Easy to make, hearty and flavorful gluten-free Irish Soda Bread that goes great alongside any meal. We enjoy it around St. Patrick’s Day and throughout the year!If you are looking for an easy to make, yeast-free bread that is great to serve with soup, gluten-free chili, gluten-free beef stew, or any hearty main dish, this gluten-free Irish Soda Bread would be a great choice!
I think I only had Irish Soda bread once or twice before going gluten-free. Since mastering this recipe, I’ve had several times in the past year and it’s a yearly gluten-free St. Patrick’s Day meal tradition!A few years ago I made three Irish Soda Bread recipes to bring to a potluck. Everyone tried them and gave me feedback and this one was the clear winner.
I’ve made it with the Zante currants and without – it is great both ways. I preferred using Zante currants over raisins, since they are smaller, but you could also use raisins. I’ve got texture issues with raisins!
We really enjoyed this served with butter or honey butter too. YUM!
Let’s talk about what you need for making this easy gluten-free Irish Soda Bread.
Notes on ingredients for this Gluten-free Irish Soda Bread:
- Flour: I’ve tested this with three different gluten-free flour blends with great success. Maninis Multi-Purpose Flour Blend, gfJules all-purpose gluten-free flour (buy direct) or from Amazon here, and with Gluten Free Mama’s all-purpose almond flour blend available from Amazon with success too!
- If the gluten-free flour blend you use already has xanthan gum or guar gum in it, then omit the xanthan gum called for in this recipe.
- Raisins or Currants: You can use raisins or currants. I opted to use Zante currants. They are made from tiny grapes and I’ve found that while I dislike raisins, I do like Zante currants. Why? They are so small that they add just a bit of flavor without a weird mushy texture that you can get from raisins. They can sometimes be found in a box near the raisins and dried cranberries at your local store, though I admit I had to go to 2 stores before I could find them here locally! You can also order online – I get them here at nuts.com now. Amazon also carries these Zante currants. Note that Zante currants are not actually currants, which is why I specified what they are called.
- Buttermilk: Buttermilk in the U.S. is gluten-free. If you don’t wish to buy buttermilk, you can make your own buttermilk at home.
While the dough with gfJules was a little stickier to work with, I honestly couldn’t tell any taste or texture difference in the baked loaves. I can definitely recommend you use whichever flour blend you have access to or want to order.
I highly suspect that other good quality gluten-free flour blends will work well in this recipe as well. I just wanted to specifically mention the ones I’ve tested it with so far. I simply cannot test every blend available, but please do try with your favorite blend and comment to let others know!
After you shape your dough into a smooth mound, you’ll brush it with a mixture of buttermilk and butter. Then you’ll cut a cross or an X into it.
Why is there a cross cut into Irish Soda Bread?
There are several reasons why a cross or an x is cut into a loaf of Irish Soda bread before baking. First, there is a baking benefit to this. Since the dough is shaped into a smooth mound, the center is very thick compared to the rest of the bread, and it would be easy for it to remain uncooked. The cross helps the heat reach the center, and allows the loaf to grow and expand as it bakes.
The second reason why a cross is cut into a loaf is for symbolism. Some felt that a cross would ward off evil spirits or would help them be blessed.
I think you’ll be blessed with how delicious this is actually!
I recommend baking your loaf on a cookie sheet with a sheet or parchment paper on it. If you don’t use parchment paper yet when you bake, I highly recommend it!
With most recipes, using parchment paper saves you from having to grease any pans at all, plus no cleaning up! You can buy these pre-cut parchment paper sheets from Amazon.
Our small group from church has a potluck dinner each year near St. Patrick’s Day. I was asked to bring this gluten-free Irish Soda bread again this year, and thankfully I made two loaves, because it all got eaten! A couple of the other people in the group are wheat-free, but the rest are all “regular” eaters and all loved the bread. You definitely won’t miss the gluten in this!
This is a great choice for your gluten-free St. Patrick’s Day dinner. It would be great served with this gluten-free Corned Beef in the slow cooker if you’ve got that on the menu. Honestly, I haven’t even planned the rest of my St. Patrick’s Day menu, but I do know I’ll be making this bread again!
What are some other yeast-free breads I recommend you make soon? I’m glad you asked! 😉 I make these gluten-free buttermilk biscuits to have with breakfast or dinner and love them! My gluten-free cornbread is a huge hit for many families I know!
If you try this, I’d love to hear what flour blend you used successfully and what you served your delicious loaf with! Enjoy!
If you make a loaf of Irish Soda Bread and love it, please come back and give this recipe a 5 star rating in the recipe card! Feel free to comment with tips or to share any successful substitutions you made.
Gluten-free Irish Soda Bread Recipe:
* If the gluten-free flour blend you use already has xanthan gum or guar gum in it, then omit the xanthan gum called for in this recipe. Recipe tested successfully with Maninis Multi-Purpose Flour Blend and gfJules flour blend. I recommend either one and link to where to buy in the recipe post. Recipe slightly adapted from Maninis Gluten Free blog. As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
For brushing on loaf:
* If the gluten-free flour blend you use already has xanthan gum or guar gum in it, then omit the xanthan gum called for in this recipe.
Recipe tested successfully with Maninis Multi-Purpose Flour Blend and gfJules flour blend. I recommend either one and link to where to buy in the recipe post.
Recipe slightly adapted from Maninis Gluten Free blog.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Pics and a bit of text updated March 2019.
I hope you and your family enjoy this gf Irish Soda Bread as much as my family!