Delicious Homemade Irish Bread Recipe

My dear readers, I humbly present to you a quintessential recipe of Ireland – Rooney’s Irish Bread. The traditional Irish soda bread is a staple in every Irish household and has become an international sensation. This recipe has been passed down for generations in the Rooney family and it is my honor to share it with you.

This bread is what I believe the perfect representation of Irish cuisine, simple but delicious. It requires only a few basic ingredients that when combined is transformed into a hearty loaf of bread that can be enjoyed any time of day. The combination of flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, milk, and eggs makes the perfect base for this bread.

As you sink your teeth into this authentic Irish bread, the texture will crumble in your mouth yet leave hints of raisins and caraway seeds that’ll make you close your eyes to savor each bite. You won’t be able to resist eating it straight out of the oven smothered in butter or jam.

So let us all join hands and embrace the authentic flavors of Ireland through Rooney’s Irish Bread recipe.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Rooney's Irish Bread
Rooney’s Irish Bread

As a chef specializing in British cuisine, let me tell you, dear reader, why you’ll love Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe.

First and foremost, this traditional Irish soda bread recipe is incredibly easy to make with only a few ingredients that you likely already have in your pantry. No need to fuss over complicated bread dough or wait for hours on end for it to rise. Simply mix the ingredients together and pop it into the oven. It’s the perfect recipe for beginner bakers or anyone who wants fresh homemade bread without the extra effort.

Secondly, this recipe produces one of the best loaves of Irish soda bread that you will ever taste. With its slightly crusty exterior and soft, tender crumb studded with raisins and fragrant caraway seeds, this bread is an absolute delight to eat. The sweetness of the raisins combined with the subtle licorice flavor of the caraway makes every bite feel like a party in your mouth.

Finally, not only does this recipe taste fantastic, but it’s also versatile enough to adapt to any occasion or preference. Serve it alongside a hearty beef stew for a warming winter meal or as part of a sweet brunch spread. You can even skip the raisins and caraway seeds for a more plain loaf that pairs perfectly with butter and jam.

In conclusion, I highly recommend this Irish Bread Recipe as it delivers authentic Irish soda bread right to your table with minimal effort involved. Regardless if you are an avid baker or someone who just loves good food, you won’t be disappointed with Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe.

Ingredient List

 Engulf in the aroma of baked Rooney's Irish Bread from my kitchen!
Engulf in the aroma of baked Rooney’s Irish Bread from my kitchen!

Gather These Simple Ingredients For A Delicious Irish Soda Bread Recipe

Before we get started, let’s make sure we have all the necessary ingredients for this Rooney’s Irish Bread recipe. You’ll need:

  • 4 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of shortening
  • 1 cup of raisins
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 and 1/4 cups of milk

Optional ingredients:
– Caraway seeds (for an authentic Irish flavor)

Note: If you’re looking to make a traditional Irish soda bread, use brown sugar instead of white sugar and add in some whole wheat flour.

Tip: Make sure to measure your ingredients accurately for a perfect loaf!

The Recipe How-To

 This bread is a perfect addition to your morning routine.
This bread is a perfect addition to your morning routine.

Now that you have gathered all the needed ingredients, let’s start making Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe. Make sure your hands are clean and your work surface is ready.

Step 1: Preheat the oven and prepare the baking pan

Preheat your oven to 375°F. Take your loaf pan and lightly grease it with a bit of shortening or butter, then dust with some flour. Alternatively, line the bread pan with parchment paper.

Step 2: Mix dry ingredients

In a mixing bowl, sift two cups of flour and add in one teaspoon baking powder, one teaspoon baking soda, one teaspoon salt, and ½ cup sugar. Mix the dry ingredients well.

Step 3: Add in shortening and raisins

Add in 1 cup of raisins and mix well this dry mixture. Take another bowl and cream together the ½ cup of shortening and add in dry ingredients.

Step 4: Mix wet ingredients

In another separate bowl, beat two eggs then mix in 1 2/3 cups of milk.

Step 5: Combine wet and dry

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredient mixture then pour in the combined wet ingredients into the well. Then mix thoroughly until smooth using spatula or wooden spoon.

Step 6: Pour batter into pan

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, filling it about three-quarters full, then level it out to avoid lumps forming on top.

