Breakfast

Easy Irish Soda Bread Scones

These easy Irish soda bread scones are a sweet twist on a classic Irish bread recipe. Tender and soft inside, delicate crunchy top, and sweet and chewy currants. They pair exceptionally well with sweet or savory toppings, making them a versatile addition to breakfast, brunch, or your St patricks Day celebration.

The months are flying by, aren’t they? March is a few days away, and spring and Easter are just around the corner!

But first things first. St. Patties Day is a few weeks away. I mean, what’s not to love with all the folklore and fun surrounding this lucky green holiday? Do you celebrate?

I do…with food, lol. Although, I was stumped about what I was going to make. I was going back and forth about making something sweet or savory for the longest time, and my sweet tooth took over!

So let me quickly point out these scones are not a traditional Irish recipe, yet they are a spin-off from the traditional Irish soda bread made into scones! Also known as bannocks. All the similar ingredients are there; I only tweaked a few things.

And I know you’ll love these scones because they can be used as the foundation to make different variations. Not to mention, they are easy and quick to make and can be made ahead.

Ingredients Notes And Substitutions

Ingredients for Irish soda bread scones

All-purpose flour ~ you can substitute both fours in this recipe for a 1:1 gluten-free flour

Whole wheat flour ~ I use both white and wheat flour to achieve a balanced texture.

Egg ~ will bind everything together.

Buttermilk ~ is a key ingredient in Irish scones. It activates with the baking soda to give them a light and fluffy texture. If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, fear not! Check out my DIY buttermilk in the recipe card below.

Brown & white sugar ~ I use both sugars in this recipe for taste and texture.

Baking soda & baking powder ~ yes, baking soda is a key ingredient in Irish ‘Soda” scones; however, I also add baking powder for extra rise and texture.

Currants ~ or raisins, are the traditional dried fruit. See below for my delicious variations if you want to veer off the traditional recipe.

Helpful Tips For Successful Irish Scones

  • Use cold ingredients
  • When using a knife or cutter to shape your scones, always cut straight down without twisting or “sawing’ through the dough.
  • Chill the dough before baking. It will help cook the scones evenly and prevent them from spreading.
example of how the dough should look
Cut outs of the Irish soda bread scones

Make Ahead And Storage

  • To make ahead and freeze ~ once the scones are shaped, place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze until firm. Then, transfer them to an air-tight container or freezer bag. Scones can be frozen for up to 1 month for best results.
  • To make ahead and refrigerate ~ once shaped, store on a parchment-lined baking sheet with plastic wrap.

While these scones are undoubtedly best enjoyed fresh, you can store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days.

Variations For These Irish Scones

Feel free to get creative with this recipe. The basic dough serves as a blank canvas for your culinary imagination.

Sweet ~ Mix and match with different dried or fresh fruits. Add in various nuts for texture and crunch.

Savory ~ Use herbs such as rosemary, thyme, or chives. Mix and match with cheeses! parmesan, asiago, or whatever you have on hand. Hard or semi-hard cheeses will work best.

close up of Irish soda bread scones

How To Make Easy Irish Soda Bread Scones

Here is a quick run-through: Find the full instructions, tips, and ingredients in a printable recipe card below

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder, brown and white sugar, and salt. Whisk the dry ingredients together. Add the cold cubed butter, and work the butter into the flour using your fingers or a pastry cutter.
  2. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg, and vanilla until just combined. Add the lemon zest and currants, incorporating them into the dough carefully. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface.
  3. With floured hands, pat the dough into a round disc, approximately 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Use a cutter to cut straight down without twisting the cutter. (twisting will seal the edges and won’t allow the scone to rise) Place the scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet, about 2 inches apart, and allow to chill for at least 15 min.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 15-20 minutes or until the scones have a golden-brown crust. Keep an eye on them to prevent over-baking. Once baked, remove the scones from the oven and let them cool slightly. Serve warm with butter, clotted cream, or your favorite jam.
Sheet pan of Irish soda bread scones
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Easy Irish Soda Bread Scones


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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Teri Wallingford
  • Total Time: 30 minutes – does not include chill time
  • Yield: 8 1x

Description

These easy Irish soda bread scones are a sweet twist on a classic Irish bread recipe. Tender and crumbly with sweet and chewy currants. They pair exceptionally well with sweet or savory toppings, making them a versatile addition to breakfast, brunch, or your St patricks Day celebration.


Ingredients

Units Scale

For Irish Soda Bread Scones

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons ) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon or orange zest, depending on your taste preference
  • 2/3 to 3/4 cup currants or raisins
  • Egg wash ( 1 egg plus 1 tablespoon of water) Optional, and is for brushing scones before baking.
  • Turbinado sugar for sprinkling. Optional. You can substitute brown or white sugar.


Instructions

For the Irish soda bread scones

  1. Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together combine the all-purpose flour,  baking soda, baking powder, brown and white sugar, and salt. 
  3. Add the cold cubed butter, and work the butter into the flour using your fingers or a pastry cutter.  until the butter resembles the size of peas. See the photo above.
  4. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg, lemon zest, and vanilla.
  5. Add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture. Mix lightly with a fork until just combined. Add the currants, incorporating them into the dough carefully.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. With floured hands, pat the dough into a round disc, approximately 3/4 to 1 inch thick. *See note below for various cutting options
  7. Use a cutter to cut straight down without twisting the cutter. (twisting will seal the edges and won’t allow the scone to rise) Place the scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet, about 2 inches apart, and allow to chill for at least 15 min. **See the note below for make-ahead options.
  8. Lightly brush the tops of the scones with the egg wash and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until the scones have a golden-brown crust. Cool slightly, and serve warm with butter, clotted cream, or your favorite jam.

Notes

* Cookie cutter variations. Square, round, you choose!  Or form the dough into a circle 3/4 to 1 inch thick and cut into wedges. Please note depending on the size of the cutter you use or the thickness of the dough will determine how many scones you will yield.

**To make ahead and freeze ~ once the scones are shaped, place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze until firm. Then, transfer them to an air-tight container or freezer bag. Scones can be frozen for up to 1 month for best results.

To make ahead and refrigerate ~ once shaped, store on a parchment-lined baking sheet with plastic wrap 

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Irish Inspired

2 Comments

  1. Paula Beckley

    Tried this with dried cranberries. Quite good!






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