bread recipe that has been passed down for generations

Sometimes, you might be missing an ingredient at home or you might want to switch things up in your recipe. That’s why I’m happy to share with you some substitutions and variations for Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe.

First of all, if you can’t find sour cream or don’t like its taste, you can use plain Greek yogurt as a replacement. It will add moisture and richness to the mixture, just like sour cream would.

If you’re out of regular raisins or looking for a different texture, you could try using dried currants instead. They are smaller and less sweet than raisins but still provide that fruity flavor that complements the whiskey well.

To give this soda bread an extra kick of Irish whiskey flavor, you can add a shot more of Jameson to the soaked raisins mixture. Trust me; it will make a difference!

If you’re looking for a sweeter loaf of bread, increase the sugar amount to 1 cup instead of 1/2 cup. Alternatively, if you prefer a less sweet taste, reduce the sugar amount by half.

For those who prefer their bread without any alcohol content or don’t have any Irish whiskey in hand, you can substitute it with apple juice or orange juice. It won’t have quite the same effect as whiskey, but will still provide a fruity flavor to the raisins.

Lastly, while this recipe is traditionally made with all-purpose flour, feel free to use bread flour for a denser crumb and chewier texture. However, make sure not to over-knead when incorporating flour mixture into wet ingredients because that could toughen the dough.

With these substitutions and variations in mind, feel free to experiment and customize Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe to your liking!

Serving and Pairing

 The perfect crust with a soft, fluffy center in each slice
The perfect crust with a soft, fluffy center in each slice

Now that your nana’s Irish soda bread with whiskey soaked raisins is fully baked to perfection, it’s time to serve and enjoy! This bread is perfect when served warm, so I recommend slicing it right away and letting it cool for just a couple of minutes before serving.

One of the best ways to enjoy this bread is by simply slathering on some butter or jam. Alternatively, you can also try using flavored butters or spreads such as honey butter.

This bread has a deep whiskey flavor that pairs exceptionally well with fine cheeses, cured meats, and fruits. Consider serving this bread alongside some sliced apples, grapes, or a cheese board with a variety of soft and hard cheeses.

Also, you can enjoy this Irish delicacy with an Irish coffee or Jameson neat. The rich flavors of the whiskey in the bread complement these drinks perfectly.

Whether enjoyed as a snack, side dish, or dessert, this nana’s Irish soda bread is sure to please anyone who tries it. So gather your loved ones around the table and savor every bite of this delicious homemade bread with whiskey-soaked raisins.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A slice of this bread straight out of the oven is a taste of Ireland
A slice of this bread straight out of the oven is a taste of Ireland

You can easily make this Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe ahead of time without sacrificing its taste and quality. After baking, let it cool completely before wrapping it tightly in plastic wrap.

To store the bread, place it in an airtight container or wrap it again in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 3 days. You can also refrigerate it for up to a week or freeze it for up to 2 months. When ready to eat, let the bread come to room temperature before serving or reheating.

To reheat the bread, you can either slice and toast it or warm it in the oven. To toast, simply slice the bread into your desired thickness and toast it in a toaster or under the broiler for a few minutes until crispy. To warm in the oven, preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C), wrap the sliced bread loosely in foil, and bake for 5-10 minutes until heated through.

Reheat before serving to get that freshly baked taste back into the bread. Don’t forget to spread some whiskey butter on top for an added kick!

Tips for Perfect Results

 The aroma of fresh-baked soda bread and whiskey will fill your kitchen
The aroma of fresh-baked soda bread and whiskey will fill your kitchen

As an experienced chef, I know that baking can be a science. Baking soda and baking powder can have different reactions depending on the temperature of the oven and the ingredients used. To make sure your Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins turns out perfectly, take note of these tips.

Firstly, make sure to thoroughly soak the raisins in whiskey overnight for at least six hours. This will help add extra flavor and moisture to the bread. Drain the raisins well before adding them to the dough to prevent any excess moisture.

Next, use a traditional Irish soda bread recipe like this one, which includes sour cream and eggs for added richness and softness. Using quality ingredients such as Jameson Irish Whiskey and golden raisins will also enhance the flavor of your bread.

It’s important not to overwork the dough when mixing it together, as this can cause the bread to become tough. Mix all ingredients together until just combined, then knead gently and briefly until it forms a ball. Using too much flour or over-kneading will result in a denser loaf.

When baking, make sure to preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and bake for approximately 50-60 minutes until golden brown. You can test if it’s done by inserting a skewer or toothpick into the center of the loaf – if it comes out clean, your bread is ready!

