This is a fast and simple Amish Friendship Bread variation based on Ina Garten’s Irish Soda Bread recipe. This recipe post contains affiliate links, so if you click and/or make a purchase, the Friendship Bread Kitchen may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.
Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day! This Irish Soda Amish Friendship Bread recipe is super easy AND super fast, with no rise time or excessive kneading required. Everything goes into one bowl, making clean up a snap. Check out the video and if you decide to give this recipe a try, you’ll have bread on your table in a little over an hour.
The first thing to do is preheat your oven to 375° F (190° C) with a rack placed in the middle of the oven. If you are going to use a baking sheet, put it aside. If you prefer to bake your bread in a cast iron skillet or Dutch oven, place them inside the oven now to preheat. If you use your cast iron skillet regularly to cook food, make sure there is no excess oil in the skillet or it will smoke in your oven while your bread is baking (boo!).
Sourdough/bread loaf recipes using Amish Friendship Bread starter take a bit longer to bake, so to prevent over browning on the bottom of the loaf, I add an empty baking sheet below the rack I will be using.
Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in the bowl of your electric mixer (you can mix by hand, too). Use the paddle attachment and set the speed to low, incorporating all the dry ingredients for a few seconds. Add the chilled cubed butter and continue mixing on low until the butter is mixed into the flour.
In a large measuring cup, use a fork or small whisk to beat the Amish Friendship Bread starter, buttermilk, egg, and orange zest. Slowly add to flour mixture and continue to mix on low speed.
Dust a large cutting board or work surface with flour. Toss 1 cup of Zante currants in the flour on the board and then add to the dough mixture. You can also use 1 cup of raisins or 2 teaspoons of caraway seeds, or skip the add-ins altogether.
Turn out the dough onto your work surface–it will be sticky. Knead a couple of times as you shape a round loaf.
Take a sheet of parchment paper and get it wet. Squeeze out the excess moisture, then place the dough ball onto the parchment paper. This will give a little steam to your bread when it goes into the oven and also make it easy to transfer.
Lightly cut an “X” into the top of your bread, then use the parchment paper to transfer the bread to a baking sheet. If you’re using a preheated skillet or Dutch oven, open the oven CAREFULLY and pull out the skillet or Dutch oven (wear oven-proof mitts, it’ll be hot). Place the parchment paper and bread in the center of the skillet or Dutch oven.
Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick or wooden skewer comes out clean. The bread will make a hollow sound when you tap on it. If your bread starts to over brown before it’s finished baking, loosely tent some foil on top of it, shiny side up. Move the bread to a baking rack to cool.
Now for the hard part. You HAVE to let the bread fully cool, at least an hour or two, before slicing into it. If you cut into it too soon, it will be gummy on the inside, and that would be a bummer. I promise it will be worth the wait!
This tastes even better the next day, lightly toasted with a generous smear of butter. Enjoy, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Irish Soda Amish Friendship Bread
- Preheat oven to 375° F (190° C). If using a cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven, place inside of oven. If using a baking sheet, set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, combiner flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Use the paddle attachment to mix, then add the chilled cubes of butter until butter is incorporated into the flour.
- In a large measuring cup, lightly beat starter, buttermilk, egg, and orange zest.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the starter mixture into the flour mixture.
- Flour a work surface or cutting board. Toss the currants in the flour on the board, then add the currants into the dough.
- Dump the dough onto the floured board and knead to form a round loaf.
- Take a sheet of parchment paper and wet it. Wring out the excess moisture and place the dough ball on top. Lightly slice an “X” into the top of the dough with a serrated knife.
- Hold the ends of the parchment paper to transfer the dough to baking sheet. If using a preheated cast iron skillet or Dutch oven, carefully add the dough and parchment paper into the center. Careful, it will be hot!
- Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean. When you tap on the loaf, it should sound hollow.
- Allow to fully cool on baking rack before slicing. Enjoy!
- The damp parchment paper will create a little steam while baking, resulting in a crisper crust.
- To avoid over-browning the bottom of your bread, insert an empty baking sheet on the rack below the bread.
- If your bread begins to brown too quickly while baking, loosely tent some foil above it, shiny side up. Don’t remove your bread from the oven, just open the oven door and drop the foil on top.
- Allow the bread to fully cool before slicing, at least one hour (some folks swear by two). This is important, otherwise your bread may end up gummy on the inside if you cut into it too early.
>> Have you tried this? Share your best pic with us or leave a comment below and let us know how it worked for you!