Step 7: Bake

Bake for approximately one hour at 375°F. To test if it is done, insert a toothpick or a thin knife into the center of the bread. If it comes out clean, then your Rooney’s Irish Bread is ready.

Step 8: Cool, slice & serve

Take it out from the loaf pan and let cool on a wire rack. Then, slice the bread and serve it with butter, jam, honey or anything you like. It’s best if served warm, right out of the oven.

Now that you have followed all the steps and procedures properly, enjoy your freshly baked brown bread loaf!

Substitutions and Variations

 The golden crust and soft texture will melt your heart away.
The golden crust and soft texture will melt your heart away.

Of course, every recipe can be tailored to suit personal preferences or dietary restrictions. In the case of Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe, there are a few substitutions and variations that can be made!

Firstly, if you are unable to have dairy, you can easily use a non-dairy milk substitute in this recipe without compromising the flavor or texture of the bread. Additionally, if eggs are not an option for you, they can be omitted from the recipe altogether.

For those who do not enjoy raisins, you may want to consider substituting them with other dried fruit such as cranberries or apricots instead. You could also add a handful of chopped nuts for some extra crunch.

Shortening can be substituted with butter or margarine if you prefer, but it is important to note that this will subtly alter the taste of the bread. Similarly, you can use whole wheat flour in place of all-purpose flour for a heartier loaf.

Lastly, if you’re feeling adventurous and want to experiment with different flavors, try adding caraway seeds or even some grated orange zest to the dough before baking for a unique twist on traditional Irish soda bread.

Whatever your preferences may be, don’t be afraid to get creative with this recipe – after all, baking is as much an art as it is a science!

Serving and Pairing

 Perfect for a cozy evening by the fireside.
Perfect for a cozy evening by the fireside.

Once you’ve baked a delightful loaf of Rooney’s Irish Bread, it’s time to serve it up in a traditional and authentic way. Irish Soda Bread is best served when it is warm and fresh out of the oven. The aroma of the bread is fetching, and the taste- even more gratifying.

I recommend serving sliced thin with a generous amount of creamy butter slathered over the top. It is an excellent accompaniment for Breakfast or a traditional Irish meal.

If you’re looking to pair it up with classic stews or soups, then look no further. Soups like corn chowder, tomato soup go exceptionally well with soda bread. Each slurp and bite would complement the other in unison.

I also recommend Rooney’s Irish Bread with tea or coffee as it serves as an ideal mid-morning snack or afternoon pick-me-up. Toast a couple of slices to have with your tea, and your afternoon tea will turn into something close to perfect!

In conclusion, Rooney’s Irish Bread adds flavor to any meal when paired correctly. With its exceptional taste and versatility, it’s the perfect addition to include in your day-to-day meals.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Invite your friends over and enjoy a warm slice of bread over a cup of tea.
Invite your friends over and enjoy a warm slice of bread over a cup of tea.

As with many bread recipes, Rooney’s Irish Bread can be made ahead of time and stored for later. To make things easier, I suggest preparing the dough in advance and storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. This will allow the dough to develop extra flavor and texture as the ingredients meld together.

When you’re ready to bake the bread, simply remove it from the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for about an hour before shaping and placing it in the oven.

If you happen to have leftover bread or want to make a larger batch for future occasions, storing is fairly simple. Store your baked Rooney’s Irish Bread in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days. To extend its shelf life, store it in the refrigerator for up to five days.

For reheating, preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Wrap the loaf in aluminum foil and place it on a baking sheet. Bake for about 10-15 minutes or until heated through. You can also slice the bread into individual portions before reheating if desired.

Remember that Rooney’s Irish Bread is best enjoyed freshly baked or warmed. Avoid reheating too many times as this may cause the bread to dry out or lose its texture.

Tips for Perfect Results

 A classic recipe with a modern twist.
A classic recipe with a modern twist.

As an experienced British chef, I have tried several recipes of Irish soda bread. Here are some of my tips to make this Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe perfect:

Firstly, because the dough is quite sticky, I encourage you to knead the dough on a floured surface. It makes it easier to shape and place into the cast iron skillet or loaf pan. When shaping the dough into a round shape, use a light touch and do not overwork the mixture, or it can come out too dense.

Secondly, many people prefer to bake their Irish breads with traditional ingredients such as caraway seeds and raisins. However, if you’re not a fan of either ingredient, you may omit them completely or swap them with other ingredients that would better appeal to your taste buds.

