Irish Soda Bread Muffins

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Preparation info

  • Makes


    Standard Muffins
    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Modern Baker

The Modern Baker

By Nick Malgieri

Published 2008

  • About

Real Irish soda bread is made from nothing more than flour, baking soda, salt, and buttermilk. Fancier versions include a little butter and sugar for flavor and tenderness, or maybe a few raisins and/or caraway seeds, but real soda bread has nothing to do with the cakelike commercial versions. I’m using my friend and colleague Cara Tannenbaum’s technique for mixing a muffin batter starting with melted butter—you just add all the ingredients one at a time and they’re in the oven in no time.


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (spoon flour into a dry-measure cup and level off)
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, optional
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • cups buttermilk
  • ¾ cup dark raisins or currants tossed with 1 tablespoon flour
  • One 12-cavity muffin pan with paper liners


  1. Set a rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Combine the Hour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and caraway seeds, if using, in a mixing bowl and stir well to combine.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar. Whisk in the egg and ½ the buttermilk. Use a large rubber spatula to gently stir ½ the flour mixture into the liquid. Stir in the remaining buttermilk.
  4. Stir in the raisins followed by the remaining Hour mixture.
  5. Divide the batter equally among the cavities in the muffin pan. Bake the muffins until they are well risen and feel firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. Cool the muffins in the pan on a rack.


Perfect for breakfast or brunch, these muffins are best spread with a little butter and/or marmalade.


Keep the muffins loosely covered with plastic wrap on the day they are baked. Wrap tightly and freeze for longer storage. If frozen, defrost at room temperature and reheat at 350°F (180°C) for 5 minutes, then cool before serving.