The Foodie Dietitian Blog

Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread

A St. Patrick’s Day classic, this Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread replaces half the grains with whole grains and half the butter with Greek yogurt. Tastes as delicious as the original – you won’t know this version is better for you! 

A St. Patrick's Day classic, this Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread replaces half the grains with whole grains and half the butter with Greek yogurt. Tastes as delicious as the original - you won't know this version is better for you! | @TheFoodieDietitianI feel like I get the best of both worlds being Irish and Italian. I get the red sauce and the pasta, and the Guinness and the corned beed (in my case cabbage and turnips) and Irish soda bread! Pretty lucky, I know. Growing up, we used to get together every St. Patrick’s Day at my grandparents’ house and I have memories of playing Irish folk music and hanging out on the patio. Today, I try to continue the tradition of gathering loved ones on this holiday by making a big ol’ crockpot of corned beef and cabbage and inviting friends over for a Irish feast.

Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread | @TheFoodieDietitian

Now any good Irish girl knows that St. Patty’s Day is not complete without Irish soda bread and every year I make the same soda bread recipe. But this year, I thought I’d change things up a bit and create a healthier version of the classic recipe.

Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread | @TheFoodieDietitian

This recipe has got half whole grains! Can I get a heck yeahhh for fiber? It’s also got half the amount of butter originally called for and I replaced it with Greek yogurt (hello, protein!). I feel much better eating this version for breakfast alongside some hard boiled eggs knowing that I’m getting double the protein and some added fiber. Now that’s a breakfast with some serious staying power. Plus, it tastes as good as the original. By using white whole-wheat flour, you really can’t detect a taste difference. If anything, I think it tastes just a bit heartier.

Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread | @TheFoodieDietitian

Whenever I make Irish soda bread, I always ask myself why I only make it once a year. It’s SO easy. This is one of those breads that doesn’t require you to rise-punch-rise and take 24 hours to make. With Irish soda bread, there’s no yeast required. In fact, the bread rises by a chemical reaction between the baking soda and the acidic buttermilk.

Whole Wheat Soda Bread | @TheFoodieDietitian Print
Whole Grain Irish Soda Bread | @TheFoodieDietitian

Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread

  • Yield: 1 loaf or 6-8 servings

Ingredients

  • 5 tbsp butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups white whole-wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp caraway seeds
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Melt 4 tbsp butter with buttermilk in a small sauce pan over medium-low heat. Set aside to cool.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, add flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, caraway seeds, and raisins.
  4. Add the buttermilk/butter mixture to the dry ingredients and mix together. Fold the yogurt into the dough.
  5. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface. Knead for 30-60 seconds and form into a round loaf. Lightly cut a cross in the top of the loaf with a serrated knife. Melt 1 tbsp butter and brush melted butter all over the loaf.
  6. Transfer loaf to a baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool and Serve warm or at room temperature.

This bread is delicious with just a spread of Irish butter and maybe a little homemade jam for good measure.

Irish Soda Bread | @TheFoodieDietitian Tell me, do you make Irish soda bread for St. Patrick’s Day? Have you ever tried a whole-wheat version?

Try some of my other St. Paddy’s Day recipes!

IMG_1464

Irish Lentil Guinness Stew

Superfood Shamrock Smoothie | @TheFoodieDietitian

Superfood Shamrock Smoothie

Vegan Cauliflower Colcannon-6-2

Vegan Cauliflower Colcannon-

I’m a nutrition coach and yoga teacher helping people to learn to love food again. I love cooking, taking pictures of my food and traveling around the world. Follow my blog for delicious, seasonal vegetarian recipes and simple strategies to bring more yoga and mindfulness into your life. And check out my e-book to learn how to improve your health through nutrition and yoga. Show me what deliciousness you make! Tag me @karalydonRD on Instagram.

Comments

  1. I made this, with some modifications, and it came out great! I used 1/2 whole wheat flour and 1/2 quick cook oats. The texture was very dense (but still bready- not like a bagel), hearty, and moist- definitely not as light as a traditional soda bread, but still very yummy. I also left out the sugar- I made it to go with a savory dinner, and found that the raisins added enough sweetness for my taste.
    All this being said, I really enjoyed this recipe, will definitely make again!

  2. Would like to try this recipe. But how much is “g”? Don’t know these amounts.

  3. Where can I find the nutritional info fir this recipe?

  4. Yum! This looks so good, I would love a piece right now!

  5. What a great recipe! Just pinned, my husband will LOVE this!!

  6. Look forward to trying this for St. Pat’s Day. Thanks for posting.

  7. Loraine Foster-Brame

    I like making small amounts daily – using 100% whole meal flour and 0% fat Greek yogurt:-

    225g whole meal flour
    130g 0% fat Greek yogurt
    1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    1/2 tsp sea salt
    1/2 tsp sugar

    Mmmmm – try serving with butter, jam and a little yogurt on top.

  8. Tande Moreau

    I made this yesterday and it makes a beautiful loaf. It was moist and delicious. I used non fat Greek yogurt. Thanks for this healthier option to make Irish soda bread. It was great with our corned beef and cabbage!

  9. leah bouquard

    Hey I tried this recipe today. I modified it a little by using all whole wheat flour, 1 tablespoon of honey instead of the sugar, whey instead of the buttermilk and an additional half cup of dried cranberries. I also made two loaves instead of one. It turned out pretty good. Thanks for posting!

  10. Maggie Condon

    This recipe looks amazing, can’t wait to try! But before I do, can I sub plain non-fat Greek yogurt instead of the low-fat variety?

    • Thanks, Maggie. I personally recommend sticking with the low-fat Greek yogurt since you’re eliminating a good amount of fat by swapping out the butter. But, I think you’d be fine using non fat yogurt if that’s your yogurt of choice.

  11. Irish Soda Bread is the absolute best bread in the world, in my opinion. I look forward to my mom’s Irish soda bread like no other – I’m obsessed! I love your recipe and this makes me crave it right now! Can’t wait 🙂

  12. Oh goodness! I can almost taste this right through my laptop screen!

  13. What a gorgeous loaf! And love how you used Greek Yogurt. I have a soda bread recipe I’m trying on Friday, but am pinning to try this one soon after. Making the corned beef & cabbage too – love having it once a year just like we used to do in the Shea household! Happy St Paddy’s Day to you guys!

    • Thanks, Jenny! Will you share the soda bread recipe you’re trying? I love experimenting with new versions. So fun – enjoy your weekend and your Irish feast! My grandmother’s maiden name is actually Shea. Maybe we’re related 😉

  14. I love, love, love Irish Soda bread but have NEVER made it. Not once! As much as I love to cook, I’m not really a baker, I hate the idea of having to measure ingredients precisely 🙂 This whole wheat version looks great- maybe I’ll get into the kitchen this week and give it a shot for Saturday!

    • Woot Woot! It’s ridiculously easy to make. So refreshing when you don’t feel like making a yeast bread that takes foreverrr. Enjoy! Let me know how it turns out if you end up making it.

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