Thirdly, let the bread cool down after baking before slicing it. Although many people can’t resist freshly baked bread aroma right from the oven, cutting it prematurely can make it crumble or even break apart.

Furthermore, soda bread without buttermilk will come out denser than if made with buttermilk. Be sure not to overwork the dough when mixing in liquid and dry ingredients. Place the loaf immediately in a hot oven, so the baking powder reacts quickly through heat.

Fourthly, for an authentic Irish soda bread flavor profile, you can use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour. And for extra health benefits and a crunchy crust, sprinkle the top with oatmeal flakes before popping it into the oven.

Lastly​, follow the recipe instructions thoroughly for perfect results. Do not shy away from experimenting with additional flavors and combining them with variations of traditional Irish brown bread or wheaten bread.

By following these tips and being adventurous in creating your own unique twist on this delicious classic recipe, you can be sure that Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe will become one of your favorites too.


As you prepare to bake this delicious Rooney Irish Bread recipe, you might have some questions in mind. In this section, I’ll address some of the frequently asked questions to help you achieve perfect results without any uncertainties or worries. Read on to find practical solutions and expert opinions that will elevate your bread-making experience.

What makes Irish bread different?

The distinct consistency of this bread is a product of an interaction between acid and baking soda that creates tiny pockets of carbon dioxide within the dough.

What is the most popular bread in Ireland?

One of the most well-known and highly regarded types of Irish bread is Irish wheaten or “Brown Bread.” It’s a household staple in most homes throughout the island and can be served with a variety of dishes due to its versatility.

Why is Irish soda bread so good?

By combining baking soda with acidic buttermilk, kneading is not necessary to achieve a nice rise in this simple bread recipe. Although commonly unadorned, the addition of ingredients such as caraway seeds or dried fruit can add an extra layer of flavor.

How do the Irish eat Irish soda bread?

When it comes to enjoying Irish soda bread, nothing beats the classic way of serving it warm with a generous slather of butter. As soon as you take a bite, you’ll be delighted by the savory taste and robust texture of this traditional treat. So go ahead, indulge in a slice and savor the delicious flavors that will surely satisfy your taste buds!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the Rooney’s Irish Bread recipe is a must-try for anyone who loves the authentic taste of traditional Irish soda bread. The perfect balance of flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder creates a soft and savory bread that pairs well with any dish. The addition of raisins in the recipe gives it a subtle sweetness and a unique texture that truly sets it apart from other bread recipes.

Whether you are a seasoned baker or just starting in the kitchen, this recipe is easy to follow and can be customized to your liking. So why not give it a try and impress your family and friends with your baking skills?

I highly recommend using quality ingredients such as fresh milk, eggs, shortening, and flour when making this bread. And don’t forget to try different variations such as adding caraway seeds or using whole wheat flour for a healthier option.

In conclusion, Rooney’s Irish Bread recipe is a winner that will bring warmth and comfort to any table. So go ahead and bake yourself a loaf today – I promise you won’t be disappointed!

Rooney's Irish Bread

Rooney’s Irish Bread Recipe

Passed down from my grandmother, this is a variation on traditional Irish Soda bread that is more accurately called a Railway Cake or Spotted Dog. This bread is more of a dessert cake and is best eaten fresh out of the oven with butter and a good cup of tea!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Irish
Keyword < 4 Hours, Breads, Breakfast, Brunch, Easy, European, Grains, High In..., Inexpensive, Scones, St. Patrick's Day
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings 1 loaf
Calories 577.4kcal


  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk


  • In a large bowl, mix together the baking powder, salt, sugar, and flour.
  • Rub in the shortening.
  • Add raisins.
  • Beat together the eggs and milk.
  • Add egg mixture to the dry mixture.
  • Mix together with your hands on a floured surface until well blended.
  • Roll to fit into a greased cast iron skillet.
  • Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes.
  • Turn down heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for another 30 to 35 minutes.
  • Serve warm.


Serving: 178g | Calories: 577.4kcal | Carbohydrates: 88.5g | Protein: 11.4g | Fat: 20.6g | Saturated Fat: 5.6g | Cholesterol: 66.3mg | Sodium: 793.5mg | Fiber: 2.9g | Sugar: 25.6g

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