Perfectly Moist Irish Wheaten Bread

Perfectly Moist Irish Wheaten Bread

laracucina 2

"My husband, a native Northern Irishman, loves this bread with a bowl of tomato and lentil soup or with butter and cheese or jelly. It really is so easy to make and comes out perfectly every time! I hope you will enjoy it too!"

Ingredients 1 h 15 m {{adjustedServings}} servings 275 cals

Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 10 servings



Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 275 kcal
  • 14%
  • Fat:
  • 11.2 g
  • 17%
  • Carbs:
  • 37.6g
  • 12%
  • Protein:
  • 7.9 g
  • 16%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 2 mg
  • < 1%
  • Sodium:
  • 556 mg
  • 22%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Prepare a shallow baking pan with cooking spray.
  2. Sift together the bread flour, whole wheat flour, salt, baking soda, and 2 teaspoons sugar in a bowl. Cut the margarine into the flour mixture until pieces are nearly indistinguishable. Make a well in the center of the mixture and pour in the oil and buttermilk. Stir with a spatula until dry mixture is completely moistened. Move the dough to a lightly-floured surface. Lightly knead the dough for no more than 1 minute. Place the dough into the prepared pan; pat down and around to form a round loaf. Cut a cross into the top of the loaf with your finger. Brush the top with 1 tablespoon buttermilk; sprinkle 1 teaspoon sugar over the top of the loaf.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C); rotate pan and bake another 30 minutes.
  4. Allow loaf to cool on a wire rack before slicing.
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Reviews 48

  1. 55 Ratings


Excellent recipe! As a native Belfast man I can recommend this as perfect Wheaten bread. Texture and consistency just right! Didn't quite see the point of brushing with buttermilk or sprinkling with sugar prior to baking but it did no harm anyway. There is absolutely no need to bake this within a pan and certainly this is something I have never heard of or come across before! I formed the cake round onto a lightly floured Pizza baking stone. Again, cutting the pre-baked bread with a finger is new to me and does not quite give the quartered effect achievable by knife. Just make sure to cut no more than 1/3 to 1/2 way through to give the splendid quartering or 'flowering' effect desired on all wheaten or soda breads. I used Olive Oil in lieu of vegetable and butter instead of margarine. Buttermilk is not usually in one's pantry so you can add a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice to regular milk to substitute for buttermilk. Dry mix can be purchased. The mixture stays easily on a pizza stone for baking. This ensures the bread 'free-forms' as it should without using a spray buttered pan. I have uploaded two photos. Photo #7 shows the consistency of the pre-baked bread and #8 shows the finished product. Serve with Irish smoked salmon. UPDATE: 17th Mar 2011 I deleted some info to include this... Reviewers have mentioned the bread as being "too crumbly". Today I added 1 egg to the mixture and found it to be "tighter". See Photo #10 for the texture after egg addition.


I was very happy with how this recipe turned out and will definitely make it again. I had never heard of wheaten and was a bit concerned by the lack of yeast or rising time in the recipe. I did an internet search and found out that in wheaten (aka brown Irish soda bread), the buttermilk and baking soda cause the bread to rise during baking. The bread doubled in size during baking and had the consistency of cornbread; in fact, we had it with chili and it was excellent. It would be great with any meal that you'd typically have bread as an accompaniment. The dough was sticky and did not lend itself well to being free formed on a flat pan. I used the bottom of a ceramic tortilla warmer as a pan. A round cake pan would probably work well, too. I used 2 TB butter instead of 1/4 cup margarine, reduced the oil to 1/8th of a cup, and used low fat buttermilk. The bread was still very moist and did not feel or taste "low-fat". I also did not sprinkle sugar on top before baking as I wanted a more savory bread.


This is exactly the bread I loved while visiting Ireland. Our group of four lived on cheese and brown bread from Jack's in Killorglin, County Kerry and were disappointed not to be able to bring extra home. Now I can make it myself -- despite the fact that I have always been a total failure at bread baking!