Finally, be patient and allow your bread to cool completely before slicing into it. Fresh homemade bread is best enjoyed once cooled down a bit.

By following these tips, you’re sure to create a delicious, tender and flavorful Nana’s Irish Soda Bread With Whiskey Soaked Raisins that will impress anyone who tries it!


Now that we have learned about the ingredients, directions, and serving of Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe, let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions.

How long do you soak raisins before baking?

If you’re planning to use raisins in a recipe, it’s best to plump them up beforehand. One option is to soak the raisins in hot water or a little bit of the recipe’s liquid for about 10-15 minutes until they become plump. Afterward, make sure to pat them dry if you won’t be using the soaking liquid.

Is there a difference between soda bread and Irish soda bread?

When it comes to making Irish soda bread, there are a few variations between the American version and the authentic Irish recipe. Unlike soda breads made in America which often include caraway seeds and raisins, the traditional recipe from Ireland omits these ingredients altogether.

Why did my Irish soda bread fall apart?

When making traditional soda bread, an excessively crumbly texture can be caused by an overuse of flour and insufficient amounts of buttermilk. It’s essential to ensure accurate measurements by spooning and leveling the flour to avoid this issue.

What is the key ingredient in Irish soda bread that makes it different from other breads?

Soda bread’s distinctive texture is attributed to the chemical reaction between sour milk and baking soda, which creates tiny carbon dioxide bubbles within the dough. Additionally, the shape of soda bread holds significant cultural significance.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Nana’s Irish Soda Bread with Whiskey Soaked Raisins recipe is a must-try for anyone who loves homemade bread with a twist. The combination of traditional Irish soda bread with the added kick of whiskey-soaked raisins creates a unique and flavorful experience that will take your taste buds on a journey. The simple ingredient list and easy-to-follow recipe make it accessible for anyone to try, regardless of their baking experience.

Not only is this bread delicious, but it also holds a special place in Irish culture and history. Baking this soda bread allows us to honor our heritage and celebrate the traditions that have been passed down through generations.

Finally, I highly recommend giving this recipe a go, whether you’re looking for a perfect accompaniment to your morning coffee or an impressive addition to your dinner table. It’s time to put on some traditional Irish music, pour yourself a glass of Jameson, and get started on baking this delicious bread!

Nana's Irish Soda Bread With Whiskey Soaked Raisins

Nana’s Irish Soda Bread With Whiskey Soaked Raisins Recipe

Our family favorite Irish soda bread recipe! Cut into wedges and serve warm with fresh butter as a traditional side to hearty Irish fare such as Stew, Cottage or Shepherd's Pie, or Corned Beef Dinner. Also a tasty tea-time snack served with butter and a dab of marmalade or a drizzle of honey, or with a slice of smoked salmon. Enjoy!
Course Bread
Cuisine Irish
Keyword < 4 Hours, Breads, Easy, European, Healthy, Kid-Friendly, Lunch, Quick Breads, Scottish, St. Patrick's Day, Weeknight
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Servings 1 round loaf Irish Soda Bread
Calories 3605.9kcal


  • 1 cup raisins (or dried currants)
  • 4 tablespoons Irish whiskey (1 shot glass full plus 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pint sour cream
  • 2 eggs


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • In a small saucepan or in the microwave, bring the whiskey and honey to a boil and add the raisins or currants. Cover and off the heat. Set aside and let steep.
  • Butter a round 1 1/2 to 2 quart baking dish, set aside.
  • Add the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl; use a wire whisk to combine.
  • In a small bowl, beat the eggs and stir in the sour cream, mixing well to combine.
  • Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture, stir well with a wooden spoon (batter will be thick).
  • Stir in the whiskey-soaked raisins or currants (along with the whiskey-honey they were steeped in); blend well.
  • Turn batter into the prepared baking dish.
  • Dust the top with flour and pat the batter evenly in the pan with your hands.
  • Use a sharp knife to make a cross on the top.
  • Bake for 50 minutes in preheated 350 F oven.
  • Remove to a rack and let cool for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a serving dish. Cut into wedges and serve warm with real butter.


Serving: 1320g | Calories: 3605.9kcal | Carbohydrates: 570.6g | Protein: 71.8g | Fat: 105.2g | Saturated Fat: 56.8g | Cholesterol: 611.2mg | Sodium: 3635.5mg | Fiber: 17.2g | Sugar: 209g

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